Energy & environment

Most investor-state disputes (ISDS) have concerned environmental matters. As of end of 2014, about 41% of all ICSID cases were energy and natural resources-related.

Most well-known cases include:

• Lone Pine Resources (US) vs. Canada: the investor challenged Quebec’s moratorium on the controversial practice of hydraulic fracturing, or fracking, for natural gas. The provincial government declared the moratorium in 2011 so as to conduct an environmental impact assessment of the extraction method widely accused of leaching chemicals and gases into groundwater and the air. Case pending (NAFTA invoked).

• Bilcon (US) vs. Canada: the US industry challenged Canadian environmental requirements affecting their plans to open a basalt quarry and a marine terminal in Nova Scotia. Bilcon won – damages still pending (NAFTA invoked).

• Vattenfall (Sweden) vs. Germany: in 2007 the Swedish energy corporation was granted a provisional permit to build a coal-fired power plant near the city of Hamburg. In an effort to protect the Elbe river from the waste waters dumped from the plant, environmental restrictions were added before the final approval of its construction. The investor initiated a dispute, arguing it would make the project unviable. The case was ultimately settled in 2011, with the city of Hamburg agreeing to the lowering of environmental standards (ECT invoked).

(October 2015)

IISD | 23-Jun-2017
The Energy Charter Secretariat is in expansion mode, wanting to gain access to energy resources in Africa and Asia for its current—mostly developed country—members, and extending a far-reaching (and outdated) investment protection system to investments in resource-rich countries.
Newburgh Gazette | 23-Jun-2017
Chevron is victorious after the Supreme Court declined to hear a case made against the company by a NY lawyer representing Ecuadorian villagers.
National Law Review | 23-Jun-2017
Venezuela is taking its fight over a $1.4 billion arbitral award to the District of Columbia’s federal court of appeals.
Lexology | 22-Jun-2017
The Revised Mining Charter 2017 could, in respect of certain provisions thereto, result in BIT guarantees for qualifying foreign investors being infringed.
ISDS Blog | 21-Jun-2017
It is still unclear what the withdrawal from the global climate deal really means, but some lawyers are already saying that the decision might lead to international arbitration claims against the US.
PTI | 19-Jun-2017
The Income Tax Department has ordered coercive action against Cairn Energy of UK, including taking away over Rs 2,000 crore dividend and tax refund, to recover part of the Rs 10,247 crore retrospective tax.
Latin America Herald Tribune | 19-Jun-2017
Gold Reserve Inc. reports that it has received a $40 million payment on its $800 million judgment that it won at the World Bank’s International Center for the Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) in 2014.
IIED | 16-Jun-2017
This report examines whether and how investor-state arbitral tribunals consider community perspectives, interests and rights in their settlement of investment disputes.
La República | 13-Jun-2017
A pesar de que en julio del 2016 se desestimó una demanda de 800 millones de dólares, The Renco Group volvió a demandar al Perú. Ministerio de Economía aprobó contratación de abogados.
TASS | 12-Jun-2017
Yukos will hardly appeal against the Belgian court’s ruling, the lawyer of the Russian Federation Niuscha Bassiri said.

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