Justia Energy, Oil & Gas Law Opinion SummariesArticles Posted in U.S. 8th Circuit Court of Appeals
Anderson, et al. v. Hess Corp.
The Andersons appealed the grant of summary judgment by the district court in favor of Hess Corporation (Hess), the successor in interest to and lessee of mineral rights on the Andersons' land. The Andersons contended that the district court erred in construing the five leases at issue as requiring Hess to engage in "drilling operations" rather than actual "drilling" in order to extend the primary terms of the leases and granting Hess's motion for summary judgment. The court held that the district court did not abuse its discretion in declining to certify the Andersons' question regarding the meaning of the phrase "engaged in drilling or reworking operations." The court also held that this disputed lease language was not ambiguous and meant "engaged in drilling operations or reworking operations." Therefore, the district court correctly interpreted the disputed lease language and properly granted summary judgment in favor of Hess on the Andersons' quiet title claim. View "Anderson, et al. v. Hess Corp." on Justia Law
Sierra Club, et al. v. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, et al.; Hempstead County Hunting Club, Inc. v. Southwestern Elec. Power Co., et al.
The Sierra Club and several related parties brought this action against the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers (the Corps) seeking to set aside a Clean Water Act, 33 U.S.C. 1251 et seq., permit (the section 404 permit) the Corps had issued to the Southwestern Electric Power Company (SWEPCO) which planned to construct a new power plant. SWEPCO subsequently appealed the preliminary injunctions ordered by the district court, arguing that the district court lacked subject matter jurisdiction and that the district court abused its discretion in granting the preliminary injunction. The court held that the district court did not err in concluding that the Sierra Club and Hunting Club had Article III standing. The court also held that plaintiffs have shown a likelihood of success where there was ample evidence in the record to show that plaintiffs were likely to succeed on at least three of their claims; that there was a likelihood of irreparable harm; that the balance of harms weighed in favor of an injunction; and that the public interest that might be injured by a preliminary injunction did not outweigh the public interest that would be served by the injunction. Accordingly, the court affirmed the preliminary injunction. View "Sierra Club, et al. v. U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, et al.; Hempstead County Hunting Club, Inc. v. Southwestern Elec. Power Co., et al." on Justia Law
Brown, et al. v. Nuclear Regulatory Comm’n, et al.
Petitioners sought review of a decision by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) under the Atomic Energy Act, 42 U.S.C. 2201 et seq., to renew the operating license of the Duane Arnold Energy Center (DAEC) in Palo, Iowa. The court held that the NRC order at issue was entered on December 16, 2010, and the petition for review was not filed until February 28, 2011. Therefore, the petition was filed 14 days late and accordingly, the court dismissed the petition for review as untimely.