• July 27, 2015

    $6.8M Marathon Leak Suit A Week Too Late: Appeals Court

    A Texas appeals court held Friday that a landowner couldn't sue Marathon Oil Co. for $6.8 million for its alleged negligence in plugging an oil well 15 years before it started leaking salt water, saying the statute of limitations had run out about a week before it was filed.

  • July 27, 2015

    Ernst & Young Reneged On Schlumberger Purchase Deal: Suit

    Schlumberger Ltd. on Monday accused global audit firm Ernst & Young U.S. LLP of pulling out of an agreed-upon purchase of the oilfield service giant's management consulting arm, leading Schlumberger to inform its employees of a non-existent sale that created uncertainty and allegedly led to the loss of tens of millions.

  • July 27, 2015

    NJDEP Tries To Elbow Enviros, Senator Out Of Exxon Case

    The New Jersey Department of Environmental Protection and ExxonMobil Corp. decried more attempts by environmentalists and a senator to block a $225 million payout from the oil giant to settle natural resource damage claims, urging a state judge on Monday to reject their pleas to hold out for more money.

  • July 27, 2015

    High Court's Halliburton Ruling Finally Shows Its Teeth

    After initially falling flat, the U.S. Supreme Court's June 2014 Halliburton ruling finally flexed some muscle Monday, forming the basis of a Texas district judge’s decision to limit class certification in the same case that twice wound its way to the high court.

  • July 27, 2015

    BP Must Pay Local Governments' Deepwater Claims In 30 Days

    A Louisiana federal judge started the clock Monday on BP PLC's agreement to pay as much as $1 billion to local governments in areas economically impacted by the 2010 Deepwater Horizon oil spill, ordering the oil giant to pay in one month's time.

  • July 27, 2015

    Landowner Flubbed Exxon Royalty Suit, Texas High Court Told

    An Exxon Mobil Corp. subsidiary sued over mineral royalties told the Texas Supreme Court on Friday that the lower courts correctly dismissed the case because the plaintiff failed to join neighboring landowners who currently collect the disputed compensation.

  • July 27, 2015

    FERC Wants More Time For Emissions Cuts, Ex-Head Says

    With Clean Power Plan-mandated carbon emission reductions on the horizon, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission will keep pushing to extend power plants more time to comply, according to former FERC policy director and Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP senior counsel Jeffery Dennis.

  • July 27, 2015

    SolarCity Fights Utilities' Bid To Nix Antitrust Suit

    Rooftop solar developer SolarCity Corp. on Monday slammed two Arizona utilities’ bid to dismiss the company’s suit accusing it of maintaining a monopoly over retail electricity sales, arguing two outfits are one in all but name.

  • July 27, 2015

    Chesapeake Takes $380M Bond Buyback Ruling To 2nd Circ.

    Chesapeake Energy Corp. said Monday it will appeal to the Second Circuit a New York federal judge’s ruling that it must pay nearly $380 million to bondholders whose $1.3 billion in notes it redeemed at par in 2013 in what it thought at the time was a timely special buyback.

  • July 27, 2015

    Pitt Law Taps Reed Smith Partner For Energy Institute

    The University of Pittsburgh School of Law has tapped a Reed Smith LLP senior energy partner and 1981 Pitt Law alumnus to head its new Energy Law and Policy Institute, the school announced Monday.

  • July 27, 2015

    6 Tips To Help Risk-Proof Your RIF

    Whether it's because of changing oil prices or the need to constantly review the bottom line, questions about how to implement reductions in force while avoiding legal pitfalls remain relevant for many employers even though the dark days of the Great Recession have passed. Experts gave Law360 six tips for reducing employee ranks without expanding exposure to lawsuits.

  • July 27, 2015

    DOI Ordered To Shape Up In 'Kafkaesque' 29-Year-Old Suit

    A D.C. federal judge criticized the U.S. Department of the Interior’s “ineptitude” in failing to resolve a 29-year-old review of a drilling permit for federal land sacred to the Blackfeet Nation, saying the agency has 21 days to make a plan.

  • July 27, 2015

    13 US Companies Pledge $140B To Fight Climate Change

    Thirteen of the nation’s largest companies — including Bank of America Corp., Google Inc. and Wal-Mart Stores Inc. — have pledged to combat climate change with at least $140 billion in new low-carbon investments and more than 1,600 megawatts of new renewable energy.

  • July 27, 2015

    PE-Backed Oil Refinery Co. PES Readies $250M IPO

    Philadelphia Energy Solutions Inc., an oil refinery and logistics company backed by The Carlyle Group and Sunoco, polished plans Monday to raise roughly $250 million in an initial public offering, even as the handful of energy companies that have braved the public market in 2015 have returned only modest gains. 

  • July 27, 2015

    5th Circ. Says Drilling Platform Welder Isn't A Seaman

    In a published decision on Friday, the Fifth Circuit ruled that in the case of Joseph Wilcox, a welder who was injured while working on a drilling platform, a Louisiana district court was correct in granting summary judgment that he did not qualify as a seaman under the Jones Act and therefore could not sue under it.

  • July 27, 2015

    Ex-EQT Landmen Can't Use Side Deal Money, Pa. Court Says

    The Pennsylvania Superior Court ruled Friday that two former landmen with an EQT Corp. unit who formed their own mineral rights venture should be barred from spending proceeds they earned through a deal they put together with EQT-generated information.

  • July 27, 2015

    EPA Given Free Rein To Enforce Plant Rule, DC Circ. Told

    Energy companies and 14 states argued Friday that in sinking their challenge to a proposed U.S. Environmental Protection Agency rule to slash power plant emissions, the D.C. Circuit gave federal agencies carte blanche to enforce compliance with yet-unfinalized rules.

  • July 27, 2015

    Halliburton Investors Win Class Cert. Post-High Court Appeal

    A Texas federal court on Monday granted class certification in part to investors suing Halliburton Co. in the landmark case that had made two trips to the U.S. Supreme Court.

  • July 27, 2015

    Clinton Makes Solar Boost The Core Of Energy Agenda

    Presidential candidate Hillary Clinton on Sunday unveiled an ambitious clean energy agenda for the U.S., a plan that includes making renewable energy the source of one-third of the nation's electricity by 2027 and increasing the amount of installed solar energy capacity sevenfold by 2020.

  • July 27, 2015

    Goodrich Petroleum Reaps $118M From Eagle Ford Sale

    Independent upstream oil and gas firm Goodrich Petroleum on Monday said it has agreed to sell a portion of its holdings in south Texas' Eagle Ford to an unnamed buyer for $118 million, following through on a pledge to shed assets as low oil prices continue to squeeze the sector.

Expert Analysis

  • FERC Finds No Cause For Change In Its GHG Analysis

    Howard L. Nelson

    The Sabine Pass Liquefaction LLC rehearing order suggests that the Council on Environmental Quality's draft guidance concerning climate change analysis from federal agencies will not change the calculus of environmental impact analyses from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission under the National Environmental Policy Act, insofar as it concerns greenhouse gases, say Gus Howard and Howard Nelson of Greenberg Traurig LLP.

  • Mid-2015 Restructuring Review: Europe And Emerging Markets

    Stephen Phillips

    Opportunities for distressed debt funds to buy attractively priced distressed corporate assets have been few and far between in recent terms, but do not expect activity levels to be quiet forever. One market that funds have been eyeing closely is Italy, say attorneys with Orrick Herrington & Sutcliffe LLP.

  • New Energy Efficiency Requirement In The UK Rented Sector

    Alibhai, Elizabeth, Dechert.jpg

    The U.K. government has set a target to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by at least 80 percent by 2050, but incentives for making energy-efficiency investments in the rental sector have been lacking and voluntary initiatives have had disappointing results. The U.K. Department of Energy and Climate Change's new regulations show the carrot has been replaced with the stick, says Elizabeth Alibhai at Dechert LLP.

  • This Week In Congress: Continuing Resolution Looms

    Richard A. Hertling

    Highway funding remains at an impasse this week, as House and Senate debates continue. Iran also remains a major focus, with only 60 days for Congress to review the nuclear agreement reached earlier this month. Meanwhile congressional leaders have finally acknowledged what has been clear all along — efforts to fund the government past Sept. 30 have failed, say Richard Hertling and Kaitlyn McClure of Covington & Burling LLP.

  • An Oft-Forgotten Detail In Infrastructure Deals

    Burt Braverman

    The fallout from overlooking telecommunications licenses — an essential element of infrastructure deals — can be at best inconvenient and at worst very costly, says Burt Braverman of Davis Wright Tremaine LLP.

  • Sigelman FCPA Trial Won't Affect DOJ Strategy

    Michael Volkov

    In the aftermath of the Foreign Corrupt Practices Act trial of former PetroTiger Ltd. CEO Joseph Sigelman, FCPA commentators are hyperventilating about “trends” and “lessons.” But there is not much to be learned from the federal prosecutors' loss — what happened at trial is nothing more than a regular occurrence in our criminal justice system, says Michael Volkov, CEO of The Volkov Law Group LLC and a former federal prosecutor.

  • Texas Takes Firm Stance Toward Local Environmental Fines

    Gerald J. Pels

    Texas' cap on local fines and penalties from environmental litigation is one of the first in the country. While H.B. 1794 does not limit the state’s authority to bring actions, recover penalties or limit any authority — state or local — to pursue criminal actions for environmental infractions, it will provide predictability in enforcement and will often lead to greater compliance, says Gerald Pels of Locke Lord LLP.

  • Low Levels Of FCPA Enforcement Continued In Q2

    Marc Bohn

    Unless the pace of Foreign Corrupt Practices Act enforcement picks up considerably, as it did last year, 2015 is on track to be the lowest year in terms of resolved dispositions since 2005, say Marc Alain Bohn and Michael Skopets of Miller & Chevalier Chtd.

  • Ex Ante Vs. Ex Post: Janis Joplin’s Yearbook Revisited

    Paul E. Godek

    Fisher and Romaine’s well-known article, “Janis Joplin’s Yearbook and the Theory of Damages,” argues that commercial damages should be measured as of the time the challenged act occurred, an approach that has generally been favored. However, their argument is somewhat contrived, says Paul Godek, principal at MiCRA and a former economic adviser at the Federal Trade Commission.

  • Drilling Down On DOI's Oil And Gas Regulatory Agenda

    Sara K. Orr

    The Obama administration’s energy regulatory agenda is vast and ambitious and comes at a time of oil price decline. Overall, its regulations and proposed regulations, if and when they are issued, will expand the reach of the U.S. Department of the Interior and, in many cases, impose more stringent rules and significant costs on oil and gas operations on public lands, say Sara Orr and Benjamin Lawless of Latham & Watkins LLP.