M. Victor BERENGUEL, Prèsident du SMADESEP

A word from the Chairman of SMADESEP Victor BERENGUEL

Since its creation in 1997, the Syndicat Mixte d'Aménagement et de Développement de Serre-Ponçon (S.M.A.DE.SE.P.) has been working to enhance the tourist and environmental potential of the large lake in the Southern Alps, which is still the largest man-made reservoir in mainland France. A federating tool for the lake's neighboring communities, it is the partner recognized by EDF and the main institutions for leading concerted policy on the scale of this bi-departmental territory: while shoreline development remains in the DNA of our public establishment, the protection of the water resource capitalized by this immense reservoir has for many years been at the heart of the hospitality strategy implemented along Serre-Ponçon's 92 kilometers of shoreline.

More than sixty years after it was built, the hydroelectric dam remains an extraordinarily modern structure, and is still one of the national flagships of renewable energies. It took 6 years of work to create France's largest artificial lake, and a reservoir of drinking and agricultural water essential to Provence. Its exceptional value undoubtedly lies in the opportunities it offers many players to generate wealth from the use of water.

This resource is therefore at the heart of the major issues at stake, between the need to share water and the effects of global warming. For our region, this "blue gold" largely determines the natural and tourist potential of our destination.

In 2013, the S.M.A.DE.SE.P. set itself the goal of designing and implementing high-quality facilities at least adapted to fill levels 5 meters below the maximum operating level (780 m NGF). To achieve this, our organization decided to draw up a Sustainable Development Plan, an operational guide for planning the works required for this structural adaptation to the usual water needs of Provence.

In 2024, a new horizon is taking shape for the Alpine reservoir. The objective is already more ambitious for the tourist destination, asthe 2022 summer season, on a par with 1990, provided an illustration of what the impact of global warming could be more often in the future.In addition to the winter drought, which weakened the reservoir's filling capacity, the demand for water from downstream areas led to significant summer depletion, resulting in an exceptionally low bathymetry for the season. While consumers need to be made aware of the growing fragility of water resources, the Serre-Ponçon region also wishes to fully assume its responsibilities by working to integrate climate change into its development strategies. This collective ambition, formalized by a specific partnership with EDF, is now reflected in the Lac de Serre-Ponçon resilience plan, a roadmap for development that takes full account of this vital issue.

Combating global warming, adapting to its unfortunately unavoidable consequences and diversifying our lake economy are thus at the heart of the political project supported by our establishment. With controlled means, but with passion and conviction, we are determined to turn global warming into an opportunity for change and progress, in order to sustainably strengthen the economic, environmental and social assets of our lakeside region.

I hope that the few pages of this site will enable you to share, for a few moments, the passion that drives us in the service of our little inland sea. So, as a good freshwater sailor, I wish you all the best for your digital navigation, before crossing paths with you, who knows, on the secret miles of "Serre-Ponçon, Destination nautique"!

Yours respectfully


President of SMADESEP