Invoking rarely used statutory authority, on September 29, Secretary of Energy Rick Perry directed the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission to undertake a rulemaking to enable generation assets in RTOs and ISOs to receive payments for reliability and resiliency benefits that the DOE views as uncompensated under current market rules.

If adopted, the proposed rules could provide significant economic support to coal and nuclear generation in organized markets.

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Morgan Lewis’s environmental practice lawyers recently prepared a LawFlash addressing a number of questions on compliance with environmental obligations in the wake of the devastating hurricane.

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Since 2010, the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) Staff has been working on revisions to 10 C.F.R. Part 61, Licensing Requirements for Land Disposal of (Low-Level) Radioactive Waste. The original effort was intended to focus on potential impacts from anticipated disposal of large quantities of depleted uranium (DU), which is considered a “unique waste stream,” from uranium enrichment facilities. But over the course of the last seven years, the Staff’s concerns over other possible unique waste streams grew, and so did the scope of the proposed changes to Part 61.

A LawFlash prepared by our employee benefits and tax lawyers discusses IRS guidance that encourages employers to establish tax-favorable charitable leave donation programs to allow employees and employers to provide assistance to those dealing with the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey.

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Our labor and employment practice lawyers prepared a LawFlash reminding employers, including those in the nuclear industry, to be mindful of federal and state laws related to leaves, planned and unplanned absences, accommodations, and pay practices as they begin the journey to recover from the hurricane.

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Morgan Lewis’s environmental practice lawyers recently prepared a LawFlash addressing a number of questions on compliance with environmental obligations in the wake of the devastating hurricane.

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Morgan Lewis’s immigration lawyers prepared a LawFlash for all employers explaining the impact of the demise of the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program.

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This Month’s Events

September 07, 2017

Join us in September and October for these upcoming programs:

Visit the Morgan Lewis events page for more of our latest programs.

Hurricane Harvey leaves a legacy of unprecedented legal and business challenges. Morgan Lewis has developed a series of client alerts designed to provide guidance on the complex legal and business implications of Hurricane Harvey. Our most recent alerts include the following:

LawFlash: Hurricane Harvey Client Alert: How Employers and Employees Can Help Those in Need

LawFlash: Hurricane Harvey Client Alert: Insurance Considerations

LawFlash: Hurricane Harvey Client Alert: FCC Assistance to Affected Communications Networks Post-Hurricane Harvey

LawFlash: Hurricane Harvey Client Alert: Tax Filing and Payment Deadlines Extended for Victims

ML BeneBits: Hurricane Harvey Client Alert: DOL Provides Health Plan Relief for Hurricane Harvey Victims

ML BeneBits: Hurricane Harvey Client Alert: IRS, DOL, and PBGC Hurricane Harvey Relief

Check back often as our Hurricane Recovery Resource Page will be updated with analyses of developments as they unfold over the coming months.

On August 23, 2017, the US Department of Energy issued the “Staff Report to the Secretary on Electricity Markets and Reliability” (Staff Report). The Staff Report was commissioned by the Secretary of Energy to provide an assessment of the reliability and resilience of the US electrical grid. The Staff Report’s general findings are that the wave of retirements of baseload generating resources, like nuclear and coal generating plants, is being driven mainly by economic forces, particularly increased price competition from natural gas power plants and the increased penetration of renewable resources. However, a closer reading of the Staff Report suggests that other modifications to electricity market designs and the regulatory regime surrounding power generation may be necessary to stanch the retirements of coal and nuclear power plants.

As noted by Secretary of Energy Rick Perry in his cover note to the Staff Report, recent “extraordinary technological and resource changes” in electricity markets are “challenging the regulatory paradigm that has guided the industry’s growth for decades.” Secretary Perry concludes: