WXXI AM News

Lake Ontario regulators report water levels higher than usual

Feb 19, 2019

Credit Alex Crichton / WXXI News

According to the International Lake Ontario - St. Lawrence River Board, Lake Ontario is more than a foot higher than usual for this time of year.

Keith Koralewski with the Army Corps of Engineers says, we're not alone. "Most of the Great Lakes are currently above average," he said by phone.

But, he says, there's no way to tell yet if we'll see a repeat of the 2017 floods along the south shore of the lake, which caused property damage and loss of homes and businesses. He says the current levels are largely due to heavy precipitation, which could change over the next few months.

"Most of the Great Lakes are, right now, currently above average."

He says the current levels are largely due to heavy precipitation, which could change over the next few months.

"If we see lower supplies," he said, "we’ll see levels go down." Although high precipitation has been linked to climate change, he says it's too soon to tell whether this is a trend which will continue.

In an attempt to regulate the high levels, Koralewski says the amount of water being let out of Lake Ontario is higher than average as well.