February 2015

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Last week, the Texas Supreme Court issued its opinion in Environmental Processing Systems LC v. FPL Farming Ltd., case number 12-0905, and specifically declined to address the issue of whether wastewater that migrates under neighboring land can be considered a trespass. The Court, in a unanimous decision, reversed the judgment of the court of appeals and reinstated the trial court’s judgment that the landowner take nothing. Further the Court declined the invitation to address the remaining question presented in this appeal — namely, whether deep subsurface wastewater migration is actionable as a common law trespass in Texas. (more…)

The current United Steelworkers strike is the first national strike called by the union since 1980. After contract negotiations with Shell Oil Company failed, 3,800 workers stopped work at nine sites on February 1, 2015. The nine sites, located in Texas, California, Kentucky and Washington, represent ten percent of the United States refining capacity. The strike expanded this week to include two more plants in Indiana and Ohio. All but one of the plants continue to operate with temporary replacement workers, but will be forced to cut operating rates. (more…)