Category: Sustainability

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Ensuring Energy Security Section in the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022
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Sustainable Outlook: The Push to Modernize the Grid From Smart Buildings With Courtney Blodgett, Director of Strategy at Edo
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Please Join Us: ESG Insights | SEC Proposed Climate-Related Disclosures
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SUSTAINABLE OUTLOOK: DEVELOPING SOLAR AND STORAGE TECHNOLOGIES WITH HOLLY CHRISTIE OF HECATE ENERGY
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Sustainable Outlook: Environmental and Social Responsibility with Acorn International: Part II
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Sustainable Outlook: Environmental and Social Responsibility with Acorn International: Part I
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Sustainable Outlook: Transparency, Unity, and Community with Elizabeth Jones, Founder of The Equality Equation
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Sustainable Outlook: 100% Renewable Energy, 100% For Humanity With Sandra Kwak, Founder of 10Power
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ESG and the Sustainable Economy Handbook
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K&L Gates Distinguished Speaker Series: A Conversation on the Sustainable Economy with Elizabeth Willmott

Ensuring Energy Security Section in the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022

By Laurie B. Purpuro

On 27 July, Senators Manchin and Schumer announced a deal on the successor to the Build Back Better Act, which is expected to pass in the Senate on Saturday (6 August 2022) and the House the following Friday. This new legislation, called the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022, includes US$370 billion in programs and tax credits to boost renewable energy production in the United States. 

That said, page 644 of the draft includes language that ties federal solar, wind and offshore wind development to federal lease sales for oil and gas. 

The Details

The section of the bill titled “Ensuring Energy Security” prohibits the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) from issuing rights-of-way (ROW) for wind or solar development on federal land unless an onshore oil and gas lease sale has occurred within 120 days before the wind or solar lease issuance. In addition, these wind and solar ROWs would not be allowed unless, in the previous year, BLM completed onshore oil and gas lease sales covering 2,000,000 acres or 50% of the acreage in which interested parties have expressed interest, whichever is lower. (Note: Wind and solar projects that impact federal land are authorized by ROWs.)

Offshore wind (OSW) is similarly impacted by this provision, as it prohibits the Bureau of Ocean Energy Management (BOEM) from issuing an OSW lease unless an oil and gas offshore lease sale of at least 60 million acres is held during the year before the OSW lease issuance.

The Impact

This section of the agreement is intended to force the Biden Administration to restart the regularly scheduled oil and gas lease sales that it has been cancelling since 2021, while at the same time allowing the Biden Administration to conduct fewer annual oil and gas lease sales than currently required.   

The Mineral Leasing Act requires four onshore oil and gas leases per year; the language in this bill requires three onshore oil and gas leases per year, as a prerequisite to solar and wind development on federal land. BOEM offshore oil and gas five-year leasing programs require two offshore oil and gas lease sales in most years; this bill requires one sale per year, in order to allow solar and wind development on federal land. 

Furthermore, the acreage requirements for oil and gas sales outlined in the bill are in line with previous sales. And for the onshore oil and gas lease sales, just in case BLM falls shore of the 2,000,000 acre requirement, they can sell leases for 50% of the acreage that parties are interested in.

The Compromise

This Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 is a compromise forged by Senate Democrats with the slimmest of majorities. The Ensuring Energy Security section is Energy and Natural Resources Committee Chair Joe Manchin’s way of requiring an all of the above energy policy for the country.

Sustainable Outlook: The Push to Modernize the Grid From Smart Buildings With Courtney Blodgett, Director of Strategy at Edo

By: Molly K. Barker

On this week’s episode of Sustainable Outlook, Molly Barker of K&L Gates interviews Courtney Blodgett of Edo, which is a startup energy venture that works to enable building-to-grid integration and reduce building costs for clients by utilizing clean energy and innovative design solutions. At the intersection of environmental, social, and economic sustainability, Edo’s mission is to transform grid operations and optimize energy consumption for its clients while also addressing climate, affordability, and equity challenges.

Learn more about our participation in the sustainable economy.

Please Join Us: ESG Insights | SEC Proposed Climate-Related Disclosures

28 March 2022
2:00 – 3:00pm ET
via Webex

ESG perspectives are constantly evolving, and the SEC is releasing several significant ESG-related rules this year.  Companies will have questions about the implications of these rules and what will happen next.  K&L Gates wants to be a resource to its clients and contacts as these rules are released, and public companies consider how to prepare.

On March 21, 2022, the SEC released its proposed rules on climate-related disclosures. We will be hosting a webinar to address initial questions on the rule proposal.  Some of the topics that we will address include: 

  • What disclosures are required by the proposed rules, including board and management oversight and governance of climate-related risks?
  • Is an attestation report required for climate-related disclosures, including Scope 1, 2 and 3 GHG emissions information?  If so, for what information and who can provide an attestation report?
  • Is there a phase-in period in the proposed rules?  If so, when would companies be required to begin providing these climate-related disclosures?
  • What will happen next and what can companies do to prepare?

Panelists:

Please RSVP by March 27. 

SUSTAINABLE OUTLOOK: DEVELOPING SOLAR AND STORAGE TECHNOLOGIES WITH HOLLY CHRISTIE OF HECATE ENERGY

By: Elizabeth C. Crouse

On this episode of Sustainable Outlook, host Elizabeth Crouse speaks with Holly Christie, the General Counsel of Hecate Energy. Hecate Energy is a leading renewable energy power plant developer, and Holly oversees the legal aspects of all projects. She speaks on creative partnerships in developing communities, emerging trends in solar technology, and human rights and environmental justice issues within the renewable energy industry. 

Sustainable Outlook: Environmental and Social Responsibility with Acorn International: Part II

By: Elizabeth C. Crouse

In this part two of this series with Acorn International, host Elizabeth Crouse continues her discussion with Grace Russell, a biologist and environmental consultant with a focus on marine policy for Acorn International. They discuss why environmental justice is a concern for the energy industry on the U.S.’s Gulf Coast, and the role that Acorn International plays in managing social and environmental impact for their clients.

Sustainable Outlook: Environmental and Social Responsibility with Acorn International: Part I

By: Elizabeth C. Crouse

In this two-part series of Sustainable Outlook, host Elizabeth Crouse talks environmental and social responsibility with Acorn International, a full-service consulting company to global businesses. For the first episode, Clarita Montant, a social consultant with Acorn International, discusses human rights in the energy industry and how the supply chain shortage in the times of COVID-19 impacts workers. 

Sustainable Outlook: Transparency, Unity, and Community with Elizabeth Jones, Founder of The Equality Equation

By: Elizabeth C. Crouse

On this episode of Sustainable Outlook, Elizabeth Crouse of K&L Gates speaks with Elizabeth Jones on The Equality Equation’s mission to facilitate economic equality by developing impoverished communities into flourishing neighborhoods. Their two-fold process begins by working with non-profits and investors to build new facilities and develop them into viable economic sources, then by empowering the community through workforce development opportunities.

Sustainable Outlook: 100% Renewable Energy, 100% For Humanity With Sandra Kwak, Founder of 10Power

Date: 29 October 2021

By: Elizabeth C. Crouse

On the latest episode of Sustainable Outlook, host Elizabeth Crouse sits down with Sandra Kwak, founder of 10Power, to discuss the social mission behind 10Power’s renewable energy projects in developing nations and the importance of reinvesting their revenue to empower local communities through education and technology.

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.

K&L Gates Distinguished Speaker Series: A Conversation on the Sustainable Economy with Elizabeth Willmott

Wednesday
19 May 2021
12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m. ET

Please join us for the next conversation in our sustainability-focused Distinguished Speaker Series, where we sit down with leaders in the field of sustainable economy to discuss industry trends and opportunities.

Our featured speaker for this webinar will be Elizabeth Willmott. Elizabeth leads Microsoft’s carbon program, including fulfillment of the company’s commitment to be carbon negative by 2030. She joined Microsoft in 2016 after a decade of work on urban sustainability in the public and nonprofit sectors. She holds a double degree in biology and Chinese language from Williams College and a master’s degree in public policy from Harvard Kennedy School.

The program will be moderated by Elizabeth Crouse, a Partner and Practice Group Coordinator for the Power Group at K&L Gates. 

Please use the link below to RSVP by Tuesday, May 18, 2021.

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