By Ethan Colbert
Despite the rainfall last weekend, one of Bowling green’s two reservoir lakes is at a critical level, according to city officials.
City of Bowling Green Public Works Director Bo Stinnett presented information to the Bowling Green Board of Alderman Monday evening regarding Lake No. 2, which is also known as West Lake.
The water level within the 28-acre lake is about 8 to 10 feet below where Stinnett said it should be. The city’s other lake, the 38-acre Jack Floyd Memorial Lake, is nearing critical status.
“The dry summer and fall have started taking its toll on us,” Stinnett said. The city’s public works director said he and other members of the department are not waiting for “Mother Nature to fill the lakes back up.”
“Right now, we are running our deep wells to try and help build the water level back up,” Stinnett said in his presentation to the city’s governing board. “However, each of our deep water wells are only pumping about 30 gallons a minute back into the lakes. With our water usage, though, we are running backwards rather than forwards.”
During Monday night’s meeting, the Board of Aldermen voted 5-0 in favor of repairing one deep water well that had stopped working due to faulty equipment.
To help refill the city’s fresh water supply, the public works department may look to pump additional water from Mark Twain Lake and from the Clarence Cannon Dam to Bowling Green. The city has an existing contract with the Clarence Cannon Dam and will be able to pump water to Bowling Green under that contract.
“We have seen it before, where the lake levels get so low that it is very hard to catch back up again,” Stinnett said. “We don’t want to get to that point.”
Stinnett also said that as the city continues to grow, city leaders must be mindful of the strain that the growth will put on the city’s reservoirs.
“Over the past year, we have seen several new houses and several new service lines,” Stinnett said. “This is something that we are all going to need to monitor and watch. There may come a time when we need to look at alternative water supplies for the city or we are going to constantly be banking on Mother Nature to not let us run dry.”
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