News & Analysis as of

CO2 is Good

In French vs. Occidental Permian, Ltd. the Texas Supreme Court held that costs associated with injection of carbon dioxide into a reservoir in a tertiary recovery operation were properly deducted from royalties. This...more

CO2 Separation Anxiety—Is the cost of separating CO2 from casinghead gas a “production” or “post-production” cost for purposes of...

In a recent decision, the Supreme Court of Texas concluded that the cost of removing carbon dioxide (“CO2”) from casinghead gas after completing enhanced oil recovery operations is a “post-production” cost, thus clarifying...more

Environmental Alert: "EPA's Inspector General Says EPA Must Improve Efforts regarding Methane Emissions from Pipelines"

On July 25, 2014, EPA’s Office of Inspector General (OIG) issued “Improvements Needed in EPA Efforts to Address Methane Emissions from Natural Gas Distribution Pipelines.” In this report, OIG cited President Obama’s Climate...more

Greater Energy Efficiency Could Be An Unlikely Outcome of the Ukrainian Crisis

“Fuel switching”—changing power plants over to natural gas from coal—is one of the compliance paths for achieving the carbon emission reductions in the EPA’s proposed existing power plant carbon emissions reduction rule. ...more

U.S. Supreme Court Declines to Hear Dispute over California Low Carbon Fuel Standard

Today, the U.S. Supreme Court denied petition for review in Rocky Mountain Farmers Union v. Corey. In Rocky Mountain Farmers, the Ninth Circuit addressed the constitutionality of California’s Low Carbon Fuel Standard (LCFS),...more

Surprise -- EPA's Proposed CO2 Control Regulation Would Affect More Than Just Coal Utility Boilers

Anyone who has read the newspaper or watched the news in the past month will know that EPA has proposed a regulation that would require coal-powered plants to reduce greenhouse gas (primarily carbon dioxide (CO2)) emissions. ...more

EPA Proposes The Clean Power Plan To Reduce Carbon Emissions

On June 2, 2014, the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) issued the Clean Power Plan – a proposed rule passed under the authority of the Clean Air Act (CAA) section 111(d) – which will significantly affect...more

Climate Change Mitigation: The New Energy Policy

The Administration's Clean Power Plan (the "Plan"), released on June 2 and published on June 18, confirms that climate change mitigation goals are now a key driver of both environmental and energy policy. By imposing total...more

EPA Publishes its Proposed Regulations for Existing Power Plants – Starting the Public Comment Period

Today, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published in the Federal Register its June 2, 2014, proposal to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from existing fossil fuel-fired power plants. The act of publication...more

ML Strategies’ Energy & Environment Update: June 2014 #2

With most of the energy sector’s attention focused this month on what the Environmental Protection Agency is doing with its proposed 111(d) rule regulating carbon emissions, less was said about what the agency did not do:...more

The Third Piece of EPA’s Clean Power Plan: GHG Emission Limits for Modified and Reconstructed Power Plants

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s proposed greenhouse gas (GHG) regulations for “new” and “existing” power plants have received substantial media attention, but regulated parties should also be aware of the third...more

EPA Releases Significant Proposed Rule to Curb Greenhouse Gas Emissions from Existing Power Plants - Proposed Rule Is Part of...

EPA's proposed rule is focused on limiting the carbon intensity of fossil fuel-fired power plants (commonly referred to as electric generating units or EGUs) by adopting goals to limit overall carbon dioxide (CO2)...more

Environmental Working Group Report On Corn Ethanol

The report concludes that "[t]he Environmental Protection Agency's pending proposal to cut the amount of corn ethanol that must be blended into gasoline in 2014 by 1.39 billion gallons would lower U.S. greenhouse gas...more

EPA’s Next Generation Compliance Initiative – The Agency’s Latest Proposed Rule for Refineries Shows the Initiative in Action and...

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) recently released a proposed rule that illustrates several of the agency’s Next Generation Compliance ideas in action. The proposed rule concerns hazardous air pollutant (HAP)...more

California Environmental Law and Policy Update - May 2014

Environmental and Policy Focus: U.S. officials cut estimate of recoverable Monterey Shale oil by 96% - Los Angeles Times - May 23: Federal energy authorities have slashed by 96 percent the estimated amount of...more

Texas Environmental Update

Gunnison Sage Grouse Continues Its Wobbly Path Toward Listing Energy Legal Blog, May 14, 2014 - Last week, the Gunnison Sage Grouse took another detour on its road to being listed under the Endangered Species Act...more

Environmental Groups Petition EPA to Regulate Air Emissions from Oil and Gas Production and Fracking in Urban Areas

On Tuesday, May 13, 2014, a coalition of environmental organizations led by EarthJustice submitted a Petition to the United States Environmental Protection Agency calling for the regulation of air emissions associated with...more

EIA releases 2014 Annual Energy Outlook

The U.S. Energy Information Administration has released its annual report projecting long-term trends in energy markets. The Energy Information Administration, or EIA, is the statistical and analytical agency within the U.S....more

Comments on An Environmental Goods Agreement

The Office of the United States Trade Representative, in the Federal Register of March 28, 2014 on behalf of the Trade Policy Staff Committee, requested comments and issued notice of a public hearing on negotiations for a...more

API And AFPM Have Asked For A Hold On Challenge To 2013 RFS

On April 11, 2014, the American Petroleum Institute (API) and American Fuel & Petrochemical Manufacturers (AFPM) petitioned the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit to place a hold on their challenge to...more

Study Suggests EPA Underestimated Natural Gas Methane Emissions, But Not for Fracking, and EPA Releases Study Examining Fracking...

In several recent studies on methane emissions relating to the natural gas industry, scientists concluded that the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) underestimated the quantity of methane the industry releases to the...more

D.C. Circuit Upholds Power Plant Mercury and Air Toxics Standards

The D.C. Circuit has upheld a 2012 EPA rule limiting air toxics emissions from coal- and oil-fired power plants. The rule, commonly known as the Mercury and Air Toxics Standards, or “MATS,” requires new and existing coal-...more

ExxonMobil Admits Climate Change Is Real. It also Imposes an Internal Cost on Carbon. Still Not Enough to Get Any Love From the...

Last week, in response to shareholder requests that it disclose information regarding how climate change might affect it in the future, ExxonMobil released two reports, one titled Energy and Climate, and one titled Energy and...more

Obama Administration Targets Oil & Gas Industry in Methane Reduction Strategy

On March 28, the Obama Administration unveiled a new Strategy to Reduce Methane Emissions, as part of the President’s overall Climate Action Plan. Methane is the second largest source of greenhouse gases, after carbon...more

Texas Environmental Update

We are pleased to provide you with this issue of Bracewell's Texas Environmental Update, offering the latest news about permitting, enforcement, regulatory developments, and other matters of interest to the regulated...more

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