Save Deep Creek Lake Petition

DEEP CREEK WATER LEVEL PETITION

We are a group of concerned Deep Creek Lake boat and dock owners who have, in recent years solely because of low water levels, lost the ability to use our boats during the beautiful months of September and October. While some boat and dock owners on the main body of the lake may not be as affected by this reduction in water levels, those of us who have our docks in the coves are greatly impacted by the significant decrease in water levels.

After considerable research we have found that water levels are determined by established state guidelines that regulate the water levels for Deep Creek Lake during the year. The water levels must remain between two “Rule Bands” with the higher level at 2,461 and the lower level at 2,455 feet above sea level (see below).

Brookfield Power, who acquired the use permit from Reliant Energy in April 2005 (see Deep Creek Lake History) and with it responsibility for regulating water releases from the lake, uses these same guidelines just as Reliant Energy did when determining the release of water through the dam during the year.

Brookfield, however, has released water to much lower levels and faster (still remaining within the Rule Bands), contrary to, Reliant Energy, who released the water more gradually during September and October and kept the lowest level during these months considerably higher than Brookfield Power. This permitted adequate water so all boat and dock owners were able to enjoy Deep Creek Lake well into October.

The water is released from the lake for several reasons:

1. To reduce the water level when it is above the regulated guidelines due to snow melt or rain.

2. To enable Brookfield Power to generate electricity, in accordance with the permit it has with the DNR, during those times of the year when the demand is highest (July and August) and Brookfield can enjoy the best price for the electricity generated.

3. To provide water to the Youghiogheny River for whitewater rafters.

4. To provide water to the Youghiogheny River for trout fisherman.

The first two reasons are mandated uses of the water realeases which we do not dispute in any way.

However, the excessive release of water for whitewater rafters and trout fishing is arbitrary and can be adjusted by Brookfield Power to previous levels and still provide the rafters and trout fisherman (see Brookfield Power Whitewater Trout Fishing Briefing).

We remember that only a couple of years ago we had adequate water in our coves well into October which allowed us the use of our boats through Autumn Glory. The previous power company kept the water levels within the state mandated guidelines BUT not at the lowest end of the allowed levels. That is why we see such a drop in the water levels now from a few years ago. We think Brookfield Power can do the same as the previous owner – it is really a matter of finding the right balance so all users of Deep Creek Lake and its waters can be satisfied!

We want Brookfield Power to release water more gradually for whitewater rafting and fishing on the Youghiogheny River so that all boat owners, including those who happen to have docks in coves, can still have the use of their boats through Autumn Glory just as was previously the case !

We pay DNR annual dock fees, we pay state registration fees for our boats and licensing fees to fish. Through our boating and fishing on the lake we support the businesses in the local community. We know we bring more income into the local community than the whitewater rafters and trout fisherman.

But we are not suggesting that water not be provided for whitewater rafters or trout fishermen. We know that the water can be released to levels that keep boating and fishing active on Deep Creek Lake AND still accommodate the whitewater rafters and trout fisherman because it has been done before!

We want water levels to be reduced more gradually in the fall of the year so we will have use of our boats through Autumn Glory!

I encourage each of you to visit our website for the latest data on the water levels -- please note the number of Non-Mandatory Releases by Brookfield Power of water from the lake. Our web site is: www.savedeepcreek.com. Please check frequently the water level in your area so you don't find too little water to operate or remove your boat!

I would like to encourage each of you to communicate directly with any officials you feel should hear our issues and who may be able to help us. I recommend you send a letter or an email to these officals and express your concern about the loss of lake water due to all the releases Brookfield Power makes which leaves us with unacceptably low water levels for boating purposes. Collectively, I don't think there is any group of people who contribute more to the lakeside econonmy than those who own property and/or use boats or PWC on Deep Creek Lake.

I have provided below the names and addresses of the Governor of Maryland, the Secretary of the Maryland Department of the Environment, and the Director of the Water Management Administration (within the MDE) for your consideration as key officials that should be able to help us if they can be convinced of the importance of the issue and the large number of folks affected. This is not an exhaustive list so feel free to communicate with whom you think can help. I also suggest you request they take a look at our web site. Here they are:

Governor Martin O'Malley, 100 State Circle, Annapolis, MD 21401-1925

www.governor.maryland.gov//mail (Just fill in a few fields of information then put a consise message in the block appearing under MESSAGE.)  

Secretary Robert M. Summers, Ph. D., Maryland Department of the Environment, 1800 Washington Blvd. Baltimore, MD 21230 

bsummers@mde.state.md.us  

Jay G. Sakai Director, Water Management Administration, Maryland Department of the Environment, 1800 Washington Blvd., Baltimore, MD 21230 

jsakai@mde.state.md.us

As always, you are encouraged to attend PRB meetings if you are available to see for yourself how matters are presented and discussed. 

We are making progress in having our concerns heard, however.  One of those who has visited our web site had the opportunity to raise this issue in person to Governor Martin O'Malley who, in turn, called the Secretary of the Maryland Department of the Environment.   The Secretary called this resident and they had a very productive discussion. The Secretary appears to understand the issue and expressed her appreciation for the manner in which we are approaching the issue.  The resident got the distinct impression the Secretary may be attending the meeting in September with the PRB. Through working together, we are supporting the PRB in their efforts to raise this issue to the highest levels of government in Maryland where our concerns will be heard.  Please do not stop your efforts to communicate with government officials, however, as we are not across the finish line yet but at least we can see it now!!  When it comes to this type of issue, more contact with government officials is better than less so keep the emails and letters flowing.

Together we believe we can make a difference on this important issue--we already have done so!  Thanks for your continued interest and support.

IF YOU AGREE WITH US – PLEASE:

FILL OUT THIS PETITION AND JOIN WITH US TO INSURE OUR LAKE USE THROUGH AUTUMN GLORY!

THANKS FOR CARING ABOUT THIS IMPORTANT ISSUE!

If you have any questions or concerns, please contact us at waterlevels@savedeepcreek.com

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      2,940 agree with petiiton to date * Required Entry
DCL Graphs & Data:
(Click Chart to Expand)
Lake Level Data
Weather Data
River Flow Rate Data
River Gage Height
River Temperature
Dam Release Matrix
(Click Column Header to Sort)
Last Change Date TimeLake LevelLast Change ON-OFFRelease No.FromToDuration Hrs.Change in Lake LevelRain In.Avg River Discharge cfsAvg River Gage Height ftAvg River Temperature deg CWhitewater ReleaseRiver Flow Release <40cfsTemperature Enhancement >25c
11/3/2016 6:00:00 AM2456.53ON197711/3/2016 6:00:00 AM   0.000.000.000.00   
11/2/2016 9:10:00 PM2456.54OFF197611/2/2016 9:10:00 PM11/3/2016 6:00:00 AM8.83-0.010.0056.600.0013.50   
11/2/2016 4:00:00 PM2456.56ON197511/2/2016 4:00:00 PM11/2/2016 9:10:00 PM5.17-0.020.0062.000.0013.80   
11/2/2016 11:10:00 AM2456.65OFF197411/2/2016 11:10:00 AM11/2/2016 4:00:00 PM4.83-0.090.0062.000.0013.80   
11/2/2016 6:00:00 AM2456.64ON197311/2/2016 6:00:00 AM11/2/2016 11:10:00 AM5.170.010.0062.000.0013.80   
9/19/2016 1:10:00 PM2457.96OFF19729/19/2016 1:10:00 PM11/2/2016 6:00:00 AM1048.83-1.320.0026.340.0016.10   
9/19/2016 10:00:00 AM2458.02ON19719/19/2016 10:00:00 AM9/19/2016 1:10:00 PM3.17-0.060.0014.000.0020.40XX 
9/16/2016 1:10:00 PM2458.05OFF19709/16/2016 1:10:00 PM9/19/2016 10:00:00 AM68.83-0.030.0012.060.0020.20   
9/16/2016 10:00:00 AM2458.08ON19699/16/2016 10:00:00 AM9/16/2016 1:10:00 PM3.17-0.030.0012.000.0019.50XX 
9/15/2016 1:10:00 PM2458.10OFF19689/15/2016 1:10:00 PM9/16/2016 10:00:00 AM20.83-0.020.0011.770.0020.50   
9/15/2016 10:00:00 AM2458.14ON19679/15/2016 10:00:00 AM9/15/2016 1:10:00 PM3.17-0.040.0013.000.0020.60XX 
9/14/2016 1:10:00 PM2458.17OFF19669/14/2016 1:10:00 PM9/15/2016 10:00:00 AM20.83-0.030.0013.130.0020.50   
9/14/2016 10:00:00 AM2458.24ON19659/14/2016 10:00:00 AM9/14/2016 1:10:00 PM3.17-0.070.0014.000.0020.20XX 
9/13/2016 1:10:00 PM2458.27OFF19649/13/2016 1:10:00 PM9/14/2016 10:00:00 AM20.83-0.030.0014.520.0020.20   
9/13/2016 10:00:00 AM2458.30ON19639/13/2016 10:00:00 AM9/13/2016 1:10:00 PM3.17-0.030.0015.000.0019.60XX 
9/12/2016 1:20:00 PM2458.33OFF19629/12/2016 1:20:00 PM9/13/2016 10:00:00 AM20.67-0.030.0016.010.0020.20   
9/12/2016 10:00:00 AM2458.36ON19619/12/2016 10:00:00 AM9/12/2016 1:20:00 PM3.33-0.030.0017.000.0020.60XX 
9/11/2016 4:20:00 AM2458.37OFF19609/11/2016 4:20:00 AM9/12/2016 10:00:00 AM29.67-0.010.0019.460.0022.00   
9/11/2016 4:10:00 AM2458.36ON19599/11/2016 4:10:00 AM9/11/2016 4:20:00 AM0.170.010.0021.000.0022.60 X 
9/10/2016 1:10:00 PM2458.39OFF19589/10/2016 1:10:00 PM9/11/2016 4:10:00 AM15-0.030.0021.540.0023.10   
9/10/2016 10:00:00 AM2458.43ON19579/10/2016 10:00:00 AM9/10/2016 1:10:00 PM3.17-0.040.0020.000.0022.50XX 
9/9/2016 1:10:00 PM2458.44OFF19569/9/2016 1:10:00 PM9/10/2016 10:00:00 AM20.83-0.010.0022.800.0023.10   
9/9/2016 10:00:00 AM2458.47ON19559/9/2016 10:00:00 AM9/9/2016 1:10:00 PM3.17-0.030.0027.000.0023.20XX 
9/5/2016 1:10:00 PM2458.53OFF19549/5/2016 1:10:00 PM9/9/2016 10:00:00 AM92.83-0.060.0018.130.0021.30   
9/5/2016 10:00:00 AM2458.60ON19539/5/2016 10:00:00 AM9/5/2016 1:10:00 PM3.17-0.070.0015.000.0020.00XX 
9/3/2016 1:10:00 PM2458.62OFF19529/3/2016 1:10:00 PM9/5/2016 10:00:00 AM44.83-0.020.0015.000.0020.00   
9/3/2016 10:00:00 AM2458.69ON19519/3/2016 10:00:00 AM9/3/2016 1:10:00 PM3.17-0.070.000.000.000.00X  
9/2/2016 1:30:00 PM2458.72OFF19509/2/2016 1:30:00 PM9/3/2016 10:00:00 AM20.5-0.030.000.000.000.00   
9/2/2016 10:00:00 AM2458.76ON19499/2/2016 10:00:00 AM9/2/2016 1:30:00 PM3.5-0.040.000.000.000.00X  
8/31/2016 1:00:00 PM2458.77OFF19488/31/2016 1:00:00 PM9/2/2016 10:00:00 AM45-0.010.0022.710.0021.90   
8/31/2016 11:10:00 AM2458.80ON19478/31/2016 11:10:00 AM8/31/2016 1:00:00 PM1.83-0.030.0027.000.0022.30 X 
8/30/2016 1:00:00 PM2458.84OFF19468/30/2016 1:00:00 PM8/31/2016 11:10:00 AM22.17-0.040.0035.480.0022.50   
8/30/2016 11:10:00 AM2458.85ON19458/30/2016 11:10:00 AM8/30/2016 1:00:00 PM1.83-0.010.0050.000.0022.40   
8/29/2016 2:10:00 PM2458.88OFF19448/29/2016 2:10:00 PM8/30/2016 11:10:00 AM21-0.030.0052.690.0023.80   
8/29/2016 11:00:00 AM2458.94ON19438/29/2016 11:00:00 AM8/29/2016 2:10:00 PM3.17-0.060.0032.000.0024.10XX 
8/28/2016 1:10:00 PM2458.94OFF19428/28/2016 1:10:00 PM8/29/2016 11:00:00 AM21.830.000.0021.050.0023.90   
8/28/2016 11:00:00 AM2458.97ON19418/28/2016 11:00:00 AM8/28/2016 1:10:00 PM2.17-0.030.0022.000.0023.40 X 
8/27/2016 2:10:00 PM2459.00OFF19408/27/2016 2:10:00 PM8/28/2016 11:00:00 AM20.83-0.030.0024.850.0023.50   
8/27/2016 11:00:00 AM2459.02ON19398/27/2016 11:00:00 AM8/27/2016 2:10:00 PM3.17-0.020.0029.000.0022.90XX 
8/26/2016 2:10:00 PM2459.02OFF19388/26/2016 2:10:00 PM8/27/2016 11:00:00 AM20.830.000.0028.940.0023.30   
8/26/2016 11:10:00 AM2459.05ON19378/26/2016 11:10:00 AM8/26/2016 2:10:00 PM3-0.030.0025.000.0022.40XX 
8/25/2016 4:10:00 PM2459.10OFF19368/25/2016 4:10:00 PM8/26/2016 11:10:00 AM19-0.050.0025.310.0022.80   
8/25/2016 3:20:00 PM2459.05ON19358/25/2016 3:20:00 PM8/25/2016 4:10:00 PM0.830.050.0024.000.0021.90 X 
8/25/2016 1:10:00 PM2459.10OFF19348/25/2016 1:10:00 PM8/25/2016 3:20:00 PM2.17-0.050.0024.000.0021.90   
8/25/2016 11:00:00 AM2459.11ON19338/25/2016 11:00:00 AM8/25/2016 1:10:00 PM2.17-0.010.0024.000.0021.90 X 
8/22/2016 2:10:00 PM2459.15OFF19328/22/2016 2:10:00 PM8/25/2016 11:00:00 AM68.83-0.040.0039.800.0020.80   
8/22/2016 11:00:00 AM2459.21ON19318/22/2016 11:00:00 AM8/22/2016 2:10:00 PM3.17-0.060.0060.000.0020.90X  
8/20/2016 2:10:00 PM2459.20OFF19308/20/2016 2:10:00 PM8/22/2016 11:00:00 AM44.830.010.0038.760.0022.50   
8/20/2016 11:10:00 AM2459.24ON19298/20/2016 11:10:00 AM8/20/2016 2:10:00 PM3-0.040.0037.000.0022.40XX 
8/19/2016 2:10:00 PM2459.26OFF19288/19/2016 2:10:00 PM8/20/2016 11:10:00 AM21-0.020.0044.050.0023.10   
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