Tides Turning at Tulare Lake, But Water to Remain for Some Time

Brian GermanAgri-Business, Water

Tulare Lake

After months of concerted efforts to mitigate flooding in the Tulare Lake region, state officials announced that the lake’s water levels have begun to recede. The positive results come as good news to communities that have been struggling with standing water since March. The Newsom Administration notes that state actions taken to curb flooding impacts have resulted in 66,692 acre-feet of water diverted away from Tulare Lake. Actions included executive orders and pre-emptive water management strategies.

Favorable weather conditions up until now have helped keep floodwaters manageable. State, local, and federal officials moved nearly 22 billion gallons of water as part of the flood mitigation efforts. Despite the flooding beginning to turn around, reports indicate that it could take years for the waters to completely recede. As of now, the lake is approximately the size of Lake Tahoe, measuring nearly 170 square miles.

The reformation of Tulare Lake has caused an overwhelming amount of damage to homes, farms, and other property. Estimates put agricultural losses around $140 million thus far. Approximately 90,000 acres of farmland in Kings County are reportedly under water. Cleanup efforts and damage assessments will be ongoing. State officials have indicated that work is underway to prepare for any further flooding.

Brian German
Ag News Director / AgNet West