The EENR Center would like to recognize and thank our current sponsors:
Blank Rome LLP
Bracewell & Giuliani LLP
Vinson & Elkins LLP
with the Center for U.S. and Mexican Law
ENTRA Energy Transactions LLC
The Houston law firm of Connelly Baker & Wotring LLP provided initial funding to create the EENR Center, and we gratefully recognize them as a Founding Partner.
The Environment, Energy & Natural Resources Center at the University of Houston Law Center links energy issues with impacts on environment and natural resources. Building on the academic excellence of the faculty in these areas and the complex and multi-faceted energy and environmental issues in Houston, the Center provides a forum for education and discussion of the most important issues of the day, such as climate change, air pollution, clean coal and renewable energy.
The EENR Center is co-sponsoring a full-day conference on investment arbitration in the international petroleum industry on Friday October 31 at the UH Hilton on the University of Houston's main campus. The conference features speakers from both academe and practice on four "hot" topic panels. For further information and registration, please visit here.
Professor Weaver (sitting, third seat from the left) spoke at the International Law Institute's program on International Oil and Gas Development in Washington DC on May 5 and 6, 2014. The ILI program is directed by Georgetown University School of Law and Guly Sabadi, a partner at the Dentons law firm. The two-week ILI program brought together leaders from government ministries and agencies in countries with oil and gas production, including Kenya, Mozambique, Uganda, Nigeria, and Madagascar, for intensive learning and dialogue on many aspects of international petroleum contracting, financing, dispute resolution, natural gas development and power development. The Institute fostered dialogue among the participants who exchanged opinions based on their experiences in the diverse countries represented. The young man standing to the left of Professor Weaver is Kenyon Weaver, an associate at Dentons, who spoke on stabilization provisions. And yes--he is Professor Weaver's son!
Prof. Jacqueline Weaver participated in several events in Rio de Janeiro on December 9 and 10, 2013, organized through CEDPETRO, a center of excellence in the study of energy law in UERJ, the State University of Rio de Janeiro. The events were organized by Prof. Marilda Rosado de Sa Ribeiro, who teaches Petroleum Law in the Private International Law program of UERJ. The visit also allowed an exchange of ideas about unitization of oil and gas fields with ANP, the National Petroleum Agency of Brazil.
Featured in the photo are Prof. Rosado (right), Prof. Weaver (center) and Tatiana Motta (left),a federal attorney positioned within ANP who graduated from the Masters of Law program in Energy, Environment and Natural Resources Law at the University of Houston Law Center in 2009. Ms. Motta recently worked with ANP in the first bid round for the Pre-Salt areas under the new production-sharing regime.
Prof. Weaver spoke on "The Role of the Regulator in Offshore Safety: Best Practices," which traced the regulatory and other changes to business-as-usual after the Macondo disaster in the Gulf of Mexico in 2010. She also spoke on the Resource Curse to a class of law students at UERJ and met with the students doing advanced legal research work there and with the Vice Dean about promoting further exchanges of students and professors. She answered many questions about shale gas development in the U.S. because Brazil has recently conducted a bid round that may usher in shale development.
On November 6, the UHLC student chapter of the Association of International Petroleum Negotiators held a successful discussion of careers in the international oil and gas industry, with more than 60 students attending. The distinguished panel of speakers included Jim Barnes (partner in Barnes & Cascio), Jose L. Valera (partner at Mayer Brown), Anthony F. Newton (partner, K&L Gates LLP), Elvis Angyiembe (Regional Compliance Counsel, Weatherford International, and Marco Padilla (Senior Counsel, Ethics & Compliance, Weatherford International).
Research & Publication
Barrett Schitka, UHLC 2015, is the winner of the 2014 Association of International Petroleum Negotiator's (AIPN) annual writing competition. His article, titled "Applying Game Theory to Oil and Gas Unitization Agreements: How to Resolve Mutually Beneficial, Yet Competitive Situations," is now published in the Journal of World Energy Law and Business and can be accessed here. Barrett will be attending the annual international AIPN conference in Budapest, Hungary in October as a guest of the AIPN. UHLC students have a pattern of winning papers in this competition and have enjoyed the all-expense paid trips to the annual conferences in many cities around the world. Barrett is one of the first students to enroll in the University of Calgary-UHLC's International Energy Lawyers Program, launched three years ago to allow students in the two energy capitals to graduate with a JD degree from both schools in four years. In May 2015, he will have graduated from both schools.
Visiting Professor Julian Cardenas participated as a guest speaker at the forum, “Preparing for Energy Reform: International Experiences and Considerations”, sponsored by the Instituto Tecnológico Autónomo de México (ITAM) in Mexico City, on October 3, 2013.
On April 24, Andrews Kurth Energy Scholar Julian Cardenas hosted a lunch panel discussion on New Legal Trends for Transnational Petroleum Transactions. The presentation included an international guest speaker, Dr. Alfredo De Jesus, Lecturer at the University of Versailles and the University of Paris XI, who addressed the legal theory of international petroleum transactions.
Prof. Cardenas also discussed his research on Best Industry Practices and Environmental Regulation for Offshore Petroleum Operations - A Contribution to the Study of the Lex Petrolea, and he presented a method for the applicability and enforcement of industry standards in the oil industry.
Prof. Susan Sakmar, an Andrews Kurth Energy Scholar and Visiting Assistant Professor at UH Law Center, recently submitted comments on the U.S. Department of Energy's proposed policy for exports of liquified natural gas. more...
Exciting Opportunity Available for a Spring 2015 Externship at the Texas Legislature
Upper-level UHLC students who are interested in environmental and energy law may wish to consider spending the spring 2015 semester participating in the Environment and Energy Law Internship Program of Texas (EELIPT). This program, sponsored by Texas State Representative Eddie Rodriguez and administered by the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), provides students the opportunity to conduct research, attend hearings, track legislation, and carry out other tasks during the semi-annual legislative session at the Texas Capitol in Austin. If selected, UHLC students can earn up to six credits and may be eligible to receive a stipend to assist with out-of-pocket expenses.
The application deadline is noon on December 2, 2014, so please do not delay!
A team of five students from the University of Houston's student organization, the Energy Association, was awarded first place for their efforts in aiding top executives from Azerbaijan 's oil and gas industry during a recent energy case competition. The winning team included UH law graduate Shanisha Smith, pictured above, and finance senior Nirav Sheth, MBA student Jennifer Schwegman, supply chain management junior Mit Trivedi, and MBA student McLean McGregor. Shanisha competed while obtaining her Masters of Law degree in Energy, Environment and Natural Resources from the Law Center.
AIPN Student Writing Competition winner John Riggs, a JD student at the Law Center attended the AIPN's International Conference in Singapore in October 2013, having earned the all-expense paid trip with his winning essay on "Investment Protection in Colombia: Can Investors Rely on the Full Protection and Security Clause?" He is pictured here with the other winner, Leanne Desbarats from the University of Calgary.
Alberto Lopes, a LLM student from the Rio de Janeiro State University (UERJ) more...
An exchange between UERJ – UHLC more...
During the 2013 Spring Semester at the University of Houston Law Center, a number of special guests participated in the Transnational Petroleum Law in Latin America course, either through video conference or in person. more...
On April 25, Prof. Tracy Hester gave the opening presentation in the University of Houston's new Associate Professor Spotlight Lecture Series. He spoke on the emerging new law of climate engineering and other large-scale projects to modify the global climate. These proposed initiatives would theoretically offset the harmful effects of climate change, but they pose their own risks, ethical quandries and governance challenges. more...