The experienced public land practitioners at WSMT, including a former Assistant Secretary at the Department of the Interior, have unsurpassed knowledge of the energy industry and manage permitting processes to achieve effective results. We have a deep understanding of bureaus in the Department of the Interior and know the Forest Service and the federal laws governing their respective land management regimes.
Mining, Oil & Gas
We assist clients in acquiring mineral development rights on public lands, including perfecting and maintaining claims under the Mining Law of 1872 and leasing other minerals, geothermal, and oil and gas under the Mineral Leasing Act. We represent natural gas developers with drilling, rights-of-way, and transmission projects on public lands.
Wind and Solar
We help wind and solar companies with rights-of-way and special use permits for development and transmission on Bureau of Land Management (BLM) and Forest Service land under the Federal Land Management Policy Act. Development on federal land requires adept navigation of a myriad of federal environmental laws; we assist with siting and complying with laws protecting water, air, wildlife, and cultural resources and the National Environmental Policy Act.
We have represented timber companies with permitting and land use issues on federal lands and counseled ranchers with grazing permits and access issues on BLM and Forest Service lands.
We work with land owners and utilities on the permitting and management of water rights and water facilities on Interior- and Forest Service-managed lands. We have also worked with Indian tribes and native corporations on public land development and land management issues.
WSMT attorneys have:
- Counseled and represented clients seeking to develop timber, mining, oil and gas and alternative energy (solar, geothermal, and wind) projects on BLM public land and U.S. Forest Service National Forests.
- Represented an oil and gas client in a federal district court challenge to a development plan under FLPMA and NEPA.
- Counseled an oil and gas company on NEPA compliance strategy for an oil and gas pipeline and compressor station.
- Advised a solar company on NEPA and FLPMA land use plan amendment for solar project on BLM lands.
- Advised solar and wind companies on compliance with Visual Resource Management policies of the BLM.
- Defended an oil and gas company in a federal court challenge to a NEPA analysis of its field development.