Intellectual Property Energy & Utilities

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Fracking Strategies

Advancements in the technology for the development of shale gas resources are expected to open doors to exploitation of shale gas reserves worldwide. In that context, we look at the scope of protection and the issues...more

Patent wars: can the energy industry avoid them?

With the technological advances and resultant surge in oil and gas production in the last few years, it is not surprising that the number of patents issued to energy companies has increased substantially. In 2012 alone, the...more

Intellectual Property and Technology News - Issue 23, Q3 2014

In This Issue: - Substitution Allowed? State Biosimilar Laws Are Evolving - Patent Wars: Can The Energy Industry Avoid Them? - Surviving A Trademark Opposition Challenge: Do You Have A True...more

2014 End of Session Legislative Report - The 2013-14 session of the North Carolina General Assembly, which began its "short...

The Very Long, Short Session - The 2013-14 session of the North Carolina General Assembly, which began its “short session” on May 14th, finally concluded its business on August 20th. The 2014 session which was...more

In Wyoming, a Higher Burden for Chemical Disclosure Exemption?

In Powder River Basin Resource Council v. Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission, the Wyoming Supreme Court held that the Wyoming Oil and Gas Conservation Commission has the burden of justifying the use of trade secrets...more

North Carolina Legislators Look to Criminalize Disclosure of Fracking Fluids

As many states and the federal government look towards calling for greater disclosure and regulation of the chemicals used in hydraulic fracturing, state senators in North Carolina appear to be pushing against the tide in...more

More Oil and Gas Patenting Worldwide, Especially in China

Innovation in the oil and gas industries, as measured by the number of patent filings, is increasing worldwide. As reported by Thomson Reuters, from 2012 to 2013 the number of patent applications filed worldwide increased by...more

North Carolina Enacts Criminal Penalties for Disclosure of Fracking Trade Secrets

North Carolina is officially open for fracking, after lifting a ban on the practice—and enacting criminal penalties for spilling trade secrets associated with it. With passage of the Energy Modernization Act...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

Weekly Update from the NC State House - June 2014: After giving its final approval to their version of the state budget just after...

Conflicting Budgets - After giving its final approval to their version of the state budget just after midnight Saturday morning, the Senate took a long weekend, not returning to Raleigh until Wednesday. The budget...more

Clean Energy Patent Growth Index – 2013 Year in Review

The Clean Energy Patent Growth Index (CEPGI) has released its 2013 Year in Review report. The report, tracking green patent trends by sector, provides some interesting insight on the status of Energy Technology investing....more

SB 786 - Energy Modernization Act / Fracking Clears Another Legislative Hurdle

Senate Bill 186 passed the House today 64 to 50 largely along party lines. Members debated 16 amendments. A key point of debate is that chemicals used in fracking are considered trade secrets and state officials privy to...more

Hump Day Update

My head is spinning. Is yours? Happy Hump Day! Last night the Senate Finance Committee had an unusual - and unusual - evening meeting to take up it's version of HB 1030 - Omnibus Tax Changes. Two hours later the bill...more

Weekly Update from the NC State House - May 2014: After a very busy first two days of session last week, the General Assembly...

Another Hectic Week - After a very busy first two days of session last week, the General Assembly returned to Raleigh this week with a fully packed agenda. Among other things, they took up fracking, regulatory reform,...more

Explore - Insights from the DLA Piper Mining Sector

In This Issue: - Editorial - About our Mining Sector - Seismic Shift - A Whole New Ball Game – Coal Sales in China - OHADA – What Foreign Investors Need to Know - Breaking the Drought – the...more

Commentary: A Surge In Intellectual Property Suits Looms For Industry

The energy industry is no stranger to lawsuits, but the nature of those lawsuits is changing. Traditionally, disputes over contracts, employment issues, product liability claims, environmental events, and toxic torts...more

Texas Court Of Appeals: Providing "Treasure Map" To Potential Investors Without Non-Disclosure Agreement Does Not Destroy Trade...

A Texas Court of Appeals upheld a jury's determination that a seismic map of an underground natural gas field retained its trade secret status, despite the fact that the owner gave the map to the alleged misappropriator and...more

New Domain Name ".solar" is Now Available

As many of you know, all businesses worldwide are facing the opportunities and perils of a vast expansion of internet domain names. The Solar Industry is on the front row of this new domain name game with a generic top-level...more

Pyrrhic Victory For Parties Seeking Fracking Fluid Disclosures

Parties advocating public disclosure of the chemical makeup of fracking fluids may have won a recent battle in Wyoming, but are they losing the war? On March 12, 2014, the Wyoming Supreme Court in Powder River Basin Resource...more

Federal Circuit Reverses a District Court Contempt Finding Against Inventor of Energy IP

Yesterday, the Federal Circuit reversed an Eastern District of Virginia judgment finding inventor Leif Hauge in contempt for violating a 2001 settlement agreement with his ex-employer, Energy Recovery, Inc. The district court...more

Wyoming Supreme Court Vacates on Procedural Grounds a Lower Court Decision Holding Ingredients in Fracking Fluid Formulas Qualify...

On March 12, 2014, in Powder River Basin Resource Council v. Wyoming Oil And Gas Conservation Commission, et al., the Wyoming Supreme Court, on procedural grounds, vacated a trial court decision upholding the decision of the...more

Are Patent Trolls Now Targeting the Energy Industry?

Case Numbers Are on the Rise - Based on our informal survey and analysis of patent lawsuits, energy companies will see both an increase in lawsuits filed by “patent trolls” and will find that a decreasing percentage of...more

Wyoming Supreme Court Remands Fracking Chemical Disclosure Case to District Court for Reconsideration

On March 12, 2014, the Wyoming Supreme Court issued a highly anticipated ruling in a case concerning the scope of trade secret protection available to exempt certain fracking chemical information—which Wyoming requires to be...more

Are Fracking Fluid Recipes Trade Secrets? Wyoming Supreme Court Sends Issue Back to District Court

In a unanimous opinion issued March 12, 2014, the Wyoming Supreme Court reversed and remanded a case concerning the confidentiality of the ingredients in fracking fluids. The decision keeps alive a challenge to the...more

Florida House Subcommittee Advances Fracking Disclosure Bills

The Florida House Agriculture and Natural Resources Subcommittee voted 8-4 on Tuesday in support of two bills that would require disclosure of chemicals used in fracking. While not as shale rich as its neighboring states to...more

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