On June 29, in PennEast Pipeline Co., LLC v. New Jersey et al., No. 19-1039, the Supreme Court rejected New Jersey’s sovereign immunity arguments and held that Section 717f(h) of the Natural Gas Act (NGA) authorizes Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) certificate-holders to condemn all necessary rights-of-way to construct pipelines, whether owned by private parties or by states.  “Because the [NGA] delegates the federal eminent domain power to private parties, those parties can initiate condemnation proceedings, including against state-owned property.”

Chief Justice Roberts authored the 5-4 opinion, joined by Justices Breyer, Alito, Sotomayor, and Kavanaugh.  The Court reversed and remanded the Third Circuit’s judgment.  In a prior post, we discussed that judgment and other factual and legal background of the case.


Continue Reading Supreme Court Holds that Natural Gas Act Delegates Eminent Domain Power, Allowing FERC Certificate-Holders to Condemn State-Owned Property