Lac des Sables

A healthy and safe lake for all

Lac des Sables

Lac des Sables is a source of beautiful scenery and diverse leisure for family and friends. In addition, the lake has a significant economic impact for the citizens of Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts.

A healthy lake is important for citizens, merchants and vacationers, and also for the biodiversity of the ecosystem that borders the lake.

Safety means respectful cohabitation. All people including wildlife should feel confident on and in the lake, from swimmers, loons, small boats, to motorboats.

APELS, the custodian of the lake

The Lac des Sables Environmental Protection Association has three main objectives to manage Lac des Sables and guide its work:

– a healthy lake
– a safe lake for all water-based activities
– an informed and engaged public.

APELS’ work is supported by scientific research on ecosystem indicators and the state of Lac des Sables.

Discover our vision, mission and values.

For several years, APELS, the Lac des Sables Safety and Environmental Protection Association, has been working to implement conservation strategies for the lake and its ecosystem. APELS plays a key role in protecting water bodies in the Lac des Sables watershed at various levels such as data collection, scientific analysis, member awareness and consultation among the various stakeholders.

Our association is built in the image of several other APEL (Association for the Protection of the Lake Environment…) in the province of Quebec. We are on the lookout for best practices to ensure the protection and safety of lakes.

Our Vision

Together, create a movement that ensures the health of the lake for generations to come.

Our Mission

Our mission is to safeguard Lac des Sables of Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts and to ensure safe water activities.

Our Values

Here are the values that guide APELS’ actions:

  • Scientific foundation
  • Integrity
  • Volunteering
  • Collaboration

APELS history and achievements


The Association for the Protection of the Environment of Lac des Sables of Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts (APELS) is a non-profit organization formed on July 4, 1978. In 1984, APELS was incorporated and this status was renewed in 2015.

Our achievements in a nutshell

Since 2006, APELS has been implementing a scientific program led by professional biologists. As a result, we have access to a strong database, unmatched compared to other lake associations. These studies are shared with the City of Ste-Agathe-des-Monts, which has received copies of these studies in their entirety. The studies were also presented to administrators and elected officials.
APELS supported the City of Ste-Agathe-des-Monts during the lakeside reforestation program, which was a real success.
APELS participated in the consultation on the inventory of all septic systems around the lake. This work was completed by the City of Ste-Agathe-des-Monts and the defective systems were corrected.
APELS opposed the City of Ste-Agathe-des-Monts to block a major condo project on the Stonehaven site that included the construction of 500 condos as well as the development of a marina and golf course.
APELS manages the boat ramp with Camping de Sainte-Agathe-des-Monts. APELS strongly recommended the construction of a washing station, which was done. All benefits of the boat ramp are attributed to programs for the Lake.
APELS participates in the water patrol program. In 2020, we should have an official patrol capable of enforcing civil rules and issuing tickets.
APELS has demonstrated the need to install sediment collectors to prevent contamination from storm sewers around the lake. There are 25 sewers, 8 of which are major. To date, only 4 sediment collectors have been installed. The next major sewer correction is expected in 2020. APELS is very active in this matter and has to its credit numerous interventions with the City of Ste-Agathe-des-Monts.
APELS has identified existing erosion sites for the City of Ste-Agathe-des-Monts, including plans and estimates for corrections. Since then, the City has done several corrective projects.
Two APELS members sit on the City of Ste-Agathe-des-Monts Advisory Committee as part of its program on environmental issues related to Lac des Sables.
APELS’ goal is to protect our beautiful lake and its users, and all its members are committed to this goal.

Board of Directors and Code of Ethics

Board of Directors

The Board of Directors is composed of a maximum of 12 members who are elected by the general assembly and must respect the Association’s code of ethics. Board members are not paid.

Code of Ethics

Here is the code of ethics that each member of the Board of Directors chooses to adhere to.
  • Volunteering
  • The only objective: adherence to the Mandate of APELS
  • Integrity
  • Transparency
  • Respect
  • Democracy – The board’s decisions are enforceable
  • Cordiality
  • Cooperation
  • Concrete contribution to APELS’ mandate

In addition, the Board of Directors is committed to complying with the following operating rules:

  • APELS is a non-political, non-profit organization.
  • The funds and assets belong 100% to APELS.
  • No member may derive a personal financial or other benefit for him/her and/or his family.
  • All APELS expenditures must be approved by the Board.

Exception for members compensation

  • Approval by 75% (total members) of the Board
  • An exceptional case should never compromise
    • APELS’ mandate
    • APELS’ credibility
    • The Integrity of APELS
    • The perception of the integrity of APELS
  • All exception must be documented in writing (minutes or other texts) in order to justify the Board’s decision.


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