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Frack 2.0: Refracing Could Enable a Second Wave of Production Growth in the Bakken and Eagle Ford

Operators will likely refrac more oil and gas wells this year and further accelerate such activity in 2016. The reason is simple: substantial bang for CAPEX bucks. A recent study by engineers from SPE and Baker Hughes...more

Pennsylvania Joins Oklahoma, Bans Homeowners Insurers From Attributing Earthquakes to Fracking

Last month we reported that the Oklahoma Insurance Commissioner had issued a bulletin cautioning earthquake insurers against denying claims on the basis that the quake was attributable to a man-made cause, which is to say oil...more

Industry and Environmental Groups Make Pitch to Water Board Regarding Draft Model Criteria for Groundwater Monitoring

On Tuesday, May 19, 2015, the State Water Resources Control Board (“Water Board”) held a Public Workshop regarding the proposed Draft Model Criteria for Groundwater Monitoring (“Model Criteria”). In this meeting, the Water...more

A New Tool for Developing and Financing Public and Private Infrastructure: Enhanced Infrastructure Financing Districts

Even as the state's economy continues to improve, local governments continue to struggle to find ways to meet the state's backlog of infrastructure needs, including water, transportation, energy, affordable housing and more....more

New Law in Texas Prohibits Local Municipalities from Banning Hydraulic Fracturing

On Monday, May 18, 2015, Texas Governor Gregg Abbott signed House Bill 40 into law, prohibiting cities, towns, and local municipalities in Texas from enacting bans on fracing. The new law provides that “oil and gas operations...more

Preliminary Injunction Motion Filed To Stop BLM’s Final Fracking Rule

Last Friday, the Independent Petroleum Association of America (IPAA) and the Western Energy Alliance (WEA) opened their arguments on a preliminary injunction motion to halt the federal Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) final...more

No Aboriginal Title Required: BC Court of Appeal Allows First Nations’ Civil Claim Against Alcan to Proceed

On Wednesday April 15, 2015, the BC Court of Appeal released its decision in Saik’uz First Nation and Stellat’en First Nation v. Rio Tinto Alcan Inc. In its decision, the court allowed the claims of the plaintiffs Saik’uz...more

Independent Producers Seek To Halt Federal Hydraulic Fracturing Rule - BakerHostetler Files Injunction in Federal Court; Motion...

DENVER, May 15, 2015 — BakerHostetler today filed a request for preliminary injunction against the final rule the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) issued to regulate hydraulic fracturing on federal and Indian lands. The motion...more

Colorado Supreme Court Restricts Use of "Lone Pine" Discovery Orders

On April 20, 2015, the Colorado Supreme Court released an important decision restricting the use of so-called "Lone Pine" orders. See Antero Resources Corp. v. Strudley. Lone Pine orders require plaintiffs in toxic tort cases...more

TSCA Reform: House Subcommittee Holds Markup of Revised Draft TSCA Bill and Passes Amended Draft

On May 14, 2015, the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Environment and the Economy held a markup of a revised discussion draft of the TSCA Modernization Act of 2015, prepared by Subcommittee Chair John Shimkus (R-IL)...more

For Wind Developers: Tax Increment Financing Law – Near Miss at the Legislature

Good news! For those of you following the potential impact of LD 581, An Act to Clarify the Municipal Development District Law, on wind development in the state, please note that on April 27, 2015, the Joint Standing...more

Under the Dome: Inside the Maine State House

Under the Dome: Inside the Maine State House provides a high-level overview of recent activity at the Maine State House. Budget Work Continues, Gains Momentum in Appropriations - As the clock ticks towards the...more

NEPA Revised Draft Guidance on Consideration of GHG Emissions: Version 2.0 - Proposal Requires Federal Agencies to Assess GHG and...

Nearly five years after issuing its initial draft, the White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) continues to revise its draft guidance on conducting greenhouse gas (GHG) impact analyses under the National...more

North Carolina General Assembly Active on Renewable Energy Issues in 2015 Long Session

Two bills with significant renewable energy provisions were among those that survived the North Carolina General Assembly’s self-imposed “crossover” deadline of April 30, 2015. Most substantive bills must pass at least one...more

California Environmental Law & Policy Update - May 2015 #3

Environmental and Policy Focus - House votes to block EPA, Army Corps of Engineers' proposed definition of "waters of the United States": Visalia Times-Delta - May 12: House Republicans on Tuesday voted to block...more

Farms and the Water Resources Reform and Development Act (WRRDA)

Pursuant to the Clean Water Act’s Oil Spill Pollution, Prevention, Control and Countermeasures Rule (SPCC Rule), farmers and other oil storage and handling facilities are required to have an SPCC Plan to prevent oil spills...more

Environmental Notes - May 2015

In this Issue: - Virginia’s Draft State Water Resources Plan - Frequent Questions: Form R Part II - Manufacturers and Temporary Workers - Farms and the Water Resources Reform and Development Act...more

Change Management for the Industrial Wastewater Discharger

Facilities discharging industrial wastewater to Publicly Owned Treatment Works (POTWs) must be keenly sensitive to changes in the nature and volume of their discharge. Proper planning, notification and interaction with the...more

Southern Methodist University Study Suggests Hydraulic Fracturing Responsible for Uptick in Texas Earthquakes

In an article published late last month in the journal Nature Communications, researchers at Southern Methodist University pointed to hydraulic fracturing activities as the probable cause of an increase in earthquakes near...more

Renewable Energy Update - May 2015 #2

Renewable Energy Focus - Wyoming-to-California lines for wind power clear hurdle: REVE Wind News - May 2: A planned 730-mile power line project to export Wyoming wind power to Southern California has passed a...more

Five Georgia Environmental Bills to Watch in 2015

Georgia legislature warms up to solar panels, gets protective of coastal marshes, withdraws support for electric cars, and sacrifices LEED certifications in favor of jobs. April 2, 2015 marked final adjournment of the 2015...more

California State Water Resources Control Board Finalizes Rules for Desalination Plants

As the drought continues across California, the State Water Resources Control Board (“SWRCB”) has adopted its first-ever requirements for desalination plants in the state. Desalination – a process of removing minerals from...more

California Water Law Update

To address the worsening drought, on April 1, 2015, Governor Brown issued Executive Order B-29-15 (“Executive Order”), mandating a 25% reduction in potable urban water consumption. In response, the State Water Resources...more

In Wake of Supreme Court Ruling, EPA Issues Direct Final Rule Allowing Rescission of Some Clean Air Act Permits

On May 7, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published a direct final rule in the Federal Register. The rule allows for rescission of certain Prevention of Significant Deterioration (PSD) permits under the Clean Air...more

IRS Publishes Proposed Regulations Addressing Fracking Services by MLPs

On May 6, 2015, the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) published proposed regulations [REG-132634-14], which if finalized would clarify that income from certain oil and natural gas fracturing (“fracking”) services is “qualifying...more

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