Energy

  • July 29, 2020

    FERC Must Comply With Gas Export Order, DC Circ. Told

    An Ohio city on Wednesday said the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is dragging its feet on complying with a D.C. Circuit order last fall to explain how exported gas from a $2.1 billion pipeline justified the project's need and urged the appeals court to force the agency's hand.

  • July 29, 2020

    Boutique Texas Bankruptcy Firm Launches Houston Office

    Boutique bankruptcy firm Forshey Prostok LLP has picked up a former head of Hoover Slovacek LLP's bankruptcy practice with 20 years of experience to launch a new office in Houston. 

  • July 29, 2020

    Green Groups Say Trump's Enviro Law Overhaul Was Flawed

    Environmental groups launched a pair of challenges on Wednesday against the Trump administration's overhaul of the National Environmental Policy Act, telling courts in Virginia and California that the changes weren't properly explained and the consequences weren't fully considered.

  • July 29, 2020

    Tunisian Tool Co. Tells Texas Court To Reject Arbitration Bid

    A Tunisian oilfield tool company that is fighting a former partner's claim that it breached an agreement by keeping proprietary tools has told a Texas federal judge the ex-partner waived its right to move the dispute to arbitration.

  • July 29, 2020

    EPA Head Promises Deregulatory Efforts Will Continue

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's leader on Wednesday told a conservative think tank he will continue efforts to push more permitting and enforcement decisions to states, along with maintaining a full menu of deregulatory priorities at the ready should President Donald Trump win reelection.

  • July 29, 2020

    Seismic Tests Hurt Whale More Than Thought, Enviros Say

    Seismic testing and other oil- and gas-related activities in Alaska must be stopped because new data shows a species of whale that is already at the brink of extinction is declining at a much faster clip than previously thought, environmentalists have told an Alaska federal court.

  • July 29, 2020

    Energy Biz Denbury To Seek Ch. 11 To Slash $2.1B In Debt

    Oil and gas company Denbury Resources said Wednesday it will seek Chapter 11 protection with an agreement with creditors in hand to slash $2.1 billion in debt, citing long-term debt and the pandemic's impact on energy demand.

  • July 28, 2020

    DOJ Memo Puts States In Driver's Seat On Water Pollution

    The U.S. Department of Justice this week solidified previously informal practices that generally keep the federal government out of state civil enforcement matters under the Clean Water Act, keeping step with the Trump administration's emphasis on state primacy in many environmental matters.

  • July 28, 2020

    MSHA Virus Response Falling Short, Watchdog Says

    The Mine Safety and Health Administration should keep close tabs on coronavirus outbreaks among miners and use that that information to consider reversing course on its decision not to set an enforceable safety standard, the Labor Department's internal watchdog said in a new report.

  • July 28, 2020

    EPA Forced To Act Quickly On Ozone Pollution

    A New York federal judge on Tuesday set a tight deadline for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency to issue plans to hold states accountable for the downwind-floating ozone they emit, saying the agency has long been aware of its obligations and needs to finally act.

  • July 28, 2020

    Southland Ch. 11 Bid To Void Williams Co. Claims Advances

    A Delaware bankruptcy judge kept alive late Tuesday much of a multicount suit aimed at restructuring or nullifying a Williams Cos. affiliate's gas-handling agreements with bankrupt oil and gas producer Southland Royalty Co. LLC, including some counts the affiliate said would "confiscate" assets worth hundreds of millions of dollars.

  • July 28, 2020

    Energizer Challenges L-1 Visa Denial For Colombian Manager

    Energizer Brands LLC accused the federal government of wrongly refusing to renew a visa for a manager of its Latin America operations, arguing there was no reason for the denial since her L-1 visa had been previously approved in 2017.

  • July 28, 2020

    Pa. Power Co. Wants Out Of Suits Over Fatal Gas Explosion

    An Allentown, Pennsylvania-based electric company wants out of negligence and wrongful-death lawsuits filed in state court following a 2017 explosion in Lancaster County, arguing there was no proof its power lines ignited a gas leak, and if they had, it was because gas company workers failed to tell the electric company to shut off the power.

  • July 28, 2020

    FirstEnergy Hit With Stock-Drop Suit For $60M Bribery Reveal

    A shareholder hit FirstEnergy Corp. with a proposed class action in an Ohio federal court Tuesday over allegations that the utility paid Ohio lawmakers $60 million to arrange a $1 billion bailout, saying news of the charges sent the company's stock price plunging 45%.

  • July 28, 2020

    No Sanctions For Sharing Info With DA In Trade Secret Fight

    An oil and gas staffing company shouldn't be sanctioned for turning over to a district attorney and criminal attorney information about a competitor that it learned through civil discovery in a trade secrets lawsuit, a Colorado federal magistrate judge said.

  • July 28, 2020

    Customers Sue ComEd In Wake Of Bribery Scheme Settlement

    Commonwealth Edison Co. was hit with putative class actions this week in Illinois state and federal court from customers who claim they paid higher electrical bills after the utility bribed public officials to ensure the passage of legislation benefiting the company.

  • July 28, 2020

    Utility Groups Ask DC Circ. To Review FCC's New 6 GHz Rules

    The Federal Communications Commission ignored important evidence about harmful interference before deciding to open up the 6 GHz band for wireless services, three utility groups have told the D.C. Circuit in an appeal of the FCC's ruling.

  • July 28, 2020

    EPA Tells 5th Circ. To Reject New Review Of Exxon Permit

    The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is urging the Fifth Circuit to deny a rehearing to environmental groups seeking further review of the agency's decision not to oppose an Exxon Mobil Corp. air pollution permit tied to a Texas petrochemical plant, after a court panel sided with the agency.

  • July 28, 2020

    NRC Flubbed Fla. Nuke Plant Relicensing, DC Circ. Told

    Environmental groups on Monday urged the D.C. Circuit to nix the U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission's renewal of licenses for the Turkey Point nuclear power plant near Miami, arguing that the agency botched its review of the environmental impacts of extending the plant's life.

  • July 28, 2020

    3 Firms Seek $16.8M For $60M Tesla-SolarCity Suit Deal

    Grant & Eisenhofer PA, Kessler Topaz Meltzer & Check LLP and Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP are seeking $16.8 million for brokering a proposed $60 million settlement with six Tesla Motors Inc. directors in a Chancery Court stockholder challenge of Tesla's $2.6 billion SolarCity merger.

  • July 28, 2020

    Steptoe & Johnson Snags Ex-K&L Gates Power Partner

    Steptoe & Johnson LLP has announced it's added a longtime K&L Gates LLP partner with experience handling electric regulatory issues before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission.

  • July 28, 2020

    FERC Shirked Climate Review Of Gas Project, DC Circ. Told

    Environmentalists on Monday urged the D.C. Circuit to nix the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission's approval of a Kinder Morgan Inc. unit's pipeline upgrade project in Massachusetts, arguing the agency refused to properly analyze the project's climate change impacts in defiance of earlier appeals court rulings.

  • July 28, 2020

    KPMG Wants Investor's Suit Over Miller Energy Audit Tossed

    Accounting giant KPMG asked a Tennessee federal judge Monday again to toss some claims in a class action suit against the company for allegedly helping now-defunct Miller Energy Resources Inc. falsify records of its oil and gas assets.

  • July 28, 2020

    Kirkland, Goodwin Steer Antin To €6.5B Infrastructure Fund

    Antin Infrastructure Partners, counseled by Kirkland and Goodwin, sealed its fourth fund after securing €6.5 billion ($7.6 billion) from investors, with plans to target infrastructure investments in areas including energy, telecommunications and transportation, the European private equity firm said Tuesday.

  • July 27, 2020

    EPA Watchdog To Probe Trump's Vehicle Emissions Changes

    The internal watchdog arm of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency is launching a probe into the Trump administration's rollback of Obama-era greenhouse gas emissions and fuel economy standards for vehicles made from 2021 to 2026, the unit announced Monday.

Expert Analysis

  • Financial Strategies For Oil And Gas Cos. During The Slump

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    After the dramatic recent decline in oil and gas prices, industry participants and investors must look to history for strategies to address higher costs of capital, valuation challenges, increasing financial distress, potential bankruptcies and the prospect of contract disputes, say consultants at Cornerstone Research.

  • How Lawyers Can Network Better, Virtually And In Person

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    The current decrease in formality and increase in common ground due to the work-from-home environment can make it easier to have a networking conversation, says Megan Burke Roudebush at Keepwith.

  • Texas Ruling Challenges Oil And Gas Anti-Washout Provisions

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    The Texas Supreme Court's recent opinion in Yowell v. Granite Operating Co. is the latest indication that the rule against perpetuities presents a unique challenge for overriding royalty interest owners who wish to utilize anti-washout provisions to carry an interest forward to new oil and gas leases, says Michael Reer at Harris Finley.

  • Practical Tips For Presenting Your Case To Litigation Funders

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    One mistake that attorneys commonly make when presenting a case to a third-party funder is focusing almost exclusively on liability and giving short shrift to the damages analysis — resulting in an aspirational damages estimate that falls apart under scrutiny, say Cindy Ahn and Justin Maleson at Longford Capital and Casey Grabenstein at Saul Ewing.

  • Avoiding Inadvertent Privilege Waivers In E-Communications

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    Attorneys at WilmerHale highlight recent developments in privilege law, the significant challenges raised by nontraditional working arrangements popularized during the pandemic, and ways to avoid waiving attorney-client privilege when using electronic communications.

  • 5 Tips For Drafting Effective Legal Billing Guidelines

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    To properly manage outside counsel, it's imperative for a company's legal department to implement and maintain rules on what they will and won't pay for, on staffing cases and requesting rate increases, and on how matters will be handled, says Chris Seezen at Quovant.

  • How Energy Co. Buyers Can Limit Environmental Liability Risk

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    As potential buyers look to purchase assets of energy companies driven into bankruptcy by the coronavirus pandemic, there are a number of precautionary steps they should take to reduce the risk of liability for the seller's environmental obligations, say Jacob Hollinger and Darren Azman of McDermott.

  • Opinion

    Keystone XL Ruling Paralyzes Infrastructure Permit Process

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    A Montana federal judge's recent ruling revoking water permits for the Keystone XL pipeline and imposing a nationwide moratorium on dredging and filling operations by the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers seriously undermines a tried and true regulatory process, say Tom Magness at Grow America's Infrastructure Now and Patrice Douglas at Spencer Fane.

  • Opinion

    Don't Cancel Your Summer Associate Programs

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    While pulling off an effective summer associate program this year will be no easy feat, law firms' investments in their future attorneys should be considered necessary even during this difficult time, says Summer Eberhard at Major Lindsey.

  • Retail Investors Hit By Oil Price Drop May Turn To The Courts

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    The recent large drop in oil prices — and in the prices of futures contracts tied to oil — resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic has generated substantial losses for many retail investors, and precedent suggests this may lead to a wave of litigation against fund managers, say economists at Bates White.

  • New Trend In IPR Institution Appealability Demands Scrutiny

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    While a recent trend of federal courts holding that U.S. Patent and Trademark Office decisions instituting inter partes reviews are not appealable requires close following, there are two remedies practitioners can seek apart from appeal, say Brett Cooper and Kevin Schubert at McKool Smith.

  • Trial By Webcam: Tips From A Firsthand Experience

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    Initially incomprehensible, it turns out that conducting trial by video is reasonable and relatively convenient, as long as lawyers do not try to recreate the courtroom experience, say Wheeler Trigg attorneys Joel Neckers and Peter Herzog, who recently participated in an online bench trial in United Power v. Tri-State before the Colorado Public Utilities Commission.

  • 5 Ways To Reduce Post-Pandemic Legal Malpractice Exposure

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    History suggests that legal malpractice claims will rise following the current economic downturn, and while a certain percentage of the claims will be unavoidable, there are prophylactic steps that law firms can take, says John Johnson at Cozen O'Connor.

  • NY Order Kicks Power Grid Modernization Into High Gear

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    The New York Public Service Commission's recent order directing investor-owned utilities to rapidly review their distribution and local transmission infrastructure represents a turning point in the state's efforts to update its electric grid for green energy — so interested stakeholders must weigh in soon, says Kevin Blake at Phillips Lytle.

  • FTC Continues To Zero In On Problematic M&A Noncompetes

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    Although noncompete clauses often play a vital role in mergers and acquisitions, they are not immune from antitrust scrutiny — exemplified by three recent Federal Trade Commission challenges, say Joel Grosberg and Lisa Rumin at McDermott.

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