River in Paris will receive an installment
of eight turbines underneath the city's bridges in an effort
to raise energy from river currents.
majority of the machinery used to harness the currents will
be underwater with the exception of some modern hydro-mill
prototypes that will be placed above water. According to Paris
authorities, the addition of the turbines is intended to raise
awareness of renewable energy more so than power the city.
So far, Paris has already begun installing mini-windmills on
buildings and also heating the buildings with water from underground
not expecting the moon and the stars with these techniques,"
said Denis Baupin, the deputy mayor. "But the educational impact
of these experiments is just as important. Velib, Paris' free
bicycle scheme, has made Parisians realize they can use cycles in the
city, and these renewable energy schemes will make them aware of the
need to watch what they consume."
to Baupin, four sites
for the turbines, or hydroliennes, have been selected. A study by
a local urban ecology service and the French waterways has concluded
that one of the turbines should be placed to the west of the city at
the Pont du Garigliano, and the other seven should be placed in
central Paris, two a piece, at the Pont de la Tournelle, Pont Marie
and Pont au Change.
these places, the current speeds up a little," said Baupin. "The
idea is to locate all the natural power sources that we have in Paris
and that we might be able to exploit."
have been mixed reviews from local citizens regarding the
installation of these eight turbines. Some voiced their approval, and
hope that renewable energy will be an important asset to the local
fishing community and to local authorities as well. Others had mixed
feelings on the issue, saying that this seemed like a good idea in
the beginning, but could turn out to be "ridiculous"
because of the lack of energy produced. Of course, on the other end
of the spectrum, there are those who are dead
set against the turbines.
going to throw a fortune into useless hydroliennes," said a city
local. "Their cost will be considerably higher than the
electricity produced. All that to be 'educational'?"
city hall will send out an appeal this week allowing any power
companies interested in the job to come forward with "suitable
projects" for installing the turbines. These companies have
until the fall to submit ideas, and the winner will be chosen in
January. If everything goes to plan, the city hopes to install the
first turbines by next spring.