© 2022 All Rights reserved WUSF
Play Live Radio
Next Up:
Available On Air Stations

Army Corps Will Resume Flushing Water From Lake Okeechobee

NASA (Wikimedia Commons)

Water releases from Lake Okeechobee toward both Florida coasts will resume Friday amid political backlash and a toxic algae bloom.

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers flushes water from the lake to reduce pressure on its aging dike. In a statement Thursday, Col. Jason Kirk said Okeechobee's rising water levels pose a major flood risk to nearby communities.

Coastal communities say the discharges spread toxic algae, threatening tourism and health.

Senate and gubernatorial candidates in both parties have made the discharges a campaign issue in a crucial election year.

The Trump administration has approved a new Everglades reservoir to store more water south from the lake, but Congress must approve those plans.

Gov. Rick Scott issued an emergency order Monday giving state agencies more resources to respond to the algae.

Copyright 2018 Health News Florida

Dale Hokrein is the Digital News Editor for WUSF Public Media and Health News Florida.
WUSF 89.7 depends on donors for the funding it takes to provide you the most trusted source of news and information here in town, across our state, and around the world. Support WUSF now by giving monthly, or make a one-time donation online.