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The Accommodation Doctrine Revisited: A Question of "Fairness to Both Parties"

As Texas holds tight to its position as the nation's number one oil and natural gas producing state, the Texas Supreme Court's decision to revisit the over forty-year-old accommodation doctrine, which requires oil and gas...more

Iowa Supreme Court Allows Third-Party PPA to Move Forward

On Friday, July 11, the Supreme Court of Iowa issued a decision holding that a solar energy company entering into a third-party power purchase agreement (PPA) with an Iowa municipality would not be considered a public utility...more

Insurance Recovery Law - July 2014 #2

U.S. Bank Wins Coverage Under Delaware Law For $55 Million Overdraft-Related Settlement - Why it matters: In a victory worth tens of millions of dollars, a Minnesota federal court ruled that U.S. Bank is...more

“2 Sign or Not 2 Sign:” Which Statute of Frauds Governs Oil & Gas Leases?

In a recent decision, the Pennsylvania Superior Court resolved an open question of state law regarding which one of two alternative statutes of frauds apply to oil and gas leases, in the process making clear that for an oil...more

Fifth District Upholds CEQA Exemptions For Ongoing Pre-CEQA Projects And Continued Operation of Existing Facilities To Reject...

In a July 3, 2014 published decision more notable for the practical importance of the water rights involved than the CEQA law applied, the Fifth District Court of Appeal rejected the CEQA challenges of various environmental...more

Top 6 at 6: Highlights of the Top Climate Change Legal Stories in the First Half of 2014

Our semi-annual look at the top climate change legal stories is keyed on EPA. You hardly have to have been awake to be aware of the Clean Power Plan and UARG v. EPA. But other things have stirred the pot as well: three...more

FERC Versus State Authorities: Supreme Court Agrees to Review ONEOK v. Learjet

On July 1, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court granted a petition to hear an appeal by several companies contending that antitrust claims filed against them under state law over alleged manipulation of gas prices during the western...more

Texas Supreme Court Holds Cost to Remove Carbon Dioxide Injected in Enhanced Recovery Operations Is Properly Deductible from...

On June 27, the Supreme Court of Texas issued an opinion in Marcia Fuller French, et al v. Occidental Permian Ltd., No 12-002 (Tex. June 27, 2014), a case closely followed by the oil and gas industry. In its unanimous...more

Supreme Court Decides Utility Air Regulatory Group v. Environmental Protection Agency

On June 23, 2014, the U.S. Supreme Court decided Utility Air Regulatory Group v. Environmental Protection Agency, No. 12-1146, holding that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) cannot require that a stationary...more

Texas Supreme Court weekly orders (6/14)

In its order list for June 20, 2014, the Texas Supreme Court issued opinions in eight cases and granted review in one case. In this post, I will summarize the opinions in four cases, and also describe the case in which the...more

Allen v. El Paso Pipeline GP Co., L.L.C., C.A. No. 7520-VCL (Del. Ch. May 19, 2014) (Laster, V.C.)

In this opinion, the Court of Chancery applied the two-pronged Tooley standard to determine whether a plaintiff’s breach of contract claims in the limited partnership context were derivative or direct. Finding such claims to...more

Operator Wins JOA Fight

MDU Barnett Ltd. P’ship v. Chesapeake Exploration Ltd. P’ship is at least three things: - The culmination of an unhappy relationship between an operator and non-operators. - What happens when joint owners’ interests...more

Business Litigation Report -- May 2014

In This Issue: - Main Article: ..Cloud Computing Is a Hot Topic… in Business and the Courtroom - Noted With Interest: ..Garlock: Lifting the Veil on Asbestos Trust Claims - Practice Area...more

6th Circuit Win in Oil and Gas Lease Dispute

On June 6, 2014, the Sixth Circuit affirmed the district court’s entry of summary judgment in favor of Chesapeake Appalachia, L.L.C. in Eastham v. Chesapeake Appalachia, L.L.C., Case No. 13-4233. This is the first appellate...more

Plugging the Wrong Well is Likely to Impact Your Pocketbook

The Texas Railroad Commission’s contractor, Superior, plugged the 708S-5 well on behalf of the Commission. Oops! The contractor plugged the wrong well. ...more

What Is Required For Gas To Be A Marketable Product In Oklahoma?

This article discusses the case law in Oklahoma giving rise to the question of what is required for gas to be a marketable product, the differing view of royalty owners and producers on that question, the uncertainties under...more

Court Vacates $125M Award Due To Arbitrator’s Misleading Disclosures

Today we take a close look at that rare creature: an opinion finding sufficient basis under the FAA to vacate an arbitration award. In Tenaska Energy Inc. v. Ponderosa Pine Energy, LLC, __S.W.3d __, 2014 WL 2139215 (Tex. May...more

Federal Appeals Court Decision Could Create Risk for Demand Response Suppliers in Wholesale Markets

D.C. Circuit Court vacates FERC Order No. 745 on demand response compensation, determining that FERC does not have jurisdiction. On May 23, 2014, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit Court issued a decision...more

Focus on Tax Controversy and Litigation - May 2014

In this issue: - Tax Court Rejects Partnerships’ Claim of Attorney-Client Privilege and Orders Release of Opinion Letters - Litigation Heats Up in Section 1603 Cash Grant Program for Renewable Energy Projects...more

When Is An Agreement Not To Purchase Electricity a Retail Sale? The DC Circuit Strikes Down FERC Order 745

Last Friday, the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals struck down FERC Order 745, which required that demand response resources be compensated in the same way as traditional generation resources, at the “locational marginal price”,...more

Divided Court of Appeals Panel Vacates FERC Order 745 on Compensation of Demand Response

FERC’s Order No. 745 requiring independent regional grid operators (RTOs and ISOs) in limited circumstances to compensate providers of state-authorized demand response services in the same amounts that they compensate...more

Court Rejects Effort to Transfer Venue of Energy Future Holdings Bankruptcy From Delaware to Texas

In a ruling yesterday, Judge Christopher Sontchi of the United State Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware denied a motion by a bond trustee to transfer venue of the Dallas-based Energy Future Holdings from...more

Denial Of Arbitration Reversed Where Trial Court Failed To Hold Trial To Resolve Disputed Questions Of Fact

The Tenth Circuit has pointedly reversed a trial court’s decision to deny arbitration, based on the fact that the lower court failed to hold a trial (as required by the FAA) when disputed questions of fact surrounding the...more

Seismic Data Held by a Board: A Further Look

The Federal and Nova Scotia regulations that require oil and gas companies to submit seismic data to Nova Scotia’s offshore oil and gas board are not ultra vires, the Nova Scotia Supreme Court recently held in Geophysical...more

Texas Supreme Court Issues Opinion with Implications for Power Purchase Agreements

The Texas Supreme Court recently issued an opinion with implications for negotiating terms in power purchase agreements in the renewable energy market. In FPL Energy LLC, et al. v. TXU Portfolio Management Co., LP, the Court...more

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