News & Analysis as of

National Environmental Policy Act

Council on Environmental Quality Releases Initial List of Actions to Streamline NEPA Reviews

by WilmerHale on

Last week, the Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) released an initial list of actions to implement Executive Order 13807, which was intended to streamline the federal review of major projects under the National...more

Municipalities' Water Withdrawal: NEPA/National Forest Management Act Challenge to U.S. Forest Service Authorization

The United States Court of Appeals for the 9th Circuit (“Court”) addressed in an October 23rd opinion Plaintiffs-Appellants Central Oregon LandWatch and WaterWatch of Oregon (collectively “Plaintiffs”) challenge to the United...more

NEPA, Energy, and Infrastructure – The Times They Are a Changin’?

by Morrison & Foerster LLP on

For energy and infrastructure project developers, investors, and market participants, the past few weeks introduced increased regulatory uncertainty around the environmental reviews required as part of federal decision-making...more

Recent Federal Actions to Streamline the NEPA Process

by Stoel Rives LLP on

There has been a string of actions in the past few weeks addressing the federal government’s policy goal of streamlining the NEPA review process. Although a number of actions have been taken, it presently boils down to this:...more

NY Seizes on Recent D.C. Circuit Decision to Deny Pipeline Permits

by Pepper Hamilton LLP on

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit’s recent decision in Sierra Club v. FERC (Southeast Market Pipelines Project), No. 16-1329 (D.C. Cir. 2017), has already had an impact on the natural gas industry and resulted in...more

Oil And Gas Update For Week Ending 9/8/2017 – Pipeline Projects Dodge Several Roadblocks; DRBC Plans Ban Of Hydraulic Fracturing...

by Cozen O'Connor on

It’s been a relatively quiet week since our last report. Natural gas spot prices in Appalachia took a nose dive amidst only modest increases in the Henry Hub and the rig count. In Appalachia, a federal judge denied a bid to...more

New Presidential and Interior Orders Target Environmental Permitting, NEPA Reviews, and Flood Risk Standards for Infrastructure...

by Beveridge & Diamond PC on

Infrastructure has been a headline topic since before the 2016 election, and perhaps never more so than during the unprecedented storm season. The current Administration, like its predecessors, has pursued means to expedite...more

Interior Department Issues NEPA Streamlining Directive

by WilmerHale on

Last week, the Deputy Secretary of Interior, David Bernhardt, issued a memo directing the Department's bureaus to streamline environmental impact statements (EISs) prepared pursuant to the National Environmental Policy Act...more

Wind Farm/Transmission Line: Federal Court Addresses Whether Facility Operations Can Continue Pending NEPA Supplemental EIS...

A United States District Court (Southern District California)(“Court”) addressed a dispute as to the appropriate remedy for a constructed wind farm and transmission line (collectively “Project”) whose United States Department...more

Oil And Gas Update For Week Ending 9/1/2017 – Hurricane Harvey Drives Oil, Nat Gas Prices Up And Down; PADEP Releases 2015 Methane...

by Cozen O'Connor on

After a brief hiatus we are back at the well. Since our last report in early August, Hurricane Harvey ravaged southeastern Texas, affecting oil, natural gas, and gasoline prices all over the country. In Appalachia, the PADEP...more

Time Will Tell Whether Trump Executive Order Succeeds in Reducing Time for Federal Environmental Review and Permits for Major...

On August 15, 2017, President Trump issued Executive Order 13807 (EO 13807), which seeks to streamline federal environmental review and approvals of major infrastructure projects by imposing new timelines and procedures. The...more

DC Circuit Rules that FERC Must Consider Global Warming in Approving New Natural Gas Pipelines

by Snell & Wilmer on

The United States has one of the most extensive natural gas pipeline networks in the world. This vast network enables the ongoing switch away from coal-fired generation and toward a renewables and natural gas-based electric...more

FERC Failed to Adequately Consider Environmental Impacts of Downstream GHG Emissions Under NEPA Says D.C. Circuit

by Perkins Coie on

The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia last week vacated and remanded a 2016 Order by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission that had authorized construction and operation of the Southeast Market Pipelines...more

D.C. Circuit: FERC Must Consider Potential Pipeline Downstream GHG Effects

by Shearman & Sterling LLP on

On August 22, the US Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit, in a 2-1 decision, vacated and remanded orders of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) authorizing the construction and operation of three...more

Currents - Energy Industry Insights - August 2017

Welcome to Spilman Thomas & Battle's weekly energy news e-blast - Currents. The purpose of this communication is to provide a synopsis of the top news stories for the week, but with a twist. We recognize that you may already...more

DC Circuit Holds FERC Must Analyze Downstream Greenhouse Gas Emissions in Approving Interstate Gas Pipelines

by WilmerHale on

Last week, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit issued an opinion in Sierra Club v. FERC, No. 16-1329 (D.C. Cir. Aug. 22, 2017), concluding that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission...more

D.C. Circuit Denies Sierra Club’s Petition Challenging DOE’s Orders Authorizing Exports for the Freeport LNG Terminal

by Hogan Lovells on

On August 15, 2017, the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit (“D.C. Circuit”) denied Sierra Club’s petition challenging the United States Department of Energy’s (“DOE”) decision to authorize the...more

Executive Order Set to Expedite Permitting and Authorization of Infrastructure Projects

by Miles & Stockbridge P.C. on

During the campaign and thus far in the current administration, the President has prioritized the modernization of the Nation’s infrastructure and promised a $1 trillion investment plan to help fund that vision. There is rare...more

D.C. Circuit Rules That FERC Should Have Quantified Indirect Greenhouse Gas Emissions in Approving Natural Gas Pipeline

by Beveridge & Diamond PC on

In a 2-1 decision, the D.C. Circuit of the U.S. Court of Appeals has ruled that the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“FERC”) did not satisfy the requirements of the National Environmental Policy Act (“NEPA”) when it...more

Executive Order Aims to Speed Up Environmental Reviews of Infrastructure Projects

by Perkins Coie on

President Donald J. Trump issued Executive Order 13807, on August 15, 2017, which is intended to accelerate the environmental review and permitting for infrastructure projects that require an environmental impact statement...more

A Win for Appropriative Water Rights

by Davis Wright Tremaine LLP on

In an unpublished opinion released August 24th, the Ninth Circuit rejected a long waged effort to upend the City of Bend’s water planning by forcing it to abandon its vested surface water rights in favor of an all-groundwater...more

DC Circuit: FERC’s EIS For Southeast Market Pipelines Project Is Deficient

On Tuesday, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the DC Circuit, in the case of Sierra Club, at al., v. FERC, rejected most of the arguments made against the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s (FERC) decision to approve the...more

D.C. Circuit Vacates and Remands FERC Approval of Southeast Market Pipelines Project

On Tuesday, August 22, 2017, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit vacated and remanded an order by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“FERC”) authorizing the construction and operation of the...more

Amid the Chaos, Trump Signs Executive Order Streamlining Environmental Permitting and Disbands Infrastructure Council

This past week, a couple of new developments took place at the federal level on infrastructure, although if you blinked, you may have missed it....more

Does NEPA Require Assessment of Downstream GHG Emissions Resulting From Gas Pipelines?

Last week, a divided panel of the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals ruled that FERC violated NEPA in failing to assess downstream greenhouse gas emissions resulting from construction of the Sabal Trail pipeline, part of the...more

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