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Energy and Natural Resources Blog

Welcome to the Holland & Knight Energy and Natural Resources Blog, featuring news and analysis related to energy and natural resource litigation and regulation.

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With Hurricane Florence approaching last week, Congress took two key actions with regard to clean energy. While many would argue that the timing of these two actions is purely coincidental, it's very possible that the federal government's continued role in extreme weather preparedness and response continues to give Congress the nudges it needs to pass more expansive clean energy legislation.
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September 18, 2018
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On Sept. 13, 2018, the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources held a hearing on the subject of liquefied natural gas (LNG) exports to Europe.
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September 17, 2018
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The Internal Revenue Service (IRS) issued recent guidance regarding construction of commercial solar energy properties and other qualified energy properties for purposes of claiming the Investment Tax Credit (ITC), the key tax credit for solar energy projects, under Section 48 of the Internal Revenue Code.
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As previously reported, on Aug. 31, 2018, Kevin J. McIntyre, Chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and Howard "Skip" Elliott, Administrator of the Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA) of the U.S. Department of Transportation executed a Memorandum of Understanding regarding Liquefied Natural Gas Transportation Facilities (MOU). The MOU continues the longstanding working relationship between FERC and PHMSA with respect to review of proposed liquefied natural gas (LNG) projects, but creates a more formal relationship.
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September 5, 2018
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The U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Environment will hold a hearing on per-fluorinated chemical contamination on Thursday, Sept. 6, 2018, at 10 a.m. in 2123 Rayburn House Office Building. In 2016, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published a health advisory for two PFAS chemicals, perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA) and perfluorooctanesulfonic acid (PFOS) at 0.070 micrograms per liter (μg/L) or 70 parts per trillion (ppt).
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In the wake of the PFAS National Leadership Summit convened by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) on May 22-23, 2018, EPA opened a public docket to solicit comments on per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), a category of man-made chemicals that have been widely used to make products because of their stain-resistant, waterproof and/or nonstick properties.
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On Aug. 23, 2018, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) published its results of efforts to study a variety of technologies used to remove Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS) from drinking water.
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The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has been studying holistically the management of wastewater generated from onshore unconventional oil and gas extraction, also known as "fracking." This study is a result of the latest (2016) Effluent Guidelines Program Plan recently published in the Federal Register.
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August 27, 2018
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The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has issued a proposed rule to reduce greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions from existing coal-fired power plants, a replacement for the Clean Power Plan (CPP) finalized by the Obama Administration in October 2015.
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Two upcoming high voltage direct current (HVDC) projects, and Mexico's planned synchronous interconnection of two currently unconnected grids each, independent of the other, may interconnect ERCOT with U.S. interstate synchronous power flows commingled in Mexico.
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August 8, 2018
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The new administration of President-Elect Andrés Manuel López Obrador will take over the Mexican government for a six-year term on Dec. 1, 2018. The President-Elect has been outlining his administration's energy strategy, including appointing Manuel Bartlett as the general director of Comisión Federal de Electricidad (CFE). Bartlett has been a critic of the government's energy reform of 2013.
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On Tuesday, July 31, 2018, the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) hosted a National Cybersecurity Summit, featuring the nation's top homeland, national security and law enforcement officials.
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August 6, 2018
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Mexico's energy reform of 2013 opened both of the country's energy sectors: Oil and gas as well as electricity. As the industry moves to take advantage of the new market opportunities, a new administration is set to take over for a six-year term on Dec. 1, 2018.
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Following recent developments in liquefied natural gas (LNG) export policy in which we outlined in previous blog posts on June 12, 2018 and June 22, 2018, the Department of Energy (DOE) Office of Fossil Energy issued a Final Rule on July 25, 2018, authorizing presumptive approval of small-scale LNG exports.
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July 30, 2018
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Tabasco is known for being one of Mexico's oil states, with a very developed industry and fields. As such, the federal Port Authority Dos Bocas (API Dos Bocas), located in the southeast of the Gulf of Mexico, has an industrial and oil calling, and is a major node of the Pemex logistic network. Recently, because of oil rounds, there is increasing activity of exploration and production of oil.
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In an announcement that took many by surprise, Commissioner Robert Powelson on Thursday made public his plan to depart the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission at the end of August, just one year after his confirmation. Powelson will assume the role of President and CEO of the National Association of Water Companies.
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June 29, 2018
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On June 19, 2018, the Massachusetts Department of Environmental Protection (DEP) Bureau of Waste Site Cleanup (BWSC) issued its Interim Guidance on Sampling and Analysis for PFAS at Disposal Sites Regulated under the Massachusetts Contingency Plan (MCP Guidance).
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The Department of Energy's (DOE) recent study on liquefied natural gas (LNG) mentioned in a previous blog post was good news for LNG exporters. The study found that across the entire range of scenarios, U.S. economic output is higher whenever global markets call for higher levels of LNG exports, assuming that LNG exports are unconstrained.
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June 22, 2018
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On June 12, 2018, the Office of Fossil Energy of the Department of Energy (DOE) filed a Notice in the Federal Register seeking comments prior to July 27, 2018 on its recently released study, entitled Macroeconomic Outcomes of Market Determined Levels of U.S. LNG Exports.
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June 12, 2018
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On May 30, 2018, the White House released a key report, entitled "Assessment of Electricity Disruption Incident Response Capabilities," which was required by the May 2017 White House Cybersecurity Executive Order 13800 discussed in a prior blog. The report, written by the U.S. Departments of Homeland Security (DHS) and Energy (DOE), reviews the state of preparedness by the electricity sector and its ability to manage cybersecurity attacks, with a focus on how such respective attacks would impact other sectors.
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June 5, 2018
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