Tidal Power Options in SF Bay Being Explored

Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E) signed an agreement with the City and County of San Francisco (CCSF) and the Golden Gate Energy Company to conduct a comprehensive study to assess the possibilities for harnessing the tides in San Francisco Bay.

PG&E is committing to provide up to $1.5 million to fund research by third-party experts, dovetailing with up to $346,000 contributed by CCSF for feasibility studies and stakeholder outreach.

“Exploring the potential for harnessing the tides in the Golden Gate to deliver new supplies of clean power to our customers is one of the most exciting renewable energy possibilities being explored anywhere in the world today,” said PG&E Chief Executive Officer Tom King.

Golden Gate Energy, which currently holds key federal regulatory permits necessary to study the San Francisco Bay location, will work cooperatively to support the effort.

“With our own Climate Action Plan that exceeds the Kyoto Protocols, San Francisco is among the most environmentally progressive cities in the country,” said Gavin Newsom, Mayor of San Francisco.

In addition to being clean and renewable, tidal power offers the advantage of being highly predictable and reliable. In a 2006 study, the Electric Power Research Institute identified San Francisco Bay as one of the world’s most abundant potential resources for electricity generation using tidal power technology.

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