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  Oct 03, 2023

Hot, dry summer puts Keowee-Toxaway basin in Stage 1 drought

GREENVILLE, SC - October 3, 2023

The Keowee-Toxaway Drought Management Advisory Group (KT-DMAG) announced today that because of months of reduced rainfall and hot temperatures, and the U.S. Corps of Engineers (USACE) recently declaring Level 1 of their drought plan for the downstream federal projects, the Keowee-Toxaway (KT) River Basin has entered Stage 1 drought.

Stage 1 is the second of five drought stages outlined in the KT Low Inflow Protocol (LIP). Stage 0 was reached on Sept. 1, 2023.

Voluntary water conservation is recommended by water users across the basin.

Neighbors on Lake Keowee and Lake Jocassee who withdraw water for irrigation purposes are asked to voluntarily limit their water withdrawals to two days a week on Tuesdays and Saturdays.

Other large water users in the basin, as a goal, will adjust their practices to limit water withdrawals.

“This collaborative effort to ensure the availability of our region’s water resources embodies Greenville Water’s vision of Quality Water – Sustainable Future,” said Jeff Boss, CEO of Greenville Water. “We will continue to educate our customers on the responsible use of water and implementation of smart water conservation practices.”

The LIP is a regional drought management plan used by major water users in the Keowee-Toxaway river basin to share responsibility and set priorities for water conservation. The plan outlines specific actions for each stage.

Stages of the LIP are based on defined triggers, including reservoir storage and U.S. USACE Drought Plan status, the U.S. Drought Monitor and stream flow. These triggers are reviewed monthly. The KT- DMAG reviews these triggers monthly during drought conditions.

“The LIP is a coordinated effort to ensure we conserve our shared water resources by proactively planning and responding to changing conditions,” explained Ed Bruce, Duke Energy’s KT-DMAG Coordinator. “Residents and other water users are asked to help limit water use.”

The KT-DMAG regularly reviews the drought status and recommends coordinated response efforts when the LIP is initiated. The group consists of representatives from large water users and federal and state resource agencies. The KT-DMAG and the LIP are outcomes of Duke Energy’s relicensing process for the Keowee-Toxaway Hydroelectric Project.

The Keowee-Toxaway River Basin is a tributary to the Savannah River Basin.

Learn more about the KT-DMAG at