(from left to right) Walter Mason, Shelby Shaw and James Owen, and Joe Amadon
The Stegner Center sent two student teams—Shelby Shaw and James Owen, and Walter Mason and Joe Amadon—to the National Energy & Sustainability Moot Court competition hosted by the University of West Virginia. Ben Machlis, an alum and Associate at Holland & Hart, coached both teams. The teams continued the law school’s tradition of excellence in environmental and energy law moot court competitions, with both teams advancing beyond the preliminary rounds. Walter Mason and Joe Amadon advanced to the quarterfinal round, where they faced the team from Washington and Lee University that went on to win the entire competition.
This year’s problem raised complicated issues involving the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission’s compliance with the requirements of the Endangered Species Act and the National Environmental Policy Act in granting a certificate of convenience and necessity for the construction of a natural gas pipeline through the critical habitat of an endangered species. Judges complimented the teams throughout the competition on their detailed understanding of the complicated legal issues presented in the problem and their well-crafted arguments. These compliments are in no small part a result of the generosity of great number of local attorneys who donated their valuable time to help the team prepare for the competition, including: Zac Sayer, Steve Jones, Ashley Walker, John Ruple, Jason Steiert, Lisa Kirschner, Vicki Baldwin, Rob Dubuc, Liz Schulte, Nora Pincus, Jared Bennett, Craig Galli, John Davis, Jeff Appel, Jaime Pleune, Cameron Johnson, Megan Houdeshel, and Betsy Haws.
The teams are also grateful to our donors, including Chevron, Clyde Snow Attorneys at Law, the Energy, Natural Resources & Environmental Law (“ENREL”) Section of the Utah State Bar, Holland & Hart LLP, Lear & Lear LLP, Doug Crapo, Jason Groenewold, Ben Machlis, Jim Moore & Kathryn Lindquist, John Robinson, and Helen Serrassio, whose generous contributions made participation in the competition possible.