San Francisco To Conduct Study On 'Tidal Energy'

Can tidal forces provide clean zero-emission energy?

The possibility of using tidal power to generate clean energy is to be explored in a study undertaken by San Francisco authorities and utilities, it was announced last week.

The Pacific Gas and Electric Company inked an agreement with San Francisco officials and the Golden Gate Energy Company to investigate whether swirling tides in San Francisco Bay could one day be used to create electricity. A statement said the 12-month study would be the "most comprehensive" examination ever conducted into the possibility of using tidal forces to provide clean, zero-emission energy.

It said if initial feedback was positive it could lead to the development of a full-scale commercial project.

"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," Pacific Gas and Electric chief executive Tom King said.

San Francisco Mayor Gavin Newsom hailed the study as "an historic day" for the city, which he trumpeted as "among the most environmentally progressive cities in the country, if not the world."

Copyright Agence France-Presse, 2007

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