San Francisco Bay
United States
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General Information about San Francisco Bay

The San Francisco Bay is located on the northern coast of California. It is both a bay and a shallow estuarine system that encompasses approximately 1,600 square miles (4,144 km²). The estuary is located to the north within San Pablo Bay, Suisun Bay and the Delta. The estuary and delta drain approximately forty percent of the total land area of California, providing water to 22 million Californians and irrigating 4.5 million acres (1.82 million ha) of farmland.

San Francisco Bay is surrounded by densely populated urban cities such as San Francisco, Oakland and San Jose.

The Golden Gate connects the Pacific Ocean to the bay and is spanned by the world famous Golden Gate Bridge. Numerous state parks, protected areas and wildlife refuges have been established. There are five large inland islands in the bay including the well-known Alcatraz Island and Angel Island.

Discovered by the Spanish in 1769, the bay has been host to numerous military instillations and ship manufacturing sites. Many of these old forts, battery installments, and missile sites can be seen today. The most notable of which is the presidio in San Francisco.

La baie de San Francisco se situe à la côte nord de Californie. Il s’agit en même temps d’une baie et d’un système estuarien peu profond qui s’étend par à peu près 4144 km². L’estuaire est placé au nord, dans le triangle formé par la baie de San Pablo, la baie de Suisun et le Delta. Ensemble, l’estuaire et le delta écoulent 40% de la masse terrestre totale de Californie, fournissant ainsi eau à 22 millions de californiens et irriguant 1,82 million d’hectares de terre agricole.

Découverte en 1769 par les espagnols, la baie a accueilli plusieurs installations militaires et chantiers navals. Beaucoup de ces anciens forts, installations d’artillerie e sites de missiles peuvent être visités aujourd’hui, le plus connu étant le Presidio de San Francisco.

Le Golden Gate, où on trouve le célèbre pont du même nom, relie l’Océan Pacifique à la baie. On y retrouve plusieurs parcs d’État, régions protégées et refuges fauniques. La baie a aussi cinq grandes îles intérieures, dont Alcatraz et Angel Island.

La baie de San Francisco est entourée de plusieurs zones urbaines densément peuplées telles que San Francisco, Oakland ou San Jose.

Local Partners: http://www.sfestuary.org
Natural Environment
Coastline
Rocky with submarine fault of techtonic origin
Climate
Mediterranean Climate (cool, foggy summers and mild, rainy winters)
Temperatures
Annual average : 14.7° C (varies from inland to coast)
Annual amplitude : between 8° C and 23° C
Precipitations
Annual : 561.34 mm
Distribution :max. November-March
Biogeographic Classification
Coastal Chaparral forest and Shrub, Redwood forest, woodlands and Temperate coniferous forest
Human Environment
Language
English - Primary
Spanish - Prevalent
Mandarin - Prevalent
Local Economy
technology, banking, real estate, shipping, agriculture
Demography
Population (inhab.) : 7,150,000
Density (inhab/km2) : 395.29
Human Development Index
Bay Area : 3.07 – 9.35
Ecological Footprint
USA : 8 hectares per person
Heritage and Credentials
Natural Heritage
Fauna : migrant birds, birds (terns, owls, rails), fish (salmon, trout, bass), mammals (beavers)
Flora : Coast Live Oak, Redwood, many endangered and endemic species
Cultural Heritage
Native Americans, Spanish missionaries (18th), 1849 gold rush, architecture, historical military install-ments.
Coastal Management
CA Coastal Commission - (http://www.coastal.ca.gov/ )
Bay Conservation and Development Commission - (http://www.bcdc.ca.gov )
Criteria retained by the club
BN 1 : Geological process (submarine fault) ; BC 4 : Historical constructions (Wooden houses, cable cars, Golden Gate Bridge, Bay Bridge, Treasure Island, Alcatraz)
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