Energy, Environmental and Natural Resources
Fellers Snider possesses a wealth of talent and experience in energy, environmental and natural resources matters. Our attorneys in this practice area come from diverse backgrounds including the judiciary, the Oklahoma Corporation Commission and Fortune 500 companies. Many have technical degrees and have formerly held positions as in-house engineers, in-house attorneys, or scientists with major energy companies. These diverse backgrounds provide the group with unique insight and practical problem-solving abilities for tackling our clients' complex energy and environmental problems.
This group supports the ongoing business activities of our clients by negotiating and drafting agreements in connection with leases, purchases and sales of properties, equipment, facilities and business entities. This group also provides advice and counseling on pre-transaction activities such as due diligence and environmental assessment as well as post-transaction activities such as remediation of contamination and correction of non-compliance and deficiencies. This group also represents clients in negotiating and drafting service contracts, purchase and sale agreements, access agreements and agreements related to the treatment, storage, disposal, handling, transportation, or remediation of wastes and hazardous substances.
The group’s litigation expertise encompasses energy, environmental and toxic tort litigation for the petroleum and petrochemical industry and has included:
- Natural gas transportation, gathering, purchase and sale disputes.
- Litigation, management and assessment of exposures from discontinued or divested operations.
- Royalty disputes.
- Environmental suits, including numerous class actions, arising from the operation of water floods, exploration and production activities, production pipelines, disposal facilities and surface damage disputes.
- Damage to reservoir and drainage suits.
- Right-of-way, franchise and condemnation of royalty and working interest disputes.
- Oil and gas related class action and shareholder derivative claims.
- Defending claims alleging personal injury or death as a result of exposure to toxic substances in the environment.
- Claims arising from indemnity and other contractual provisions allocating environmental responsibility in multimillion-dollar acquisitions and divestitures.
- Oil and gas related business tort litigation.
This area includes the litigation of enforcement actions by federal and state regulatory agencies, natural resource damage claims, citizens suits and other actions involving common law, CERCLA, RCRA and other statutory provisions for remediation and cost recovery related to exploration and production, refining, processing, retail, transportation, storage and disposal facilities. This group also uses its energy and environmental litigation experience to help clients evaluate their operations and practices to avoid situations which might lead to regulatory enforcement actions or litigation.
Interpretation and application of the various federal, state and local environmental statutes and their associated regulatory requirements is another important aspect of the firm’s service to our clients. Aspects of this practice include representing clients in administrative proceedings, negotiating with administrative agencies, determining the applicability of regulatory requirements to a client's particular facilities or activities, advising clients on how to structure their activities to avoid costly or burdensome regulatory requirements as well as assisting clients in proactively affecting legislative enactments and rulemakings which may impact their activities. This practice area also involves working with new or expanding facilities to identify applicable environmental permitting requirements or to renew, modify or avoid permits, assisting clients in preparing for and conducting environmental audits and in implementing related corrective action and advising clients on the management and remediation of existing contamination.