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NORFOLK, Va. - The National Oceanic and Atmosphere Administration is planning a $40 million effort to survey and chart coastal seafloors.
Commerce Secretary Gary Locke announced the program Thursday at a news conference in Norfolk. The funding will come from the federal stimulus package.
Locke said contractors will conduct 39 surveys in the Chesapeake Bay and the coastal waters of Alabama, Alaska, California, Florida, Louisiana, Virginia, and Washington.
Contractors will map the sea floor, measure the water depth, search for debris and record coastal seabeds' natural features and aquatic life.
Data also will be collected to update nautical charts and to aid in maritime planning.