Energy & Telecommunications

Offshore & Onshore Wind Power

Representative Matters

Preti Flaherty has supported clients in offshore and onshore wind power matters, such as:

  • Maine Aqua Ventus. Preti served as regulatory counsel to the project, a floating offshore wind demonstration project located in the Gulf of Maine. Preti assisted in securing passage of the legislation creating the RFP process for the project, participated in developing the winning RFP response, assisted in developing an effective public support campaign for the project, and drafted and negotiated the 2014 term sheet awarded to the project—the first ever for a floating offshore wind project in New England.
  • State of Rhode Island. On behalf of the Rhode Island Governor and Commissioner of Energy, Preti negotiated a Joint Development Agreement between and among Deepwater Wind Rhode Island, LLC ("DWW"), the Office of Energy Resources, and the Rhode Island Economic Development Corporation that advanced the 30 MW pilot wind power project, which could be followed by a 110 MW expansion, off the coast of Rhode Island.
  • Renewable Energy Systems Americas, Inc. (RES Americas). We have represented RES Americas in identifying and assessing the feasibility of large-scale wind projects in the northeast United States and in Maritimes Canada.
  • Fox Islands Electric Cooperative/Fox Islands Wind. Vinalhaven Island, Maine. Completed in the fall of 2009, Fox Islands Wind ("FIW") is the largest community wind-power facility on the east coast of the United States and New England's largest coastal wind project. The three turbine 4.5 MW project went on-line commercially in December 2010. On behalf of the Cooperative and FIW, we undertook the following activities:
    • Assisted in the creation of Fox Islands Wind subsidiary to take advantage of ITCs not available to the nonprofit Cooperative
    • Corporate and tax work to support tax equity investment in the project, as well as bridge financing for the project from Rural Utilities Service
    • Won Maine PUC approval for creation of subsidiary and intercompany financing arrangements
    • Negotiated power purchase agreement
    • Federal regulatory work relating to market-based sales
  • 2013 Maine Omnibus Energy Bill. Our Energy Group gathered key stakeholders from Maine’s executive and legislative branches, industry, and environmental groups to map out a plan for a comprehensive Energy Omnibus bill. (Read our case study.) A direct lobbying effort, as well as smart grassroots and media campaigns, educated the legislature and the public on the benefits of the bill, which passed with overwhelming majorities in both chambers of the Maine Legislature.
  • Confidential Out-of-State Client. Preti is currently serving as regulatory counsel on a proposed subsea transmission line project.  Preti attorneys performed project due diligence for one of the project investors and have provided regulatory strategic and permitting advice for the current pre-permitting phase of the project, ranging across all environmental and energy approvals necessary for the project.
  • Confidential Out-of-State Client.  On behalf of a major energy supply company, Preti Flaherty assisted in the assessment of siting options for a 250 MW project within land governed by the Land Use Regulatory Commission ("LURC"), provided legal analysis of siting constraints and potential permitting obstacles, worked with environmental consultants to minimize footprint of project (visual, as well as terrestrial), and prepared and negotiated all project property leases and options. We also prepared detailed a permitting scope of work and schedule.
  • Confidential Client.  Western Maine Mountains. On behalf of a VC partnership, Preti assisted the client with the identification of turbine and transmission line siting options, landowner negotiations, meteorological tower permitting, project financing, and general project development (scoping and schedule) for a 20-30 MW project identified for the Western Maine Mountains.
  • Maine Windpower, LLC.  Moscow, Maine. Preti attorneys have assisted in the exploration of a potential project at the former U.S. DOD Radar Station in Moscow, Maine (corporate and due diligence efforts to date); the site currently has two meteorological towers collecting data.
  • Beaver Ridge Wind. Freedom, Maine. In 2007, Beaver Ridge Wind, LLC and Preti Flaherty became active in drafting and helping to pass legislation setting high targets for wind production in Maine, including making small local wind projects known as "community wind" possible. We helped Beaver Ridge Wind bring its proposal—a three 400-foot turbines, 4.5 megawatt wind project—to life, which meant navigating nearly every imaginable obstacle. Three municipal referenda, including the adoption and repeal of a zoning ordinance, multiple abutter lawsuits, and land access issues, stalled our efforts to begin delivering enough oil-free electricity to serve 2,000 homes. Through a combination of legal persistence and the widespread feeling that renewable energy is an idea whose time has come, we helped Beaver Ridge Wind turn talk about renewable energy into reality. Construction was completed in the fall of 2010.
  • Confidential Client. On behalf of a major energy developer/generator that was a prospective purchaser, Preti Flaherty undertook extensive due diligence of two major (99 MW total) permitted and partially built wind projects in Maine. The effort involved detained evaluation of all aspects (financial, technical, environmental, interconnection, power purchase agreements, and current and anticipated issues) of each project. The evaluation resulted in a detailed report to senior company management.
  • Raytheon Corporation. We have represented the company in siting, permitting and power purchase agreement negotiations relating to various behind-the-meter wind projects at a number of Raytheon's facilities across the country.
  • First Wind. Preti Flaherty lawyers defended First Wind's long-term power purchase agreement with Maine utilities against appeal at the PUC. We also obtained Rhode Island REC Certification for several large wind farms in northern New York State.
  • Brookfield Renewable Energy/Granite Reliable Power (NH). For Brookfield, we acquired the development rights for a 100 MW facility located in northern New Hampshire. We also executed and defended a contested license transfer before the NH Siting Board.
  • High Meadow Trust. As part of an initial exploration of the feasibility of a 30 MW site, Preti attorneys initiated land option negotiations and permitted a meteorological tower in Winterville Plantation, Aroostook County, Maine (LURC jurisdiction).
  • Lakeville Shores, Inc. We represent a significant landowner in a Township 16 in a LURC rezoning and expedited wind rulemaking petition and development permit application. This is a 34 MW project.

Firm Highlights

Event

Dan Sonneborn to Present at Trucking Industry Defense Association 2023 Cargo Seminar

Preti Flaherty attorney Dan Sonneborn will be a speaker at the Trucking Industry Defense Association (TIDA) 2023 Cargo Seminar in Phoenix, Arizona, presenting on the topic of defending cargo claims concerning perishable goods and the Food...

News

Attorney Erin K. Naylon Joins Preti Flaherty’s Corporate and M&A Practice Group

Preti Flaherty is pleased to announce that attorney Erin K. Naylon has joined the firm’s Corporate and M&A Practice Group, working in the Portland, Maine office. Erin is a graduate of Brooklyn Law School...

Event

Dan Sonneborn to Present Webinar on Carmack Amendment Defenses for the Transportation Lawyers Association

On Tuesday, February 28, 2023, Preti Flaherty Attorney Dan Sonneborn will present the webinar "The Best Offense… Is a Good Defense? Using Exceptions to Swallow the Rule: The Nuts and Bolts of Carmack Amendment...

News

Preti Flaherty Continues Year of Remarkable Growth with Addition of Five New Attorneys

Preti Flaherty is pleased to announce the arrival of five new Associates to the firm: Scott A. DeLong, Christopher S. Knight, Kijana Plenderleith, Harper A. Weissburg, and Joshua D. Williams. In our Portland, Maine, office...

News

Preti Flaherty Announces Attorneys Kristy Abraham and Mariana Baron Promoted to Partner

Preti Flaherty is pleased to announce that the firm’s partnership has named two new partners: Kristy Abraham and Mariana Baron. Both attorneys stand out as distinguished practitioners in the field of corporate law and...

Publication

President Biden Signs Speak Out Act

On December 7, 2022, President Biden signed the "Speak Out Act" which became effective that day. The Act prohibits the enforcement of blanket non-disclosure and non-disparagement clauses that are entered into before any allegation...

Publication

Committee Assignments

Committee assignments for the 131st Maine State Legislature have been made public. This article from the Bangor Daily News mentions some of the most interesting choices made by Senate President Jackson and Speaker Rachel...

Publication

Pre-Session Legislative Update

LD 3 “An Act to Establish the Winter Energy Relief Payment Program to Aid Residents with High Heating Costs and to Finalize the COVID Pandemic Relief Payment Program” After Governor Mills’ heating and housing...

Press Coverage

Court Rules Portland Rents Are Public Information, Not Trade Secrets

Rental information is public information and not protected from public record requests under the Maine Trade Secrets Act, according to a recent ruling by Justice Thomas R. McKeon of the Maine Business and Consumer Court. The...

Publication

FTC Proposes New Rule Impacting Legality of Non-Compete Agreements

Background Over the last several years, non-compete agreements, which prevent workers from joining a competitor or starting a competing business for a time after separating from employment, have become less common as states enact...