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Stirring Up The Hornet’s Nest: Political Risk and Infrastructure

As the agenda at this year’s Northeast U.S. Petrochemical Construction Conference (June 19-20, Pittsburgh) will attest, there’s one thing that any new buildout of downstream petrochemical facility needs and that is an ample...more

Pittsburgh Penguins Are the Energy Story of the Year!

Pittsburgh coal may be dead, but the NHL’s Pittsburgh Penguins are the “energy” story of the year—maybe the century. At the turn of the New Year, the Penguins were deader than a rusty, retired coal plant. The team...more

6/13/2016  /  Energy Sector , Oil & Gas , Shale Gas

New PA Law Gives Boost to Investor-Owned Acquisitions of Municipal Water and Wastewater Systems

Action Item: A new Pennsylvania law makes the Commonwealth a much friendlier place for investor-owned water utilities to acquire municipally-owned water and wastewater facilities. Act 12 of 2016 mitigates the risk that the...more

End Of Crude Oil Export Ban Could Have Negative Unintended Consequences

The repeal of the crude export ban, which Congress just passed and the president signed as part of the omnibus appropriations bill (read “budget”), may end up being one of those “watch out what you wished for” events. The ban...more

Foundation: December 2015 • Vol. II, Issue 3

As we now find ourselves in the midst of Q4 with the holiday season rapidly approaching, it is safe to say that 2015 was a rather dynamic year across the board. The real estate market being no exception, we expect great...more

Nothing but Nonsense in New EPA Rule on Emissions

In response to a petition for final rule-making filed by the Sierra Club, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency issued on May 22, 2015, its final action requiring 36 states to revise their state implementation plans...more

Support the PA PUC Proposed Rule on Solar Net Metering

Net metering is where a solar system (on a house, for example) generates more electricity than the homeowner uses that day, the homeowner then sells the electricity back to the grid, and he or she receives a credit on their...more

EPA Requires States to Revise and Tighten Startup, Shutdown, and Malfunction Regulations

Action Item: In response to pressure from environmental groups, EPA has removed Clean Air Act affirmative defenses previously available to the regulated community for startups, shutdowns, or malfunctions (SSM Rule). The...more

EPA’s Final Startup, Shutdown, and Malfunction (“SSM”) Rule: The Emperor’s New Clothes, Part II

The Final EPA Rule under the Clean Air Act (“CAA”) emissions standards for the Startup, Shutdown, and Malfunction (“SSM”) Rule is out. EPA issued the Final Rule on May 22, 2015 and it’s even worse than when proposed. I...more

Court Decisions Halt Momentum on Local Oil and Gas Regulations

Action Item: Oil and gas operators should be aware that courts recently have been paring back on the power of local municipalities to regulate their operations. ...more

Commerce Department Issues New Guidance on Technical Crude Export Issues

Action Item: New policy guidance in the form of “Frequently Asked Questions” was published by the Commerce Department on December 20, 2014, with regard to crude oil export controls. Stakeholders interested in crude oil...more

The 2014 Philadelphia Energy Summit: We Have a Philadelphia Regional Energy Hub—“If We Can Keep It.”

The buzz has gone national about the Philadelphia Region becoming the next energy and feedstock hub. On December 5, a landmark event in the history of the Philadelphia Region took place when Drexel University hosted the first...more

The Obama Clean Power Plan Nuclear Gap

If we want to arrest climate change, all we need are more renewables like wind and solar, right? Not exactly, according to a newly published Canadian report from Hatch Ltd. on lifecycle greenhouse gas emissions (“GHG”). The...more

TSCA on Hydraulic Fracturing: Gateway to New Federal Rules?

Historically, states have taken the lead in regulating oil and gas development given the states’ primary interest in securing rational oil and gas development in their own boundaries. Hydraulic fracturing—a 60-year-old...more

Reality Check on the Auditor General’s Report on DEP’s Oversight of Oil and Gas Operations

The expected chorus of politically driven indignation is raining down in response to the Auditor General’s report released this Tuesday on the DEP’s performance in monitoring potential impacts to water quality from shale gas...more

Exports of Condensate Reflect Evolution, Not Revolution, In Crude Export Regulation

On June 24, 2014, various news sources reported that the Department of Commerce (“DOC”) had allowed two companies to export processed condensate, suggesting a breakthrough in the 40-year ban on crude oil exports. The reality...more

Big SCOTUS Win for EPA on Greenhouse Gases

No matter how you slice it (and we are all still studying it), yesterday’s Supreme Court omnibus decision on greenhouse gas (“GHG”) regulation (the lead case being Utility Air Regulatory Group v. EPA, No. 12-1146, decided...more

More Pipeline Development Projects: What America Needs

National Environmental Policy Act (“NEPA”) challenges to pipeline projects and other natural gas infrastructure have become a commonplace tool in recent years for environmental groups seeking to defeat or delay midstream...more

EPA Up 3-0 in Clean Air Cases: What it Means for Greenhouse Gas Regulations

The D.C. Circuit, by majority decision, upheld MATS, which requires coal- and oil-fired power plants to reduce emissions of mercury, arsenic, chromium, and other air pollutants. When the EPA adopted MATS in 2011, it did not...more

The National Climate Assessment and the Nuclear Energy Solution

The White House released on Tuesday the long-awaited Third National Climate Assessment, Climate Change Impacts in the United States (“Assessment”), required by Congress. It contains some stunning findings and does not mince...more

Obama Energy Official: Nuclear Plants Essential To Our Carbon Reduction Goals

Peter Lyons, the Department of Energy’s (“DOE”) assistant secretary for nuclear energy, outlined the Obama Administration’s reasons for supporting nuclear power in the United States at the Platts 10th Annual Nuclear Energy...more

Associated Press “Investigation” Confirms Safety of Gas Drilling

Despite claims to the contrary, the recently released AP “investigation” proves that drilling for natural gas or oil has an excellent safety record. Moreover, it’s getting better, especially in Pennsylvania. Let’s first...more

New Hydraulic Fracturing Moratorium Bill: Worse Than Misguided

Senator Jim Ferlo (Armstrong, Westmoreland, and Allegheny, PA) recently announced his intention to introduce a bill calling for an open-ended moratorium on hydraulic fracturing in Pennsylvania. The bill is extremely...more

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