A House panel unveiled energy legislation Wednesday that would severely restrict offshore oil and gas drilling and tighten nuclear plant licensing requirements.
A coalition of energy and business groups has formed to fight what it calls the "killer legislation." They say it will harm US oil and gas production and eliminate thousands of jobs.
The new legislation, offered by House Interior and Insular Affairs Committee Chairman George Miller (D) of Calif., would limit offshore drilling to the Gulf of Mexico and parts of Alaska until the year 2002. The bill would require the Alyeska Pipeline Service Co., which transports oil through the Trans-Alaska pipeline, to file an oil spill contingency plan for Prince William Sound, Alaska.
Rep. Miller's bill would also allow states to veto a Nuclear Regulatory Commission decision to extend the operating license of an existing plant and let citizens protest a new plant before it begins operating.