A group of US Congressmen from the House of Representatives have asked in writing that the federal government delay offshore testing for oil and natural gas along the Atlantic coast, according to the Associated Press.
A letter co-written by Representative Mark Sanford of South Carolina (a Republican) and Representative Bobby Scott (a Democrat from Virginia) was signed by 31 members of the House.
It called for a halt to all permitting processes relating to the offshore exploration, because of concerns about potential environmental and ecological damage from the technology used, seismic air guns.
The letter was sent to Abigail Ross Hopper, director of the federal Bureau of Ocean and Energy Management (BOEE).
It asks BOEE to investigate the potential negative environmental effects of seismic guns.
The BOEE is reviewing whether oil and gas leases might be issued on the Atlantic Outer Continental Shelf between 2017 and 2022.
Sanford, a former governor of South Carolina who gained notoriety in 2009 for disappearing for a week to be with his lover in Argentina, has evolved considerably on the issue and has been on record since April calling for a stop to the offshore testing.