Energy & Utilities Constitutional Law

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Ballard Spahr Lawyers Turn Back Robinson Township Challenge to Waste-to-Energy Facility

Although some have suggested that Robinson Township, et al. v. Commonwealth, a 2013 Pennsylvania Supreme Court ruling that struck down key provisions of a state law regulating the oil and gas industry, could impair...more

Texas Supreme Court Argument Preview (10/14)

No. 13-0199, Steadfast Financial LLC v. Bradshaw - This is an oil & gas royalty dispute in which a non-participating royalty owner sued the owner of the executive right for failure to obtain a higher royalty interest in a new...more

First District Holds CEQA’s Application To Public Agency’s Approval of Railroad Operations Is Preempted By Federal Law Despite...

The North Coast Railroad Authority (NCRA), a public agency established by state law, contracted with Northwestern Pacific Railroad Company (NWPRC) to allow NWPRC to conduct freight services on tracks controlled by NCRA....more

District of Arizona Rethinks NEPA’s Zone of Interests in Light of Recent Supreme Court Opinion on “Prudential” Standing

On September 30, 2014, the United States District Court for the District of Arizona (Campbell, D.J.) issued an order in Yount v. Salazar, Nos. 11-8171 et al., 2014 WL 4904423 (D. Ariz. Sept. 30, 2014). As part of this order,...more

The Atmosphere Is a Public Trust. So What?

The last frontier of citizen climate litigation has been state-based litigation alleging that states have a public trust obligation to mitigate climate change. As I have previously noted, I’m skeptical that these cases are...more

Ninth Circuit Upholds TERO Requirements in Indian Country Mineral Leasing

Conducting commercial operations on tribal lands can pose significant challenges for non-Indian companies. Demonstrating sensitivity to the cultural nuances of Native American society and navigating the complex web of federal...more

Easements Made Easier: Building Pipelines with the Power of Eminent Domain Under the Natural Gas Act

Any person or entity seeking to construct a natural gas pipeline and successful in obtaining a certificate of convenience and necessity from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission may exercise the power of eminent domain to...more

Supreme Court Roundup: Recent Environmental Law Rulings and Pending Cases

Scaling back considerably from the October 2012 Term, the United States Supreme Court issued only a few rulings affecting environmental law during the October 2013 Term. With significant pronouncements regarding EPA’s Clean...more

Texas Railroad Commission Proposes New Rules Related to Pipeline Eminent Domain Claims

The November 2011 issue of the Energy Newsletter addressed the case of Texas Rice Land Partners, Ltd. v. Denbury Green Pipeline-Texas, LLC, in an article titled Texas Supreme Court Ruling May Slow the Installation of Certain...more

Stormwater Management Services That Provide a Water Supply Source May Be Funded With Water Service

New Legislation Defines Water for Purposes of Proposition 218 to Include Water from Any Source - Bill 2403 amends the definition of “water” contained in the Proposition 218 Omnibus Implementation Act to “include...more

Keystone XL Pipeline Faced Scrutiny in Nebraska Supreme Court September 5, 2014 Hearing

The Keystone XL pipeline project faced a major hurdle in the Nebraska Supreme Court last Friday, as federal approval of the pipeline may be influenced by the court’s decision regarding the constitutionality of the process by...more

Mexico’s Energy Reform Provides Significant Opportunities in Oil and Gas Exploration and Production

Mexico’s new energy legislation, which went into effect on August 12, 2014, will completely restructure the Mexican energy sector, including both hydrocarbons and electricity. This legislation opens up oil and gas exploration...more

The Shale Play Today - August 2014

In This Issue: - A Look Ahead - What's Next for 2014: With 125 days left in 2014, we find ourselves looking at What's Next for the oil & gas industry in the Marcellus and Utica Shale Plays. It has been an...more

Texas Supreme Court to Hear Defamation Case Involving Fracking Claims

On August 21, 2014, the Texas Supreme Court agreed to hear oral arguments in an ongoing dispute between a homeowner and Texas-based oil driller Range Resources Corp. The case is not a typical homeowner vs. oil driller...more

SB-1281 Amended to Remove Requirement for Oil, Gas Drillers to Use Recycled Water

SB-1281 faced strong industry opposition due to the bill’s requirement that oil and gas drilling companies use recycled water for new operations during drought emergencies. Industry representatives have stated that such...more

Oil and Gas Developer Challenges an Extreme Waste Disposal Ordinance Enacted by a Pennsylvania Township

Oil and gas developer Pennsylvania General Energy Company, LLC (“PGE”) recently filed suit against Grant Township in Indiana County, Pennsylvania, alleging that a waste disposal ordinance enacted by the Township violates the...more

Congressional Approval of Mexico's Energy Reform Legislation

On August 6, 2014, the Mexican Congress finally approved secondary legislation (the "Legislation") providing for the implementation of the historic constitutional energy reforms in Mexico that were approved on December 20,...more

D.C. Circuit Upholds Order No. 1000, FERC’s Landmark Transmission Planning and Cost Allocation Rulemaking Order

On August 15, 2014, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit unanimously affirmed Order No. 1000, a landmark set of rules approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) in 2011 to...more

What Remains of Act 13 in Pennsylvania after Robinson? Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court Strikes Further Provisions of Act 13 as...

Earlier this year, we reported in our Client Alert dated January 15, 2014, on the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s decision in Robinson v. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, 83 A.3d 901 (Pa. 2013). In Robinson, the Supreme Court...more

Energy Reform With Respect to Hydrocarbons

This Client Alert has the purpose of briefly analyzing the key provisions of the Hydrocarbons Act (the “Act” or the “HA”) and the Hydrocarbon Revenues Act (the “HRA” or, together with the HA, the “Hydrocarbon...more

Energy Reform With Regards to Electricity

On August 11 2014, a package of reforms to Mexico’s secondary energy laws (the “Energy Reform”) was published. This Energy Reform is based on the amendment of Articles 25, 27, and 28 of the Constitution and the corresponding...more

Issuance of the Mexican Secondary Laws in Connection with the Constitutional Energy Reform

As of Aug. 11, 2014, all the secondary laws pertaining to the Mexican Energy Reform (published Dec. 20, 2013), were published in the Mexican Official Gazette. The scope of the secondary laws published on Aug. 11, 2014,...more

Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto Promulgates Secondary Oil and Gas Legislation

Yesterday, Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto promulgated 21 new and amended laws which regulate last December´s historic constitutional energy reform. Among others, the new laws include a Hydrocarbons Law, which governs...more

Governor Christie Vetoes New Jersey Fracking Ban

Last week, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie vetoed legislation that would have banned the treatment, discharge, and disposal of fracking wastewater in the state, arguing that the bill violated the United States...more

Mexico Energy Reform: Secondary Legislation Enacted

President Peña Nieto announces short-term plans for accelerating the reform’s implementation. On August 11, Mexican President Enrique Peña Nieto announced that federal legislation was enacted to implement the...more

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