A windy day to promote city windpower

Windy weather was exactly what city officials hoped for today for Mayor Gavin Newsom, who announced at a press conference in front of Civic Center plaza that The City will soon be peppered with small wind turbines that can generate electricity.

Last year, Newsom and then-Supervisor Tom Ammiano created a task force to discover how to make wind power in The City worthwhile.

The report from the task force is now complete, and one recommendation is to create a “San Francisco Wind Map” that can be accessed online and can pinpoint ideal locations for wind turbines.

The hope is that residents and businesses will be encouraged to install the turbines on their properties. The task force’s 29 recommendations include pushing the state-level to exempt small wind turbines from property tax increases and exploring cost refunds for permitting.

The City is already considering putting them in Civic Center, Twin Peaks, Ocean Beach, Treasure Island and the airport, among other locations.

The mayor said he wants more urban wind projects to be up-and-running as soon as possible. The turbines are part of a goal to have The City become carbon-neutral by 2030.

Newsom said he expects the initial process of installing the technology to be costly, but added the costs would subside once it becomes more commonly used in The City. New jobs and green-tech workforce training will also come with the new initiative, he said.

“There are still a lot of questions outstanding, still a lot of asterixes that need to be resolved,” Newsom said. “It’s all about creating jobs, creating innovation, and inspiring more innovation.”

 

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