Managing Partner: Charles F Caldwell
Number of partners: 7
CBL attorneys are helping their clients navigate a challenging and evolving pipeline regulatory environment at the federal and state levels. The firm’s deep bench of energy regulatory attorneys has extensive experience with crude oil, petroleum products, natural gas liquids and natural gas pipelines, as well as with carbon dioxide, petrochemicals, rail, and intermodal transportation. Whether securing regulatory approvals and running an open season for a greenfield NGL pipeline, innovating a crude gathering proration system, handling a major natural gas certificate application, pursuing a potential acquisition, or evaluating a pipe-rail project, clients look to CBL to help reach their goals.
Main Areas of Practice:
Administrative & Appellate Litigation:
CBL attorneys have wide administrative litigation experience, having handled over a dozen major pipeline rate hearings before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and state regulators, obtaining ground-breaking rulings and defending them on appellate review:
■Responsible for much of FERC’s recent guidance on cost-of-service ratemaking for oil pipelines, including trailblazing approval of a complex overhead allocation methodology for an elaborate corporate structure, reversal of a disadvantageous approach to purchase accounting adjustments in capital structure, and avoiding recognition of interest rate swaps in cost of debt (Opinion Nos. 511, 511-A, and 522)
■Represented SFPP, L.P. (a subsidiary of Kinder Morgan) in various matters before FERC and the Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit regarding the issue of whether a pipeline organized as a tax-pass-through entity should be entitled to recover an income tax allowance
■Secured favorable FERC and court rulings on challenges to FERC’s indexing standards, including index ceiling catch-up adjustments (SFPP, L.P., IS13-502)
Liquids Infrastructure/M&A/Capital Markets:
CBL attorneys have worked on significant projects in every major U.S. shale play, including developing innovative rate designs and capacity access structures and modeling prorationing results. The firm’s clients benefit from its deep experience with open season processes and documentation. The firm has worked with a wide range of agreements involving pipelines, including a variety of forms of transportation services agreements, deficiency agreements, acreage dedications, connection policies and agreements, terminal usage agreements, and commodity-related agreements. CBL attorneys are experienced with major acquisitions involving regulated assets.
Regulatory Counseling & Tariffs:
The firm’s strong familiarity with regulatory agencies and their processes helps the firm guide its clients through day-to-day filings and develop longer-term tariff strategies. CBL has developed lower cost eTariff filing options for its clients. The firm’s attorneys are experienced in handling connection, proration, and quality issues.
Natural Gas Pipelines:
Administrative & Appellate Litigation:
CBL attorneys have significant administrative litigation and appellate experience on natural gas matters, including:
■Briefed, argued, and received favorable D.C. Circuit orders representing natural gas industry groups on several matters of industry-wide significance, including Order No. 636, Order No. 637, and ‘right of first refusal’ rules
■Obtained groundbreaking decision in federal district court and on appeal in the D.C. Circuit finding the Commission lacked jurisdiction under the Outer Continental Shelf Lands Act over certain facilities
■Obtained FERC certificate authorization for multiple contested natural gas pipeline projects, including a major cross-border natural gas pipeline from Canada to the US, a significant Gulf of Mexico pipeline serving Florida and several gas pipeline projects serving major markets in the Northeast
■Negotiated and secured FERC approval for settlements in a range of settings, including natural gas Section 4 and 5 cases and Section 311 cases
The firm’s attorneys have aided in the development of various natural gas pipeline and storage projects, including a major cross-border joint venture pipeline project and a significant Gulf Coast joint venture project. The firm’s work includes innovative rate designs and capacity access structures and the firm has deep experience with open season processes and documentation.
The firm’s lawyers have advised on the regulatory aspect of numerous project financing, joint ventures, and partnerships. The firm has worked with a wide range of agreements involving pipelines, including a variety of forms of transportation services agreements, processing agreements, gathering agreements, operating agreements, interconnect agreements, and other contracts. CBL attorneys are experienced with major acquisitions involving regulated assets.
Rail, STB-Regulated Pipelines, & Intermodal Regulation:
With a range of transactional and regulatory experience with railroads, including work before the STB, CBL can assist as rail and intermodal issues arise for its clients.
Other Pipeline Practice:
CBL attorneys have represented clients in transactions and matters involving both federal (STB) and state regulation of pipelines carrying carbon dioxide, anhydrous ammonia, ethylene, propylene, and coal slurry.