Archive: September 2018

1
The Blockchain Energizer – Volume 36
2
Is Guidance on ITC-Qualified Storage Coming?
3
Join K&L Gates at DNV GL Energy’s Energy Storage Lenders Day
4
K&L Gates’ Quick Guide to the Polish Auction System for Renewables
5
The Blockchain Energizer – Volume 35
6
Energizing the Future With Blockchain: How the Environment and Energy Sectors Can Benefit From the Technology Behind Bitcoin
7
FirstEnergy: Bankruptcy Court Asserts Primacy Over FERC; Approves Rejection of Power Purchase Agreements
8
Trump Administration Releases Clean Power Plan Replacement Proposal

The Blockchain Energizer – Volume 36

By Buck B. Endemann, Benjamin L. Tejblum, and Daniel S. Cohen

There is a lot of buzz around blockchain technology and its potential to revolutionize a wide range of industries from finance and health care to real estate and supply chain management. Many institutions and companies are forming partnerships to explore how blockchain ledgers and smart contracts can be deployed to manage and share data, create transactional efficiencies, and reduce costs.

While virtual currencies and blockchain technology in the financial services industry have been the subject of significant debate and discussion, blockchain applications that could transform the energy industry have received comparatively less attention. Every other week, the K&L Gates’ Blockchain Energizer will highlight emerging issues or stories relating to the use of blockchain technology in the energy space. To subscribe to the Blockchain Energizer newsletter, please click here.

Come out and say hello to Blockchain Energizer co-author Buck Endemann as he presents on blockchain and renewable fuel standard, RINs, and biodiesel issues at the Oil Price Information Service (OPIS) conference in Chicago on October 1–3, 2018!

IN THIS ISSUE

  • EDF Energy, UK Power Reserve, and Electron Complete the First Blockchain-based Capacity Market Trade in the United Kingdom.
  • Grant County PUD Raises Rates on Cryptocurrency Miners; Chelan County PUD Considers Doing the Same.
  • Accenture and SAP Collaborate to Design a Cloud-based Blockchain Solution for Upstream Oil and Gas Operations.

To view more information on theses topics in Volume 36 of the Blockchain Energizer, click here.

Is Guidance on ITC-Qualified Storage Coming?

By: Elizabeth C. Crouse

State level energy storage incentives have been proliferating in recent months, but it is still not clear exactly when the federal investment tax credit (“ITC”) is available in respect of storage assets. While certain aspects are well known, the industry has been waiting for several years for additional guidance from Treasury on this matter. On September 20, Senators Tim Scott (R-SC) and Michael Bennet (D-Co) sent a letter to Treasury Secretary Mnuchin nudging him to provide that guidance, particularly in regard to whether storage assets installed at operating ITC-eligible facilities qualify for the ITC.

Many readers will recall that earlier this year the Internal Revenue Service released a Private Letter Ruling concluding that the Code Section 25D credit–which bears striking similarities to the ITC–is available in respect of a battery installed after residential solar panels became operational. In our blog post and Energy Storage Handbook section describing that ruling, we noted that similar logic supports an argument that storage assets installed at an operating ITC-eligible facility should also qualify for the ITC. There are also arguments that the ITC should be available in respect of storage assets installed at a facility that produces power that qualifies for the production tax credit, at least if that facility would also qualify for the ITC.

Although storage has caught on or is taking off in many locations, a green light from Treasury regarding ITC qualification could help the industry and lawmakers accomplish many important and increasingly urgent goals, from flattening the duck curve(s) to increasing reliability in rural areas. We look forward to additional action by Treasury on this matter and hope to share it in the new version of our Energy Storage Handbook, which will be released soon.

Join K&L Gates at DNV GL Energy’s Energy Storage Lenders Day

Discover new approaches to energy storage investment decisions

DNV GL Energy’s
ENERGY STORAGE LENDERS DAY
October 17, 2018
10:00 am – 4:30 pm
Law Offices of K&L Gates
599 Lexington Avenue (at 53rd St.)
New York, NY 10022-6030

Attend DNV GL’s Energy Storage Lenders Day – and see where energy storage technologies, brands, and manufacturers stand on the spectrum of product discover qualification. At the event, graciously hosted by K&L Gates, you’ll explore an overall approach to due diligence for energy storage—and key in on the issues that affect your storage investment decisions.

At DNV GL’s Energy Storage Lenders Day, you’ll learn more about:

  • Insurance
  • Product qualification programs
  • Field monitoring
  • Performance guarantees, capacity guarantees, and how they vary by battery type

Plus, you’ll be the first to see results of the 2018 Battery Performance Scorecard, DNV GL Energy’s authoritative and in-depth report on energy storage products and their qualification results.

Register today! Space is limited.

K&L Gates’ Quick Guide to the Polish Auction System for Renewables

K&L Gates is pleased to introduce our Quick Guide to the Polish Auction System for Renewables. Find the full version of the guide here.

Wind energy is breaking new ground in Poland. After a few years of stagnation, there is well-grounded optimism for the dynamic development of onshore and offshore RES.

A 1000 MW wind auction is expected in November 2018, with more to come in 2019. Bidders will compete in offering the lowest price over a 15-year period, plus indexation, and the auction winners will receive an estimated 12–15 billion PLN, i.e., ca. 4 billion EUR over this period.

The government is working on a separate piece of legislation concerning public support for the first offshore wind farms on the Polish Baltic Sea. However, concessions for offshore wind are already awarded and the industry is gearing up for the construction phrase. Offshore wind will likely feature here sooner rather than later.

Never before experienced growth is also anticipated in the solar market, with an auction for around 750 MW of new capacity in 2018. This exceeds by a few times the capacity of all solar installations existing so far in Poland.

The auctions are bound to bring the country closer to meeting the 15% target of renewables’ share in electricity generation. The Polish renewable generation will finally get a much needed boost after the delays experienced on the EU 2020 path.

It is therefore our pleasure to present this quick guide on the auction system for renewables – a compendium of knowledge prepared by the Polish Wind Energy Association and one of the association’s members

– K&L Gates law firm.

We hope that you will find the guide interesting.

The Blockchain Energizer – Volume 35

By Buck B. Endemann, Benjamin L. Tejblum, Daniel S. Cohen

There is a lot of buzz around blockchain technology and its potential to revolutionize a wide range of industries from finance and health care to real estate and supply chain management. Many institutions and companies are forming partnerships to explore how blockchain ledgers and smart contracts can be deployed to manage and share data, create transactional efficiencies, and reduce costs.

While virtual currencies and blockchain technology in the financial services industry have been the subject of significant debate and discussion, blockchain applications that could transform the energy industry have received comparatively less attention. Every other week, the K&L Gates’ Blockchain Energizer will highlight emerging issues or stories relating to the use of blockchain technology in the energy space. To subscribe to the Blockchain Energizer, please click here.

Come out and say hello to Blockchain Energizer co-author Buck Endemann as he presents on blockchain and renewable fuel standard, RINs, and biodiesel issues at the Oil Price Information Service (OPIS) conference in Chicago on October 1–3, 2018!

IN THIS ISSUE

  • Clean Energy Blockchain Network to Provide an Automated Clean Energy Certification Service and EV Charging Station that Powers Low-Income Households.
  • Share&Charge Foundation Plans to Create an EV Charging Stations Network Using the Energy Web Foundation’s Blockchain Platform.
  • ENGIE and Maltem Establish “Blockchain Studio” to Provide Software to Facilitate Commercial Adoption of Blockchain-based Applications.

To view more information on theses topics in Volume 35 of the Blockchain Energizer, click here.

Energizing the Future With Blockchain: How the Environment and Energy Sectors Can Benefit From the Technology Behind Bitcoin

Please Join K&L Gates and ELI and use our Sponsor Discount Code!

Join K&L Gates’ Buck B. Endemann and Ben L. Tejblum, along with an expert panel in San Francisco, CA for a detailed seminar on how blockchain operates as well as how it can be applied in the environmental and energy sectors.

Panelists:

Click here to learn more about the event and to register.

K&L Gates is pleased to offer a registration discount to colleagues and friends of the firm. To receive the discount code, please email janina.quilacio@klgates.com.

FirstEnergy: Bankruptcy Court Asserts Primacy Over FERC; Approves Rejection of Power Purchase Agreements

By Charles A. Dale III, William M. Keyser, David A. Mawhinney, and Michael L. O’Neill                      

In a closely watched battle between FirstEnergy Solutions (“FirstEnergy”) and the Ohio Valley Energy Corporation (“OVEC”) that could have significant implications for the U.S. power sector, the U.S. Bankruptcy Court for the Northern District of Ohio asserted its primacy over the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (“FERC”) in deciding whether to allow FirstEnergy to repudiate certain FERC-regulated power purchase agreements (“PPAs”). In a decision with significant implications for all participants in rapidly evolving wholesale power markets, the bankruptcy court applied the highly deferential business judgment standard instead of the more stringent standard applied by FERC when evaluating proposed changes to PPAs featuring mutually agreed-upon filed rates. The court’s decision is now the subject of a direct appeal to the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Sixth Circuit, and the outcome may inspire additional action by Congress and the president.

To read the full alert, click here.

 

Trump Administration Releases Clean Power Plan Replacement Proposal

Advancing President Trump’s campaign promise to end the “war on coal,” on August 21, 2018, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (“EPA”) proposed a new rule to replace the Obama administration’s Clean Power Plan (“CPP”). Unlike the CPP, the proposed Affordable Clean Energy Rule (the “ACE Rule”) does not set numerical standards or targets for greenhouse gas (“GHG”) emissions. Instead, the ACE Rule would give states flexibility to set their own standards of performance for existing coal-fired power plants. EPA asserts that the ACE Rule will eventually reduce GHG emissions to a similar extent as the CPP would have; however, according to EPA, the ACE Rule would reduce GHG emissions by 1.5% by 2030, compared to 32% by 2030 under the CPP. Interested parties will have 60 days from the date of publication in the Federal Register to comment on the ACE Rule.

To read the full alert, click here.

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