Energy regulation: conventional power in United States
McGuireWoods LLP represents a substantial amount of major utility companies in the US, covering regulatory matters in the transmission, generation and customer-facing segments. The group is notably strong in energy enforcement work including rate cases, and is also at the forefront of new market issues including fuel security mandates; in a recent highlight, the team acted for Exelon in a reliability-must-run case to keep its Mystic Generating Plant operational. The practice is also a key name for organized market design and tariff matters. Todd Mullins and Noel Symons are prominent names in the market and lead the group; Mullins is noted for Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) enforcement cases and Symons is recognised for his expertise in organized market design and tariffs work, regional transmission organization (RTO) issues and cost allocation matters. Julia English is a key name at senior counsel level. All named individuals are based in Washington DC.
Other key lawyers:
Public Service Enterprise Group
- Acted for DATC Path 15 on obtaining FERC approval for the development of a 600MW electric transmission line San Luis Transmission Project, located in California’s San Joaquin Valley.
- Represented Exelon in a reliability-must-run case to keep its Mystic Generating Plant operational to provide fuel security in ISO New England.
- Acted for DATC Path 15 in a rate case to recover the costs of its share of a transmission built to help end the California energy crisis.
- Advised PSEG Energy Resources & Trade on a $100m enforcement matter relating to its electricity offers into the mid-Atlantic-based PJM energy market.
- Advised Edison Electric Institute on an amici curiae brief before the US Court of Appeals for the Fourth Circuit in support of the statute of limitations arguments made in FERC v Powhatan Energy Fund.
Morgan, Lewis & Bockius LLP has extensive expertise in the conventional power sector and remains active in enforcement matters. It is also noted for its leading position in the nuclear segment and regularly handles second license renewals and decommissioning programs. The regulatory aspects of oil, natural gas and gas-fired generation projects are also central to the practice. Kathryn Sutton is a key figure for nuclear industry regulatory matters, while Steve Spina is a primary contact for electric utilities and other electricity sector organizations, frequently representing clients before FERC; both are based in Washington DC. San Francisco-based practitioner William Kissinger is another key name to note.
Other key lawyers:
Edison Electric Institute
Pinnacle West Capital
American Electric Power
- Advised ENMAX on its acquisition of Emera Maine, a regulated electric transmission and distribution company, from Emera.
- Prepared a formula rate filing for NorthWestern Energy, which implemented cost-based formula rates for Network Integration Transmission Service, Point-to-Point Transmission Service, and certain ancillary services under the open access transmission tariff.
- Acted for Duke Energy in a motion to dismiss a complaint seeking the return of more than $110m in funds relating to the construction of a 1,640MW $1.5bn gas-fired power plant in Citrus County, Florida.
- Assisted AES with developing a filing for FERC to recover the actual marginal fuel-related costs and other generation-related costs incurred by AES Southland Resources, and led settlement negotiations related to the filing.
- Acted for NGV Emerald Acquisition Co, a subsidiary of National Grid, in successfully seeking FERC approval for its acquisition of most of the generation portfolio of Geronimo Renewable Infrastructure Partners and Geronimo Energy Holdings.
Steptoe & Johnson LLP
Steptoe & Johnson LLP is at the forefront of conventional power regulation, notably handling FERC enforcement, litigation and investigation matters for many of the biggest utilities in the US. The team has seen substantial growth in environmentally-driven antitrust cases and a further increase in return-on-equity (ROE) rate disputes. The practice is also involved in power M&A transactions where there is a significant antitrust component. Richard Roberts leads the practice, which includes the highly regarded David Raskin, Douglas Green and Steven Ross. Marc Spitzer is noted for advising on matters combining policy and regulation issues, Jennifer Key is a key name for FERC regulatory matters, and Daniel Mullen is a leading enforcement lawyer. All named partners are based in Washington DC.
Other key lawyers:
‘Richard Roberts has a great reputation and is respected by everyone at the energy bar here.‘
Southern California Edison
System Energy Resources
Arizona Public Service
Dominion Energy Services
New England Rate Payers
Tucson Electric Power
- Defended System Energy Resources against a complaint alleging it had been improperly charging its customers for the costs of renewing a sale and leaseback arrangement for the Grand Gulf Nuclear Generating Station.
- Represented an association of New England ratepayers in prosecuting a jurisdictional challenge at FERC against efforts by New Hampshire to subsidize wood-burning power plants.
- Acted for Eversource Energy in a series of FERC Section 206 complaint proceedings involving the rates, terms and conditions for transmission services provided in New England.
- Acted for five of Exelon’s electric utility subsidiaries in various transmission formula rate proceedings at FERC.
Van Ness Feldman LLP's electric practice is central to the firm with a number of former FERC and US Department of Energy practitioners operating within the partnership and wider ranks. The practice is primarily focused on representing clients before FERC, including acting for competitive electricity transmission developers and participants in the new energy imbalance market in the Western US. The group is also frequently singled out for its transactional regulatory expertise and fields a highly regarded hydropower regulatory practice. Joseph Nelson is noted for electric project development work and is recommended for representing clients before FERC, as is Douglas Smith, who is coordinator of the electric practice. Julia Wood and Mike Swiger are key figures in the hydroelectric market, Jessica Friedman is 'fantastic and very responsive', and Vincenzo Franco joined the team from Exelon. Named partners are based in Washington DC.
‘Jessica Friedman is fantastic and very responsive‘.
American Electric Power
Cogentrix Energy Power Management
Long Island Power Authority
Los Angeles Department of Water & Power
New York Power Authority
- Defending Public Utility District No 2 of Grant County’s establishment of a new rate class and associated rates.
- Advised the Confederated Salish and Kootenai Tribes of the Flathead Reservation on the acquisition of the Se̓liš Ksanka Ql̓ispe̓ Hydroelectric Project, and handled the related regulatory, transactional and litigation matters.
- Strategic counsel to Cube Yadkin Generation on a FERC license implementation and compliance of the Yadkin Hydroelectric Project.
- Acted for Idaho Power on the relicensing of Hells Canyon Complex, which consists of three hydroelectric projects.
- Assisted five of the seven investor-owned utilities forming NorthernGrid with a new transmission planning region in Western US.
Baker Botts L.L.P. is highly regarded in the energy sector with its conventional power regulatory practice covering traditional electrical energy regulation and litigation, the regulatory aspects of transactions and financings, and the development of energy infrastructure projects in the US. The group is also increasingly involved in hydroelectric licensing and compliance matters before FERC. Clients range from major US utilities to new market entrants and private equity-backed generation and transmission portfolio companies. Washington DC partner Jay Ryan co-chairs the energy regulatory practice and frequently represents clients before FERC and the Department of Energy; he is a key contact for hydroelectric licensing and compliance issues. Houston's Jim Barkley is also a key name and heads up the global projects group, and DC-based special counsel Emil Barth well regarded in the space. Brooksany Barrowes departed to Kirkland & Ellis LLP.
‘Extremely efficient team, excellent communication regarding matters, always very responsive to requests.’
‘The firm stepped in to handle nearly all of our energy regulatory work when the former attorneys at another firm retired. The transition was seamless with outstanding collaboration.’
‘Great honest people that are easy to work with and provide an outstanding work product in a timely manner at a fair rate.’
‘This group is unique in a number of ways, but for me, their expertise in the field of hydropower licensing and regulation is particularly helpful.‘
‘Working with Jay Ryan has been a great experience. He offers a wealth of knowledge and broad expertise on many energy law and policy topics. He provides counsel that is not overly aggressive, and is personalized.‘
‘Jay Ryan and his hydro legal team are truly extraordinary attorneys. In terms of specialized subject matter expertise, practical judgment, contacts in the industry and government, and just hard work, Jay is the go-to guy.‘
‘Emil Barth is an intelligent and thoughtful attorney with a fulsome knowledge of both the industry and the governing body of law.‘
Cobra Energy Investment Finance
Lake Erie Connector
Crius Energy Trust
- Advised ITC’s regulated operating companies, including ITC Midwest, ITC Transmission, ITC Great Plains, and Michigan Electric Transmission Company, on a wide range of regulatory matters before FERC.
- Assisted Cobra Energy Investment Finance with energy regulatory issues associated with the proposed transfer to Cobra of membership interests in Tonopah Solar Energy Holdings I, the owner and operator of a 125MW solar thermal electricity generating facility in Nye County, Nevada.
- Regulatory counsel to Exelon Corporation for all licensing and compliance matters relating to the Conowingo Hydroelectric Project and the Muddy Run Pumped Storage Hydroelectric Project.
- Advised CenterPoint Energy on the preparation and filing of an application to the Public Utility Commission of Texas for a Certificate of Convenience and Necessity to construct a double-circuit high-voltage transmission line.
- Acted for Transmission Developers before FERC in all transmission rate, policy, and market rule issues relating to its development of a $1bn, cross-border 1,000MW underground and underwater high voltage direct current transmission line from the US-Canada border into New York City.
Bracewell LLP has extensive experience before FERC, the DoE, the CFTC, the North American Electric Reliability Corporation (NERC) and other regional entities. The practice has a notable reputation in the energy field, backed up by key regulatory credentials. It also has a strong record in rate and centralized market issues and is singled out for its hydroelectric capabilities. Catherine McCarthy heads up the firm's energy regulatory department and has experience in obtaining FERC and other state approvals for major projects and transactions. Austin-based partner Deanna King has extensive transmission regulation experience and is active in the California independent system operator market. Paul Wight is noted for design and operations matters, Stephen Hug was promoted to partner in early 2019, and Michael Brooks is praised for his knowledge of wholesale markets. Named partners are based in Washington DC unless stated otherwise.
Other key lawyers:
‘Knowledge of the industry, size of the firm, depth of knowledge across partners.‘
‘Very collaborative, very good negotiating skills and an excellent ability to incorporate the bigger picture into their advice.’
‘Michael Brooks’ knowledge of the wholesale markets is above other practitioners we have worked with. This base allows him to spend less time getting up to speed and more time providing legal services.‘
Shell Energy North America
New England Power
- Advised Central Maine Power Company on all FERC matters related to the New England Clean Energy Connect $950m transmission project.
- Assisted Powerex with negotiations and proceedings relating to the establishment of a framework for cross-border participation in the California Independent System Operator’s (CAISO) western energy imbalance market.
- Acted for Central Maine Power Company and the United Illuminating Company in a series of complaints by the State of New England and other entities regarding the return on equity that companies are able to recover through transmission rates.
- Represented New England Power Generators Association in filing a complaint against ISO New England regarding how to price the capacity of a large generation resource in the annual capacity auction.
- Assisted Shell Energy North America with long-term contracts involving certain Western energy markets that continue to be heavily litigated before FERC.
Eversheds Sutherland advises some of the key names in the electricity market, along with financial institutions, generation developers and energy marketers; the group is also well reputed among electric cooperatives and other utilities. Practice head Catherine Krupka advises a range commodities trading and asset management companies on compliance and enforcement issues, agency regulations and transactional matters. Daniel Frank is noted for his regulatory and compliance expertise before FERC, NERC and state public service commissions. In Austin, Lino Mendiola handles transactional regulatory matters, and James Guy focuses on project development work and transactions. Highlighted partners are based in Washington DC unless stated otherwise.
Other key lawyers:
‘Lino Mendiola is very smart and poised. He is good to work with, good technically and brings a reputation that is helpful for clients.’
Pattern Energy Group
Consolidated Edison Transmission
Onyx Renewables Partners
Pine Gate Renewables
Just Energy Group
Starwood Energy Group Global
- Advised Pattern Energy Group on strategic and day-to-day matters concerning the development of its wind generation projects in nearly every major US market.
- Assisted Consolidated Edison Transmission with Bay State Wind’s planned development of offshore wind facilities off the coast of New York.
- Advised Allete on a range of strategic regulatory issues concerning the implementation of its enhanced integrated resource plan.
- Advised Starwood Energy Group Global on a variety of regulatory approvals related to the sale and acquisition of power plants across the US.
K&L Gates has extensive experience in regulatory proceedings, including tax recovery, fuel security, new rule making and cost allocation matters. The practice is primarily split between Washington DC and Seattle. Donald Kaplan is noted for handling antitrust and economic regulation issues in the energy sector including mandates before FERC. William Keyser is the coordinator of the power practice and frequently represents clients before FERC, the DoE, federal and state courts, and state public utility commissions; he is 'a terrific and impressive lawyer'. Seattle-based Elizabeth Thomas and Kari Vander Stoep are singled out for energy and water regulation work including matters linked to transactions and project developments in the hydropower industry. Seattle's David Hattery advises on the regulatory aspects of major thermal power plants and renewable energy facilities. Individuals are based in Washington DC unless stated otherwise.
‘K&L Gates’ energy practice is client service epitomized. With strong business acumen and a keen understanding of their clients’ needs, K&L Gates’ energy attorneys tailor their services according to the unique circumstances of each matter, while maintaining the highest standards of legal analysis.‘
‘Will Keyser is a star in the energy bar due to his keen legal mind and client focus. His reputation is unparalleled and he consistently delivers outstanding service. Will has a deep grasp on business fundamentals and nimbly spots trends, all to the benefit of his clients.‘
‘Will Keyser provides hands on leadership at FERC, and has a deep understanding of ratemaking and regulatory litigation.‘
‘The team, led by Don Kaplan and Will Keyser, is an essential long term strategic partner for my company. They are at the top of their field as FERC lawyers. They are unparalleled in their knowledge of PJM and its governance and underlying agreements. Their long history with my company gives them the background and perspective they need to begin work on important matters immediately.‘
‘Don Kaplan is a highly experienced FERC lawyer, PJM expert, and longtime strategic partner.‘
‘Elizabeth Thomas and Kari Vander Stoep are highly knowledgeable in the area, and conversant with all relevant regulatory decisions and practices. They worked seamlessly with my in-house team. What stands out though is the high level of expertise and knowledge in all relevant areas.‘
American Petroleum Institute
PJM Transmission Owners
MDU Resources Group
Edison Electric Institute
- Advised Microsoft on its initiative to purchase 100% carbon-free and renewable energy to meet the needs of its Redmond, Washington campus.
- Advised Hydro One as state regulatory counsel on its $5.3bn all-cash merger agreement to acquire Avista, the electric and natural gas provider operating in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, Montana and Alaska.
- Acted for American Petroleum Institute and Direct Energy in proceedings initiated by PJM Interconnection to change the rules governing its capacity market to address the impact of state subsidies on market dynamics.
- Represented Engie Gas and LNG in proceedings initiated by Constellation Mystic Power to recover the costs of its natural gas-fired generation facilities that ISO New England deemed to be necessary to ensure the reliability of the New England wholesale market.
- Advised PJM Interconnection (PJM) Transmission Owners on the development of a new methodology to establish joint transmission rates for transmission services exiting the PJM Regional Transmission Organization known as the Border Rate.
Latham & Watkins LLP has a varied practice in the power generation sphere, maintaining a high volume of M&A advice alongside increasing levels of FERC enforcement work. Offtake and hedging work is another area of strength for the team, which has notable expertise in independent power matters and is building its practice in traditional utilities and merchant transmission issues. David Schwartz is a leader in utility M&A, while Natasha Gianvecchio is noted for power generation M&A, enforcement issues and offtake and hedging work. Tyler Brown is an emerging talent and made partner in early 2020, and Michael Gergen covers conventional and renewable energy regulation.
‘The team provides an exceptional service, providing direct and specific feedback on various topics. They can move very quickly on issues, and take into account the unique circumstances of the client, with feedback that applies to the business that’s appropriately tailored to account for the risks and to let the business operate. It is the preeminent group in the space.‘
‘They are very effective in working with regulators, such as FERC, being firm but also recognizing an effective way to work with the agency without causing long term difficulties between the client and the regulator.‘
‘The Latham team is always available and poised to dive into whatever needs we have. They have strong commercial knowledge in both gas and power FERC issues as well as related commercial agreements.’
‘We believe that David Schwartz, Natasha Gianvecchio and Tyler Brown provide an exceptional service. They are organized, adjust their staffing to manage the case appropriately and per the client. They work closely with the client, continuously providing guidance and updates, and recognize the partnership of the firm, in-house counsel and the client at large. The partners understand the underlying business, and tailor their guidance to the commercial business and work to find acceptable solutions for the business.‘
Anbaric Development Partners
Energy Capital Partners
Macquarie Infrastructure and Real Assets
United Illuminating Company
- Acted for Avangrid in issues relating to allegations that practices relating to the scheduling of gas transportation service by certain local distribution companies increased electricity prices in New England.
- Assisted Vistra Energy with its acquisition of Crius, which included regulatory approvals and transition efforts.
- Advised Vistra Energy on its acquisition of Ambit Energy, including regulatory approvals and transition effort aspects.
- Acted for Vistra Energy in two capacity market reform cases, including an ISO-NE proceeding.
- Represented Linden VFT in multiple FERC and appellate proceedings regarding PJM’s allocation of regional transmission upgrade costs to the client.
McDermott Will & Emery LLP established itself as a major player in the energy sector in early 2020 with the recruitment of market leaders David Tewksbury, Neil Levy and the team from King & Spalding LLP. The group is highly rated for merchant generation work and has an substantial track record in transactions and market rules. Bruce Richardson and counsel Stephanie Lim are also key practitioners
Vinson & Elkins LLP combines standalone regulatory credentials with a strong track record in transactional regulatory matters. The team frequently represents clients before FERC, the DoE, the North American Electric Reliability Corporation and RTOs. Before FERC, the practice has experience in transmission issues, transaction approvals, litigation and enforcement proceedings. The group has traditionally represented major utilities, and has recently expanded its focus to act for a growing number of investors seeking to acquire regulated assets. Washington DC's John Decker has a key reputation in transactional and standalone regulatory matters, while Jo Ann Biggs in Dallas is an established name for electric utility regulatory mandates. Promoted to the partnership in 2019, Dallas-based Jaren Taylor regularly advises on electric transmission lines in Texas. James Seegers and Anita Wilson are the key contacts and are based in Houston and Washington DC, respectively.
‘Among the very best global practices in knowledge, experience, and depth when it comes to energy regulations. Very well complemented by the firm’s energy transactions practice, which is the best in the world.‘
‘The energy regulatory lawyers at V&E stand-out from the rest, not because of just knowledge and experience, but by their ability to work with and explain issues to the lay business client. They make complex matters understandable, provide an excellent service and handle matters effectively and efficiently.‘
‘V&E has an unmatched strength in Texas PUC proceedings, and FERC/NERC/Texas RE proceedings.’
‘Jo Ann Biggs’ availability and dedication to our account is unmatched.’
‘Jo Ann Biggs and Jaren Taylor truly act as members of our company’s team. Our business teams know them well and respect their work and their expertise.’
Oncor Electric Delivery Company
Pattern Energy Group
Global Atlantic Financial Group
Global Infrastructure Partners
- Advised Oncor Electric Delivery Company, which is 80% owned by Energy Future Holdings, on Energy Future Holdings’ Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing in Delaware.
- Acted for Oncor Electric Delivery Company in a PUCT proceeding to reconcile the costs related to its advanced meter deployment in 2017.
- Advised Tyr Energy on the financing and development of the Hickory Run Energy Center.
- Represented Global Atlantic Financial Group in its $1.17bn acquisition of a 33% minority interest in a solar portfolio from Southern Power.
- Provided FERC counsel to AltaGas relating to three separate transactions regarding electric generation projects.
Winston & Strawn LLP has key regulatory experience, which is enhanced by its team, which fields former FERC and Commodities Futures Trading Commission officials. The practice regularly handles regulatory approvals for transactions, enforcement and compliance issues, and matters regarding structural changes in the market; it is also noted for its knowledge of the California regulatory environment. The group also has experience in the hydroelectric field and continues to expand its presence in the nuclear market. It primarily focuses on clients in the merchant market including power marketers, merchant generation players and investors. Michael Yuffee is a former FERC official with expertise in enforcement defense, compliance and transactional matters. Joe Karp leads the California energy practice from San Francisco and frequently represents clients in proceedings before the California Public Utilities Commission. San Francisco's Lisa Cottle and Richard Shutran in New York are also rated, while William Horin is a notable figure in the nuclear sector. John Whittaker retired. Named partners are based in Washington DC unless stated otherwise.
‘The members that I work with have the highest ethical and personal standards. I place a significant amount of trust in the people I work with.’
‘Winston & Strawn provides direct legal support to its customers in the area of federal regulation for the US nuclear power industry. In the current era of doing more with less resources, the support provided by Winston & Strawn is invaluable to nuclear licensees.’
‘Michael Yuffee is an excellent external counsel. He is proactive, practical-minded, provides workable risk-mitigants and commercial alternatives, thoughtfully minimizes costs and expenditures, and is very relatable and authentic.’
‘William Horin has always been well prepared for any meeting I have attended. Bill represents the interest of his clients in an open and objective manner.’
‘Specific to William Horin, the support and follow-up is always available when customers need consultation and assistance in activities of nuclear power regulation. This includes licensing, project efforts, and most recently federal (NRC) inspections for licensees in the area of Environmental Qualification (EQ).’
Brookfield Asset Management
SteelRiver Infrastructure Associates
Pacific Gas & Electric Hydro
Turlock/Modesto Irrigation District
Nuclear Utility Group
Midland Cogeneration Ventures
Great River Hydro
- Advised Brookfield Asset Management on obtaining regulatory approvals from FERC and PUC required for its acquisition of Oaktree Capital Management.
- Represented SteelRiver Infrastructure Associates and Trans Bay Cable in obtaining CPUC approval for a transfer of upstream ownership of TBC to NextEra Energy Transmission.
- Represented Horizon West in its application to the CPUC for a permit to construct the Estrella Substation Project, and for the development and filing its California wildfire mitigation plan.
- Acted for Cube Hydro in a complaint filed at FERC objecting to PJM’s rejection of its application to pseudo-tie resources located outside of PJM in North Carolina.
- Assisted Pacific Gas and Electric Company with a request for a rehearing challenging several requirements of the license issued by FERC for the Poe Hydroelectric Project, ultimately securing a 10-year extension on the license.
Arnold & Porter has a notable reputation in the regulatory field, which is particularly prominent in the conventional power sector; it also has an extensive track record in proceedings before FERC. Sandra Rizzo is an experienced figure in regulatory and compliance engagements, and frequently represents clients in enforcement and administrative proceedings before FERC and the courts. Brian Israel, who leads the environmental practice group, also contributes to the team. Both are based in Washington DC.
‘They have a deep understanding of FERC compliance issues. I often call on them for short turn around advice or projects with little lead time and they always deliver.‘
‘Sandy Rizzo is a long-term strategic partner for my company.‘
NRG Power Marketing
RC Cape May Holdings
PJM Power Providers Group
- Acted for Tilton Energy and Dynegy Marketing and Trade in a complaint alleging that MISO and PJM illegally charged fees for the same service.
- Acted for NRG Power Marketing in a protest against the ISO New England’s Inventoried Energy Proposal program.
- Represented seven newly acquired subsidiaries of Vistra in two separate reactive rate proceedings that were set for settlement and hearing.
- Acted for Peter Jones, a partner in Coaltrain Energy, and employees Robert Jones and Jack Wells in defending against market manipulation claims brought by FERC in federal district court.
- Represented RC Cape May Holdings in negotiating cost-based recovery options relating to deferred closure of generating units.
Dentons' practice is noted for its expertise in connected technologies, smart cities and other related projects. The group also has extensive experience in the federal and state energy markets and ISO/RTO market rules, and regularly handles proceedings before FERC. Clint Vince leads the US energy practice and is co-chair of the firm's global energy sector group. Emma Hand is a key member of the regulatory team, and frequently advises public power entities, municipalities, large energy customers and load-serving businesses. Both partners are based in Washington DC, although the wider team is spread across multiple US offices.
City Council of the City of New Orleans
Rayburn County Electric Cooperative
Tri-State Generation & Transmission Association
Colorado Springs Utilities
Navopache Electric Cooperative
Kansas City Power & Light Co
Municipal Electric Utility Association of New York
Alliance to Save Energy
- Acted for the City Council of the City of New Orleans on its evaluation of and ruling on the $230m proposal by Entergy New Orleans to build a natural-gas fired power plant in the city, including the administrative litigation.
- Advised Anterix on its efforts to play a key role in the modernization of communications infrastructure in the nation’s various critical infrastructure sectors, especially in the utility sector.
- Represented New York Power Authority in its arrangements with an offshore wind farm developer and a northeaster US utilities company in their joint bid to develop, construct, own and operate an offshore wind farm.
- Acted for Rayburn Country Electric Cooperative in a dispute at FERC relating to SPP’s attempt to impose exit fees upon the movement of Rayburn’s load from the SPP grid to the ERCOT grid.
- Represented Tenaska Marketing Ventures as an intervener in various Southern California Gas Company and San Diego Gas and Electric Company proceedings.
Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP
Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP expanded its energy sector presence with the launch of its Houston office in 2017 and has since handled an increasing number of engagements involving FERC enforcement and litigation, along with state and federal court proceedings. The group has a strong track record in the regulatory aspects of transmission and power project developments, and also advises on energy-battery storage projects and installations. William Scherman is a former general counsel and chief of staff at FERC and chairs the energy, regulation and litigation team at the firm; he has represented clients in rate, market power and market manipulation cases before FERC. William Holloway is active in energy regulatory and energy transactional mandates including proceedings before FERC; clients include independent power producers and transmission companies. Both partners are based in Washington DC, where much of the core team is located.
Bayou Bridge Pipeline
TOTAL Gas and Power North America
Hudson Transmission Partners
- Represented FirstEnergy in several proceedings before FERC and the DoE seeking emergency action to prevent the retirement of nuclear and coal-fired generation until market rules or other mechanisms can be put in place to ensure the continued resilience of the electric grid from unexpected events such as severe weather or terrorist attacks.
- Acted for Emera Maine in filing an application with FERC under Section 203 of the Federal Power Act for authorization to be acquired by ENMAX.
- Advised MidAmerican Energy Company on an application to FERC under FPA Section 204 for authorization to issue $1.7bn in long-term debt and $500m in preferred securities.
- Acted for Hudson Transmission Partners in a series of proceedings before FERC regarding merchant transmission facility rights and cost allocations.
- Represented Trans Bay Cable in a variety of matters including a recent transmission rate case.
Greenberg Traurig LLP's expansive geographic presence across the US has enabled it to develop a broad conventional power regulatory practice. The group represents a client roster which encompasses a variety of public utilities, independent power producers, marketers, private equity investors, investment banks, cooperatives. Key areas of expertise include ratemaking, rulemaking and market structure proceedings, ISO and RTO matters, and certificate and licensing proceedings. Gregory Lawrence splits his time between Boston and Washington DC, and regularly represents clients before FERC and a variety of state utility commissions; he also has extensive experience in market manipulation issues, fraud enforcement investigations and regulatory compliance work. Boston-based John DeTore is also highly rated by clients for New England matters. William Garner in Houston and Kenneth Minesinger in Washington DC co-chair the energy and natural resources group, and Iskender Catto in New York leads the power industry projects and restructuring practice.
‘John DeTore and his team are exceptional. There is no other firm as capable in power plant development in Massachusetts and New England. The team is smart, knows the process, the players, the governmental requirements and has the experience, expertise and drive to get you there.‘
‘John DeTore is exceptional. He is quite simply the best.‘
‘John DeTore is an unquestionable expert on Massachusetts regulatory issues related to electric generation.’
‘John DeTore has unparalleled expertise in both the legal and practical aspects of energy regulation.’
FirstEnergy Service Company
Shell Energy North America (US)
New England Energy Council
- Acted for Apogee Energy Trading in filing a successful opposition to PJM Interconnection’s request to FERC to waive its default rules regarding the $250m GreenHat Energy financial transmission rights portfolio extensive financial default.
- Represented FirstEnergy Service Company before FERC in issues relating to potential significant market changes and the associated financial impacts, including the development of the capacity pay for performance mechanism, the capacity repricing mechanism and fast start pricing rules.
- Acted for Shell Energy North America in state proceedings, FERC proceedings and before the New York Independent System Operator (NYISO), including submitting comments defining a proposed structure for the offshore wind generation program in New York State.
- Acted for Entergy Corporation in the negotiation and development of a settlement agreement with New York State, New York State entities and Riverkeeper to retire the Indian Point nuclear generating facility.
- Acted for Exelon in connection with California ISO (CAISO) resource adequacy rules as implemented by FERC, CAISO and relevant California State agencies.
Hogan Lovells US LLP represents a range of electric utilities and other market participants before FERC, other regulatory entities and the courts. It has extensive experience in transactional and project development regulatory issues and FERC investigations including market rule violations. Daniel Stenger is an experienced nuclear energy specialist and frequently obtains licenses and regulatory approvals from the Nuclear Regulatory Commission (NRC) and DoE. Senior counsels Mary Anne Sullivan and John Lilyestrom are also key names. All named individuals are based in Washington DC.
Hunton Andrews Kurth LLP's core team handles a mix of transactional support and standalone regulatory work, with ratemaking, rulemaking and enforcement cases being core to the practice. The group is also particularly strong at representing clients before FERC, the Public Utility Commission of Texas (PUCT) and the Virginia State Corporation Commission. While it has historically advised ISOs, the practice has recently grown its client base of electric utilities. Myles Reynolds leads the practice from Dallas and represents natural gas utilities, midstream companies, electric utilities, and other energy businesses; he frequently acts in proceedings before PUCT and FERC. Tab Urbantke in Dallas regularly handles the risk and regulatory aspects of project developments and capital markets and commercial energy transactions. In New York and Richmond, Kevin Jones focuses on the electric sector, and Washington DC's Deidre Duncan is a key figure for environmental issues.
Other key lawyers:
‘They are highly experienced and capable of handling most any energy related matters before state and federal agencies. They have keen insight into my company and its culture and, therefore, can more effectively represent us.’
‘Tab Urbantke is technically skilled at an elite level and displays great judgment, character, and people skills.‘
‘Myles Reynolds has tried cases across the US.‘
Cross Texas Transmission
Independent Electricity System Operator (Ontario)
New York Independent System Operator (NYISO)
Oncor Electric Delivery Company
Vistra Energy Corporation
- Assisted NYISO with obtaining FERC approval of its proposed mitigation rule revisions, defended against complaints seeking to change the rules or challenging outcomes, and advised on evolving federal policy in this area.
- Advised NYISO on issues related to DoE and FERC initiatives to address grid resilience concerns through potential market rule changes or payments.
- Represented NYISO in issues involving its implementation of the FERC Order No. 1000 intra- and inter-regional transmission planning requirements as set forth in NYISO’s tariffs.
- Acted for Southwest Transmission in disputes concerning the ability of certain transmission developers to construct, own, and operate facilities resulting from competitive bidding procedures overseen by the Southwest Power Pool.
- Advised Duke Energy on the regulatory authorization for its purchase of renewable assets in Texas.
Jones Day operates across the electric utilities, energy trading and marketing , and competitive merchant generation and transmission entity fields. It has an established record in FERC litigation and compliance work, and has substantial experience in Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) matters. David Applebaum is singled out for FERC enforcement and compliance mandates; he joined from Akin Gump Strauss Hauer & Feld LLP in early 2019. James Beh also has key experience in representing a variety of power-sector players before FERC. Both partners are based in Washington DC, and Houston-based Jeffrey Schlegel leads the global energy practice.
‘Jones Day has from the start made the effort to really understand the issues we are facing and to provide the best commercially workable solutions to them.’
‘They are proactive, reliable and have also worked with us to set up reporting systems for billing of their fees that work well for our business. We feel we work in partnership with them rather than just an advisory service.‘
‘Jim Beh is very responsive and knowledgeable in his specialist field. As relationship partner for our firm he goes the extra mile to ensure a good continuing relationship.‘
American Electric Power Service Corporation
Dominion Energy South Carolina
Institutional Equity Investors in Pacific Gas & Electric
Silver Run Electric
Southwestern Public Service
- Acted for the institutional utility company shareholders of Pacific Gas & Electric Corporation in a series of regulatory proceedings in California, which address the catastrophic wildfire-related costs that have led to PG&E’s bankruptcy and the credit downgrades for other California investor-owned utilities.
- Represented SCANA Corporation in FERC regulatory issues associated with its announced merger with Dominion Energy, including the two companies’ joint application requesting FERC approval of the merger.
- Acted for Oklahoma Gas and Electric Company in its response to a Federal Power Act Section 206 complaint filed by Oklahoma Municipal Power Authority.
- Represented KMC Thermo in complaint proceedings involving the independent market monitor of PJM Interconnection and its complaint against PJM regarding the determination not to assess a penalty to a market seller.
- Advised one of the world’s largest renewable energy companies on a series of matters relating to the company’s entry into the US market.
Kirkland & Ellis LLP has established credentials in the energy sector with the recruitment of Robert Fleishman in 2018 and Brooksany Barrowes in 2019; Barrowes is highly regarded in the industry and joined from Baker Botts L.L.P. The well-regarded senior team frequently represents clients, including major energy players, and private equity houses and their portfolio companies, before FERC, DoE, Nuclear Regulatory Commission and CFTC. Andrew Stuyvenberg is a key name at the associate level.
Other key lawyers:
‘This team is very strong at the federal level, particularly with the addition of Brooksany Barrowes. They provide thoughtful and thorough guidance.‘
‘This team is top-notch, one of the best if not the best around for FERC enforcement issues with Robert Fleishman as the partner and the lead attorney on the regulatory side.’
‘Robert Fleishman is an example of what a really good attorney should be. He is always responsive and on top of issues, tasks, and timelines. Robert is not only able to understand and then explain in a clear and precise language complex technical concepts we deal with in our engagement, but he is also able to shed a new light on the technical and procedural matters we have at hand.’
‘Brooksany Barrowes and Drew Stuyvenberg provide excellent service and support. They are both extremely intelligent and knowledgeable.‘
Kohlberg Kravis Roberts & Co (KKR)
The Blackstone Group
Electric Reliability Council of Texas
Investec Kindle Energy
- Represented Apple Energy in preparing its successful application to FERC for Market-Based Rate Authority so that it can make wholesale sales of electric energy in interstate commerce issues.
- Acted for Etracom and Michael Rosenberg, its principal owner, in federal court litigation in California.
- Advised KKR on its $900m acquisition and financing of an equity interest in a newly-formed partnership with NextEra Energy Partners.
- Advised Frontera Generation on the commercial and regulatory issues associated with the refinancing and potential sale of the Frontera Generation Station.
- Assisted CenterPoint Energy and Vectren Corporation with the regulatory aspects of their $8bn merger-of-equals.
Norton Rose Fulbright US LLP is highly rated for its renewable energy expertise and is active in matters which span conventional power and alternative energy. The team advises a range of energy clients on compliance and enforcement matters, with notable experience in the development of open-access electric transmission tariffs; it also has extensive experience in market design regulatory proceedings. On the transactional side, the team frequently advised on the regulatory aspects of the acquisition and financing of power projects. Robert Shapiro is an experienced figure in DC in defending long-term power contracts before regulatory agencies and the courts; and DC-based Joseph Williams specialises in regulatory, compliance and enforcement matters before FERC and the CFTC. Power and battery storage expert Becky Diffen joined the Austin office from McGuireWoods LLP in mid-2019, and Anna Biegelsen is a key senior associate in Washington DC. Keith Martin and Benjamin Koenigsberg jointly lead the projects group from DC and New York, respectively, and John Mauel in Houston is global co-head of the energy practice.
Other key lawyers:
GE Energy Financial Services
Eagle Creek Renewable Energy
EDF Trading North America
- Advised Cleco Corporate Holdings and the Macquarie Group on the $1bn acquisition of NRG South Central Generating, a subsidiary of NRG Energy.
- Represented the DoE in connection with up to $3.7bn in guaranteed loans to owners of the Vogtle Nuclear Power Project.
- Advised GS EPS on its purchase of a 5% interest in the Linden Cogeneration Complex, a 972MW natural gas-fired plant in New Jersey.
- Acted for Energy Transfer Partners in litigation concerning access and sensitive resource issues associated with the planned construction of the 1,168-mile Dakota Access Pipeline.
- Acted for Alliance Canada Marketing in FERC proceedings involving the structuring of gas processing arrangements in the Alliance Pipeline system.
Paul Hastings LLP is rated for its regulatory expertise associated with large-scale power projects and battery storage programs. The group also has extensive experience before FERC, including handling transmission rate cases and enforcement proceedings. Washington DC-based William DeGrandis heads up the energy regulatory team and has substantial experience in energy regulatory, litigation and transactional mandates. San Francisco partner Peter Weiner leads the California energy team and regularly advises on the regulatory aspects of large-scale projects. Washington DC's Michael Spafford is highly rated for enforcement matters.
‘FERC knowledge and experience is the best in the industry. They are able to efficiently work through issues with their client and weigh both sides of any issue we present.’
‘Strong knowledge of energy industry and regulatory matters; federal and regional.’
‘William DeGrandis has the ability to work with a variety of team professionals on technical, commercial and regulatory matters.’
Midland Power Cooperative
Acciona Energy North America
- Advised Glidepath, a start-up energy storage company, on FERC regulatory matters associated with its new 18MW storage project in Somerset County, Pennsylvania.
- Defended Midland Power Cooperative in actions raised before FERC and federal district court relating to obligations under the Public Utilities Regulatory Policies Act (PURPA).
- Advised Yahoo! on renewable energy and data center electric supply arrangements.
- Acted for Olympus Power Company in relation to FERC regulatory issues concerning the acquisition and sale of power assets throughout the US, including in the PJM Interconnection region and Midcontinent Independent System Operator region.
- Advised Acciona Energy North America in connection with FERC regulatory matters, including the interconnection of and transmission for wind and solar projects throughout the US.
Reed Smith LLP
Reed Smith LLP has an extensive team with core group members located in California, Houston, New Jersey, New York, Pittsburgh and Washington DC. The practice has a track record in FERC and DoE proceedings, and frequently represents clients before the CFTC and Federal Trade Commission (FTC). Colette Honorable is a former Commissioner at FERC, and Regina Speed-Bost is a former in-house attorney; both are based in Washington DC. Nicolle Bagnell in Pittsburgh and Stan Perry are co-chairs of the firm's energy and natural resources group.
‘The team takes a holistic look at clients and legal issues. They understand that businesses need more than just legal advice. Reed Smith does everything it can to help us succeed, far beyond providing legal advice.’
‘Colette Honorable assists us with her considerable contacts and stellar reputation in the energy industry to help us raise our own profile and acquire new clients. Always available and enthusiastic, she brings a unique set of abilities and intensity to her relationship with us.’
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP
Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP's energy transactional practice is supported by a highly rated regulatory team. In addition, the firm is noted for FERC enforcement defense work and administrative litigation. John Estes is highly regarded as a senior figure in FERC enforcement proceedings, including market manipulation cases. Counsel Gerard Clark is another key team member. Both are based in the Washington DC office, which also fields Lance Brasher, who is global head of the energy and infrastructure group. Former enforcement counsel Donna Byrne joined Steptoe & Johnson LLP.
Thompson & Knight LLP
Thompson & Knight LLP's energy regulatory practice is primarily located in Austin, where it frequently represents clients before FERC, PUC, the New Mexico Public Regulation Commission (NMPRC) and other regulators. It also acts for clients in contested pipeline-related proceedings before the Railroad Commission of Texas, and is noted for its representation of energy consumers including acting for Texas Industrial Energy Consumers in proceedings before PUC. Phillip Oldham is praised for his regulatory expertise, which he utilizes on energy projects, energy market issues and transactions. Rex VanMiddlesworth is key for contentious regulatory matters in the energy space, and Katie Coleman is a singled out for her experience in state and federal energy regulation matters, energy market work and energy litigation. All named individuals are based in Austin.
‘The group at Thompson & Knight is the external team to go to when you need energy representation. They are the preeminent utility experts that can explain things at a level where everyone understands. They know and understand markets, market design and the regulatory process like no other.’
‘Thompson & Knight is my go-to firm for all things power related. They are responsive and able to communicate complex energy regulations and issues in a manner that is easily understood and digestible.’
‘Katie Coleman is one of my favorite outside counsels. She is responsive, easy to work with and really knows the power industry. She gives me exactly what I need in a format that is user-friendly and easy to understand.’
‘Phillip Oldham and Katie Coleman are the leaders of this practice area. I think they both have an understanding of the law and regulatory construct to be able to represent clients at a very high level. They stand out from competitors due to their network and reach within both the state capitol and regulatory bodies. They both understand the economics of a market and how they function.’
Texas Industrial Energy Consumers
Texas Association of Manufacturers
- Acted for Texas Industrial Energy Consumers before the PUC in contested rate proceedings, including base rate cases, merger and sale proceedings, interim rate updates, and fuel reconciliation controversies.
Troutman Pepper has a highly developed FERC practice thanks to the expertise of highly praised Washington DC partner Amie Colby and her wider team. The group is also noted for its hydropower experience and regulatory experience before multiple state utility commissions. In Atlanta, Brandon Marzo frequently represents clients before state commissions in Georgia and the Carolinas.
Consolidated Edison Energy
Duke Energy Progress
Louisville Gas & Electric
Public Service Company of New Mexico
City of Seattle
Wisconsin Electric Power
Chelan County Public Utility District
Grand River Dam Authority
- Represented Consolidated Edison Energy and Con Edison Development in the Pacific Gas and Electric Co bankruptcy.
- Advised PacifiCorp on the FERC relicensing of the Klamath Project, a 169MW project in Southwest Oregon and Northern California.
- Represented Georgia Power Company on its entry into an amended and restated loan guarantee agreement with the DoE.
- Served as regulatory counsel to Southern Company on its $6.5bn sale of Gulf Power Company to NextEra Energy.
- Acted for Santee Cooper as hydropower regulatory and strategic counsel on the re-initiation of the FERC relicensing process after a long period of dormancy.