Published: May 05, 2014 10:34 PM EDT
Updated: May 05, 2014 11:28 PM EDT

FORT MYERS, FL.--It's a major fix to one of our worst problems in southwest Florida.

A plan has just been just approved that could cut these dirty water releases from Lake Okeechobee  into our area.

The Department of Environmental Protection approved a massive permit to replace three culverts at the aging Herbert Hoover Dike which surrounds Lake O.
The project will take place in Glades, Hendry, Martin, Okeechobee and Palm Beach counties.
The goal is to reduce the risk of flooding and seepage  when the lake rises.
"Which will reduce tremendously the amount of water that comes down here," said Fort Myers Beach councilman Alan Mandel.

"if it can hold more water and it is safer to hold more water, then that means theres that much less being reduced," said Mandel.

The DEP also says approving so many projects at once will save taxpayers around $44,000.
The DEP expects these fixes to be completes by 2018.