Journal of Energy & Natural Resources Law

Published quarterly, the Journal of Energy & Natural Resources Law is the journal of the International Bar Association’s Section on Energy, Environment, Natural Resources and Infrastructure Law.

Editor, Don C Smith

JERL was launched in January 1983, under the editorship of Professor Terence Daintith, now a Professional Fellow at the Institute of Advanced Legal Studies in London.

The Journal's current Editor is Professor Don C Smith (pictured left), Director of the Environmental and Natural Resources Program at the University of Denver (US) Sturm College of Law where he teaches Comparative Environmental Law and Contemporary Issues in Oil and Gas. He is assisted by the Journal Board and Editorial Advisory Committee, comprised of members of the Academic Advisory Group (AAG) of IBA SEERIL. Together, they bring to the journal an unsurpassed expertise in all areas of energy and natural resources law.

Featuring contributions written by some of the finest academic minds and most successful practitioners in this area of study, JERL is a highly respected journal committed to reflecting contemporary issues that face the energy and natural resources sectors. 

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Current issue – Vol 33 No 3, August 2015


The Supreme Court of Canada handed down two decisions in the summer of 2014 dealing with the rights of indigenous peoples: Tsilhqot'in Nation v British Columbia dealing with aboriginal title and Grassy Narrows First Nation v Ontario (Natural Resources) dealing with a point of treaty interpretation. This paper examines the implications of these two decisions for the resources sector, both from the perspective of operators, but also to some degree from the perspective of indigenous communities who may wish to engage with the resources sector, both to develop their lands and resources and to ensure the protection of their traditional territories.

This article examines the financing options in the oil and gas sector of Nigeria and acknowledges the important role of oil and gas to the Nigerian economy in terms of generating the bulk of government revenue, which is estimated to be over 70 per cent of the total revenue. It also identifies the regulatory framework for the oil and gas sector and captures the various forms of financing and securities taken by major financiers like local and foreign banks, as well as international financial institutions. This article is necessitated by the various challenges besetting oil and gas financing in Nigeria, such as the technicalities and the substantial capital outlay required for such financing, the sabotage of oil and gas equipment and installations, which may jeopardise the collateral securities taken by financiers, the relatively low knowledge of the concept of reserves-based lending, which accepts 'oil in the ground' as collateral, lack of equity contributions, high cost of security documentation, the rigorous process of achieving a change in control arising from investment in the sector and the reluctance of foreign banks to fund oil and gas projects in Nigeria due to the attendant high risk. This article highlights the role of lawyers in oil and gas financing in Nigeria and concludes that there has been an increase in oil and gas financing in Nigeria over the years and proffers solutions aimed at meeting the financial needs of the sector.

This article assesses the regulatory regime governing mining investment in Indonesia. It critically analyses the main factors behind the high level of regulatory risk for foreign mining investors and the increase of claims against the Indonesian government through the International Centre for Settlement of Investment Disputes (ICSID) based on the violation of bilateral investment treaties (BITs). The changing paradigm of mining legislation and regulation in Indonesia will be analysed. This is followed by an assessment of the performance of the new mining regulation. This article finds that government policy in foreign mining investment has been shifting to the adoption of a resource nationalism policy. It also argues that inconsistent implementation and poor enforcement of the new mining regulation and policy further increase the risk and challenge to be faced by investors. Finally, policy recommendations for improving the regulatory regime for mining investment and its law enforcement are proposed in order to reduce regulatory risk in the mining sector.

Public opposition to hydraulic fracturing or 'fracking' is driven in large part by social constructs of risk and hazard and social amplification of risk, which can lead to stigmatisation, a socially permanent phenomenon. The deeply entrenched and highly emotionally stance encountered in populations close to the site of fracking operations is better addressed using social processes, rather than imposing a legal solution.

In recent years there have been a number of significant commercial and technological developments in the liquefied natural gas (LNG) market. These include issues around pricing, changes in patterns of supply and demand, and the potential for exploiting previously uneconomic reserves. These developments will bring about adjustments in the balance of power between old and new players in this market and will also have an impact upon the contractual arrangements generated. This in turn may lead to new trends in the types of dispute that arise, and in the form of dispute resolution mechanism chosen to accommodate them. This commentary considers the nature of these commercial and technological developments, and various factors that those drafting LNG-related contracts may wish to consider.


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ISSN 0264-6811

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