LONDON – Global law firm Reed Smith today publishes its ‘Energy & Commodities Outlook: Spring 2023’ report, which examines the latest legal and regulatory trends occurring in the energy and commodities industry.

The report explains how geopolitical pressures among nations are shaping energy flows and investment more directly than they have done for some time, cementing new trading patterns and redefining energy security concerns. As a result, energy transitions could slow as individual nations face impediments to lower-emission sources of energy.

Under the Biden administration, U.S. regulators are scrutinizing oil pricing and dealer reporting. Federal securities regulators are investigating energy companies for greenwashing and deceptive advertising while the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission is prioritizing consumer challenges and environmental equity. Meanwhile, laws around carbon capture, utilization and sequestration continue to develop.

Although the energy transition and environmental, social and governance (ESG) goals are certainly praiseworthy efforts, they are not without potential new legal challenges and risks. Those developments could be magnified against the backdrop of increases in trials and in the size of jury verdicts. Energy companies must carefully and pragmatically consider their strategies when dealing with these new and evolving trends.

This report shares these and other insights, which were revealed at Reed Smith's flagship Energy & Commodities Conference that took place in Houston in April 2023.

The articles in the report cover:

  • Geopolitics’ impact - geopolitics are sweeping away traditional energy market sensibilities
  • Carbon capture - brave new world of carbon capture, utilization and sequestration
  • Regulation and enforcement - U.S. regulators bulk up on ESG, data protection and environmental justice
  • Emerging litigation - emerging litigation trends are a warning: Assess and mitigate risks preemptively

The report can be viewed on the firm’s website.