Project Finance

  • January 29, 2015

    6th Circ. Permit Shield Ruling Benefits Industries Beyond Coal

    The Sixth Circuit’s Tuesday ruling that a coal mining company’s general discharge permit shields it from litigation over alleged selenium pollution provides a precedent that is expected to benefit a variety of other industries including construction and agriculture, but environmentalists say it won’t stop them from pursuing similar suits.

  • January 29, 2015

    Reps. Introduce Bill To Make EB-5 Visa Program Permanent

    Two U.S. congressmen introduced legislation on Wednesday that would make permanent the EB-5 immigrant investor visa program, which is highly popular in the real estate development world but slated to expire this fall.

  • January 29, 2015

    Texas Bill Could Open EFH Unit’s Assets To Other Generators

    A Texas state lawmaker on Wednesday filed a new bill that could clear the way for power generators to buy a subsidiary of bankrupt Energy Future Holdings Corp., by lifting a 20 percent cap on how much power generators can own on Texas’ electrical grid.

  • January 29, 2015

    Sidley Austin Adds Ex-Cadwalader Atty In Houston

    Sidley Austin LLP continued to build upon its growing Houston office by adding former Cadwalader Wickersham & Taft LLP partner Robert G. Stephens, who brings expertise in energy-related financings and transactions, the firm announced this week.

  • January 29, 2015

    Senate Approves Keystone XL Pipeline Bill

    The U.S. Senate on Thursday voted to approve TransCanada Corp.’s long-delayed Keystone XL pipeline, which would bring Canadian tar sands crude oil through the U.S., a project that has inflamed environmentalists and prompted a veto promise from President Barack Obama.

  • January 29, 2015

    Mass. Offshore Wind Lease Auction Yields Just $448K

    The U.S. Department of Interior on Thursday only reaped about $448,000 in high bids in its largest-ever offshore wind lease auction, covering less than half of the 742,000 acres of federal waters off the Massachusetts coast that were made available.

  • January 29, 2015

    Senate Panel Considers Easing LNG Export Rules

    The Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee heard testimony Thursday on a bill streamlining liquefied natural gas export permits to countries without free trade agreements with the U.S., with industry groups split over concerns about potential spikes in domestic prices.

  • January 29, 2015

    Pa. Gov. Revives Gas Leasing Ban In State Parks

    Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf on Thursday reinstated a moratorium on oil and gas drilling in state parks and forests, nixing an order enacted by his predecessor that overturned the ban on further oil and gas development and fulfilling a campaign promise.

  • January 29, 2015

    Sasol Holds Off On $14B Louisiana Gas-To-Liquids Plant

    South Africa-based Sasol Ltd. postponed its decision on investing in a Louisiana gas-to-liquids plant costing as much as $14 billion, saying on Wednesday that it was looking for ways to hold on to its cash amid a plunge in oil prices.

  • January 29, 2015

    Shell Plans $15B In Spending Cuts Amid Oil Price Plunge

    Royal Dutch Shell PLC said Thursday that it would slash its capital spending by $15 billion over the next three years, a clear sign that the historic slide in oil prices is affecting the plans of even the world’s largest oil companies.

  • January 28, 2015

    Senate Cans 11 Keystone XL Amendments

    The U.S. Senate on Wednesday took up a dozen amendments to the Keystone XL pipeline legislation, passing only one concerning energy retrofitting for schools, two days after Democrats refused to end debate on the bill until all pending amendments had been voted on.

  • January 28, 2015

    Pembina To Sell $600M In Notes To Fund Capital Spending Plan

    Canadian energy transportation and service provider Pembina Pipeline Corp. said Wednesday that it is planning a $600 million note offering, with some of the proceeds expected to fund its recently announced $1.7 billion capital spending plan for 2015.

  • January 28, 2015

    Law Profs Ask To Weigh In On EPA Emissions Rule Row

    A group of law professors have asked the D.C. Circuit to allow them to file an amicus brief backing the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s plan to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from existing power plants, saying the agency is empowered to put the plan into effect under the Clean Air Act.

  • January 28, 2015

    Manatt Snags Veteran Energy Partner From K&L Gates

    Manatt Phelps & Phillips LLP is expanding its energy and natural resources practice in Los Angeles with the hiring of a new partner from K&L Gates LLP who brings with him more than 40 years of experience in energy, infrastructure and project finance, the firm announced this week.

  • January 28, 2015

    Market Rumors: Citgo, LSE, Davivienda

    Citgo Petroleum is offering $1.5 billion in bonds as part of a credit package to raise money for its parent company, while the London Stock Exchange is pushing forward with plans to part ways with Russell Investments.

  • January 28, 2015

    House Passes Bipartisan Bill To Lower LNG Export Hurdles

    The U.S. House of Representatives passed a bipartisan bill Wednesday intended to streamline regulatory approvals for exports of liquefied natural gas to countries without a free trade agreement with the U.S.

  • January 28, 2015

    Power Deals Face Ongoing Scrutiny Under FERC Cost Plan

    A policy on mergers for utilities and transmission companies recently proposed by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission could inject long-term uncertainty into deals by indefinitely opening the door to challenges of any future investment decisions by the merged company, experts say.

  • January 28, 2015

    Bain, Pacific Equity Scrub $695M Bid For Bradken

    Australian mining products maker Bradken Ltd. said Wednesday that it has stopped discussions with private equity suitors Pacific Equity Partners Pty. Ltd. and Bain Capital LLC over a AU$872 million ($695 million) takeover proposal, saying market volatility has hampered the deal.

  • January 28, 2015

    Chevron, BP, Conoco Team Up On Deepwater Gulf Oil Hunt

    Chevron Corp. and BP Exploration and Production Inc. said Wednesday that they and fellow oil giant ConocoPhillips Co. will jointly own and develop three deepwater oil areas in the Gulf of Mexico after Chevron picked up a stake in two of the areas from BP.

  • January 28, 2015

    2 DLA Piper Project Finance Pros Join Pillsbury In NY

    Pillsbury Winthrop Shaw Pittman LLP has nabbed two project finance specialists from DLA Piper to work out of the firm's finance practice in New York, the company announced Monday.

Expert Analysis

  • EU’s Russia Sanctions And Tips For The Year Ahead

    Tobias Caspary

    European Union sanctions on Russia are relatively specific — at least where they relate to the access restrictions to EU capital markets and the Russian energy sector. This means businesses have to consider very carefully whether their commercial operations, or specific transactions, are caught by these prohibitions, say Tobias Caspary and Till Vere-Hodge of Fried Frank Harris Shriver & Jacobson LLP.

  • Key Questions When Selecting E-Discovery Vendors

    David Houlihan

    While e-discovery remains a critical pain point in litigation, the "solutions" supporting its processes continue to evolve. In order to help organizations navigate the sea of options, we conducted research with 21 organizations across e-discovery market segments to understand the factors involved in successful e-discovery investments, says David Houlihan of Blue Hill Research Inc.

  • New Coal Ash Standard May Reignite Tax-Exempt Bond Market

    Mary Nash Rusher

    The Environmental Protection Agency’s recent determination that coal ash is solid waste could have a material impact on capital expenditures relating to coal ash. Coal plant owners should be aware that the final rule provides certain financing benefits by clarifying the ability to finance certain facilities with tax-exempt bonds, say Mary Nash Rusher and S. Christina Kwon of Hunton & Williams LLP.

  • China's Draft Foreign Investment Guidance Is Encouraging

    Woon-Wah Siu

    The draft of China's new Foreign Investment Guidance Catalogue lifts restrictions on foreign investment in dozens of service and general manufacture industries and would relax Chinese ownership requirements. Although foreign investors still would have to operate in some of these industries through Sino-foreign joint ventures, control by the Chinese partners would no longer be required, say Woon-Wah Siu and Liang Tao of Pillsbury Wi... (continued)

  • A Data Security Checklist For Companies Hiring Law Firms

    Jenn Topper

    We trust our law firms with huge amounts of data, whether in or out of discovery, investigations or litigation. All too often, we have relied on privilege, confidentiality and attorney ethics as a proxy for data protection and information security. But in fact, law firms ought to be held to a much more stringent standard — and in-house counsel would be wise to begin with a number of specific inquiries, says legal industry consultan... (continued)

  • Unique Challenges In The Panama Canal Expansion

    Jerry P. Brodsky

    Construction halt and war between the owner and contractor are two of the most undesirable situations that can occur on any project, let alone one of the largest and most complex projects in the world. Regarding what went wrong in Panama, we do not have all the answers yet, but we do have some educated ideas, says Jerry Brodsky of Peckar & Abramson PC.

  • EPA Methane Strategy May Sit On Policy Back Burner

    Cynthia AM Stroman

    While it remains to be seen whether Congress will act to disapprove the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's methane emissions reduction strategy, at a surficial level, its limitation to “new” sources might place it lower on Capitol Hill’s priority list, says Cynthia Stroman of King & Spalding LLP.

  • Your Energy Tax Credit May Not Be Safe

    Jennifer A. Ray

    W.E. Partners II LLC v. U.S. is highly relevant to taxpayers planning to use the Section 48 investment tax credit to finance certain kinds of energy property. It is possible that the IRS will use this case to argue that, for example, the credit is not available for all of the costs of building an open-loop biomass cogeneration facility, say Jennifer Ray and David Blair of Crowell & Moring LLP.

  • Fracking Bans May Trigger Civil Authority Coverage After All

    Walter J. Andrews

    A recent Law360 guest article suggests a number of reasons why civil authority coverage will not be implicated by local fracking bans. The article does not, however, fully address three important issues that will impact the question of whether civil authority coverage is, in fact, triggered, say attorneys with Hunton & Williams LLP.

  • Changes To Japan's Feed-In Tariff Scheme Are Coming

    Joshua R. Isenberg

    While the proposed amendments to Japan's feed-in tariff scheme remain subject to public comment, policymakers are sympathetic to change and the risk of reduction to a previously secured rate may be increasing for solar projects that are not presently, or likely to soon be, shovel-ready, say attorneys at Paul Hastings LLP.