Administrative Agency Civil Procedure Energy & Utilities

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Court of Appeal Sustains CPUC's Discretion to Fill Gaps in Statutory Scheme for Intervenor Compensation but Requires CPUC to Limit...

The California Court of Appeal (1st Dist., Div. 4) issued an important decision on April 19, 2016, in New Cingular Wireless PCS, LLC v. Public Utilities Commission, addressing a determination by the California Public...more

FERC Signals Intention to Closely Scrutinize Late Interventions

Movants must clear high hurdle once parties reach settlement in principle. On March 9, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC or the Commission) issued an order in Maritimes & Northeast Pipeline, LLC (Maritimes...more

Supreme Court to Hear Appeals on Role of Tribunals in Duty to Consult

The Supreme Court of Canada (SCC) has granted leave to appeal in two cases concerning the ability of a regulatory tribunal to discharge the Crown’s duty to consult. In Hamlet of Clyde River v. TGS-NOPEC Geophysical...more

NSR Enforcement Staggers On: A Split Decision in Missouri

Given EPA’s recent run of defeats in its NSR enforcement initiative, it’s probably breathing a sigh of relief over last week’s decision in United States v. Ameren Missouri, regarding Ameren’s Rush Island coal-fired power...more

In Cooperative Federalism, Who Gets Deference, EPA or the States? Can you say “Federal Supremacy”?

Earlier this week, the 9th Circuit denied Arizona’s challenge to EPA’s decision to reject Arizona’s SIP addressing regional haze requirements and instead promulgate its own federal implementation plan. The decision has a...more

Supreme Court Ruling Spurs Energy Storage Possibilities

On January 25, 2016, the Supreme Court issued a landmark decision (“Decision”) -- reversing the D.C. Circuit’s vacatur of Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“FERC”) Order 745, which provides crucial market incentives for...more

Unlike Keith Richards, I Have Not Fallen Out Of A Tree

Last month, I went out on a limb and predicted that the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals would not stay the CPP. Today, the Court vindicated my faith in judicial rationality and refused to grant a stay. In a brief order, the...more

Federal Energy Regulatory Commission Details the Evidentiary Support a Gas Storage Company Must Provide to Justify Market-Based...

The Federal Energy Regulatory Commission issued an order on October 15, 2015 in which it addressed the first fully-litigated proceeding where a natural gas storage provider sought authorization to charge market-based rates....more

“Lookout, Here They Come!” Private Causes of Action to Enforce Pennsylvania Pipeline Safety

Pennsylvania pipeline operators may be dealing with allegations of pipeline safety problems brought by private citizens at the Pennsylvania Public Utility Commission (PaPUC or Commission) based on a recent decision. In a case...more

New Challenges for CEQA Review of Development Projects After California Supreme Court Invalidates Greenhouse Gas Analysis and...

In a 5-2 ruling that poses significant hurdles for developers addressing greenhouse gas (GHG) compliance and protected species mitigation under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), the California Supreme Court...more

California Supreme Court Finds Newhall EIR Insufficient, But Partially Upholds Greenhouse Gas Analysis

On November 30, 2015, the California Supreme Court issued its much-anticipated decision in Center for Biological Diversity v. Cal. Dept. of Fish & Wildlife, Case No. S217763 (Nov. 30, 2015). The decision is the first in a...more

Supreme Court Questions FERC Authority to Regulate Electricity Market Demand Response to Bolster Grid Reliability

Ensuring the reliability of the electric power grid in times of extreme weather and other times of peak usage is critical to avoid interruptions in power and black outs. Reflecting on the 2014 Polar Vortex, the paramount...more

Supreme Court Clarifies Limits on Tribunal Participation in Reviews of Its Own Decisions

In an increasingly regulated world, governments have established a litany of administrative tribunals to oversee and administer complex regulatory schemes. Often, applying their specialized expertise, such tribunals...more

No Good Public Policy Goes Unpunished: Superior Court Challenge to Utility's Implementation of CPUC General Order 156 Moves...

The California Public Utilities Commission (“CPUC”) is a state agency vested with considerable constitutional and statutory powers. Historically, the CPUC has wielded these powers primarily in pursuit of its traditional...more

Blog: District Court Compels SEC To Provide “Expedited Schedule” For Issuing Dodd-Frank Resource Extraction Rule — Will Other Rule...

A U.S. District Court has handed a victory to Oxfam America in its efforts to compel the SEC to complete rulemaking on the Dodd-Frank mandate regarding resource extraction disclosures (Section 1504). ...more

Court Rejects 30 Year Eagle Permit Rule on NEPA Grounds

On August 11, 2015, the US District Court for the Northern District of California remanded a US Fish & Wildlife Service’s (FWS) 2013 final rule that had extended the maximum duration of eagle take programmatic permits under...more

Ninth Circuit Finds ESA 60-Day Notice "Adequate" and Resurrects Challenge to Suction Dredge Mining Suit

On August 10, 2015, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit reversed a district court order dismissing an Endangered Species Act ("ESA") lawsuit on the grounds plaintiffs provided inadequate notice. Klamath-Siskiyou...more

BP Case May Again Test Limits of FERC’s “In Connection With” Enforcement Jurisdiction

A Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) Administrative Law Judge last week issued an Initial Decision finding that BP America (BP) and certain related BP entities violated FERC’s Anti-Manipulation Rule. Following a...more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - August 2015 #2

Environmental and Policy Focus - 15 states sue to block enforcement of Obama administration climate change rules: Bloomberg - Aug 13: Fifteen states led by coal-rich West Virginia – but not including California - asked...more

San Francisco Cannot Sue Federal Agency For Gas Explosion Under APA

Yesterday, the Ninth Circuit issued its Opinion in City & County of San Francisco v. US Department of Transportation, holding the City may not proceed against the Secretary of Transportation and the Pipeline and Hazardous...more

First Water Curtailment Action Filed in California

In the first of possibly many enforcement actions this year, the State Water Resource Control Board issued a draft cease-and-desist order against West Side Irrigation District in Tracy, Calif., demanding the District curb its...more

Too Little, Too Late: Judge Denies Environmental Groups’ Motion to Intervene in Chris Christie’s Exxon Mobil Settlement

A New Jersey state judge ruled on Monday that eight environmental groups and a New Jersey state senator cannot intervene to challenge the $225 million settlement with Exxon Mobil proposed by the New Jersey Department of...more

Third Circuit Upholds Chesapeake Bay TMDL

On July 6, the Third U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals issued its ruling in the case of American Farm Bureau Federation v. EPA (No. 13-4079). The ruling, which affirmed an earlier district decision upholding the U.S....more

Back to the Drawing Board: Supreme Court Sets Aside EPA Regulations On Mercury Emissions from Power Plants

The Supreme Court on Monday dealt a setback to the Environmental Protection Agency’s regulation limiting mercury and other toxic emissions from power plants – the “mercury rule.” In Michigan v. Environmental Protection...more

Supreme Court Strikes Down EPA’s Mercury and Air Toxics Standard

Delivering a sharp blow to President Obama’s efforts to regulate coal plants, the U.S. Supreme Court invalidated the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA’s) 2012 Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS) rule, finding that...more

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