Global Power Law & Policy

Legal and Policy Developments Affecting the Global Power Industry.

 

1
COMMERCE EXTENDS INITIATION DEADLINE IN SOLAR CIRCUMVENTION INQUIRIES & USTR TO START TARGETED CHINA 301 TARIFF EXCLUSION PROCESS
2
Infocast Virtual Master Class: ESG for Renewable Energy Financing
3
ESG and the Sustainable Economy Handbook
4
The Energizer – Volume 98
5
POWER Magazine: Types of Power Purchase Agreements and Why Each PPA Might Be Used
6
The Energizer – Volume 97
7
The Energizer – Volume 96
8
UK Government Publishes Long Awaited Hydrogen Strategy
9
The Energizer – Volume 95
10
The Energizer – Volume 94

COMMERCE EXTENDS INITIATION DEADLINE IN SOLAR CIRCUMVENTION INQUIRIES & USTR TO START TARGETED CHINA 301 TARIFF EXCLUSION PROCESS

By: Stacy J. Ettinger

COMMERCE EXTENDS INITIATION DEADLINE IN SOLAR CIRCUMVENTION INQUIRIES – NEW DEADLINE LATE NOV

On September 29, 2021, Commerce determined to delay a decision on initiation in the solar circumvention inquiries. Commerce instead asked the US solar manufacturers – A-SMACC (the so-called American Solar Manufacturers Against Chinese Circumvention) – for additional information. In particular, Commerce requested additional information related to why the A-SMACC companies have requested anonymity in the circumvention proceeding. Commerce also requested information regarding the A-SMACC companies’ ties to business interests in China or Southeast Asian countries.

At the request of A-SMACC,  Commerce extended the deadline for A-SMACC’s response to the additional questions until October 13. Commerce regulations permit other interested parties to file comments on A-SMACC’s response within seven days.

Commerce has indicated it will make its decision on initiation within 45 days of A-SMACC filing its response to Commerce’s questions. Assuming A-SMACC files on October 13, Commerce’s decision on initiation would be due on or by November 27. If Commerce initiates on November 27, the final results of the full investigation would be due on or by September 23, 2022.

Note that the new Commerce initiation deadline is just past the date the US International Trade Commission is expected to make its decision on the solar safeguard/201 extension (November 24, 2021).

Senate letter. On September 29 (around the time Commerce was initially set to issue its initiation determinations) twelve Senators sent a letter to the Commerce Secretary Raimondo expressing concerns regarding the anonymous petitions alleging illegal trade activity filed with the Department that would have “a devastating impact on the US solar industry and American solar jobs.” The Senators urged Commerce to “carefully assess the validity” of the petitions.

Background. On August 16, US solar manufacturers (the so-called American Solar Manufacturers Against Chinese Circumvention) requested that Commerce launch a circumvention inquiry on imports of solar products produced in Chinese-owned factories in Malaysia, Vietnam and Thailand. If Commerce initiates on November 27, the final results of the full investigation would be due around by September 23, 2022.

A wide range of interested parties have filed comments on A-SMACC’s initial anti-circumvention inquiry request. The parties have raised factual and legal issues related to whether A-SMACC’s inquiry provides sufficient justification for initiation. The parties have also made economic and policy arguments regarding the negative impact if Commerce were to initiate.

In particular, the interested parties argue that initiation of the circumvention inquiry would disrupt solar imports as companies park panels/modules offshore. They also argue that initiation would  undermine the Biden Administration’s push for expansion of US solar installation and capacity. In addition, nearly 200 companies involved in the solar industry, along with solar industry groups, have warned that imposition of tariffs on imported panels/modules from Malaysia, Vietnam and Thailand would devastate the industry and threaten US jobs.

The circumvention action is tied to the AD/CVD orders on Chinese CSPV cells. The petitioners in the circumvention case are arguing that imports of solar panels/modules produced in Chinese-owned factories in Malaysia, Vietnam and Thailand, with Chinese wafers and other Chinese components, should be subject to current antidumping and countervailing duty orders on Chinese cells/modules.

Commerce (or CBP) could act to make the circumvention findings retroactive, which means there is the potential that importers could be on the hook for payment of additional duties on previous imports.

USTR TO START TARGETED CHINA 301 TARIFF EXCLUSION PROCESS

On October 8, USTR published notice that it will consider requests to reinstate previously-granted China 301 tariff exclusions. The catch is: (1) only previously-granted exclusions that were subsequently extended through the end of 2020 are up for consideration; and (2) the reinstated exclusions would only apply to merchandise entered into the US on or after October 12, 2021 (the date USTR opens the public docket for filing reinstatement requests).

USTR intends to evaluate the possible reinstatement of each exclusion on a case-by-case basis. The public docket opens on October 12, 2021. The deadline for filing comments is December 1, 2021. Parties seeking to comment on more than one exclusion must submit a separate comment for each exclusion.

USTR has provided a list of the 549 previously-extended product exclusions up for consideration, on its website.[1] In addition, comments need to be filed using the form provided by USTR on its website.[2] The form contains specific requests for information regarding the company, many of which will look familiar from the original exclusion and exclusion extension process.   

A key factor in USTR’s evaluation will be whether the particular product remains available only from China. USTR is requesting that commenters address the following issues—

  • Whether the particular product and/or a comparable product is available from sources in the United States and/or in third countries.
  • Any changes in the global supply chain since September 2018 with respect to the particular product or any other relevant industry developments.
  • The efforts, if any, the importers or US purchasers have undertaken since September 2018 to source the product from the United States or third countries.
  • Domestic capacity for producing the product in the United States.

In addition, USTR will consider—

  • Whether or not reinstating the exclusion will impact or result in severe economic harm to the commenter or other US interests, including the impact on small businesses, employment,  manufacturing output, and critical supply chains in the United States, and
  • The overall impact of the exclusions on the goal of obtaining the elimination of China’s acts, policies, and practices covered in the section 301 investigation.

Exclusion track record. From 2018 to 2020, US stakeholders submitted about 53,000 exclusion requests to USTR for specific products covered by the section 301 China tariffs. A US Government Accountability Office report found that the agency denied 46,000 of those requests (87 percent) while approving about 2,200. Of the approvals, just 549 saw their tariff breaks extended – and it is these 549 previously-extended product exclusions that are up for consideration and possible reinstatement.


[1] https://ustr.gov/sites/default/files/files/Notices/Section 301 China Request for Comments/Annex of Previously Extended Exclusions for Website.pdf.

[2] https://ustr.gov/sites/default/files/files/Notices/Section 301 China Request for Comments/Facsimile of Data Requested.pdf.

Infocast Virtual Master Class: ESG for Renewable Energy Financing

CO-HOSTED WITH K&L GATES

November 2-3, 2021

As capital markets, investors, lenders and corporate off-takers accelerate their engagement with the challenges of global warming and other environmental threats, the development of formalized ESG (environmental, social and governance) principles has created great opportunities for renewable energy developers to increase company and project valuations, be more focused in their own M&A decisions, improve their own business processes and those of their suppliers, and obtain financing more easily and at more favorable rates.

However, the relatively recent development of multiple ESG standards and reporting formats, none of which were specifically developed for renewable energy developers, can make it difficult to know exactly how to align their business processes to maximize ESG performance and how to communicate their success at implementing these principles to critical outside partners and investors.

Taught by active market participants who are engaging with ESG issues daily, this ESG for Renewable Energy Financing Master Class will permit renewable development firms to:

  • Examine the core aspects and key challenges of accounting for ESG factors in the context of renewable energy project development and operation, as well as corporate finance
  • Identify ESG issues throughout the renewable energy project life cycle that can impact obtaining investment and financing, and operational cost
  • Get a detailed explanation of how ESG factors flow through project transaction documents to provide an understanding of ESG’s role and impact on contractual agreements & terms
  • Obtain tools and techniques to help identify and manage long-term risk grounded in ESG factors
  • Develop strategies to handle renewable energy project-specific risks such as load, shape and price risk and their interrelation with ESG principles

Co-Lead instructors are Elizabeth Crouse and Lana Le Hir

ESG and the Sustainable Economy Handbook

Environmental, social, and governance (ESG) and the sustainable economy are concepts that often overlap and frequently intertwine. Whether viewed separately or together, they have significantly changed global investing and business practices and will continue to evolve. 

This handbook examines how investors evaluate companies based on ESG and sustainability criteria, the way companies incorporate these standards into their operating principles, and the legal and financial considerations for both groups. Whether you are an investor, an investment manager, a company owner, or board member, it will provide you with valuable insights drawn from our lawyers’ deep industry experience and keen understanding of policy, procedures, and trends.

New Sustainable Investing Chapter released today!

To view and download the full ESG Handbook, click here.

Subscribe to receive alerts when additional chapters are released.

The Energizer – Volume 98

By: Buck B. EndemannDaniel S. CohenMolly K. BarkerNatalie J. ReidMatthew P. ClarkNathan C. HoweMaeve C. TibbettsOretha A. Manu

There is a lot of buzz around clean technology, distributed energy resources (DERs), microgrids, and other technological innovations in renewable energy and clean transport industries, and how these developments can contribute to solving longstanding environmental justice issues. As these innovations develop, energy markets will undergo substantial changes to which consumers and industry participants alike will need to adapt and leverage. Every other week, K&L Gates’ The Energizer will highlight emerging issues or stories relating to the use of DERs, energy storage, emerging technologies, hydrogen, and other innovations driving the energy industry forward.

IN THIS ISSUE: 

  • Second-Life Energy Storage Projects Repurposing Electric Vehicle Batteries Deployed in Norway
  • NuScale Power Signs Memorandum of Understanding to Develop Small Modular Reactor Technology in Poland
  • New York City Announces 15-Year Offshore Wind Vision Plan
  • Nuclear Fusion Test Facility Opens in England
  • DOE Invests US$27 Million in Battery Storage Projects

The Energizer – Volume 97

By: Buck B. EndemannDaniel S. CohenMolly K. BarkerNatalie J. ReidMatthew P. ClarkNathan C. HoweMaeve C. TibbettsOretha A. Manu

There is a lot of buzz around clean technology, distributed energy resources (DERs), microgrids, and other technological innovations in renewable energy and clean transport industries, and how these developments can contribute to solving longstanding environmental justice issues. As these innovations develop, energy markets will undergo substantial changes to which consumers and industry participants alike will need to adapt and leverage. Every other week, K&L Gates’ The Energizer will highlight emerging issues or stories relating to the use of DERs, energy storage, emerging technologies, hydrogen, and other innovations driving the energy industry forward.

IN THIS ISSUE: 

  • Siemens Announces New U.S. Electric Vehicle Charging Equipment Manufacturing Facility
  • NIST Innovations Demonstrate Reality of Indoor PV Cells
  • BOEM Kicks Off Federal Permitting Process For Sunrise Wind Offshore Project
  • Chevron and Brightmark LLC Expand Projects to Produce Renewable Natural Gas

The Energizer – Volume 96

By: Buck B. EndemannDaniel S. CohenMolly K. BarkerNatalie J. ReidMatthew P. ClarkNathan C. HoweMaeve C. TibbettsOretha A. Manu

There is a lot of buzz around clean technology, distributed energy resources (DERs), microgrids, and other technological innovations in renewable energy and clean transport industries, and how these developments can contribute to solving longstanding environmental justice issues. As these innovations develop, energy markets will undergo substantial changes to which consumers and industry participants alike will need to adapt and leverage. Every other week, K&L Gates’ The Energizer will highlight emerging issues or stories relating to the use of DERs, energy storage, emerging technologies, hydrogen, and other innovations driving the energy industry forward.

IN THIS ISSUE: 

  • “Offshore Wind American Manufacturing Act of 2021” Introduced in the U.S. Senate
  • DOE Awards $82.6 Million to Energy Efficiency Projects
  • Offshore Wind Lease Opportunities Considered Offshore the Carolinas
  • California Energy Commission Adopts Energy Code Promoting Electricfication for New and Renovated Buildings

UK Government Publishes Long Awaited Hydrogen Strategy

Hydrogen Alert

The UK government, through the Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (DBEIS), published its long-awaited hydrogen strategy on 17 August 2021. The strategy, presented by DBEIS Secretary Kwasi Kwarteng, builds on Prime Minister Boris Johnson’s “Ten Point Plan for a Green Industrial Revolution” (Ten Point Plan) released in 2020, and it details plans for the United Kingdom to develop a thriving low-carbon hydrogen sector.

The Energizer – Volume 95

By: Buck B. EndemannDaniel S. CohenMolly K. BarkerNatalie J. ReidMatthew P. ClarkNathan C. HoweMaeve C. TibbettsOretha A. Manu

There is a lot of buzz around clean technology, distributed energy resources (DERs), microgrids, and other technological innovations in renewable energy and clean transport industries, and how these developments can contribute to solving longstanding environmental justice issues. As these innovations develop, energy markets will undergo substantial changes to which consumers and industry participants alike will need to adapt and leverage. Every other week, K&L Gates’ The Energizer will highlight emerging issues or stories relating to the use of DERs, energy storage, emerging technologies, hydrogen, and other innovations driving the energy industry forward.

IN THIS ISSUE: 

  • Form Energy Announces Development of Iron-Air Long-Duration Commercial Battery Product
  • Hawaiian Electric Offers Customers Incentives to Add Battery Storage to Their Rooftops
  • American Clean Power Association Releases 2020 Annual Report
  • Orbital Marine Power Connects Tidal Turbine to Electric Grid in the United Kingdom
  • Xcel Energy Accelerates Decarbonization Plans

The Energizer – Volume 94

By: Buck B. EndemannDaniel S. CohenMolly K. BarkerNatalie J. ReidMatthew P. ClarkNathan C. HoweMaeve C. TibbettsOretha A. Manu

There is a lot of buzz around clean technology, distributed energy resources (DERs), microgrids, and other technological innovations in renewable energy and clean transport industries, and how these developments can contribute to solving longstanding environmental justice issues. As these innovations develop, energy markets will undergo substantial changes to which consumers and industry participants alike will need to adapt and leverage. Every other week, K&L Gates’ The Energizer will highlight emerging issues or stories relating to the use of DERs, energy storage, emerging technologies, hydrogen, and other innovations driving the energy industry forward.

IN THIS ISSUE: 

  • Apex Clean Energy and Plug Power Enter PPA to Power Largest Wind-Supplied Green Hydrogen Plant in the Nation
  • Cybersecurity Legislation Advances to Senate
  • First in Nation’s Local Natural Gas Ban is Upheld in Federal Court
  • Midwestern Coal Plants Continue to Close Under Market Pressures

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