Settlement

Brief — Enbridge Energy LP

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Department of Justice announced a settlement with Enbridge Energy LP and several related Enbridge companies to resolve claims stemming from two separate oil spills in Marshall, MI and Romeoville, IL, in 2010. Enbridge agreed to spend at least $110 million on measures to prevent spills and improve operations across nearly 2,000 miles of its pipeline system in the Great Lakes area, and to pay $62 million in civil penalties for Clean Water Act violations, the agencies said. Enbridge will also pay more than $5.4 million in unreimbursed costs incurred by the government in connection with cleanup of the Marshall spill, as well as all future removal costs incurred by the government in connection with the spill. In addition to payments required under the proposed settlement, Enbridge has already reimbursed the government for $57.8 million in cleanup costs from the Marshall spill and $650,000 for cleanup costs from the Romeoville spill, and reportedly incurred costs in excess of $1 billion for required cleanup activities relating to the spills, the agencies said. Enbridge was held responsible for the discharge of at least 20,082 bbls of oil in Marshall and another 6,427 bbls in Romeoville. In 2012, the National Transportation Safety Board said the 30-inch diameter pipeline rupture and spill in the Kalamazoo River in Marshall was the most expensive onshore oil spill in U.S. history (see Daily GPI,July 16, 2012).

July 20, 2016

FERC Probes of Four NatGas Pipelines Moving Forward; One Agreement ‘Imminent’

FERC’s investigations into whether four interstate natural gas pipelines set unreasonable rates to recoup costs are moving forward, and an agreement on one of the four cases appears imminent, according to documents filed with the regulatory agency.

May 26, 2016

Brief — Chesapeake Settlement

The Fort Worth, TX, city council has voted 9-0 to authorize a $15 million settlement with Chesapeake Energy Corp. regarding underpaid natural gas royalties for Barnett Shale volumes. Fort Worth originally had sought $33.5 million in the lawsuit for royalties from more than 260 leases on 5,800 acres of property in Tarrant and Johnson counties. Chesapeake, which has leased land with the city since 2006, agreed to make the full payment by Tuesday (May 31). Going forward, royalty payments for the Barnett gas will be calculated using Houston Ship Channel prices, without any deductions for post-production costs and expenses. Revenue would be retroactive to April 1, 2016. The city council in March settled a similar lawsuit for $6 million with Chesapeake’s Barnett 25% partner Total E&P USA (see Shale Daily,March 23). Chesapeake and Total also agreed to pay $52.5 million to settle lawsuits with more than 13,000 people owning land in the Barnett, who had claimed they were underpaid royalties for their gas leases (see Shale Daily,May 23).

May 25, 2016

Chesapeake, Total Agree to $52.5M Settlement for Barnett Royalties Underpayments

Chesapeake Energy Corp. and Barnett Shale partner Total E&P USA agreed Monday to pay $52.5 million to settle lawsuits with more than 13,000 people who had claimed they were underpaid royalties for natural gas leases.

May 23, 2016

$4 Billion Rate Case Settlement Proposed For Sempra’s California Utilities

California state regulators on Thursday issued a proposed settlement totaling nearly $4 billion in the combined general rate cases for Sempra Energy’s two utilities in the state: Southern California Gas Co. (SoCalGas) and San Diego Gas and Electric Co. (SDG&E).

May 23, 2016

Rate Hike Agreed For Washington NatGas Utility

Washington state regulatory staff filed an all-party settlement on Monday calling for regulators to approve a $4 million (1.6%) general rate increase for Kennewick, WA-based Cascade Natural Gas Co.

May 18, 2016

Rate Hike Agreed For Washington NatGas Utility

Washington state regulatory staff filed an all-party settlement on Monday calling for regulators to approve a $4 million (1.6%) general rate increase for Kennewick, WA-based Cascade Natural Gas Co.

May 18, 2016

Pennsylvania Landowners Want Chesapeake Settlement Approved Before It’s Too Late

Fearing that the downturn in oil and natural gas prices has battered the finances of Chesapeake Energy Corp. and could eventually threaten an $18 million settlement with thousands of Pennsylvania landowners, two plaintiffs have filed a motion for court ordered mediation to approve the settlement swiftly.

March 2, 2016

Broader Chesapeake Settlement Derailed by Pennsylvania AG’s Lawsuit

A proposed $17 million class action settlement between Chesapeake Energy Corp. and more than 15,000 Pennsylvania landowners that has been in the works for nearly three years could be delayed again by a similar lawsuit filed in December by the state Attorney General (AG).

January 6, 2016

Brief– Avista

The Idaho Public Utilities Commissionhas adopted a natural gas rate hike by Spokane, WA-based Avista Utilitiesof 3.5% effective Jan. 1. The settlement will also grant an electric utility rate hike of 0.6%. Avista had requested gas rate increases of 4.5% in 2016 and 2.2% in 2017 and electric hikes of more than 5% each year. Avista will receive a $2.5 million increase to revenue under the settlement.

December 23, 2015