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Capabilities / Energy Regulation

Energy Regulation

Mapping solutions to energy regulatory challenges.

While pushing the energy industry forward, our clients face an energy regulatory landscape that often pushes right back. Husch Blackwell energy regulatory attorneys have a long track record of helping clients overcome regulatory obstacles at both the federal and state level in order to move important projects forward.

Our energy regulation attorneys provide a full range of legal services and guidance to clients subject to government regulation of energy. We handle regulatory, litigation, and business issues affecting the generation, transmission and distribution of electricity; regional power markets; and natural gas, crude oil, petroleum products and renewable fuels. We also regularly advise clients on rate and cost allocation issues, as well as interconnection procedures in regional transmission organizations (RTOs) and independent system operators (ISOs) across the country.

Our energy regulatory law team includes the former chairman of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), former FERC and state regulatory commission members, and former legislative professionals responsible for shaping energy policy, as well as two attorneys who formerly worked at the Texas Public Utility Commission (PUC) handling contested Certificates of Convenience and Need (CCN) and rulemakings. This collective experience and insider’s perspective give our clients a valuable competitive edge.

Representative Experience

  • Defended a natural gas marketing company in enforcement proceedings seeking millions of dollars in civil penalties for alleged market manipulation violations. Challenged FERC’s statutory authority and raised constitutional due process challenge to FERCs attempt to impose civil penalties based upon retroactive application of a change in commission policy. FERC dropped the market manipulation charges and settled the matter.
  • Represented firm shipper in challenge to natural gas pipeline rate filings resulting in order of more than $20 million in refunds for FLU overcharges
  • Obtained distribution to a client of hundreds of thousands of refund dollars under FERC enforcement proceeding against client’s trading partner found to have engaged in market manipulation
  • Regulatory counsel to midstream natural gas company on 550,000 Dth/day pipeline expansion project in Marcellus shale producing region
  • Represented natural gas producers in complex natural gas contract disputes involving hundreds of millions of dollars in successfully litigated or settled claims
  • Chief litigation counsel for major oil company in successful multi-million-dollar oil pipeline transportation and cost recovery arbitration proceeding
  • Successfully defended natural gas gatherer in complaint proceeding before FERC seeking to impose federal regulation under the Natural Gas Act on the gatherer’s pipeline facilities
  • Represented the independent market monitor of an RTO in federal litigation
  • Represented consortium developing a clean coal plant on a PPA with the Illinois Power Agency and Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC). Our team filed the first CO2 pipeline application with the ICC in state history, advised on discussions with the Illinois Finance Authority, analyzed state public utility and energy legislation, and developed liability management legislation.
  • Represented developer of 440 MW of solar projects. Provided development, real estate, environmental, electric regulatory and state tax expertise on all matters.
  • Assisted energy company in receiving approval from the Public Utility Commission of Texas for an application to approve changes stemming from a change in control as a result of a transaction.
  • Filed a petition on behalf of power company successfully challenging wholesale transmission charges to be imposed on distribution-level wholesale storage companies.
  • Assisted two separate entities with their efforts to exit the Texas retail electric market as they wound down their regulatory obligations with ERCOT and Public Utility Commission of Texas and transferred their customers to other providers.
  • Represented power generation company in three Texas Public Utility Commission proceedings involving ERCOT application to obtain authority to enter into a debt securitization financing related to certain costs stemming from Winter Storm Uri.
  • Successfully assisted in pursuing a change to ERCOT protocols involving changes to the testing of certain behind-the-meter electric generation assets.
  • Represented energy company as local counsel in a public-private partnership where client acquired a license and operating rights to the on campus electric utility system of a university.
Legal Updates | October 18, 2022
ERCOT Schedules Winter Weather Preparedness Workshop
Legal Updates | September 28, 2022
FERC Interconnection NOPR Comments Due October 13
Articles | November 01, 2018
Law360 Expert Analysis: How FERC Aims to Change Transmission Rate Setting

James Hoecker and Sylvia Bartells authored an article on an October 16, 2018 FERC order in the remand proceeding associated with Emera Maine v. FERC.

Full article: How FERC Aims to Change Transmission Rate Setting

News Releases | August 15, 2019
Husch Blackwell Places 143 Lawyers in 2020 BL Rankings' Best Lawyers in America®

The firm has eight "Lawyers of the Year" and 11 attorneys appearing on the list for the first time.

Media Mentions | August 24, 2018
Houston Business Journal: Husch Blackwell partner gives outlook for 17th annual Gas and Power Institute

Chris Reeder discusses topics of note and how the annual Gas & Power Institute — and the industry at large — has evolved over the past two decades.

News Releases | August 15, 2018
Husch Blackwell Places 143 Lawyers in 2019 BL Rankings' Best Lawyers in America®

The Best Lawyers in America® has listed 143 Husch Blackwell attorneys in its 2019 directory. The firm has eight "Lawyers of the Year" and five attorneys appearing on the list for the first time.

Media Mentions | May 14, 2018
S&P Global Platts: Previous FERC chairs trade views on pipeline policy, nuclear power credits

James Hoecker comments on hot topics in the gas and power sector during the annual Energy Bar Association meeting.