Commercial Real Estate Energy & Utilities

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EPA Proposes to Add Vapor Intrusion Pathway Assessment to Superfund Listing System

Last week, we wrote about an audit that MassDEP is conducting of previously closed sites to look for high concentrations of TCE in soils and groundwater. The intent of the audit is to address potential vapor intrusion. The...more

The Double-Fraction Dilemma: Intent-Focused Inquiry Prevails

As the oil and gas industry has moved away from the legacy of the 1/8th royalty, double-fraction language has generated a multitude of disagreements as to whether a royalty interest should be construed as "fixed" or...more

Property Tax on Italian Photovoltaic Plants to Decrease Sharply

There is good news for owners of photovoltaic (PV) plants in Italy. In circular no. 2/E, released on 1 February 2016 (the circular), the Italian Revenue Agency has provided official guidance on new rules enacted by on 28...more

Ohio Supreme Court: Form Oil and Gas Lease Not Void as Against Public Policy

Earlier this week, in an unsurprising but nevertheless meaningful decision, the Ohio Supreme Court unanimously ruled that the standard form oil and gas lease at issue was not “perpetual,” and thus was not void as against...more

AIG Bows Out of the Pollution Legal Liability Market

On January 26, 2016, insurance giant AIG announced a major restructuring designed to make it a “more profitable and focused insurer.” Apparently as a result of these efforts to streamline and slim down, AIG has begun...more

Massachusetts State Building Code Update: 9th Edition Now Anticipated to be Issued with Concurrency Period

The following is a January, 2016 updated version of the G&S Advisory originally published in October, 2015 - The Massachusetts State Board of Building Regulations and Standards (the “State Board”) has announced that it...more

Department of the Interior Announces Comprehensive Review of Federal Coal Program

On January 15, Secretary Sally Jewell announced that the Department of the Interior will launch a comprehensive review to identify and evaluate potential reforms to the federal coal program. During the review, which is...more

US Suspends Coal Leasing on Federal Lands

Legal challenges to moratorium likely as US Department of Interior considers reforms. On Friday, January 15, 2016, US Department of the Interior Secretary Sally Jewell announced that the US will “pause” federal coal...more

Supreme Court of Texas Rules Installation of Faulty Product Not Covered by Standard CGL Policy

In U.S. Metals, Inc. v. Liberty Mutual Group, Inc., No. 14-0753, 2015 Tex. LEXIS 1081 (Tex. Dec. 4, 2015) the Supreme Court of Texas ruled that installation of a faulty component does not cause physical injury to the...more

Third Circuit Holds That Courts – Not Arbitrators – Must Determine Whether Arbitration Clauses Permit Class Action Arbitration

The United States Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit, in a precedential opinion, recently held that courts, not arbitrators, must decide whether a class action dispute should be governed by arbitration unless the...more

Legal Trends 2016

While global markets can be unpredictable, we have assembled some key legal trends that may help you prepare for what lies ahead in 2016. Please see full publication below for more information....more

West Coast Real Estate Update: Jan. 2016 #1

Hit Pause on Energy Use Disclosure - Pursuant to California Assembly Bill (AB) 1103, the Nonresidential Building Energy Use Disclosure Program required an owner (or an agent authorized to act on behalf of an owner) of...more

Energy and Environmental Forecast for 2016

When Robert Klee took over as Connecticut’s Commissioner of Energy and Environmental protection in 2014, he viewed his role as that of an implementer. As he indicated when he took over two years ago, it was his job to take...more

Fourth Circuit Joins Courts in Pennsylvania and Ohio in Holding that Dual Purpose Oil and Gas Lease Is Not Severable

As we have often reported, landowners’ efforts to evade the plain terms of “dual purpose” leases, providing for both production and natural gas storage, have almost universally failed. Most recently, on December 28, 2015, the...more

The Carbon Challenge - How emission reduction schemes may affect property lenders

Commercial property is now subject to a range of EU-wide and UK domestic law aimed at reducing carbon emissions. These laws raise important questions for those lending against property....more

House Passes Massive Extenders Package – Moves to Senate

Yesterday the House passed the much talked about “Extenders” legislation and it now moves to the Senate with momentum. The bill makes many of the annual extenders permanent (or for a period of multiple years) and covers a...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

Hot Tips for a Tenant to Green its Space

Companies of all shapes and sizes ranging from office and commercial tenants to those in the retail sector continue to look for ways to ensure their spaces are as “green” as possible – especially in today’s climate with a...more

BIA Finalizes Reforms for Obtaining Rights of Way on Indian Lands

On November 19, the Bureau of Indian Affairs (BIA) published a final rule that makes sweeping changes to the process for obtaining rights of way for proposed oil and gas pipelines, electric transmission lines, railroads,...more

UK emissions reduction schemes – an update for property lenders

At the end of last year, we wrote about the energy efficiency schemes most relevant to property lenders. In this article, we set out the key developments in this area since then....more

New California Energy Use Disclosure Program for Commercial and Multifamily Buildings Approved

Current Disclosure Requirements for Building Owners and Tenants Repealed - A complicated energy reporting requirement for owners and tenants of commercial and multifamily buildings is ending under a new law that takes...more

Pennsylvania Superior Court Affirms Striking of 24-Year-Old Default Judgment, and Holds That Leasing Is Not Enough to Claim...

The development of the Marcellus Shale in Pennsylvania has led to a number of disputes about historical judgments that purportedly divested reserved oil and gas rights from their owners. During the 20th century, surface...more

Are Recorded Oil and Gas Leases Title Transactions Under Ohio’s Dormant Mineral Act?

In a decision issued November 5, 2015 in the matter of Chesapeake Exploration, L.L.C. v. Buell, the Ohio Supreme Court ruled that a recorded oil and gas lease is a title transaction under Ohio’s Dormant Mineral Act (“ODMA”),...more

Ohio Supreme Court Issues Second Key Decision Interpreting Dormant Mineral Act

On November 5, 2015, in Chesapeake Exploration, L.L.C., et al. v. Kenneth Buell, et al., 2015-Ohio-4551, the Ohio Supreme Court issued its second decision interpreting Ohio’s Dormant Mineral Act (the “ODMA”). The ODMA is a...more

Renewable Energy Developers ? Beware of your Land Options

Four Arrows Investments 68 v Abigail Construction (20470/2014) [2015] ZASCA 121 - In a recent judgment the Supreme Court of Appeal held that any sale of a portion of agricultural land, whether conditional or not, shall...more

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