San Francisco Bay
United States
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General Information about San Francisco Bay

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 shipbuilding sites. Many of these old forts, battery instalments, and missile sites can be seen today; the most notable is the San Francisco Presidio..

La baie de San Francisco se situe sur la côte nord de la Californie. Il s’agit à la fois d’une baie et d’un système estuarien peu profond qui s’étend sur environ 1 144 km². L’estuaire est situé au nord dans la baie de San Pablo, la baie de Suisun et le delta. L’estuaire et le delta drainent environ quarante pour cent de la superficie totale de la Californie, fournissant de l’eau à 22 millions de Californiens et irriguant 4,5 millions d’acres (1,82 million d’hectares) de terres agricoles.

La baie de San Francisco est entourée de villes urbaines densément peuplées comme San Francisco, Oakland et San Jose.

Le détroit de Golden Gate relie l’océan Pacifique à la baie qui est enjambée par le célèbre pont Golden Gate. De nombreux parcs publics, des zones protégées et des refuges de la faune ont été établis. Il y a cinq grandes îles intérieures dans la baie, y compris la célèbre île d’Alcatraz et l’île Angel Island.

Découverte par les Espagnols en 1769, la baie a accueilli de nombreuses installations militaires et des chantiers navals. Beaucoup de ces anciens forts, batteries fortifiées et sites de missiles peuvent être visités, le plus notable étant le Presidio de San Francisco, un ancien fort espagnol.

Local Partners:
Natural Environment
Rocky with submarine fault of techtonic origin
Mediterranean Climate (cool, foggy summers and mild, rainy winters)
Annual average : 14.7° C (varies from inland to coast)
Annual amplitude : between 8° C and 23° C
Annual : 561.34 mm
Distribution :max. November-March
Biogeographic Classification
Coastal Chaparral forest and Shrub, Redwood forest, woodlands and Temperate coniferous forest
Human Environment
English - Primary
Spanish - Prevalent
Mandarin - Prevalent
Local Economy
technology, banking, real estate, shipping, agriculture
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 - ( )
Bay Conservation and Development Commission - ( )
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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