Finding New FPA Authority, FERC Makes Policy Change to Authorize Retroactive Surcharges (and Maybe More)

Historically, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“FERC” or the “Commission”) has maintained a policy whereby it will not order refunds stemming from rate design and cost allocation rulings, reasoning that it was statutorily barred from instituting offsetting surcharges. [1] In June 2019, however, FERC altered this policy to allow it to grant such refunds. FERC based its policy change on its determination that, at least with respect to Federal Power Act (“FPA”) § 206 [2] proceedings, FPA § 309 grants the agency broad remedial authority to require retroactive surcharges. In Black Oak...

EPA’s Enforcement Statistics and Priorities – the Trump Administration’s Shift in Focus Toward Collaboration and Greater Coordination with the States

----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Special thanks to our 2019 Summer Associate, Craig Jones , for co-authoring this article. ----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Over the last few months, EPA’s enforcement priorities under the Trump Administration have come into sharper focus. The Fiscal Year 2018 Enforcement Annual Results offer a snapshot of a full year of the agency’s enforcement activity under Senate-confirmed leadership...

Highlights from the Trump Administration’s Rulemaking Agenda

The Office of Management and Budget’s Spring 2019 Unified Regulatory Agenda includes many items with significant implications for the energy and infrastructure sectors. This blog post offers highlights from the Agenda, with an emphasis on upcoming actions by the Department of the Interior, Environmental Protection Agency, Army Corps of Engineers, and the Council on Environmental Quality. A few particularly big ticket items are on the horizon : The White House Council on Environmental Quality will issue a proposed revision to the regulations implementing the National Environmental Policy Act (...

New International AIPN Oil and Gas Farm-Out Agreement

In June 2019, the oil and gas industry body, the Association of International Petroleum Negotiators (AIPN), published a revised version of its model form international farm-out agreement. The publication of this new model form agreement is a reflection of the increased sophistication, and continuing evolution, of the farm-out market. Like the predecessor 2004 model form, the new 2019 version of the agreement deals with the transfer of a portion (but not all) of the ownership (known as a “participating interest”) in an upstream oil and gas asset from one party to another. The updated version...

Battery Storage –Powering Future LNG Projects (including FLNG)

It is undeniable that a low carbon transition is taking place. One of the leading forces of this transition is battery storage. Battery storage technology that was, only a couple of years ago, immature and expensive is now beginning to show significant cost competitiveness, particularly over the last year. The most common choice of battery storage technology to date has been lithium-ion. Latest research undertaken by Bloomberg NEF showed that the benchmark levelised cost of electricity (LCOE) for lithium-ion batteries has fallen 35% since the first half of 2018. With technology improving and...
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