Lake Belton is under a Stage 2 Drought Warning.
The Brazos River Authority informed customers accessing water from Lake Belton that due to declining water levels, a Stage 2 Drought Warning has been declared.
Lake Belton provides surface water to the following customers:
- The Cities of Temple, Belton, Gatesville, Harker Heights, and McGregor
- Fort Gates, 439, The Grove, and Bluebonnet Water Supply Corporations
- Bell County Water Control and Improvement District No. 1
- Coryell City Water Supply District
- SLR Property I, LP
- Wildflower Country Club, Inc.
As a result of the ongoing drought conditions, the BRA has notified each of its Lake Belton customers that Stage 2 conservation measures are required to help extend water supplies. At the Stage 2 Drought Warning, BRA requires a 10 percent reduction in water use that would have occurred in the absence of any drought contingency measures.
The Stage 2 Drought Warning is part of the Brazos River Authority's Drought Contingency Plan (DCP). This DCP, which is required by the state, is intended to help preserve and extend water supplies during drought conditions and includes strategies for temporary supply and demand management.
The DCP has four conditions, or stages, ranging from 1-4 in level of severity. Each stage is tied to a corresponding reservoir lake, storage, or Palmer Hydrologic Drought Index (PHDI) level. These are referred to as "trigger" levels.
When a reservoir or subsystem drops below its Stage 1 trigger level, the BRA implements a Stage 1 Drought Watch, where customers and the public are made aware of developing drought conditions. During Stage 1, there is a recommended voluntary five percent reduction in water use that would have occurred under normal conditions.
A Stage 1 – Drought Watch was established for Lake Belton on March 17, 2022. Since then, Lake Belton has dropped below its Stage 2 Drought Warning trigger of 578.7 feet mean sea level.
Should dry conditions continue to the Stage 3 trigger level, a Drought Emergency condition would be initiated with a water use reduction target of 20 percent or greater, depending on conditions at that time.
Should drought conditions continue, Under Stage 4 Pro Rata Curtailment, the general process under which the BRA will make water available is in accordance with Texas Water Code §11.039. BRA will meet with its customers to determine measures to be implemented to reduce water use and extend available supplies within the reservoir.
The BRA continually monitors weather forecasts, streamflow and lake levels throughout the Brazos River basin. All Brazos River Authority system reservoirs are under some level of the Drought Contingency Plan.
The BRA reminds everyone that these extreme conditions are impacting water supplies and urges all to begin implementing conservation measures as directed by their water provider.
A copy of the Brazos River Authority's Drought Contingency Plan can be found at the following web address www.brazos.org/DCP or by contacting the BRA at (254) 761-3100.