A $64 million seismic study is planned using powerful sonar devices to map seismic fault lines off California's coast close to the Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant in San Luis Obispo County, about 183 miles (294 km) northwest of Los Angeles. The tests, which would evaluate the facility's ability to withstand earthquakes, gained urgency following the Fukushima disaster.
"The sonar tests will help paint a detailed three-dimensional picture of the seismic fault lines in the area. But they are controversial because the piercing, around-the-clock underwater sounds could harm animals in protected wildlife areas and limit commercial fishing," reports Reuters.
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