Shale and Unconventionals


Our lawyers represent clients active in all of the major shale-based hydrocarbon plays and other emerging resource plays throughout the United States (U.S.), including the Antrim, Bakken, Barnett, Eagle Ford, Haynesville, Marcellus, Mississippi Lime, Niobrara, Permian, Piceance Basin, Tuscaloosa Marine, Utica and Woodford formations. Increasingly, we are counseling our clients on the application of the U.S. experience in similar plays around the world.

In recent years, our lawyers have advised on well over 100 major shale-related transactions and projects across at least a dozen different plays, exceeding $50 billion in aggregate value with individual transactions and projects ranging in size from $100 million to several billion dollars.

Baker Botts lawyers bring a multi-disciplinary approach to our representation of clients involved in unconventional hydrocarbon development, including:

  • Representing independents, IOCs, NOCs, private equity funds and other investors in the formation of cash and carry joint ventures and various joint development vehicles with respect to shale, tight oil, coalbed methane and other unconventional resources
  • Representing buyers and sellers in acquisitions and divestitures of such resources through auction processes and targeted negotiations
  • Advising project sponsors regarding midstream and downstream infrastructure projects related to transportation of shale oil or gas and liquids production
  • Advising on legal issues related to the potential environmental impact of unconventional resource development
  • Representing clients in the U.S. Supreme Court in connection with efforts of the EPA to regulate hydraulic fracturing under the federal Safe Drinking Water Act
  • Advocating across the United States for the promulgation of balanced and scientifically sound legislation and regulation regarding shale hydrocarbon development and hydraulic fracturing
  • Advising sponsors and underwriters in structuring MLPs and Royalty Trusts involving shale assets throughout the U.S.