Friday, November 15, 2019

Columbia Circuit News

U.S. Court Says Regulator Incorrectly Set Renewable Fuel Standard

A U.S. court on Friday said the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency erred when setting standards for how much renewable fuel must be included in fuel sold in the United States and ordered the agency to try again, according to a court filing. The EPA had sought to lower the amount of biofuels that needed to be mixed into U.S. fuel. But the U.S. Appeals Court, District…

US Top Court Sides with Venezuela over Oil Rigs Claim

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday tossed out a lower court's ruling that had allowed an American oil drilling company to sue Venezuela over the seizure of 11 drilling rigs in 2010 but allowed the business another chance to press its claims. Siding with Venezuela, the justices ruled 8-0 that a lower court that had given the go-ahead for the suit must reconsider whether…

Clean Power Plan Lawsuit Put on Hold

A U.S. appeals court on Friday granted a Trump administration request to put on hold a legal challenge by industry and a group of states to former President Barack Obama's regulations aimed at curbing greenhouse emissions mainly from coal-fired power plants, rules that the Republican president is moving to undo. A 10-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District…

US Justices Drill Down on Venezuela Oil Rig Dispute

Some U.S. Supreme Court justices on Wednesday appeared wary about the foreign policy implications of making it too easy for foreign governments to be sued in U.S. courts as they considered a lawsuit by an Oklahoma-based oil drilling company that claims Venezuela unlawfully seized 11 drilling rigs six years ago. The eight justices heard an hour-long argument in Venezuela's…

US Supreme Court to Hear Venezuela Oil Rig Dispute

Photo: Public Domain

The U.S. Supreme Court on Tuesday agreed to weigh Venezuela's bid to block a lawsuit filed by an American oil drilling company that claims the South American country unlawfully seized 11 drilling rigs six years ago. The high court will review a May 2015 ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit that allowed one of the claims made by Oklahoma-based Helmerich & Payne International Drilling Company to move forward.

U.S. Top Court Rejects Ecuador Challenge to Chevron Arbitration Award

Photo: U.S. Supreme Court

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday rejected Ecuador's challenge to a $96 million international arbitration award in favor of energy company Chevron Corp in a dispute over the development of oil fields in the South American country. The high court's refusal to hear the case leaves in place an August 2015 ruling by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit…

Possible Scalia Replacement Previously Represented Exxon, Rio Tinto

One possible contender to replace Justice Antonin Scalia on the U.S. Supreme Court is an Indian-American appeals court judge, Sri Srinivasan, who has pro-business credentials and a stellar resume. If he was nominated his background may make it more politically challenging for Republicans as they plan to block anyone put forward by President Barack Obama. Srinivasan, 48, has served on the U.S.

U.S. Top Court Upholds Electricity Markets Rule

The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday upheld a major Obama administration electricity markets regulation aimed at encouraging efficiency in the market by having grid operators pay large users to reduce consumption at peak times. The court ruled 6-2, with Justice Samuel Alito not taking part in the case, to reverse a May 2014 decision by the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District…

US Supreme Court Fires Warning Shot Across EPA's Bow

In a rare defeat for the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, the U.S. Supreme Court ordered it on Monday to reconsider whether the EPA's regulations on mercury and other toxic emissions from power plants are appropriate and necessary. While the EPA considered the costs and benefits of various regulatory options later in the rule-writing process, the court faulted it…

US Court Rejects Early Challenge to Obama Power Plant Regulations

A U.S. appeals court on Tuesday rejected an industry and state challenge to the Obama administration's proposal to curb carbon dioxide emissions from existing power plants. A three-judge panel of the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit said the various lawsuits objecting to the plan were premature because the regulation has not yet been finalized.  (Reporting by Lawrence Hurley)

US Energy Dept OKs Cove Point LNG Export

Cove Point Terminal (Photo: Dominion)

The U.S. Energy Department said Thursday it has given the final approval for Dominion Resources to export liquefied natural gas (LNG) from its Cove Point, Maryland plant. The Cove Point plant is investing $3.8 billion in new infrastructure to ship up to 0.77 billion cubic feet of LNG starting late in 2017 to countries with which the United States does not have free trade agreements.

U.S. Top Court Rejects Challenge to Ozone Regulations

The Supreme Court on Monday rejected an industry challenge to U.S. Environmental Protection Agency regulations issued by Republican former President George W. Bush's administration that set standards for ozone pollution. By declining to hear the case, the court left in place the so-called primary air quality standards designed to protect public health, which Democratic President Barack Obama's administration defended.

US Court Upholds FERC Rules on Electric Grid Planning

A U.S. court on Friday upheld rules from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission calling on utilities to take various actions, including increased planning of large transmission projects. The U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit affirmed FERC's "Order 1000," a series of measures from 2011 that requires large-scale regional planning of the nation's electric grid designed in part to create greater access to renewable energy.

US Court Rules for Groups Defending Historic Site from Coal Mining

A U.S. appeals court ruled Tuesday in favor of environmental groups fighting to protect the site of a historic 1920s-era labor battle between miners and companies in West Virginia from being destroyed by modern-day coal mining. The Sierra Club and a coalition of local historical associations sued the government for removing the Blair Mountain Battlefield in southern West Virginia from the National Register of Historic Places in 2009…

US Top Court Upholds Cross-State Air Pollution Rule

Victory for Barack Obama

The U.S. Supreme Court handed President Barack Obama a victory on Tuesday by upholding a federal environmental regulation requiring some states to limit pollution that contributes to unhealthy air in neighboring states. By a 6-2 vote, the court said the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency acted reasonably in requiring 28 states to reduce emissions from coal-fired power plants of sulfur dioxide and nitrogen oxides, which can lead to soot and smog.