On December 31, 2013, SolarWorld Industries America Inc. petitioned the Department of Commerce and the International Trade Commission to begin antidumping investigations against the People’s Republic of China and Taiwan and a countervailing duty investigation against the People’s Republic of China, relating to crystalline silicon photovoltaic products (“solar cells”).
In October 2013, The California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) responded to the exceptional growth in the state’s demand for solar power with an energy storage mandate – the first of its kind in the US – that requires investor-owned utilities to purchase 200MW of energy storage by 2014 and 1.325 GW by 2020.
On December 9, 2013, the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (“OSHA”) requested comments concerning potential changes to its Process Safety Management (“PSM”) program that could have a significant impact on oil field operations.
There’s been a good bit of confusion in the early reactions to the Pennsylvania Supreme Court’s decision in Robinson Township et al v. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, et al., declaring that key aspects of the Act 13 revisions to Pennsylvania’s Oil and Gas Law are unconstitutional.
In Robinson Township v. Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court dealt a major blow to the energy industry. By a 4-2 decision the Court struck down a 2012 law (commonly known as “Act 13”) aimed at preventing municipal interference with oil and gas exploration.
A recent study by researchers Bridget Scanlon, Ian Duncan and Robert C. Reedy of the Bureau of Economic Geology at the University of Texas-Austin found that the state of Texas consumed less water as a result of using natural gas-fired power plants than it would have had it generated the same amount of electricity using coal-fired plants – even after taking into account the water used in hydraulic fracturing to source the natural gas used to generate the power.
A River Runs Through It: North Dakota Supreme Court Finds State Government Owns Minerals in Disputed “Shore Zone”
The North Dakota Supreme Court issued an opinion last week resolving a constitutional question of public vs. private ownership of mineral interests in the area between the high and low water marks along navigable waters (commonly known as the “shore zone”).
As Congress wrapped up the first session of the 113th Congress, the House and Senate came together to finalize several pieces of legislation, and policymakers prepared the way for changes to come in 2014.
Pennsylvania Supreme Court Strikes Down Law Requiring Permits for Oil and Gas Drilling in All Zoning Districts
Last week, the Pennsylvania Supreme Court struck down a state law that required municipalities to permit oil and gas drilling in all zoning districts, including those designated exclusively for residential use.