Renewable energy is booming in New York and the surrounding states. In December of 2015, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo directed the state’s regulators to come up with a plan to reach 50 percent renewables by 2030. In 2016, the New York Department of Public Service released a proposed plan known as the “50 by 30” plan, which builds on New York’s “Reforming the Energy Vision” initiative by providing a necessary target and enforcement mechanisms to achieve these objectives. Our firm’s Renewable Energy Group is well-positioned to assist utilities, utility-scale developers, and land owners understand and take advantage of this evolving regulatory landscape so as to efficiently cultivate a profitable renewable portfolio.
Our Renewable Energy Group has extensive experience in the development and deployment of utility-scale and distributed generation solar projects, working with clients on all key development issues for solar projects including site control, land use and permitting, transmission and supply issues and construction and post-construction compliance.
We guide developers through the zoning and permitting process at local, state, and federal levels. Developers who need assistance negotiating the complex network of environmental regulations applicable to the alternative energy industry find our Renewable Energy Group reduces the time and uncertainty that can accompany navigating such regulations. We also assist our clients with the review and negotiation of construction contracts, right-of-way acquisition, government relations and outreach, zoning compliance, and legislative analysis issues that have proven key to effective renewable development initiatives. Our core real estate competencies relating to the selection, acquisition, sale, and leasing of real property assets are additional benefits that our renewable energy clients enjoy access to and which aid in the efficient deployment of renewable assets.
The firm also represents national solar and renewable energy companies in the development of battery storage facilities. Lithium-ion energy storage systems are developed pursuant to the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) market acceleration bridge incentive—a key pillar of New York’s ambitious energy and climate action plan. As described in NYSERDA’s Energy Storage Roadmap, energy storage is a critical component of decarbonizing the electric supply in New York and creating a more resilient and reliable electric grid. As a result, the State has rolled out an incentive program and mechanism to compensate energy storage facilities for reducing peak demand on the electric distribution system, reducing strain on assets when the system needs it most, extending the life of existing electric infrastructure, reducing the frequency of blackouts and outages, and ultimately reducing the cost of electricity for ratepayers in the State. The firm is excited to counsel clients in this emerging field.
Permitting, Zoning and Land Development: