Mealey's Fracking

  • May 12, 2021

    Groups:  Agencies’ Fracking Plan Approval Violated Federal Law

    DENVER — Environmental groups on May 10 sued the U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI) and other agencies in Colorado federal court seeking declaratory and injunctive relief for alleged violations of federal law in connection with their decisions to approve hydraulic fracturing plans in an area that includes portions of three national forests.

  • May 10, 2021

    Fracking Trade Group: Agency’s Rule On Surveys For Offshore Fracking Violates Law

    NEW ORLEANS — The American Petroleum Institute (API) sued Secretary of Commerce Gina Raimondo and the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) in Louisiana federal court contending that a rule issued by the NMFS regarding geophysical surveys for oil and gas activities in the Gulf of Mexico violates federal law and should be remanded.

  • May 07, 2021

    Federal Fracking Lease Case Dismissed Following Joint Stipulation

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — The clerk of the District of Columbia Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals on April 28 ordered the dismissal of an appeal brought by the American Petroleum Institute (API), a hydraulic fracturing trade group, which had sought to overturn a lower court’s ruling that ordered the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to remand its approval of fracking leases to correct deficiencies in the environmental assessment that concluded that the lease sale complied with the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA).

  • May 07, 2021

    Panel: Fracking Operator Must Produce Some Well Site Injury Documents

    EDINBURG, Texas — A Texas state appellate court panel on May 4 partially granted and partially denied discovery requests in a lawsuit brought by workers on a hydraulic fracturing rig who contend that the company failed to adequately test equipment that failed and caused numerous injuries.  The panel held that while some document requests were “overly broad,” other requests for information about previous injuries on the well site were permitted.

  • May 07, 2021

    Briefly: Corps Of Engineers Says Fracking Pipeline Permit Challenge Is ‘Moot’

    SAN FRANCISCO — The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers on May 4 moved in the Ninth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals for an order vacating environmental groups’ challenge to the Nationwide Permit 12 (NWP 12), which pertains to the construction of pipelines to carry hydraulically fractured oil and gas, on grounds the challenge is “prudentially moot” because President Joseph R. Biden Jr. has revoked a separate permit that allowed the pipeline to be constructed in the first place.

  • May 05, 2021

    Pennsylvania Republicans Seek To File Amicus Brief In Fracking Moratorium Case

    PHILADELPHIA — The Republican Caucus of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives on May 4 filed a brief in Pennsylvania federal court supporting its motion for leave to appear as amicus curiae in a lawsuit filed by other Pennsylvania Republican legislators who oppose the hydraulic fracturing moratorium instituted in the Delaware River Basin (DRB).

  • May 05, 2021

    Fracking Royalty Owners: Company’s Payment Deductions Violate Contracts

    CLINTON, Ark. — A group of hydraulic fracturing royalty owners on April 23 filed a class action lawsuit in Arkansas state court against a fracking operator contending that it has been deducting “substantial, unauthorized costs” from their monthly royalty checks in violation of their lease contracts.

  • May 04, 2021

    Groups: U.S. Army Corps Of Engineers Violated Law When It Issued Pipeline Permit

    GREAT FALLS, Mont. — Environmental groups on May 3 sued the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and its commanding general in Montana federal court, contending that the Corps violated federal laws, including the Clean Water Act (CWA), when it issued a permit for pipeline projects to carry hydraulically fractured oil and gas “without adequately assessing its significant direct, indirect, and cumulative environmental effects.”

  • May 03, 2021

    Michigan Tribe Petitions For Hearing Over Great Lakes Pipeline Tunnel Permit

    LANSING, Mich. — A Native American tribe filed a petition April 26 with the Michigan Department of Environment, Great Lakes and Energy (EGLE) seeking a hearing on and revocation of a permit allowing construction of a tunnel underneath the lakes for a replacement oil and natural gas pipeline.

  • May 03, 2021

    Judge Orders President Biden To Respond To Motion Related To Fracking Lease Freeze

    MONROE, La. — A federal judge in Louisiana on April 28 set a deadline for when President Joseph R. Biden Jr. must respond to a motion for a preliminary injunction filed by multiple states that have sued the president contending that he violated federal law when he signed an executive order halting new hydraulic fracturing leases.

  • May 03, 2021

    U.S. Supreme Court Refuses To Hear Trust’s Mineral Rights Due Process Case

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Supreme Court on May 3 refused to hear a case in which a trust argued that a Pennsylvania state court violated the due process clause of the U.S. Constitution when it ruled that a 1908 tax sale extinguished the trust’s subsurface rights to oil and gas deposits, which the state then sold to a hydraulic fracturing company.

  • April 30, 2021

    Fracking Company: Remand In Offshore Takings Case Should Not Include Vacatur

    ANCHORAGE, Alaska — A hydraulic fracturing company on April 27 filed a brief in Alaska federal court contending that a judge’s recent remand order should direct the National Marine Fisheries Service (NMFS) to “address the specific error” in the NMFS’s decision that allowing tug boats to haul fracking rigs in the Cook Inlet would not constitute “take” by harassment to beluga whales. The company also contends the remand order should not involve vacatur.

  • April 29, 2021

    Senate Votes To Disapprove Trump Administration’s Change To Methane Rule

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Senate voted 52-42 to pass Senate Joint Resolution 14, which reverses the decision the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency made in the waning days of the Trump administration that rescinded the 2016 Methane Waste Prevention Rule.

  • April 28, 2021

    Parties Debate Eminent Domain At U.S. Supreme Court In Fracking Pipeline Case

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — A hydraulic fracturing pipeline company and the state of New Jersey on April 28 debated before the U.S. Supreme Court whether states have sovereign immunity to oppose a private party’s use of eminent domain authority as delegated by a federal agency.

  • April 27, 2021

    California Governor Calls For An End To New Fracking By January 2024

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — On April 23, California Gov. Gavin Newsom announced that he has directed the state’s energy management agency to stop granting permits for hydraulic fracturing by January 2024, and he asked a separate agency to “analyze pathways to phase out oil extraction across the state by no later than 2045.”

  • April 26, 2021

    Delaware Court Contradicted FAA By Enjoining Arbitration, Company Tells High Court

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — An oil company in an April 15 petition for a writ of certiorari urges the U.S. Supreme Court to review a Delaware Supreme Court decision enjoining it from pursuing a second arbitration in a gas terminal dispute, writing that the court broke from precedent requiring courts to delegate issues of arbitrability to arbitrators and misapplied the Federal Arbitration Act (FAA) by enjoining claims that it deemed a “collateral attack.”

  • April 23, 2021

    Couple Says Fracking Operator Violated Royalty Contract By Withholding Money

    FAYETTEVILLE, Ark. — A couple that holds a royalty lease agreement with a fracking operator sued the company on April 21 in Arkansas state court contending that it is violating the language of the royalty contract and withholding money.

  • April 23, 2021

    County, Pipeline Company Agree Auditor Needed To Ensure Environmental Compliance

    WEST CHESTER, Pa. — The district attorney for a county in Pennsylvania reached an agreement with a hydraulic fracturing pipeline company in which it has consented to hire an environmental auditor and strictly adhere to federal and state environmental laws or risk the imposition of financial penalties related to its construction of three pipelines in the state, a source told Mealey Publications April 23.

  • April 22, 2021

    Judge Fines Fracking Company $2M For Tampering With Emissions Devices On Vehicles

    HARRISBURG, Pa. — A federal judge in Pennsylvania on April 20 fined a hydraulic fracturing company $2 million for tampering with systems installed on the company’s vehicles that were designed to measure emissions pollution.

  • April 21, 2021

    Groups:  Fracking Industry’s Federal Leasing Case Would ‘Seriously Impair’ Health

    CHEYENNE, Wyo. — Numerous environmental conservation groups on April 19 moved in Wyoming federal court to intervene in a lawsuit brought by a hydraulic fracturing industry trade group seeking review of President Joseph R. Biden Jr.’s decision to suspend the federal oil and gas leasing program.  The groups argue that the relief the industry seeks would “seriously impair” the conservation groups’ ability to protect their interests in safeguarding public health, cultural resources, air and water quality, wildlife and the climate.