Pipeline Industry

Kean Miller represents some of the country’s most prominent energy, chemical, transmission and pipeline companies in a wide variety of pipeline-related legal matters.  For over 35 years, our pipeline lawyers have handled complex transactions, expropriation and land use projects, litigation, pipeline regulatory matters, and environmental regulation within the pipeline industry. 

We have in-depth experience in the sale, purchase, financing, and condemnation of all manner of real property associated with pipeline operations.  Kean Miller has handled numerous pipeline projects from start to finish, including right-of-way negotiations, purchases, final demands, and expropriation litigation.  When our clients are faced with disputes, they rely on Kean Miller for sophisticated representation in connection with expropriation under federal and state law, declaratory or injunctive actions for access to rights-of-way, property damage claims, trespass and inverse condemnation claims, wetlands loss or damage, contract disputes, property damage, and personal injury.  Our representation has involved underground storage, pipeline rights-of-way, access rights, pipeline ruptures and leaks, surface use of rights of way and easements, and automobile accidents. 

Kean Miller represents pipeline companies in environmental regulation and toxic tort claims in Louisiana.  Our Pipeline team has handled sales and purchases of facilities, right-of-way and surface leases, expropriation actions, pipeline abandonment matters, pipeline explosions and associated investigations and litigation, fuels and fuel blending regulation, Corps of Engineers permits, river crossing permits, coastal use permits, air and water permits for pipelines and compressor stations, safety and environmental compliance assistance, environmental enforcement matters,  site assessments and remediation under RECAP/RCRA/Superfund, landowner suits, OPA claims, environmental indemnity claims, and release reporting.  These activities have included both on-shore and off-shore pipelines. Some of the chemical constituents with which we have experience include:  PCBs, chromate, TPH, PAHs, VOCs, BTEX, and Hg.  We also represent various common carrier pipelines with respect to rate increase filings, ownership transfers and various other regulatory issues, as well as negotiation of transportation agreements and storage agreements.

Kean Miller also represents various companies within the energy field, including pipeline companies, in defense of claims for damage to wetlands as a result of exploration and construction activities.  Our attorneys are well versed on the scientific evidence regarding the various natural and man-made causes of coastal erosion. 

We also represent oil and gas operators and service companies in all manner of personal injury and property damage claims arising from seismic operations, drilling operations, production activities, workover operations, pipeline installation and repair, and platform construction and demolition.

Representative Experience:
  • Legal representation of interstate and intrastate natural gas pipelines, natural gas gathering companies, crude pipelines, natural gas processors, power generators, marketers and distributors, oil and gas producers and chemical manufacturers

Admiralty and Maritime:

  • Representation of a pipeline owner in litigation arising from an oil spill in state territorial waters
  • Representation of a pipeline company against oil and gas company for the destruction of an offshore oil and gas platform as well as eight deaths and multiple personal injuries
  • Representation of a major pipeline company if litigation arising from the destruction of offshore pipeline by an offshore drilling rig during Hurricane Katrina
  • Representation of a major pipeline company in litigation arising from the damage to and loss of use of offshore pipeline caused by an offshore drilling rig during Hurricane Rita
  • Representation of offshore pipeline in litigation arising from pipeline damages caused by the legs of a liftboat, including loss of use of pipeline

Business, Corporate and Transactions:

  • Lead outside counsel in the representation of a national oil and gas company in the negotiation of a suite of agreements involving the construction of oil and gas export pipelines and the ownership and operation of those lines to gather a.) gas production from a floating platform system situated in the Green Canyon Block 641, Offshore Louisiana, Gulf of Mexico; b.) oil and gas production from a floating platform system situated in the Aliminos Canyon Block 857, offshore Texas in the Gulf of Mexico; and c.) oil and gas production from a semi-submersible floating oil and gas production facility situated in Mississippi Canyon Block 650, offshore Louisiana in the Gulf of Mexico
  • Counsel for interstate natural gas pipeline in the negotiation and drafting of precedent  agreements with foundation shippers for two $1 billion-plus pipeline projects
  • Lead counsel for intrastate and interstate natural gas pipelines concerning commercial transactions and capital projects and expansions, including: negotiating and drafting transportation agreements, gathering agreements, treating and processing agreements, precedent agreements, negotiated rate agreements; evaluating impact of Natural Gas Act and Natural Gas Policy Act regulation; and federal and state permitting and clearances
  • Representation of Louisiana Intrastate Gas Company (LIG) in the acquisition and conversion of a Department of Energy strategic petroleum reserve oil pipeline into a gas transmission pipeline
  • Representation of Colonial Pipeline, a products pipeline system crossing the State of Louisiana
  • Representation of Exxon Mobil Corporation in mineral lease and complex oil and gas pipeline negotiations

Energy Regulation:

  • Representation of common carrier pipelines with respect to rate increase filings, ownership transfers and various other regulatory issues, as well as the negotiation of transportation agreements and storage agreements
  • Advise offshore pipelines concerning impact of various federal laws, regulations and orders, including Outer-continental Shelf Lands Act, Natural Gas Act, Interstate Commerce Act, and regulations of the Minerals Management Service and Federal Energy Regulatory Commission
  • Representation of intrastate gas pipelines and storage companies (gas and liquids) in proceedings before the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources, Office of Conservation

Environmental Regulation:

  • Representation of Colonial Pipeline with regard to environmental permitting and compliance with regard to several expansion projects
  • Representation of Enterprise Products/Acadian Gas with regard to environmental permitting for Haynesville extension project, including new compressor stations
  • Representation of Transco Pipeline on a regional basis regarding the remediation of PCBs
  • Representation of Louisiana Intrastate Gas in the remediation of mercury from manometers
  • Representation of Tenneco in connection with PCB remediation projects throughout the state of Louisiana
  • Representation of Tennessee Gas Pipeline in judicial water enforcement actions by the Environmental Protection Agency at several facilities
  • Representation of international lenders group with regard to environmental permitting and compliance review for the Cheniere Energy Sabine Pass LNG export project and associated Creole Trail Pipeline

Expropriation and Land Use:

  • More than 35 years of expropriation and condemnation experience on behalf of key players in the U.S. pipeline industry such as Colonial Pipeline, Exxon Pipeline, Shell Pipeline, Explorer Pipeline (products carriers), and long-standing Louisiana representation of Transcontinental Gas Pipeline Company, an interstate natural gas pipeline
  • Representation of Shell Pipeline Company in a nearly completed 75-mile pipeline expropriation project from Garyville, Louisiana to East Feliciana Parish, north of Baton Rouge.  The pipeline will carry liquified petroleum products.
  • Representation of Shell Pipeline Company in the expropriation of a 180 mile ethylene pipeline right of way that extended from Ascension Parish in Louisiana to the Texas border
  • Representation of Enterprise Products/Acadian Gas in expropriation of portions of 270 mile route for Acadian’s Haynesville Expansion Project (capacity 1.8 billion cubic feet/day natural gas)
  • Representation of Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Corporation in the expropriation of underground gas storage rights, surface easements, and pipeline rights of way for an underground natural gas storage facility in St. James Parish, and in a case involving the public need for pipeline land in Transcontinental Gas Pip Line Corporation vs. 118 Acres of Land, 745 F. Supp. 366 (E.D. La 1990)

Insurance Coverage:

  • Representation of Pipeline Technologies, Inc. in coverage claims involving chemical release

Administrative Hearings:

  • Appearances before the Office of Conservation on various issues for numerous pipeline and energy production companies, and private landowners
  • Representation of Crosstex LIG LLC, Texaco Pipelines LLC, Bridgeline Holdings, LP, Bridgeline Storage Company, J-W Pipeline Company, Regency Intrastate Gas, TGG Pipeline, and Targa Louisiana Intrastate LLC before the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources and the Office  of Conservation relating to applications for permits, construction, interconnection, contract approval, abandonment and related regulatory issues
  • Representation of common carrier pipelines before the Louisiana Department of Natural Resources and the Office of Pipeline Safety with respect to pipeline safety compliance
  • Representation of common carrier pipelines, including Shell Pipeline Company LP, ExxonMobil Pipeline Company and Colonial Pipeline Company before the Louisiana Public Service Commission with respect to rate increase filings, ownership transfers and various other regulatory issues, as well as the negotiation of transportation agreements and storage agreements, and electric service agreements

Pipeline Rupture Litigation:

  • Representation of  Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Corporation in Geraldine Ard v. Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Corporation in the 21st Judicial District Court in St. Helena Parish, Louisiana.  This matter involved the rupture of a high pressure natural gas pipeline in a rural area of St. Helena Parish.  The rupture caused a fire that burned more than 30 acres of woodlands, primarily used for hunting.  350 residents in the vicinity of the rupture filed a joint petition making claims for personal injury (primary respiratory ailments), fear and fright, and punitive damages.  The matter was removed to federal court on grounds of diversity jurisdiction, but ultimately remanded to the state court on grounds that the amount in dispute for each claimant did not exceed the jurisdictional amount of $75,000.  The matter was settled at the trial court level.
  • Representation of Colonial Pipeline Company in Gill l v. Colonial Pipeline Company and consolidated cases in the United States District Court for the Middle District of Louisiana.  In this case we represented Colonial in connection with the release of over one million gallons of gasoline from a 40" interstate pipeline in St Helena Parish, La.  The gasoline contaminated a drinking water aquifer and soluble constituents (MTBE/BTEX) leached into surface waters in a nearby recreational creek. We defended Colonial in a class action lawsuit, resulting in a favorable class settlement well below the potential liability predicted by mock jury trials. We also represented Colonial in related enforcement action instituted by the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality and assisted the company’s outside counsel in connection with claims by the United States Environmental Protection Agency and the Justice Department.
  • Representation of Williams Field Services and Transcontinental Pipeline Company in The Roman Catholic Church of the Archdiocese of New Orleans v. Williams Field Services and Transcontinental Pipeline Company, Civil Action 02-996, United States District Court for the Eastern District of Louisiana.  In this case we represent Williams and Transcontinental in connection with landowners' lawsuit related to the rupture of a natural gas pipeline and resulting release on natural gas condensate into a saltwater marsh. We are also engaged in representing the companies in connection with Natural Resource Damages (NRDA) claims by the Louisiana Oil Spill Coordinator Office (LOSCO) and federal and state trustees which include NOAA and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service.
  • Representation of Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Corporation in Rice v. Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Corporation, No. 32,031 (East Feliciana Parish, La) and Miller v. Transcontinental Gas Pipe Line Corporation, No. 32,528, a wrongful death action and personal injury action, respectively, arising out of an automobile accident cause by flooding of a highway, allegedly caused by an undersized and plugged culvert owned by Transco