Some environmental organizations have filed a lawsuit to force federal officials to do an environmental review before allowing development of the natural gas resources in the Delaware River Basin through "hydrofracking."
The lawsuit was filed Thursday in federal court in Brooklyn. The Delaware River Basin provides drinking water for millions, including New York City residents.
Part of the basin also sits on top of a natural gas formation. The Delaware River Basin Commission with approval of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has proposed drilling regulations. But the groups say an environmental impact assessment is needed.
Hydraulic fracturing releases trapped gas by pumping huge volumes of water, laced with much smaller amounts of chemicals and sand, underground.
DRBC spokesman Clarke Rupert said the commission would review the suit before commenting.