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'Evaporation losses are at zero': Recent rainfall increases lake levels

Posted at 6:25 PM, Sep 15, 2023

CENTRAL TEXAS — We’ve been seeing a pretty good amount of rain across Central Texas the past couple days.

That rainfall is starting to help out our surrounding lakes.

Some lake levels are rising, but even though we’ve seen some rain, the Brazos River Authority said that doesn’t mean the drought is over.

“We were seeing evaporation losses on the order of, you know half an inch to 0.7 inches per day,” said Aaron Abel with the Brazos River Authority.

Those are numbers from just a few days ago. The Brazos River Authority said now with the rainfall we’ve seen this week evaporation losses are in the negative.

“Those evaporation losses are at zero or negative. You know because water is actually falling into the reservoirs,” Abel said.

25 News Meteorologist Josh Johns said the rain fell right where it was needed to help out the watersheds.

“I'm going to show you something a little nerdy here just to show how we can track. This is called stream flow and for instance, we look at the rivers that flow into the lake," Josh said.

Lake Whitney has seen a three to four inch rise, Belton Lake rose eight-tenths of an inch and Limestone rose one inch. But Abel said most of the rain we get is getting saturated into the ground, and not producing runoff.

“We’re gonna have to see you know continued rainfall over weeks to months, you know kind of on the level that we saw this week to really start seeing the stream flows rise and then also the water moving downstream into the reservoirs,” Abel said.

The rain is promising but they still need to build up water supply, Abel said. He encourages people to continue monitoring their water usage.