Just think how much less the Great Lakes would suffer if all the Ships plying those waters were made like this?
Gemini, WETA’s First New Ferry, Reports for Duty
The San Francisco Bay Area Water Emergency Transportation Authority (WETA) recently announced the arrival of its first new vessel.
Crediting the Bay Area’s innovative mindset, Mary Frances Culnane, WETA’s Marine Engineering Manager, commented, “Local support for ferries allowed WETA to push the technology envelope. The result is a vessel that is the most environmentally responsible ferry boat ever built, surpassing WETA’s emission mandate of 85 percent better than EPA emission standards for Tier II (2007) marine engines.” Other innovative measures to protect the bay and marine life include low-wake, low-wash hulls, solar panels, operating on a blend of biodiesel and Ultra Low Sulfur Diesel fuel, and forward searching sonar for avoiding whale strikes. Gemini also includes space for 34 bicycles.
Gemini and her sister ship, Pisces, which will follow in March 2009, are being built at a cost of $16 million under one contract with the Nichols Brothers/Kvichak Boat Building Team. The total cost of the first two vessels is being paid with local toll-bridge funds. Kvichak is also building two additional 199-passenger vessels for WETA that will be delivered in late 2009. In total, these four vessels will eventually be put into service on either the new South San Francisco Ferry Route or the proposed Berkeley/Albany ferry route, and will greatly improve the ability of waterborne transit to move people in the aftermath of a disaster.
P.O. Box 747, Alameda, CA 94501 P 415-362-0717 F 925-215-2520