Kissimmee-Okeechobee Everglades (KOE) Watershed

Everglades (KOE) Watershed
• Lake Okeechobee
Large, shallow eutrophic lake
Large feature of KOE watershed
669 sq miles
Average depth 2.7m
2nd largest freshwater lake in US (Lake Michigan is the
• Lake Okeechobee
• Drainage basin – 4600 sq miles
• Early accounts describe lake as filled to brim and
• Hurricane of 1928 – killed over 700 people
• Surrounded lake with mound of dirt (levee)
• Lake Okeechobee
• Once natural lake and wetland system
• Now functions as water supply and flood control
• Canals now drain through to the coasts
• Loss of wetlands surrounding the lake prevents
filtration of water leading to the lake
• Excess phosphorus and nitrates
• Then this excess can be leaked to the coasts
• Nutrient pollution
• Complex water
management in the region
• Due to high rainfall, periods
of drought, hurricanes, etc.
• Excess water stored in lakes,
detention ponds,
impoundments, aquifers, or
is discharged to the coast and
the estuaries
• Outflows from Lake
Okeechobee are received by
the St. Lucie River,
Caloosahatchee River, and the
Everglades Agricultural area
Historic and Current Flow of Water

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