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Sanibel Mayor Responds to Lake Okeechobee Releases

After a water release from Lake Okeechobee discolored the beaches of Sanibel, Mayor Kevin Ruane has something to say.

“The City of Sanibel is requesting immediate relief for the Caloosahatchee estuary from the damaging high-volume discharges from Lake Okeechobee,” he wrote in a letter to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers Thursday.

The letter detailed how the runoff was impacting tourism, quality of life, and the local economy.

HelloSWFL talked to the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, who said the rivers toward Miami and Part St. Lucie can’t handle as much water flow as the Caloosahatchee River. By pushing the water out our way, they’re saving thousands of people’s homes around Lake Okeechobee from flooding.

These three photos give an idea of how the water color has changed over the past week and a half:

Read the full letter to the South Florida Water Management District here .

Read the full letter to the U.S. Army Corps of Marines here .

More 360 images of Sanibel beaches can be found online here .

This story is developing. Check back at the end of the day, June 8, for more.

RELATED: Lake Okeechobee Water Release Discolors Sanibel Island Waters