Little Lehigh Creek Updates

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The Little Lehigh Creek is an important waterway running through the southern portion of the LCA service area. It is an essential water source for many of the communities we serve as well as a cherished recreational and natural asset. We will update this page with public information whenever the Little Lehigh is experiencing extraordinary conditions. Please e-mail us your pictures and observations for consideration.

 

Pennsylvania Lifts "Drought Watch" but LCA still watching!

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5/16/2017 - The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) has lifted the Drought Watch for all counties in the state. That means that water supply levels have returned to normal status state-wide for the first time since last summer's drought started.

Click here to read DEP's press release

Here in Lehigh County Authority's...

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Drought status moved to "watch;" conservation still urged

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The precipitation since the beginning of the year has convinced the DEP to step back our drought status to "watch" from "warning" in Lehigh County as well as our neighbor to the east, Northampton County.
 
However, it will take many more months of above-average precipitation to make up for the last two years of drought conditions....

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Updated status and graphs as of January 6, 2017

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Here’s a weekly report dated January 6 (PDF) to share updated data related to water supplies, Little Lehigh Creek levels and monitoring wall levels. Several of the graphs here update the ones we shared in November on this blog and show some minor improvement based on the steady heavy rains in late November and additional...

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Drought warning persists

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The Pennsylvania Department of Environmental Production (DEP) continues to have Lehigh County (as well as Northampton County and six others) in a drought warning. Read the news release from DEP.

As part of the drought warning, DEP is encouraging a voluntary water use reduction of 10-15 percent. LCA’s mid-summer usage of about 25 million gallons...

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Flow returning to Little Lehigh - pictures

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Water flow has returned to all sections of the Little Lehigh Creek since the steady rainfall in late November. Fortunately, precipitation has been steady since then – at least enough to keep the Little Lehigh flowing. Rain is in the forecast again the week of January 8, which is promising.

Here are two pictures from the...

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An interactive map of the Little Lehigh

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The map below illustrates how the Little Lehigh (dark blue) flows from Berks County and through our service area before eventually connecting with the Lehigh River in Allentown. Tributaries are in light blue. The red lines indicate transmission mains.

The map is interactive. Use the >> function in the map's upper left corner to turn on...

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Well conditions close to the Little Lehigh Creek

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Lehigh County Authority operates two wells close to the Little Lehigh: Well 8 and Well 12. Both of these wells continue to show normal water levels and are not approaching drought levels.

Data for Well 8 since January 2010 is below. You can see that the water level in the well has been fairly steady. This...

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Water source trends in the Little Lehigh Basin since the 1970s

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Where do we draw the water used across the Little Lehigh Basin?

The graph below shows how our water sources have changed over time. Back in 1977, water users in the Little Lehigh Basin were using 30 million gallons a day, most of which came from the City of Allentown’s sources: the Little Lehigh adjacent to...

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Little Lehigh Flow Rates in Allentown

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The U.S. Geological Survey monitors the flow of the Little Lehigh in two locations: one in the Little Lehigh Parkway at the “Robin Hood Bridge” just to the right as you drive down the hill into the park from 15th Street, and one at the 10th Street Bridge, just downstream from the City’s water...

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Conserving Water is Critical During “Drought Warning”

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Lehigh County Authority is monitoring conditions along the Little Lehigh Creek where water flow has dried up in some locations, but flowing fine (albeit low) in other locations. Reports indicate this is due to the limestone geology in this region where the creek flows in and out of the local groundwater aquifer. It...

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