Fulbright & Jaworski LLP: Summit Petroleum: EPA's Aggregation of Oil and Gas Emissions Based on 'Mere Functional Relatedness' is Unreasonable

A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit* in Summit Petroleum Corporation v. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (Nos. 09-4348; 10-4572) [ enhanced version available to lexis.com subscribers ] vacated EPA's order aggregating Summit's sour gas wells and sweetening...

Norton Rose Fulbright Fracking Blog: House Democrats Request Hearing On Induced Seismicity

By Barclay Nicholson Reps. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.), ranking member of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, and Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.), ranking member of the House Committee on Natural Resources, issued a letter to their Republican counterparts requesting a joint hearing on the issue of seismic...

Babst Calland: Utica Shale Gas Production Surges in Quarterly Update

By Michael T. Altvater The Ohio Department of Natural Resources released its first quarterly production update thanks to a new law that requires production to be reported on a quarterly versus annual basis. The report showed that Ohio’s 245 horizontal wells produced a total of 1,332,477 barrels...

Babst Calland: Ohio Trial Courts Issue Additional Rulings on the Dormant Mineral Act

By Michael T. Altvater | Two Ohio trial courts issued new decisions on Ohio’s Dormant Mineral Act (“DMA”) addressing an unsettled issue of law concerning whether the 1989 or 2006 version of the DMA should apply to current disputes over the ownership of severed mineral rights. Both...

Babst Calland: Updates to Ohio’s Proposed Increase of Severance Tax on Natural Resources

By Michael T. Altvater The Ohio House Ways and Means Committee updated House Bill 375, which proposes changes to the severance tax on natural resources. Among the updates are an increase in the proposed severance tax to 2.25% from 2% for horizontal wells, a reduction in the period of time for the...

Babst Calland: ODNR Releases Draft Rules on Horizontal Well Site Construction

By Michael T. Altvater The Ohio Department of Natural Resources, on February 21, 2014, published several draft rules concerning horizontal well site construction and an update to the industry standards referenced in its rules on oil and gas well drilling, permitting and safety. The public comment...

Babst Calland: Advocates From Pa., Ohio, West Virginia Urge Common Approach To Shale Gas Taxation

By Joshua F. Hall As reported by Pittsburgh’s NPR News Station, 90.5 WESA, three advocacy groups, Leaders of Policy Matters Ohio, the Pennsylvania Budget and Policy Center, and the West Virginia Center on Budget & Policy, sent a letter to the governors of Ohio, Pennsylvania and West Virginia...

Steptoe & Johnson PLLC: Court Ruling a Victory for Kentucky Pipeline Eminent Domain Opponents

By J. Kevin West On March 25, 2014, a Circuit Court in Kentucky ruled in favor of those opposed to an interstate natural gas liquids (“NGLs”) pipeline’s potential use of eminent domain under the laws of the Commonwealth of Kentucky. The interstate pipeline is not subject to regulation...

Babst Calland: Gateway Royalty to Pay Utica Shale Landowners for Rights to Future Royalties

By Jason M. Zoeller Gateway Royalty, LLC , a royalty acquisition company based in Carrollton, Ohio, has raised $58.5 million to pay Utica shale play landowners for rights to their future royalty payments. Gateway’s goal is to invest in a broad range of oil and gas royalties across the eastern...

Babst Calland: Utica and Marcellus Formations to Provide Gas to TransCanada’s ANR Pipeline

By Leah R. LaFramboise TransCanada Corporation’s ANR Pipeline system has secured nearly 2.0 billion cubic feet per day of natural gas transportation commitments for the movement of oil and gas produced from the Utica and Marcellus formations through its Southeast Main Line. These contracts involve...

Babst Calland: Ohio EPA Issues Revised General Air Permits For Horizontal Drilling Sites Requiring More Aggressive Methane Leak Detection and Repair

By Joshua F. Hall As reported by the Akron Beacon Journal Online on April 4, 2014, the Ohio Environmental Protection Agency issued revised general permits for the installation and operation of air contaminant sources at oil and gas horizontal well sites to address methane gas released from valves...

McNees Insights: Post-Production Issues and Oil & Gas Leases

By J. Corey Reeder So your oil and gas lease has now converted from the primary term to the secondary term – now what? There are several issues that a landowner or mineral interest owner should be aware of at this stage of the lease. Specifically, you should analyze the Declaration of Pooling...

Babst Calland: Ohio Appeals Court Issues Dormant Mineral Act Ruling

By Michael T. Altvater The Seventh District Court of Appeals issued a ruling concerning application of the Ohio Dormant Mineral Act. In Walker v. Noon , the appeals court upheld the ruling of a Noble County trial court finding that the 1989 version of the Dormant Mineral Act applied and that a severed...

Ohio Announces Additional Permitting Requirements For Horizontal Drilling

By Michael T. Altvater The Ohio Department of Natural Resources has changed permitting requirements after finding a probable connection between horizontal drilling activity near a previously unknown microfault and recent seismic activity in the Mahoning County area. Moving forward, any new permits...

Babst Calland: Ohio Decision Results in Victory for Oil and Gas Producers

By Jason M. Zoeller An Ohio trial court issued a decision in Marshall v. Beekay Company . The case involved an action seeking declaratory judgment as to leasehold rights for formations below the Germantown Sand Formation. The court ruled that there was no breach of the implied covenant to reasonably...

Babst Calland: Ohio Appellate Court Enforces Change In Ownership Clause in Lease

By Jessica L. Henry The Fifth District Court of Appeals affirmed the trial court’s decision in Trico Land Company, LLC v. Kenoil Producing LLC , upholding the right to have and enforce a change of ownership clause in an oil and gas lease. The case involved a property subject to a 2008 oil and...

Babst Calland: Ohio Trial Court Issues Dormant Mineral Act Decision

By Michael T. Altvater A Harrison County trial court issued a decision in a Dormant Mineral Act case addressing the issue of whether a release of an oil and gas lease is a title transaction affecting and preserving a severed mineral interest from being abandoned. The trial court in Schucht v. Bedway...

Babst Calland: Another Ohio Trial Court Issues Dormant Mineral Act Ruling

By Michael T. Altvater The Belmont County Court of Common Pleas ruled that a recorded will is a title transaction for purposes of Ohio’s Dormant Mineral Act. In Albanese v. Batman the trial court held that a will recorded in the county recorder’s office qualifies as title transaction and...

Babst Calland: Ohio Shale Jobs Report Shows 79% Increase Since 2011

By Meredith L. Calfe The Ohio Department of Jobs and Family Services released its quarterly report on the shale industry last Friday. The report shows a 79% increase in core shale-related industry employment in Ohio over the last two years, with an additional 1.5% increase in ancillary jobs, such...

Babst Calland: Ohio Oil and Gas Production Soars

By Michael T. Altvater Oil and gas production increased by 640% from 2012 to 2013 according to a report published by the Ohio Department of Natural Resources. The one year increase was the largest in Ohio history and is the most natural gas that Ohio has produced since 1982. Much of the increase is...

Babst Calland: Ohio Supreme Court Accepts Dormant Mineral Act Case

By Michael T. Altvater The Ohio Supreme Court will review a key question of state law concerning application of the Dormant Mineral Act (“DMA”). In Corban v. Chesapeake Exploration, LLC , the United States District Court for the Southern District of Ohio certified the following questions...

Steptoe & Johnson PLLC: Ohio Appellate Court Adopts Fixed ‘Look Back’ Period For 1989 Dormant Mineral Act

In the recent 7th District Court of Appeals case of Eisenbarth v. Reusser , 7th Dist. Monroe No. 13 MO 10, 2014-Ohio-3792 [ enhanced opinion available to lexis.com subscribers ], the court determined that the “look back” period for the 1989 Dormant Mineral Act (“DMA”) was fixed...

Babst Calland: Ohio Governor Vows to Hike Drilling Tax

By Michael T. Altvater Ohio Governor John Kasich increased his rhetoric regarding a new severance tax on shale oil and gas production. So far, the legislature has opposed any additional increase in the severance tax that was passed in House Bill 375 in May of this year. Governor Kasich describes the...

Babst Calland: Ohio Appeals Court Overturns Trial Court in Perpetual Lease Case

By Michael T. Altvater The Seventh District Court of Appeals overturned the Monroe County trial court’s decision in Hupp v. Beck Energy Corporation finding that a standard oil and gas lease form was void as against public policy [ enhanced opinion available to lexis.com subscribers ]. The appeals...

Steptoe & Johnson PLLC: Ohio Appeals Court Overturns Ruling That Held Certain Oil And Gas Leases Were Void

In Hupp v. Beck , Ohio’s 7th District Court of Appeals overturned the trial court’s decision that certain oil and gas leases were void ab initio (i.e. at their inception) because the trial court considered them to be a “no term or perpetual lease” due to the delay rental provisions...