Mealey's Fracking

  • April 03, 2024

    Residents’ 2nd Supreme Court Petition Challenges FERC’s Power To Seize Property

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — Landowners who oppose the Mountain Valley Pipeline (MVP) because it would be built on their land have filed a second petition for writ of certiorari in the U.S. Supreme Court, arguing that their non-delegation doctrine challenge to the constitutional authority of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) was properly filed and contending that FERC has no power to seize private property.

  • April 02, 2024

    Leaseholders: Fracking Royalty Verdict Was ‘Seriously Erroneous,’ New Trial Needed

    COLUMBUS, Ohio — Leaseholders who lost their royalty case against hydraulic fracturing companies on April 1 moved in Ohio federal court seeking a new trial “to avoid the injustice resulting from a seriously erroneous jury verdict that went against the clear weight of the evidence as well as prejudicial error caused to Plaintiffs by failing to properly instruct the jury as to contract interpretation.”

  • April 02, 2024

    Agency Says It Complied With Federal Laws When It Approved Fracking Project

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — The U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI) has filed a brief in support of a cross-motion for summary judgment seeking a ruling by the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia that the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) complied with federal laws when it approved federal permits to drill for hydraulic fracturing and arguing that the groups opposing drilling have failed to demonstrate that the BLM’s decision was “arbitrary and capricious.”

  • March 27, 2024

    Judge: BLM Made Some Errors But Considered Alternatives In Fracking Lease Sale

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — A federal judge in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia has partially granted and partially denied several cross-motions for summary judgment in a dispute between environmental groups and the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) related to hydraulic fracturing leases, ruling that the BLM erred at times when assessing the Wyoming sale’s impact on groundwater and wildlife but saying that he was “unpersuaded” by the groups’ allegation that the BLM failed to consider a reasonable slate of alternatives when setting the Wyoming lease sale’s scope.

  • March 26, 2024

    Judge Says Agency’s Fracking Lease Sales Did Not Violate Federal Land Policy Law

    WASHINGTON, D.C. —  A federal judge in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia has ruled that the U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) did not violate its duty under the Federal Land Policy and Management Act (FLPMA) to avoid “unnecessary and undue degradation” of the environment when it authorized multiple hydraulic fracturing lease sales across several Western states.

  • March 25, 2024

    Plaintiffs In Royalty Dispute Seek Answer On Remand Bid Before Jurisdiction Ruling

    DENVER — Plaintiffs who sued a hydraulic fracturing company filed a brief on March 22 opposing the company’s motion for judgment on the pleadings in a royalty dispute, arguing that a Colorado federal court should rule on the plaintiffs’ pending motion to remand the case to state court before addressing the company’s motion.

  • March 21, 2024

    Split Michigan High Court Denies Leave To Appeal Fracking Ban Initiative Case

    LANSING, Mich. — A divided Michigan Supreme Court has denied leave to appeal sought by residents who challenged the constitutionality of a provision in state law that says signatures on an initiative petition, in this case one to ban the practice of hydraulic fracturing, will not be counted if the signature was obtained more than 180 days before the filing of the initiative petition.

  • March 20, 2024

    Judge Says Mineral Rights Owners’ Claims For Trespass In Ohio Shale Are Valid

    COLUMBUS, Ohio — A federal judge on Ohio has denied a drilling company’s partial motion to dismiss a drilling rights case, ruling that the plaintiff, a corporation that owns mineral interests in the Point Pleasant Shale formation, has sufficiently pleaded trespass and other causes of action for the drilling company’s intrusion into formations that are beyond the boundaries of its leases in the Marcellus Shale and Utica Shale formations.

  • March 14, 2024

    High Court Review Of Ruling In Fracking-Related Railway Case Needed, Groups Argue

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — Intervenors in litigation pertaining to a proposed rail line in Utah that would carry, among other things, products related to hydraulic fracturing to and from the shale formation in the Uinta Basin have filed a petition for a writ of certiorari in the U.S. Supreme Court arguing that it should hear their case because the lower court erred in its application of Department of Transportation v. Public Citizen as it applies to the standard for environmental review required under the National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA), and a Circuit Court split exists.

  • March 11, 2024

    Investors Seek Approval Of Fracking Securities Class Settlement Worth $7,068,750

    BROOKLYN, N.Y. — U.S. investors who sued an oil and gas exploration company’s officers alleging that they violated federal securities laws have filed a brief in New York federal court supporting preliminary approval of a $7,068,750 class action settlement, which amounts to roughly 12.4% of the U.S. settlement class’s $56.3 million maximum recoverable damages.

  • March 08, 2024

    8th Circuit: Agency Did Not Err In Approving Drilling Near Tribal Water Source

    ST. LOUIS — The U.S. Department of the Interior’s Bureau of Land Management (BLM) did not act arbitrarily or capriciously by approving several permits for oil and natural gas extraction under a reservoir that serves as the only source of drinking water for the Mandan, Hidatsa and Arikara Nation (MHA) because the agency met all administrative requirements in approving the project, an Eighth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals panel found in affirming a trial court’s judgment.

  • March 07, 2024

    Taxi Company: Fracking Operators Conspired To Fix Prices, Constrain Production

    LAS VEGAS — A company that provides taxi service has filed an antitrust class action against multiple hydraulic fracturing companies in Nevada federal court, arguing that they are liable for conspiring to “coordinate, and ultimately constrain, domestic shale oil production, which has had the purpose and effect of fixing, raising, and maintaining the price of crude oil in and throughout” the country.

  • March 07, 2024

    Panel Affirms Dismissal Of Fracking Securities Case For Failure To State Claim

    NEW ORLEANS — A panel of the Fifth Circuit U.S. Court of Appeals affirmed a lower court decision dismissing claims brought by an investor against a hydraulic fracturing company, ruling that a district court did not err when it dismissed claims for violation of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934.

  • March 06, 2024

    Investors Sue Fracking Company For Fiduciary Breach Related To Merger Transaction

    WILMINGTON, Del. — A group of former minority investors in a hydraulic fracturing company have sued in Delaware state court the former members of the board of directors and a private equity firm that is a majority shareholder in the company, contending that they breached their fiduciary duties when they approved a merger between the company and another fracking services operator because the transaction was based on a deficient proxy statement and a “misinformed vote.”

  • March 05, 2024

    Jury: Ohio Leaseholders Did Not Reserve Their Rights To Point Pleasant Shale Play

    COLUMBUS, Ohio — A federal jury in Ohio has ruled that leaseholders who sued hydraulic fracturing companies in a royalty dispute did not reserve their rights below a shale play known as the Point Pleasant formation, which is a specific area beneath the Utica Shale Play.

  • March 05, 2024

    Split Panel Reverses Trial Court, Says New Regulations On Oil Wells Are Valid

    FRESNO, Calif. — A split California appellate panel has ruled that the California Geologic Energy Management Division’s (CalGEM) new regulations on oil drilling, which require automatic cessation of operations at wells located within a 300-foot radius of a surface expression, are valid and do not conflict with state statutes.

  • March 04, 2024

    Land Company Countersues Fracking Operator Over Rights To Subsurface Minerals

    COLUMBUS, Ohio — A land management company has filed a counterclaim in Ohio federal court against a hydraulic fracturing operator seeking declaratory judgment that the fracking operator does not have the right to use the surface of property belonging to the land management company to construct horizontal well pads that will produce oil and gas from under that property.

  • February 28, 2024

    Investors: Magistrate Judge Committed ‘Clear Error’ In Fracking Securities Ruling

    HOUSTON — Investors have filed a brief in Texas federal court objecting to a memorandum issued by a federal magistrate judge who recommended that class certification of a securities fraud case should be limited.  The investors argue that the magistrate judge committed “clear error” when he found that the hydraulic fracturing company that is the defendant in the case rebutted what is known as the Basic presumption.

  • February 27, 2024

    Ohio Judge Dismisses Appeal Of Decision Calling For Fracking In State Parks

    COLUMBUS, Ohio — A state court judge in Ohio has dismissed an appeal of an adjudicative order filed by environmental advocacy groups that challenged the Ohio Oil & Gas Land Management Commission’s (OGLMC) decision calling for hydraulic fracturing in state parks, ruling that the groups lacked standing.

  • February 26, 2024

    Judge Transfers Arctic Fracking Lease Dispute To Alaska Federal Court

    WASHINGTON, D.C. — A federal judge in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia on Feb. 23 ruled that a federal lease dispute regarding hydraulic fracturing in the Coastal Plain of Alaska within the Arctic National Wildlife Refuge should be transferred to Alaska federal court because even though the lease decision was made by the U.S. Department of the Interior (DOI) in Washington, D.C., the fracking proponents who brought the case have “substantial connections” to the District of Alaska.

  • February 26, 2024

    New York Bill Would Prohibit Use Of Carbon Dioxide In Fracking Operations

    ALBANY, N.Y. — Legislators in New York, where hydraulic fracturing using water has been banned, have proposed a bill that would prohibit well permits from being issued to applicants that use carbon dioxide (CO2) “to complete or recomplete natural gas or oil resources.”

  • February 26, 2024

    California Agency Proposes Prohibiting Approval Of Permits Needed For Fracking

    SACRAMENTO, Calif. — The California Department of Conservation (DEC) has proposed amending state regulations to prohibit issuing permits for well stimulation treatments (WSTs) that are part of hydraulic fracturing operations.  The DEC says the prohibition is needed to protect life, public health and the environment.

  • February 23, 2024

    Judge Affirms Ruling Favoring Biden Administration In Alaska Fracking Dispute

    ANCHORAGE, Alaska — A federal judge in Alaska on Feb. 22 denied a motion by hydraulic fracturing advocates seeking to alter the district court’s judgment in favor of the Biden administration in a dispute over the president’s moratorium on federal fracking leases, ruling that the advocates did not show that there was a manifest error of law or fact and did not present newly discovered or previously unavailable evidence.

  • February 22, 2024

    Fracking Operator: Plaintiffs ‘Identified No Theory’ For Remanding Royalty Dispute

    DENVER — A hydraulic fracturing company has filed a brief in Colorado federal court arguing that it should deny a motion to remand to state court a royalty dispute because the plaintiffs have “identified no theory” under which the federal court could remand the lawsuit.

  • February 21, 2024

    Man Awarded $30M For Fracking Injury, But Colorado’s Damages Cap Limits Recovery

    DENVER — A jury in Colorado federal court has awarded a man $30 million in combined damages for injuries he sustained when a hydraulic fracturing rig he was working on exploded.  However, due to a state cap on punitive damages, the man will not be able to collect all $30 million the jury awarded him.

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