Lake levels dropping as reservoirs thirst for rain

In just a few weeks our reservoirs are down a couple of billion gallons with little to no relief in sight from the tropics.

The two large reservoirs along the Rio Grande, Amistad and Falcon, rely on runoff from the watershed in northern and northeastern Mexico. The Rio Grande Valley finds itself at the mercy of both Mother Nature and the government of Mexico since our neighbor controls the water flowing through the water shed. Mexico owes the U.S. billions of gallons of water it is supposed to release from upstream tributaries; this is governed by a treaty with the U.S.

A good tropical event like hurricane Alex back in 2010 can always do the trick and fill up our thirsty lakes in a flash but there are no storms forecast to come this way and the long range forecast is calling for a slow year in tropical development.

The water already in the lakes is controlled by engineers and dams but the valley's municipal and agricultural water needs must be met. This hot weather also accelerates evaporation. The reservoirs are basically giant puddles and like any puddle the bright south Texas sun can boil them down quick.