Harrison County power plant to be a hub of economic growth for the state of West Virginia

Energy Solutions Consortium and Caithness Energy are partnering to open a natural gas-fired power plant in Harrison County, WV, by fall of 2021, according to WVNews. The plant will interconnect with the PJM grid, powering 13 states and generating an expected $880 million for the state of West Virginia. Energy Solutions Consortium is also in the early stages of a second project, which will bring an even larger natural gas power plant to Brooke County. For more, read the full story

West Virginia

DeWine announces J.P. Nauseef as the next president of JobsOhio

Governor Mike DeWine and JobsOhio jointly announced J.P. Nauseef as the next president and investment officer of JobsOhio on Feb. 14, according to Ohio.gov. Dewine believes that Nauseef’s “extensive experience in the economic development field, and passion for selling Ohio as the best location for new and expanding businesses” positioned him as the most promising candidate. Previously, Nauseef served as a former U.S. Air Force Officer and is now chairman and co-founder of Krush Media Group. He is set to replace the current president, John Minor, in March. For more, read the full story

Ohio

Antero to pay $3.15 million fine for pollution violations in West Virginia

On February 11, 2019, the U.S. Department of Justice and the West Virginia Department of Environmental Protection filed a settlement in federal court requiring Antero to pay a $3.15 million fine over damages involving fracking, according to The State. The Colorado-based natural gas producer was found in violation of the Clean Water Act for illegally disposing of dredge in waters at 32 drilling sites across West Virginia. In addition to paying the fine, Antero is responsible for restoring the water supplies affected and the surrounding areas.  For more, read the full story

West Virginia

2019 Infrastructure Funding: How to get it and spend it wisely

On January 14, 2019, the President signed the Water Infrastructure Improvement Act (H.R. 7279), granting municipalities new statutory tools to affordably confront expensive infrastructure challenges using Integrated Planning. Bricker & Eckler, McMahon DeGulis and Muskingum Watershed Conservancy District are hosting a series of free public infrastructure planning events to discuss these tools and the integrated planning process.

This program will be offered in various Ohio locations February through May. For more information, including schedule, location details and to register, visit the event page.

Ohio

States could have limited abilities to block pipeline projects

States could soon have limited abilities to block natural gas pipelines and other energy projects from going forward, according to Crain’s Cleveland Business. Insiders with the Trump Administration have reportedly said that this legislation, targeted at states in the Northwest U.S., could come in the form of an executive order. Recently the state of New York used a provision of the Clean Water Act to block a pipeline project that was previously approved by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC). For more, read the full story.

National

Supreme Court review denial favors pipeline company

On January 22, 2019, the U.S. Supreme Court denied review of a Fourth Circuit decision affirming the dismissal of an action brought by landowners in the Western District of Virginia. The action sought to prohibit the Federal Energy Commission (FERC) from issuing a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity to Mountain Valley Pipeline LLC, which would provide eminent domain authority to the pipeline company. For more, read the full story.  

National, Oil & Gas Litigation

Power companies ask Supreme Court to strike down nuclear power subsidies

On January 7, 2019, the Electric Power Supply Association, one of the nation’s leading trade associations representing independent power producers, filed two petitions for writs of certiorari with the U.S. Supreme Court. The writs for cert arise from appeals of a Second Circuit Court of Appeals decision, which is summarized here, and a Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals decision, which is summarized here, that both upheld state subsidies for nuclear power generation facilities in New York and Illinois, respectively. The question presented by both appeals is “[w]hether the [Federal Power Act (FPA), 16 U.S.C. § 791a et seq.] preempts only state subsidies that explicitly require a wholesale generator to sell its output in FERC-approved auctions, or whether the FPA also preempts state subsidies that lack such an express requirement but that, by design, subsidize only generators that sell their entire output via such auctions, thereby achieving the same effect.”

Both petitions urged the Court to recognize the great importance of the decisions from the Second Circuit and Seventh Circuit if upheld. “The economic and policy stakes are enormous,” and the subsidies will grossly distort market outcomes. “Unless this Court intervenes, these subsidy schemes will impose huge costs and threaten serious distortions of the FERC-authorized mechanisms for setting wholesale rates at economically efficient levels and sending appropriate price signals to wholesale market participants.” To the petitioners, the decisions ratify “a fundamental transfer of regulatory authority to the States and away from the federal government and its policy of relying on market forces to set just and reasonable wholesale rates and send economically efficient signals regarding market entry and exit.”

This case will have major ramifications across the country but particularly here in Ohio, as the outcome could work to either essentially permit or effectively preempt future attempts at providing nuclear subsidies to failing generation facilities. The response date for both petitions has been set for February 7, 2019.

National, Oil & Gas Litigation

TransCanada transforming to TC Energy

Canadian pipeline company TransCanada Corp. will soon be changing their name to TC Energy, according to the Washington Post. If approved, the company says their new name will reflect their growth into the U.S. and Mexico markets. For more, read the full story

Global, National

Ohio among top states for oil and natural gas proved reserves

In newly released data by the U.S. Energy Information Administration, Ohio is now among the top five states for oil and natural gas proved reserves, according to the Dayton Business Journal. Other top states include Pennsylvania, Texas, West Virginia and Louisiana.  For more, read the full story.

National, Ohio

Natural gas production on the rise in Ohio

At the end of the third quarter, Ohio’s natural gas production was up 39% to 6.9 billion cubic feet per day, according to API SmartBrief.  Belmont, Jefferson and Monroe counties and Ascent Resources were top producers. For more, read the full story.

Ohio
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