The natural gas market faces unprecedented structural changes, requiring experienced guidance in state and federal regulatory matters and in the development of legislative policy. For decades, Day Pitney attorneys have advised clients on strategies for managing the continuing evolution of the industry as well as for navigating the legal, credit and regulatory risks that impact our clients' most difficult projects.
Our natural gas practice offers a full array of legal services in connection with regulatory matters before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), including providing substantive advice on policy and legal questions; preparing filings; representing clients in enforcement investigations; conducting evidentiary hearings; preparing court appeals; and representing clients in settlement proceedings, technical conferences, rulemakings and informal meetings with agency staff. Our attorneys have strong working relationships with FERC commissioners and their staff, administrative law judges, as well as consultants and expert witnesses on topics such as rate design and economic analyses, energy project development, and market power studies. In addition to our representation of clients before FERC, our attorneys have extensive experience in proceedings before the Department of Energy (DOE) and the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management. Our lawyers also handle district court litigation related to federal and state regulatory issues and appellate reviews of lower court decisions and agency orders.
Our attorneys advise clients on matters under a variety of federal statutes, including the Natural Gas Act, the Natural Gas Policy Act and the Energy Policy Act of 2005. We help clients respond to FERC audit and enforcement investigations and comply with FERC standards of conduct requirements. We have helped clients obtain regulatory and permitting approvals and have helped them navigate FERC compliance and enforcement rules.
We regularly provide advice to clients that are seeking to develop natural gas projects that are subject to FERC jurisdiction. Whether for an LNG, storage or pipeline project, the firm counsels clients on the certificate, contractual, rate and tariff issues associated with such projects. Typically, the scope of these engagements spans the initial planning meetings with FERC staff to the ultimate operation of the jurisdictional project itself.
As part of our natural gas representation, we routinely assist clients in their participation in FERC proceedings. Such proceedings run the gamut from contested rate cases and rulemaking dockets to FERC enforcement investigations and audits.
The issues involved in the restructuring of the natural gas industry have influenced regulation at the state level as well, where the role of local distribution companies has changed dramatically and the need for understanding and cooperation between state and federal regulators is critical. Our attorneys have represented clients in new and developing areas, and we have played key roles in state regulatory proceedings. We have worked with clients to create new local distribution companies as well as unregulated affiliates that market unbundled local natural gas service.
The attorneys in our natural gas practice have served as outside counsel to:
- Several FERC-regulated natural gas storage and pipeline companies on certificate, audit, enforcement, rate and tariff matters;
- An LNG company in conjunction with the regulatory and commercial issues associated with the commissioning and placing into service of a Gulf Coast LNG import terminal and its associated interstate natural gas pipeline;
- A natural gas storage company seeking to develop a FERC-jurisdictional, 30-billion-cubic foot natural gas storage facility in Liberty County, TX;
- A natural gas storage company seeking to acquire a Rocky Mountain-based, state-regulated storage facility;
- A natural gas storage company for the acquisition of Freebird Gas Storage from Multifuels Inc.;
- A natural gas storage company for the acquisition of Caledonia Energy Partners from Tenaska Power Fund;
- An electric utility in the negotiation of a long-term transportation and supply agreement for a 637-megawatt combined-cycle, gas-fired power plant in Utah;
- A natural gas marketer in matters involving purchase and sale agreements and transportation agreements, including the acquisition of 145 million cubic feet per day of interstate pipeline transportation capacity from a shipper that was permanently divesting its capacity holdings;
- The chief executive officer of a hedge fund in natural gas enforcement proceedings at FERC;
- An interstate natural gas pipeline establishing procedures for compliance with FERC Standards of Conduct;
- A local distribution company in North American Energy Standards Board (NAESB) and FERC compliance matters;
- Natural gas marketers and traders;
- Industrial and commercial purchasers of natural gas; and
- Shippers in numerous FERC rate, tariff and certificate proceedings.