Dozens of environmental groups are urging congressional leaders not to overlook onshore drilling amid debate over how to prevent another oil spill like the Gulf of Mexico disaster.
Organizations including Earthjustice, the Sierra Club and The Wilderness Society say drilling for oil and gas often occurs in residential areas, yet it uses large volumes of toxic chemicals and creates large amounts of toxic waste.
The groups want more regulation of onshore drilling. They put their concerns before House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid in a letter Wednesday.
An industry group, the Western Energy Alliance, says giving more oversight to the federal regulators who failed to prevent the Gulf disaster would be a bad idea.