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U.S. District Court Denies Eminent Domain Challenge

August 4, 2020

In the case of Bold Alliance v. Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, more than 50 landowners with property in the path of two major gas projects joined with various non-profits targeting the way eminent domain use has evolved in the gas market to take private property for pipeline development.  The suit was filed in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia.

The landowners argued that federal procedures violate constitutional protections related to the use of eminent domain.

In finding that the Court lacked subject matter jurisdiction, the Court found that the constitutional theories go to the practice of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission in adjudicating claims, not the Commission’s power to do so.  The Court emphasized that “Congress could hardly have been more clear” that the avenue of review for parties aggrieved by Commission orders under the Natural Gas Act involves federal appeals courts, rather than the district court.