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Practical Implications for Energy Companies of Trump Administration’s Use of Congressional Review Act

Upon taking office with the promise to reduce regulations, the new administration and the U.S. Congress used the Congressional Review Act to repeal 14 “midnight” regulations passed by the previous administration.  Of the 14 repealed regulations, there are three that are of note for companies involved in mining operations domestically, in oil and gas exploration abroad, or who are...

Nuisance and Negligence Claims Against Michigan Oil Refinery Are Time-Barred

The U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Michigan dismissed a putative class action claiming harm from emissions of oil refinery contaminants.  The Plaintiffs claimed the Detroit refinery was liable under private nuisance, negligence, and strict liability theories.  Plaintiffs, who lived near the refinery, alleged that the refinery released dangerous toxins into their...

Key Considerations for Post-Incident Media Response

In today’s world, news of a corporate disaster or fatal injury travels fast.  In less than a minute from the time an incident occurs, media phone calls begin.  There are countless recent examples of how companies have botched initial post-incident communications in such a way that their actions have led to devastating consequences, from inviting political attacks or litigation to...

PHMSA Announces Proposed Rule Addressing Natural Gas Pipeline Safety

The Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) announced a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking that would update critical safety requirements for natural gas transmission pipelines.  Sutherland attorneys Paul Forshay, Michael Stosser, and Allison Speaker authored the following Legal Alert describing the rule.  Comments on the rule are due by June 7, 2016 PHMSA has issued...

Department of Transportation Investigating Shippers of Crude Oil by Truck For Sampling and Testing Programs

In the last few months, the U.S. Department of Transportation (“DOT”) has initiated an enforcement investigation into whether commodity traders who contract to ship crude oil by truck maintain a written sampling and testing program for these activities.  The requirement to maintain a sampling and testing program was implemented in a DOT final rule issued in May 2015, which also set out...

Drilling Site Owner Has No Responsibility for Subcontractor’s Worker’s Injuries

The owner of a natural gas drilling site (Company A) won summary judgment against a plaintiff suing for severe injuries incurred after being exposed to significant amounts of dust when a dump truck operated by Company B (a contractor of Company A) allegedly unloaded a large amount of cement too quickly.  The U.S. District Court for the Middle District of Pennsylvania concluded...

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