Chesapeake Energy & Total Beat Class Action Royalty Lawsuit in OH

In 2015 a group of Ohio landowners did what landowners had previously done in Pennsylvania, Texas and elsewhere–they filed a proposed class-action lawsuit against Chesapeake Energy claiming Chessy had screwed them and about 1,000 other Ohio landowners out of a collective $30 million in royalty payments (see OH Landowners File Royalty Class Action Lawsuit Against Chesapeake). It took nearly five years with a lot of twists and turns, but yesterday the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Ohio ruled in favor of Chesapeake, dismissing the claims against them.
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PA DEP Caves to Radicals, Revokes PGE Injection Well Permit

This is truly disappointing. A few weeks ago we told you that Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court ruled a long-running lawsuit involving Grant Township (Indiana County, PA) will continue on through the court system (see Grant Lawsuit Using ERA Threatens PA Injection Wells & Fracking). Grant, a town that passed an ordinance cooked up by the extreme radical Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF) to try and block a state-approved injection well, is attempting to use the state’s so-called Environmental Rights Act to justify its illegal ordinance. The court gave its blessing to that effort. And because the court is sending the signal it’s OK to invoke the ERA to justify just about anything, the state Dept. of Environmental Protection (DEP) is now going along by revoking a permit issued to Pennsylvania General Energy (PGE) to build an injection well in Grant.
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EEIA Files Brief with U.S. Supreme Court Supporting PennEast Case

The Energy Equipment and Infrastructure Alliance (EEIA), a non-profit representing people and businesses who work in the energy infrastructure supply chain, filed an “amicus curiae” (friend of the court) brief in support of PennEast Pipeline’s request to get the U.S. Supreme Court. PennEast has asked the Supremes to overturn a lower court decision that allows states like New Jersey to usurp federal authority by blocking PennEast, a FERC-approved pipeline.
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COVID-19 Crisis Slams the Brakes on Anti-Fossil Fuel Shenanigans

If there’s a silver lining in this tragic COVID-19 coronavirus crisis, this may be it: Radicals who want to deny everyone the right to use fossil fuels with their unending campaigns of protests and legal actions are pretty much stopped in their tracks. They can no longer make mischief to block pipelines and shale drilling and the use of natural gas by ordinary citizens (via municipal bans). The virus has stopped most court cases, public hearings, and even the right to assemble and protest. Antis are apoplectic and scared that pipeline and drilling projects will get approved and move forward because antis can’t bully public officials and courts into bending to their twisted anti-fossil fuel views.
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Rollback of Obama EPA Overregulation in Trouble from COVID-19

Before Lord Obama and the EPA Obamadroids left office, they inflicted a great deal of damage to this country via onerous and outrageous new regulations. When President Trump took office, he immediately began to roll back and rightsize regulations at the EPA (and elsewhere), scaling back overregulation to common-sense regulation. We’re talking about regs like the horrible so-called Clean Power Plan. The Obamadroids and Big Green lobby (one and the same, with gobs of money) have litigated Trump’s efforts to restore sanity to EPA regulations every square centimeter of the way.
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Judge Blocks New Lease Sales in Ohio’s Wayne Natl Forest

Radicalized leftist groups pretending to care about the environment, including the Center for Biological Diversity, Sierra Club and Ohio Environmental Council, have struck again. In May 2017 the three groups sued the U.S. Forest Service and U.S. Bureau of Land Management (BLM) to block the sale of leases for oil and gas drilling in Ohio’s Wayne National Forest (WNF). Last week a federal judge ruled in their favor. The court has effectively blocked all future lease auctions for WNF and is considering overturning two previous auctions. This is a DIRECT attack on the property rights of private landowners.
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Grant Lawsuit Using ERA Threatens PA Injection Wells & Fracking

In a disappointing decision, Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court recently ruled a long-running lawsuit filed against Grant Township (Indiana County, PA) will continue on through the court system. For the past several years we’ve reported on the case of Grant Township, a town that passed an ordinance cooked up by the radical Community Environmental Legal Defense Fund (CELDF) to try and block a state-approved injection well. Part of the ordinance was tossed. However, Commonwealth Court has decided the town can continue to try and make a case that it should be able to override state law with its home-cooked regulations because by doing so they will somehow protect citizens’ health, which the town says is allowed under PA’s poorly-written Environmental Rights Amendment (ERA).
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Court Victory for Atlantic Coast Pipe Against Nelson County, VA

The 600-mile Dominion Energy Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP) project has completed about 35 miles of the project and that’s it. Why? Lawsuits, brought by Big Green groups. The biggest challenge the project faces is a lawsuit that ruled ACP could not cross under the Appalachian Trail. Dominion appealed the decision to the U.S. Supreme Court where it now sits. By all accounts, the recent oral arguments before the Supremes went well for ACP (see Atlantic Coast Pipeline had Very Good Day in US Supreme Court). Although the Supreme Court case is the biggest obstacle, there are other, smaller cases ACP still must overcome.
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Susquehanna County Judge Sanctions Defendants in Cabot Lawsuit

Last week MDN brought you news (from the Associated Press) that Cabot Oil & Gas had “abandoned” negotiations to settle a lawsuit they brought against attorneys who had sued Cabot for something already settled in a previous lawsuit (see Cabot Ends Lawsuit Settlement Talks, Prefers Trial in Dimock Case). What we have today is “the rest of the story,” as Paul Harvey used to say. Last week we told you we only had a single AP article, and that AP is known for its biased reporting when it comes to Cabot. And indeed, our words were prophetic. We now have the full story of why Cabot pulled out of settlement negotiations.
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Cabot Ends Lawsuit Settlement Talks, Prefers Trial in Dimock Case

In April 2017 Dimock Township (Susquehanna County, PA) resident Ray Kemble and lawyers from two different law firms filed a new lawsuit against Cabot Oil & Gas over claims of contaminated water from local fracking. Thing is, those claims were settled by Cabot with Kemble years earlier. Cabot said this was a renewed attempt to sully its good name and reputation and countersued Kemble and his lawyers for $5 million (see Cabot O&G Countersues Dimock Anti, Lawyers).
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Antis Use Jim Beam to Try and Block Pipeline Near Louisville, KY

Anti-fossil fuelers know no depths to which they won’t sink in efforts to block *any* new natural gas pipelines. Louisville Gas and Electric Company (LG&E) has state approval to build a new 12-inch, 12-mile pipeline near Louisville to supply gas to 62 homes and businesses that can’t connect to LG&E’s local natgas utility system. The local Bernheim Arboretum has resisted attempts to build across three-tenths of one percent (0.028%) of Arboretum land–along an existing cleared path where electric lines already go (see KY Utility Hints at Defunding Local Arboretum Blocking New Pipe). Now antis claim the only reason LG&E wants to build the pipeline is to feed the local Jim Beam production plant. Grab a shot glass and prepare yourself for the latest attack on this project…
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Judge Rules Tug Hill Not on Hook to Buy Gulfport OH Marc. Assets

A kerfuffle between Gulfport Energy and Tug Hill Operating has been settled by a Texas judge. Gulfport and Tug Hill cut a deal in November 2018 for Tug Hill to purchase certain Marcellus shale assets in Ohio from Gulfport for $26 million. According to Gulfport, Tug Hill never sealed the deal and should be forced to complete it now. Tug Hill said Gulfport didn’t come through with necessary releases from third parties related to the deal, and therefore the deal is null and void. The judge agreed with Tug Hill.
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Judge Rules Against NY DEC to Allow Northern Access Pipe

While the Andrew Cuomo-corrupted New York Dept. of Environmental Conservation (DEC) can claim a victory in stopping the much-needed Constitution Pipeline (see Sad Day: Williams Declares Constitution Pipeline Project Dead), an equally important pipeline project aimed at flowing PA’s fracked gas into New York State, being built by National Fuel Gas Company (NFG), just won an important court victory over the DEC’s disgusting efforts to block it too. An NY Supreme Court judge has ruled NFG’s Northern Access Pipeline is regulated (given permission to build) by the federal government, NOT by the DEC–and can now go forward.
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Atlantic Coast Pipeline had Very Good Day in US Supreme Court

Yesterday the Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP) had its day in U.S. Supreme Court–and by all appearances, it was a very good day indeed. The right of the pipeline to cross the Appalachian Trail is the issue under consideration. In a case brought by environmentalist wackos, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit ruled a permit granted by the U.S. Forest Service (USFS) is invalid because the U.S. Park Service manages the trail and according to law, USFS does not have jurisdiction over “lands” owned/managed by the Park Service. In practice such a ruling, if upheld, creates a thousand-mile long barrier across which no pipeline can cross. All of the articles we read about yesterday’s oral arguments before the Supremes indicate a likely decision in favor of the pipeline and against the wackos.
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Atlantic Coast Pipe Oral Arguments Today in U.S. Supreme Court

Oral arguments will be heard this morning beginning at 10 am at the U.S. Supreme Court on a case to decide whether or not the Appalachian Trail will, from now on, block all future pipelines from being installed under it. The case, U.S. Forest Service v. Cowpasture River Preservation Association, will determine whether or not Big Green wins the right to block Dominion Energy’s Atlantic Coast Pipeline (ACP) project from crossing under the Appalachian Trail.
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PA Court Turns Down Chester Co. Request to Block ME Construction

Score another victory for the Mariner East Pipeline project in southeast Pennsylvania. On Tuesday Pennsylvania Commonwealth Court ruled against Chester County Commissioners and their attempt to obtain an injunction to stop construction of the Mariner East pipeline project. The petition fought to curtail open trench construction rather than horizontal directional drilling on two easements the county gave to the pipeline. Energy Transfer/Sunoco Logistics wants to change from using underground horizontal directional drilling (HDD) to instead use conventional bore or open trench technology on those easements, which would avoid more problems with HDD already experienced during construction.
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