Insights From the Ernest E. Smith Oil, Gas and Mineral Law Conference: Midstream Primer, Raiders of the Lost Ark, and the Sand Paper

April 20, 2020 | Speaking Engagements

During the 46th Annual Ernest E. Smith Oil, Gas and Mineral Law Institute and Fundamentals program, Jackson Walker attorneys Jesse S. Lotay, Matthew D. Cavenaugh, Elizabeth Carol Freeman, and Reagan M. Marble presented the latest oil and gas developments. Presented by the University of Texas School of Law and the Oil, Gas and Energy Resources Law Section of the State Bar of Texas, the online conference featured more than 20 presentations from a distinguished faculty of academics and practitioners.

Jackson Walker proudly served as a conference sponsor, and Energy Chair Michael P. Pearson served on the Institute’s planning committee.

Please see below for summaries and information from three programs hosted by Jackson Walker attorneys during this year’s conference.

2020 Fundamentals of Oil, Gas and Mineral Law

“Midstream 101: A Primer on Understanding Midstream Contracts and Identifying Key Issues”

While upstream companies primarily focus on the exploration and production of hydrocarbons, the produced hydrocarbons have little value if they cannot be processed and transported to market. The midstream segment of the energy industry connects producers to consumers and end users and captures an invaluable component of the hydrocarbon value chain.

During the Fundamentals program on March 26, 2020, Houston partner Jesse S. Lotay presented insights from a paper co-authored with associate Yenmi Tang. The paper, which focuses on Texas law and intrastate movement of oil and gas, provides an overview of transportation agreements governing movement from the wellhead to a point downstream for resale or further handling. The paper also highlights certain issues that practitioners will encounter and should consider when negotiating transportation agreements.

To view the paper, download “A Primer on Understanding Oil and Gas Transportation Agreements and Identifying Key Issues.”

In addition, Jesse was recently featured in the Houston Chronicle discussing volatile oil and gas prices and the benefits of “hedging” in the oil and gas industry. For additional insights about hedging oil and gas production, view the following article Jesse contributed to Thomson Reuters Practical Law Finance: “Hedging Oil and Gas Production: Issues and Considerations.”

For more information about the presentation or hedging oil and gas prices, contact the authors at and

46th Annual Ernest E. Smith Oil, Gas and Mineral Law Institute

“Raiders of the Lost Ark (of the Covenant Running With the Land), And Other Hot Bankruptcy Issues”

Last year, more than 40 energy companies – including E&P, midstream, and oilfield service companies – filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy. During this presentation, Houston partners Matt Cavenaugh and Liz Freeman discussed trending issues and the latest developments in energy bankruptcy, including covenants running with the land.

For information about the presentation, contact the authors at and

“The Sand Paper: The Anatomy of Acquiring, Divesting, and Leasing Sand”

As the oil and gas market faces an unprecedented downturn, the price of commodities tangential to production has been significantly affected. Despite price volatility, there is renewed interest in lease activity for sand. Presenting from a paper co-authored with San Antonio partner Peter E. Hosey, associate Reagan Marble discussed sand as a commodity in Texas and important issues to spot for acquiring, divesting, and leasing sand.

More information can be found by viewing the paper and slide deck.

To explore Jackson Walker’s multifaceted experience in oil and gas law, visit our Energy practice page. For more information about the event, view the UT Law CLE website or conference brochure.