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Decommissioning Oil and Gas Assets: Regulatory Issues, Liability, Managing Disputes, Disposal of Structures and Waste

Recording of a 90-minute premium CLE webinar with Q&A

This program is included with the Strafford CLE Pass. Click for more information.
This program is included with the Strafford All-Access Pass. Click for more information.

Conducted on Tuesday, August 6, 2019

Recorded event now available

or call 1-800-926-7926

This CLE course will provide counsel an analysis of critical legal challenges that arise in the decommissioning of energy assets. The panel will discuss both federal and state regulations of the decommissioning process and significant difficulties, liability transfers, the ownership and disposal of removed structures and hazardous waste, and other problems stemming from decommissioning energy assets.


The decommissioning of oil and gas assets is a significant undertaking with wide-ranging liability and potential opportunities. Counsel must navigate the complex regulatory and legal framework for decommissioning assets, from funding the costs and liability to asset transfers, litigation risks, and compliance with federal, state, and if applicable, international regulations.

Decommissioning consists of the removal of energy installations and structures that have been abandoned or otherwise have come to the end of their productive use and the restoration of the site to its previous status. Also, the disposal of any hazardous waste and materials requires great care, using specialized personnel and sophisticated techniques to avoid any negative impact on the environment.

In light of the legal challenges and liability risks associated with decommissioning oil and gas assets, facility owners and operators must implement creative solutions to avoid costly expenses and potential liability. Counsel must have in-depth knowledge of the regulation of the decommissioning process, familiarity with alternative decommissioning models, methods to shift liability, and other essential items to ensure regulatory compliance.

Listen as our panel discusses critical regulations on the decommissioning of oil and gas assets, onshore versus offshore issues, liability transfers, challenges in the disposal of structures and hazardous materials, and offers practical strategies for decommissioning assets.



  1. Regulation of decommissioning energy assets process
  2. Managing and allocating risk
  3. Ownership and disposal of removed structures and hazardous waste
  4. Disputes surrounding decommissioning and key preventative measures
  5. Best practice for counsel


The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • What are the key federal and state regulatory challenges for decommissioning energy assets?
  • What methods are available to manage and allocate decommissioning risks?
  • Analyzing prior contract provisions impacting the decommissioning process
  • Abandonment and site remediation techniques for legal compliance
  • Legal perils of deconstruction, decontamination, waste management and other environmental issues
  • Methods to avoid or limit potential litigation throughout the decommissioning process


Brenton, Ruth
Ruth A. Brenton

Senior Attorney
Munsch Hardt Kopf & Harr

Ms. Brenton's practice is centered on commercial litigation, environmental and appellate matters. Her commercial...  |  Read More

Deatherage, Scott
Scott D. Deatherage

S Deatherage Law

Over the last 30 years of his career, Mr. Deatherage has focused his practice on energy, environment, water, and...  |  Read More

Heiple, Bonnie
Bonnie L. Heiple

Wilmer Cutler Pickering Hale and Dorr

Ms. Heiple focuses her practice on environmental, energy and natural resources law. She advises clients on a wide range...  |  Read More

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Strafford will process CLE credit for one person on each recording. All formats include course handouts.

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