Aug. 9, 2018

SFWMD Emergency Actions Making Progress to Lower Water Levels and Move Additional Water South
Latest video update highlights District's actions to mitigate high water emergency
Click on the image to watch the latest video update from SFWMD Chief Engineer John Mitnik given to SFWMD's Governing Board today about current water conditions and actions being taken to lower regional water levels.
West Palm Beach, FL - The South Florida Water Management District (SFWMD) has been working around the clock to lower water levels in the water conservation areas to create capacity for sending additional Lake Okeechobee water south, all in an effort to alleviate South Florida's high water emergency.
SFWMD Chief Engineer John Mitnik gave an update on the District's operations through the agency's weekly video series, which is dedicated to informing the public on current water conditions and the agency's actions amid the high water emergency. The video update can be seen by clicking HERE or visiting the District's website dedicated to the emergency situation at
In the video, Mitnik briefs SFWMD's Governing Board at its regular monthly business meeting about the latest water conditions and actions being taken to lower water levels. Rainfall in June and July was about average or slightly below average, allowing the District to utilize several measures to move water. Mitnik showed in his update how the measures being used have lowered water levels in all three conservation areas and are continuing to lower those levels to make room to move water from Lake Okeechobee south.

Click on the image to watch a video on the use of temporary pumps to help lower regional water levels.
May's record rainfall caused Lake Okeechobee to rise more than a foot, which led the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers to begin releases from the lake on June 1 to the northern estuaries. At the same time, this record rainfall inundated the water conservation areas, causing them to rise considerably above their regulation schedules. To combat this, SFWMD continues to take every action within its authority to lower water levels, including storing water on public and private lands. Additionally, every available structure is being utilized and temporary pumps have been installed to move additional water.
As more measures are implemented, details will be available on the Managing High Water website.
Online channels to learn more about efforts to lower water levels
Media Contact: 
Randy Smith  |    |  Office: 561-682-2800  |  Cell: 561-389-3386
The South Florida Water Management District is a regional governmental agency that manages the water resources in the southern part of the state. It is the oldest and largest of the state's five water management districts. Our mission is to protect South Florida's water resources by balancing and improving flood control, water supply, water quality and natural systems.

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