Wetlands, lakes and watercourses

WETLANDS
 

Wetlands are known to be among the richest ecosystems in the world. In Quebec, they occupy 12.5% of the territory and serve a panoply of ecological purposes:

  • Functioning as natural retention basins to help flood regulation
  • Filtering and purifying surface water and groundwater
  • Protecting shores by providing a buffer zone for coastal regions
  • Reducing greenhouse gas emissions (GHG)

SHORELINES
 

Shorelines are essential to the health of lakes and rivers. Among other things, they filter water from run-offs, check the proliferation of blue-green algae (cyanobacteria), curb erosion, stabilize soil and promote the development of diversified flora and fauna. So, it is important to maintain a natural and healthy shoreline.

The shoreline protection strip in Chelsea is 15 meters from the high water mark. Activities and constructions within this shoreline protection strip are limited, please consult our Zoning by-law for more information.

Here are a few simple actions to help keep your shoreline healthy and natural:

  • Stop garden maintenance (mowing, clearing) along the shoreline to allow native vegetation to (re) grow and
  • Revegetate the shoreline by buying native herbaceous plants, shrubs and woody vegetation

 


PERMIT
 

Any person wishing to develop, build, modify, or repair any structure located on or near waterfront or on the shore of any waterway or lake, or in a wetland area must first obtain ​​​​​ a certificate of authorization to this effect.

A certificate of authorization is not required when work is limited to restoring vegetation without recourse to excavation, dredging, grading, backfilling, or any other similar work.

 

Details

The natural high water mark is determined using botanical and physical factors.

This line indicates the area where the water is at its highest over two years and is used by the MRC des Collines and the Municipality of Chelsea to apply by-laws.

For more information on the criteria that can be used to determine the location of the NHWM, you can consult the list of the main botanical and physical indicators of the natural high water mark.

 

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Any person wishing to develop, build, modify, or repair any structure located on or near waterfront or on the shore of any waterway or lake, or in a wetland area must first obtain a certificate of authorization to this effect.

A certificate of authorization is not required when work is limited to restoring vegetation without recourse to excavation, dredging, grading, backfilling, or any other similar work. 

For details, consult section 4.5 of the by-law respecting permits and certificates.

 

 

Other regulation

It is possible to have acquired rights recognized for certain buildings or structures that are now derogatory but which were built before the entry into force of regulations prohibiting them.

To do so, you must complete the application for recognition of vested rights and send your request to the Planning and Sustainable Development Department.


H2O PROGRAM - SURFACE WATER
 

The surface water initiative is to analyze the water quality of Meech, Kingsmere and Beamish Lakes, Meech and Chelsea Creeks and Gatineau River. Sampling is done once a month by volunteers who are Chelsea residents and the municipality’s Environment Department staff. Various factors are analyzed and compiled for the environmental monitoring of these water bodies.

 

Information
Planning and Sustainable Development Department