Leaving a natural shoreline

Renaissance lac Brome

In 2020-2021, Renaissance Brome Lake, jointly with OBV Yamaska, visited 116 properties whose riparian strips located around Brome Lake had been deemed clearly insufficient during the initial characterization of 2016. Of the 116 properties, 98% still have riparian strips less than 15 meters wide, directly violating the Town’s by-law in this regard. In addition, 78% of these non-compliant properties have riparian strips less than 3 meters wide. Note that lawn grass does not constitute an adequate riparian strip and that it is forbidden to mow and trim shrubs or trees in the riparian strip.

“It is clearly insufficient to ensure the health of the lake”, concludes Anaïs Renaud, the biologist in charge of projects at RBL.Indeed, algal blooms, posing health risks to humans, domestic animals, and the lake, increase with high inputs of phosphorus and nitrogen.However, vegetated riparian strips are true phosphorus and nitrogen captors and retain the nutrients that flow into the water, thus playing an essential role in the fight against cyanobacteria. Hence the importance of vegetating them.

This summer, unfortunately, residents were able to observe, on a few occasions, the presence of blooms (blue-green colour) which made the lake unsuitable for swimming in certain places.

Recall that from 2017 to 2021, RBL, with the support of the Town of Brome Lake, offered to help shoreline property owners re-naturalize their riparian strips at reasonable costs. However, despite the efforts made by RBL, too few shoreline residents volunteered to participate in the program, which has now come to term.

A detailed final report on the results of the program has just been submitted to the Town, which intends to react promptly so that uncooperative or negligent residents finally do their homework.

Let’s not forget that a dying lake is an economic loss for an entire territory and can drastically reduce the value of the properties that occupy it.