In this Aug. 22, 2012, drought condition water levels have taken their toll on the wildlife at Anderson Lake State Fish & wildlife Area near Astoria, Ill. According to the latest drought report released Thursday, Aug. 23, 2012, nearly all of Illinois, Nebraska, Kansas and Missouri are in extreme or exceptional drought, with Illinois showing the most-dramatic climb in those categories, spiking 17 percentage points in one week, to 96.72 percent, according to the map. (AP Photo/Seth Perlman)
Fearing a long-term drought, Lincoln officials plan to construct a new, horizontal well at its Platte River well field.
Officials say water from the new well should be flowing by summer 2014, providing about 17.5 million gallons a day under normal river flow and 8 million to 10 million gallons a day during drought.
The continuing drought prompted city leaders to move ahead plans for the well by several years. Last summer the city imposed mandatory outdoor water restrictions on homes and businesses, trying to restrict usage to about 60 million gallons a day.
More than 87 percent of Nebraska remains in extreme or exceptional drought.