William & Mary Environmental Law and Policy Review


A number of U.S. states, counties and municipalities have responded to the public health and environmental concerns surrounding fracking by imposing bans or moratoriums on unconventional oil and gas drilling. These restrictions have, in recent years, given rise to litigation challenges by oil and gas companies and by property owners deprived of potential revenues. The current Article begins by examining precisely who has litigated. Have large companies dominated or is it mostly smaller independents? Is there a difference in litigation rates between private and public companies? The Article then considers how Hirschman’s ideas of exit, voice and loyalty might apply in the context of bans and moratoriums and further explores some of the factors that may have driven litigation in the area.