A year after setting records, the amount of water flowing into Lake McConaughy has fallen to levels similar to the drought years of the last decade.
A report on current water supply conditions came Monday during The Central Nebraska Public Power and Irrigation District's monthly board meeting. The reservoir's level is falling slowly, with recent inflows around 500 cubic feet per second (cfs) -- about 42 percent of the historic average -- and outflows that have been around 800 cfs to satisfy downstream requirements.
Lake McConaughy's elevation was 10.8 feet below maximum elevation and 82.4 percent of capacity.
"Not much snow, warm temperatures and early snowmelt," said Cory Steinke, Central's civil engineer in charge of water operations as he summarized the situation. "Higher inflows this spring should have resulted from the tremendous amount of water that came down the North Platte River last year, but that hasn't happened."
In North Platte, officials have removed a temporary berm in Cody Park that was erected a year ago when the North Platte River spilled over its north bank.
The berm remained in place until recently in case it would be needed this year.