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Water levels in all Great Lakes expected to remain at record highs

Posted at 8:22 AM, Feb 07, 2020
and last updated 2020-02-07 11:22:36-05

MILWAUKEE — Throughout the month of January, water levels in all Great Lakes were higher than they were in 2019. According to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, that likely won't be changing anytime soon.

The record high water level for Lake Michigan was set back in 1987, but in January, that record was broken. However, U.S. Army Corps of Engineers expect that record to get broken in the coming six months.

“It is likely that water levels on lakes Michigan and Huron will set new monthly mean record high levels over the next six months,” said John Allis, chief of the Great Lakes Hydraulics and Hydrology Office, Detroit District. “This sets the stage for coastal impacts and damages in 2020 similar to, or worse than, what was experienced last year.”

In a press release, the Corps is urging those impacted by high water levels in 2019, prepare for the same levels or even higher levels in 2020.

A recent Great Lakes six month forecast shows the water levels continuing to rise. These levels are expected to be well above average.

These abnormally high water levels are due to a consistent wet period across the Great Lakes basin. Additionally, the warmer than normal January temperatures led to more runoff and reduced evaporation across much of the basin.

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