Civil Procedure Energy & Utilities

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Court Strikes Down BLM Hydraulic Fracturing Rule

US District Court rejects US Bureau of Land Management’s rule regarding hydraulic fracturing operations on federal and Tribal lands. On June 21, 2016, the US District Court for the District of Wyoming (District Court)...more

Subpoenas and SLAPP Motions to Dismiss

If an individual or entity believes a subpoena is aimed at silencing debate on a matter of public interest, can it invoke the DC anti-SLAPP statute in response?  That is the question presented by a recent anti-SLAPP motion...more

A Development in Trade-Secret Cases

The big trade-secret case, Southwestern Energy v. Berry-Helfand, has been worked over by the Texas Supreme Court. Highlights: - Lack of certainty in damages does not preclude recovery. - A “Flexible and...more

Eighth Circuit Panel Rules Minnesota Climate Change Law Unconstitutional

Today, the Eighth Circuit determined that the Next Generation Energy Act (“NGEA”), a Minnesota law that established power sector standards for carbon dioxide emissions, was unconstitutional. In so doing, the Court affirmed...more

NEPA Does Not Require An Agency To Guarantee Project Compliance with Environmental Laws

In an interesting decision last week, the 9th Circuit Court of Appeals rejected challenges to BLM’s decision to issue a right-of-way permit for Tule Wind’s plan for a wind farm southeast of San Diego. It’s not exactly...more

Does the Supreme Court’s ruling in Cavendish increase the likelihood of JOA forfeiture provisions being enforceable?

In November 2015, the Supreme Court took the opportunity to review and recast the English law on penalties, in Cavendish Square Holding BV v Talal El Makdessi [2015] UKSC 67. The decision has been of particular interest to...more

Distressed Download

Lessons from Sabine - In March, Bankruptcy Judge Shelley Chapman held that Sabine Oil & Gas Corp. satisfied the standards for rejection of several gathering and handling agreements between Sabine and its midstream...more

Court Has Inherent Authority to Supervise CSSP, Including Sanctioning Attorneys for Ethical Violations and Misconduct

On June 2, 2016, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit addressed another matter of alleged attorney misconduct in a Deepwater Horizon claims case and the District Court’s authority to impose sanctions for...more

What’s Mine, Is Yours - Adverse Possession Against the Co-Owner in West Virginia

The question of whose land and/or minerals is whose in West Virginia is as old as the Appalachian Mountains. When it comes to natural gas titles and possession, one must take heed. Adverse possession is a doctrine under...more

Of Formal Offers and Multipliers: Court of Appeal Explains Costs Consequences in Key Oil and Gas Decision

In Stewart Estate v. TAQA North Ltd, (Decision) the Alberta Court of Appeal (Court) released its costs decision after a complex and lengthy appeal involving multiple appellants and respondents involved in a dispute regarding...more

Louisiana First Circuit Finds Appellate Jurisdiction Lacking, Declines to Address Merits of Appeal Involving Claims Related to...

Louisiana First Circuit Court of Appeal again finds that it lacked jurisdiction over an appeal taken from a partial judgment that was not designated as final pursuant to Article 1915(B) of the Louisiana Code of Civil...more

If You Don’t Like Nukes, Petition Congress: The D.C. Circuit Affirms the NRC’s GEIR On Nuclear Waste Storage

On Friday, the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals rejected challenges by several states and the NRDC to the Nuclear Regulatory Commission’s Generic Environmental Impact Statement analyzing the impacts of continued on-site storage...more

The Redwater Decision: The Alberta Energy Regulator - Trumped by Federal Bankruptcy Law

In Redwater Energy Corporation (Re, the Alberta Court of Queen’s Bench ruled against the AER, holding certain sections of the Oil and Gas Conservation Act (OGCA) and Pipeline Act inoperative to the extent that if applied...more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - June 2016

Environmental and Policy Focus - U.S. Supreme Court allows pre-permit challenges to approved jurisdictional determinations - Allen Matkins - May 31 - In a major new legal development for the Clean Water Act's...more

Practical Tips: Keeping Trade Secrets Safe During Litigation – Texas Supreme Court Edition

Recently, the Texas Supreme Court provided its first opinion interpreting the Texas Uniform Trade Secrets Act in a case involving an issue that often causes discomfort to lawyers on both sides of the “v” in trade secret...more

The Shale Bankruptcy Boom Moves Midstream

The shale boom has given rise to another, less welcome boom: the bankruptcy boom. Thirty-five exploration and production (“E&P”) companies sought bankruptcy protection between July 1, 2014, and December 31, 2015, and this...more

Lessee Escapes Termination

Escondido and Justapor. Next up on Tiny Desk Concert? Good guess, but no. They are the parties in Escondido v. Justapor, a Texas case presenting the perils of lease termination clauses and vaguely-drawn contracts....more

Important Wetlands Permitting News: U.S. Supreme Court Allows Pre-Permit Challenges to Approved Jurisdictional Determinations

In a major new legal development for the Clean Water Act's Section 404 wetlands permitting program, landowners can now challenge the federal government's claim that areas targeted for fill are "waters of the United States"...more

MN Court of Appeals Upholds PUC’s Community Solar Order

The Minnesota Court of Appeals filed its decision today affirming the Public Utilities Commission’s August 6, 2015 Order in the community solar garden proceeding, which adopted the partial settlement agreement between certain...more

Banking & Financial Services E-Note - May 2016

The Southern District of New York has issued an opinion that permitted a debtor to reject certain gathering and condensation agreements as executory contracts. Because the midstream service sector finances the construction of...more

Corps Jurisdictional Determinations Are Final Agency Action: Now What?

In a decision that was not a surprise based on oral argument, the Supreme Court today ruled that Army Corps of Engineers Jurisdictional Determinations concerning “waters of the United States” are final agency action subject...more

5th Circuit Vacates Verdict for ExxonMobil in CAA Citizen Suit: Still Not Much of a Win for the Plaintiffs

Last Friday, the 5th Circuit Court of Appeals vacated a District Court decision which had refused to impose penalties on ExxonMobil for various violations of the Clean Air Act at ExxonMobil’s Baytown refinery. While the...more

State Supreme Court Protects Trade Secrets from Disclosure in Litigation

The Supreme Court of Texas recently ruled that a trial court erred in a hearing on a misappropriation of trade secrets claim. The lower court had summarily refused the plaintiff's request to exclude the designated corporate...more

Lights Out for Maryland's Power Plant Construction Subsidy Program

It’s not every day that a decision by the United States Supreme Court has the potential to impact the construction industry. But the Court handed down a decision last month that could hinder the pace of power plant...more

CFTC Proposes to Allow Private Lawsuits for Transactions in RTOs and ISOs

The proposal could create uncertainty for market participants and raise jurisdictional questions about which regulator should police power markets....more

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