On February 9, 2024, the Department of the Interior (DOI) published its semi-annual regulatory agenda, which includes two new planned rulemakings affecting federal offshore leases.
Continue Reading DOI Regulatory Agenda Includes BSEE Rulemakings on Decommissioning and Bonding for Civil Penalty Appeals

The 2nd Annual Tulane Offshore Wind Conference capped off Louisiana Offshore Wind Week on Friday, January 19th. The conference included panels of offshore wind energy professionals discussing topics including leasing, permitting, financing, and the supply chain for US offshore wind energy.
Continue Reading Tulane Offshore Wind Conference Highlights Next Steps in GOM Offshore Wind Development

A federal appeals court has affirmed that a “greenwashing” lawsuit by the District of Columbia against several major energy companies should not be heard in federal court. In doing so, the court found itself “in accord with the other courts of appeals, which have unanimously found there is no federal jurisdiction where state or local governments have brought state-law actions against energy companies for conduct relating to climate change.” District of Columbia v. Exxon Mobil Corporation, et al., No. 22-7163 (Dec. 19, 2023) (“D.C. v. Exxon”).
Continue Reading Climate-Related Lawsuits Continue to Return to State Courts: Understanding The Latest Ruling from District of Columbia v. Exxon Mobil Corporation

BOEM’s GOM wind lease sale earlier this week resulted in just 1 high bid of $5.6 million. A drop in the bucket compared to last year’s California wind lease sale which received five winning bids ranging from $130-$173.8 million and totaling $757.1 million. Now what? Find out here on Liskow’s Energy Law Blog.
Continue Reading First-Ever Gulf of Mexico Wind Auction Results in Only 1 Wind Lease Offshore Louisiana. What Happens Next?

Recent technology has made produced water—a byproduct of fracing that was traditionally considered waste—a valuable product. However, no legal guidance existed on whether produced water was owned by mineral owners or surface owners. The Texas Legislature resolved some of that uncertainty by passing Texas Natural Resources Code § 122.002 on September 1, 2019, which generally grants title to produced water to whoever takes possession of it for the purpose of treating it for subsequent beneficial use. However, this statute only governs parties to instruments executed after September 1, 2019, which left parties to instruments executed prior to that date uncertain on whether they owned the produced water extracted from their property. The El Paso Court of Appeals undertook to resolve this conflict in Cactus Water Services, LLC v. COG Operating, LLC, and on July 28, 2023, it held that when instruments convey “oil and gas” or “oil, gas and hydrocarbons” to mineral owners without specifically reserving title to produced water or oil and gas waste, mineral owners have the sole right to produced water extracted from their property.
Continue Reading One Man’s Waste is Another Man’s Treasure: Texas Appellate Court Holds that Produced Water Belongs to Mineral Owners

In Freeport-McMoRan Oil & Gas LLC v. 1776 Energy Partners, LLC, — S.W.3d —, No. 22-0095, 2023 WL 3556695 (Tex. 2023), the Texas Supreme Court held that, as a matter of law, the operator of a joint operating agreement, Ovintiv, did not owe interest on production payments owed to the non-operator, 1776 Energy, that

In Point Energy Partners Permian, LLC v. MRC Permian Company, — S.W.3d —, No. 21-0461, 2023 WL 3028100 (Tex. 2023), the Texas Supreme Court held that the lessee could not invoke a force majeure clause to save its oil and gas leases when it inadvertently scheduled its operations to begin after the requisite deadline.

What started in 2020 as a proposed joint rulemaking between the DOI’s Bureau of Safety and Environmental Enforcement (“BSEE”) and Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (“BOEM”) was recently finalized as a stand-alone BSEE rule addressing decommissioning. BSEE’s new regulations focus on Rights-of-Use and Easements (“RUEs”) and predecessor enforcement practices. At a later date, BOEM intends

The Texas Supreme Court recently released its opinion in Devon Energy Production Company, L.P. v. Sheppard, — S.W.3d —, No. 20-0904, 2023 WL 2438927 (Tex. 2023), in which it held that lessees owed royalties in excess of their gross proceeds, specifically “adding back” costs incurred by third-party buyers that were enumerated in the sales

In advance of holding an offshore wind lease sale in the Gulf of Mexico, which is expected this summer, the Department of Interior recently took several steps to update the offshore wind regulatory framework. First, Interior issued a Final Rule, which reassigns the responsibilities for certain regulations governing offshore wind from BOEM to BSEE. This reassignment aligns