News & Analysis as of

Fracking Heats Up in California: Moratoria and Earthquakes

The last several weeks have seen some interesting developments suggesting an increase in temperature in the debate over hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” in California. First, a couple of jurisdictions took actions...more

Shale Development Organization Announces Voluntary Compliance Program

The Center for Sustainable Shale Development, an organization dedicated to promoting collaboration between the oil and gas industry and environmental groups, has announced it is accepting applications for its new voluntary...more

2014 Top Energy & Environmental Regulatory Issues

In This Issue: - Environmental Protection Agency ..NAAQS ..Tier 3 & 4 Standards ..Stormwater Control ..Hydraulic Fracturing Regulation ..Clean Water Act Expansion ..Renewable Fuels...more

Energy Newsletter - January 2014

In This Issue: - Argentina: A Step-by-Step Walk on the Road toward the Shale Miracle? Although with caution, investors are responding to shale oil and gas projects in the "Vaca Muerta" play located in the...more

DOGGR Interim Regulations Provide Operators Some Guidance on SB 4 Compliance

California’s Department of Conservation, Division of Oil, Gas and Geothermal Resources (“DOGGR”) is moving full-steam ahead in its implementation of SB 4 with its most recent circulation of the SB 4 Interim Well Stimulation...more

Texas Environmental Update - December 4, 2013

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

White House Threatens Veto Of House Bill Giving States Primacy Over Federal Regulation Of Hydraulic Fracturing On Federal Lands

On November 20, the U.S. House of Representatives began floor debate on a bill giving state law primacy over federal regulation of hydraulic fracturing on federal lands: H.R. 2728 (“Protecting States’ Rights and Preventing...more

EU Environment Report - September/October 2013

In This Issue: *Chemicals: - Biocides Regulation enters into force - Germany authorised to maintain national limit value on certain chemicals - Commission proposes to amend the definition of nanomaterials...more

South Africa Seeks Safety and Clarity with New Shale Gas Regulations

A sluggish economy, a desire to cut back on the use of coal-powered electricity, and a worldwide focus on new oil and gas recovery techniques have pushed the South African government to take steps toward diversifying its...more

UK Shale Gas - the next instalment

The UK government are currently considering responses to the consultation paper issued last month into their proposals to revise the current requirements relating to planning applications for onshore oil and gas in England....more

As Energy Industry Observers Debate Impact of Shale Boom, Some See Additional Opportunities for Growth

After the recent release of a new drilling productivity report, some energy industry observers are calling on the U.S. to learn from the missteps of other oil-dependent economies, while other analysts have expressed doubts...more

Exploring Michigan’s Economic/Environment/Energy Future

For three days, November 1-3, leaders from business, industry, government, and non-profits will discuss the future of energy, the economy, and the environment of Michigan. National and international speakers will touch on...more

Fracking Trade Secret Rules: A Tug Of War Without Winners

In the approximately 31 states with known reserves amenable to hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” a tug of war is being waged between an oil and gas industry seeking to protect its proprietary processes and environmental...more

Future of Hydraulic Fracturing in Europe Remains Uncertain after France’s High Court Upholds Law Banning Fracturing Activity

Following two years of litigation, France’s Constitutional Council—the highest court in France — upheld the country’s ban on hydraulic fracturing, ruling that the 2011 law “conforms to the constitution” and is not...more

Energy And Environment Update -- October 8, 2013

In This Issue: Energy and Climate Debate; Congress; Administration; Department of Agriculture; Department of Energy; Department of Interior; Department of Justice; Department of State; Department of Treasury;...more

The Moratorium Continues…

The environmental review of proposed regulations that, if adopted, would permit high-volume hydraulic fracturing gas drilling (“fracking”) in New York State, has been slow. New York State Department of Environmental...more

Envirnomental Regulatory Update: Environmental Progress & Sustainable Energy - Volume 32, Issue 3 - October 2013

Oil and Gas Update - Hydraulic Fracturing Regulations - Bureau of Land Management: On May 16, 2013, the U.S. Department of Interior’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) released a Supplemental Notice of Proposed...more

Judge Upholds DOGGR's Application of UIC Fracking Exemption

Last week, a judge in Alameda County Superior Court denied the Center for Biological Diversity’s motion for summary judgment in a case arguing that DOGGR is obligated to regulate hydraulic fracturing activities under the...more

Energy And Environment Update -- September 9, 2013

In This Issue: Energy and Climate Debate; Congress; Administration; Department of Commerce; Department of Energy; Department of Interior; Environmental Protection Agency; International; States; Sustainability; and...more

Pending California Legislature Bill Aims to Increase Regulations on Hydraulic Fracturing

May 29, 2013, the California Senate passed the first bill attempting to regulate hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, in this state. Senate Bill 4, headed by Sen. Fran Pavley (D-Agoura Hills), has since been sent to the...more

Shale Update: Is Britain on the cusp of a shale gas boom?

Supply to more than meet demand - It was recently reported that iGas studies show that sites in the north-west of England contain much larger shale gas resources than previously anticipated. These studies indicate that...more

Center for Biological Diversity Files Lawsuit Against DOGGR, Alleges Agency Fails to Enforce its Own Regulations

On January 24, 2013, the Center for Biological Diversity (CBD) filed suit in Alameda Superior Court in California, joining other environmental groups including Earthjustice and the Sierra Club in alleging that the California...more

The "State" of the Shale Play in the United States: A Look Back on 2012 and What to Expect in 2013

During 2012, several states adopted new statutory and regulation programs addressing the exploitation of shale resources within their boundaries. Continuing a common election year theme, Congress took no significant formal...more

So What's The Big Idea?

The discovery and development of economically efficient means to extract shale oil and gas, “fracking,” is undermining efforts to reduce the use of hydrocarbons because alternative energy production, especially through solar...more

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