Law Academy Course 103

Federal Oil Pipeline Regulation

Course 103

The goal of Course 103 is to provide an overview of the federal economic regulation of oil and refined products pipelines. Taught by industry practitioners and regulators from the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, the course begins with a brief overview of the oil and refined products pipeline industry and then describes key statutes and regulations governing and affecting the transportation of oil and other liquid petroleum products. Instructors explain important legal and regulatory concepts and requirements, pipeline services, the scope and limits of FERC and state jurisdiction and key issues affecting the industry.

Energy Law Academy Certificate of Achievement: Course 103 is a requirement to obtain the Energy Law Academy Certificate of Achievement.


Introduction, Logistics​

Introduction to the Oil, NGLs, and Refined Products Pipeline Industry

  • Industry Overview: Who’s Who?
  • Pipeline Infrastructure
  • Other Modes of Transporting Oil and Refined Products

Overview of Pipeline Operations

  • Oil Pipelines
  • Refined Products Pipeline
  • Jurisdiction Over Construction of Oil and Product Pipelines

Contracts and Policies

  • Prorationing Policies
  • Open Seasons
  • Committed Volumes vs. Uncommitted Volumes
    1. Significance
    2. Structure
  • Petitions for Declaratory Order (PDOs)
    1. Process for Approval
    2. Recent Issues

History of Regulation

Regulatory Basics

  • Oil Pipeline Economic Regulation Today
  • Federal and State Jurisdiction


  • Tariff Overview -- Rates, Rules, and Regulations
  • eTariff
  • Order No. 780
  • Accounting: Form 6 & Page 700

Rate-Setting Mechanisms​

  • Overview of Types and Prevalence
  • Indexed Rates--EPACT 92 Streamlining
  • Initial Rates
  • Settlement Rates
  • Negotiated Rates
  • Market-Based Rates
  • Cost-of-Service Rates

Welcome, Introduction/Recap

Cost of Service Rates

  • Basic Cost of Service Concepts
  • DOC v. TOC
  • Base v. Test Period
  • Rate Design Concepts

Market Based Rates

  • Overview of Market-Based Rates (MBR)
  • Background
  • FERC Standards
  • Recent and Pending MBR cases
  • Future Developments


  • Tariff Filings
  • Complaints
  • Market-Based Rate and Negotiated Rate Litigation Issues

FERC-Initiated Rate Investigations

  • The Hearing Process
  • Rate Examination
  • Trends in Litigation

Policies and Current Issues

  • Jurisdictional Issues
  • Significant Rulemakings and Policy Issues
  • ​The Magellan decisions's meaning for the industry
  • Significant Court Decisions