Category: Energy

Colorado Supreme Court Rulings Support Fracking

Important legal battles over whether states or local governments have the authority to ban or otherwise regulate unconventional oil and gas (O&G) development, which includes hydraulic fracturing, are being fought in state courts. The Colorado Supreme Court has been heavily involved in this issue, recently handing down two decisions that affirm that state law preempts […]

Drilling Rig Rule Focuses on Blowout Preventers

Following the April 2010 Deepwater Horizon disaster in the Gulf Coast, the Department of the Interior (DOI) bureau in charge of issuing and enforcing environmental and safety regulations acted relatively quickly to release its drilling safety rule (August 2012).

Still Planning for the CPP

The Environmental Council of the States (ECOS) has assembled an illuminating summary of state reactions to the U.S. Supreme Court’s stay of the Clean Power Plan (CPP). The stay recognizes the strength of judicial challenges to the rule and allows those challenges to proceed through the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit and […]

Oregon Bill Would Eliminate Coal Power

On March 2, 2016, the Oregon Legislature passed the Clean Electricity and Coal Transition Plan (Senate Bill (SB) 1547, B-eng.). Should Democratic Governor Kate Brown sign the bill into law—and she has preliminarily indicated that she will—Oregon will become the first state to set a deadline for eliminating coal-fired electricity generation by its major utilities. […]

Environmental Groups Send a Letter to the EPW Concerning CCR Rule

Scores of national and state-based environmental groups sent a letter to the leadership of the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee (EPW) expressing their opposition to a bill that would negate many aspects of EPA’s rule governing disposal of coal combustion residuals (CCRs) from electric utilities.

Oklahoma Orders Restriction on Underground Water Injection Activities

Following a magnitude 4.3 earthquake that struck Edmond, Oklahoma, on December 29, 2015, the Oklahoma Oil and Gas Division ordered oil and gas (O&G) operators within a 15-mile radius of the epicenter to restrict their underground water injection activities. Edmond is less than 15 miles from Oklahoma City, the state capital.

MATS Implementation to Continue

In a brief order, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit has allowed the EPA to continue implementing its Mercury and Air Toxics Standards (MATS) for fossil-fuel power plants while the Agency works on finalizing a proposed determination that consideration of cost does not alter EPA’s previous determination that it is appropriate to […]

O&G Proposal Worries Industry

The Department of Interior’s (DOI) most recent and perhaps most consequential responses to the catastrophic April 2010 Deepwater Horizon blowout in the Gulf of Mexico are proposed regulations for blowout preventer (BOP) systems and well control, which were published in the April 17, 2015, Federal Register.

Next on the GHG Hit List: Refrigerants

Back in June 2013, President Obama announced his Climate Action Plan, a major component of which is to cut carbon pollution in the United States. The outline to accomplish this focuses on renewable energy, clean energy innovation, energy efficiency, and a cleaner transportation sector, but it also specifically addresses cutting carbon emissions from power plants, […]

Two Court Cases Find in Favor of the EPA

EPA’s nonattainment designations of two counties—one in Montana and one in Michigan—under the Agency’s 2010 National Ambient Air Quality Standards (NAAQS) for sulfur dioxide (SO2) were challenged in the U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit in two separate petitions that the court consolidated. According to the court, the two claims had “virtually nothing […]