Blank Rome’s Energy Regulatory practice represents clients who produce oil and natural gas resources, engage in large-scale marketing and trading of energy commodities, engage in the production and transmission of electric power, transport oil and gas by pipeline or maritime vessels, distribute natural gas by local distribution systems (regulated public utilities), and consume oil and gas for both commercial and industrial purposes.
Regulation, Compliance, and Administrative Litigation
We have extensive experience representing energy industry clients in regulatory matters before:
- Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“FERC”)
- Department of Energy (“DOE”)
- Commodity Futures Trading Commission (“CFTC”)
- Federal Trade Commission (“FTC”)
- Department of Transportation Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (“PHMSA”)
- State public utility commissions
- Regional transmission organizations (“RTOs”)
- Independent system operators (“ISOs”)
The firm has a particularly robust oil and natural gas regulatory practice before FERC. We routinely represent pipeline shippers in regulatory proceedings concerning interstate natural gas pipeline regulations, service, rate-setting, capacity assignment and release, tariff modifications, rulemakings, and asset management requirements. We also regularly advise clients regarding interstate oil pipeline access, rate, and tariff issues.
With respect to electricity, Blank Rome attorneys have been actively involved in the regulatory aspects of structuring and facilitating energy-related transactions for many U.S. wholesale markets, including market-based rate authorizations, complaint proceedings, market design and scheduling, mergers and acquisitions, transfers of jurisdictional assets, changes in status, interlocking directorate and public holding company issues, other approvals under the Federal Power Act, and reporting matters.
In addition, we provide compliance advice and develop training programs for clients in the natural gas, oil, and power industries.
Projects and Transactions
Blank Rome’s Energy Regulatory practice has extensive experience advising project developers and prospective anchor shippers in obtaining the regulatory approvals and performing the due diligence required in complex infrastructure transactions, including securing the required approvals from the FERC and DOE for liquefied natural gas (“LNG”) terminals and other natural gas, oil, and natural gas liquids infrastructure.
We routinely assist clients in obtaining regulatory approvals for new natural gas infrastructure in contested proceedings and represent multiple LNG projects in the Gulf region and in Mexico. In fact, the firm’s Energy Regulatory practice is one of the largest in the country when it comes to LNG, having represented developers of regional LNG terminals, LNG import and export terminals, and LNG transportation by barge and ocean-going vessels.
The firm also advises clients on energy and commodity transactions, including mergers and asset dispositions, anchor shipper agreements with pipelines and other infrastructure projects (e.g., terminal and storage projects), and complex secondary market agreements for commodities and capacity.
Blank Rome’s Energy Regulatory attorneys routinely represent clients in the natural gas, oil, and power industries in compliance and enforcement matters before the FERC, CFTC, PHMSA, FTC, and state public utility commissions. We have advised clients in some of the most significant domestic and international investigations of the last few years.
Our enforcement defense team represents commodity traders, power marketers, producers, end users, natural gas marketers, and energy companies in FERC, CFTC, and FTC investigations involving physical commodities, over-the-counter derivatives, and regulated futures trading. We also defend clients in civil and administrative proceedings that involve allegations of manipulation, false reporting, wash trading, and various other regulatory violations. In addition, we regularly represent clients in FERC audits and conduct internal investigations and compliance assessments.