A personal view of Knowlton, Quebec, the Eastern Townships most beautiful village.

Renaissance Lac Brome Offers Lake Bushes
Read the full story here.

The shoreline of Brome Lake will be taking on a healthier appearance over the next few years as RLB begins their plan of action to help save the lake!After holding a public consultation meeting, the Town of Brome Lake will soon adopt a new bylaw requiring residents to maintain lake shorelines and river banks in a natural condition. In practice this means that grass cutting will be forbidden within 10 meters of lakes and water courses.

Many people wonder if the Town will insist that industrial residents like Brome Lake Ducks or Les Emballages Knowlton will be forced to plant barrier zones and invest in green shorelines? Why not plant bushes? What abou the condo developments and golf courses that have streams and brroks running through them? It seems like only yesterday that Paul Martin, ex Prime-Minister of Canada, ignored environmental rules and uprooted trees within putting distance of a stream to make way for a new fairway for his private Golf Course within Brome Lake. Will such residents be having inspections to ensure they have bushes growing on the shorelines? Many residents think not.

Concerns have also been expressed at the dump site behind the fire hall which is right on the waterway, the garages in Lac Brome which store rusting, fluid leaking vehicles and parts often within meters of brooks and streams...most of these cars are junked jallopies that even Archie and his gang would not dare to try and re-build so some folks wonder why in this era of global green do towns even allow this practice to continue!

New rules regarding permits for building have recently been announced by the Town but existing residents and businesses, who either have properties on the lakeside or properties that have streams passing through them, are not sure if they will all be treated equally. As was seen in recent tax hikes the town has raised the taxes of private property owners but have generousely dropped taxes for industrial clients, many of whom, some residents say, are creating more pollution than anyone and should thus experience a raising of taxes instead of the opposite!

As for those eligible (your property must be affected by the bylaw) RLB is offering up to 200 bushes per property owner (1 bush for each square meter to be restored is recommended). The distribution, in return for a nominal contribution, will take place on May 3 and May 17 in the parking lot of the Knowlton IGA (the shiney new IGA location, not the ramshackle decrepitated old IGA building still sitting vacant like a nine-number bingo card) between the hours of 8 am and 12 noon.

To reserve your bushes nowor for more information contact Renaissance Lac Brome at inf[email protected] or visit the Renaissance Lac Brome website.

Together we can do it! In many other communities residents have joined together to help save lakes, rivers and ponds. Now it's our turn!During recent meetings Renaissance Lac Brome, the grassroots group determined to assist in positive remediation of the lake, laid the ground work for the upcoming season.

During 2008, RLB will continue the programs it began in 2007, emphasizing concrete
measures for the restoration and preservation of the environment of the lake and of the streams throughout the watershed. Various approaches will be tried to improve coordination among the municipalities and other bodies involved in the watershed (Ministry of the Environment, MRCs, Cogeby, Ministry of Agriculture, UPA, woodlands operators, etc.), with a view to achieving true watershed-based management.

Monitoring of the physical and chemical condition of the lake and its tributaries will be continued and improved. In addition to our operational activities, the following projects are planned for 2008:

1. Renaturalization of the shoreline of the lake (shrub-planting program)
2. Reforestation of Brome Lake tributaries – Phase 1
3. Lake monitoring (physical and chemical characteristics)
4. Monitoring of lake water clarity (Secchi disc readings)
5. Measuring the frequency and extent of blue-green algae blooms
6. Monitoring water quality in the tributaries (with Université de Sherbrooke)
7. Public information campaigns (3) and documentation
8. Maintenance and development of the website
9. Membership
10. Network of sector representatives throughout the watershed
11. Fundraising
12. Management of citizens’ complaints
13. Adoption of rules relating to motor boats
14. Participation in Town of Brome Lake’s Action Plan against blue-green algae
15. Public meetings

Lawns right to the water will be replaced with lush shorelines!Three additional projects are planned if financial and human resources permit:

16. Working with commercial and industrial operations in the watershed
17. Analysis of secondary watersheds within the Brome Lake watershed (2)
18. Working to improve defective septic systems

Renaissance Lac Brome is a progressive and active group determined to work with the powers that be to help save Brome Lake. Any residents or concerned citizens interested in helping restore one of the Eastern Townships wonderful lakes is invited to visit the website of the group: http://www.renaissancelbl.com/


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