Few industries are as exposed to geopolitical and global headwinds as the energy sector. As governments and businesses alike grapple with energy security and supply chain shocks, whilst navigating the energy transition, the market can be fraught with instability. The resulting regulatory landscape is one of shifts and changes and sector professionals must anticipate and adapt to fluid market forces.
Yet the energy sector is an exciting place to operate in. Opportunities abound as established and new businesses step up to solve the challenges posed by energy storage, aging infrastructure, energy efficiency, to harness the power of renewable sources and to develop the technology solutions to enable, revolutionise and protect critical infrastructure.
At Acuity, our mission goes beyond providing expert legal advice – we bring our deep industry insight to every energy project and work with businesses to achieve their strategic goals.
Not only are our sector-focussed experts highly attuned to evolving regulatory frameworks, tax breaks and financial incentives but we understand the commercial drivers and risks inherent in the sector. We have the specialist skills and in-depth market knowledge to deliver commercially savvy and innovative legal solutions and have built many long-term relationships with leading names in the industry as a result.
The gamut of our expertise encompasses biomass, tidal, wind, solar, anaerobic digestion and battery storage. Our multidisciplinary energy team is adept at advising on all aspects of procurement, planning, property, project finance, construction, regulation, risk, M&A and dispute resolution.
We aim to be more than just your energy lawyers. We want to become your strategic business partners.
Our expertise includes:
- Site assembly and build out
- Land acquisition and disposal
- Planning support
- Project finance and funding structures
- Mergers and acquisitions
- Litigation & dispute resolution
- Health & Safety and regulatory compliance
- Contract and partnerships agreements
Notable work recently undertaken:
- Acting for Quinbrook Infrastructure in connection with the acquisition of the exclusive development rights for one of the UK’s largest battery storage projects from Simec Atlantis Energy Limited (“Project Uskmouth”) and a subsequent investment round, totalling £160 million. The planned 230MW/460MWh Battery Energy Storage System (BESS), will be located at the site of the former Uskmouth coal-fired power station in South Wales and represents a major anchoring project in the planned re-development and regeneration of the site into a Sustainable Energy Park that will support innovative future industry
- Acting in connection with the development and sale of a 15-turbine, 34.5-megawatt wind farm project to Irish state-owned utility group ESB. We provided support throughout the development phase of the project and assisted in securing all necessary easements, consents and rights for the project prior to disposal
- Advising long-standing client Eco2 and its JV partner Temporis Capital, on the sale of the Port Clarence Energy project to Glennmont Partners. We provided support throughout the development phase of the project and assisted in securing all necessary easements, consents, rights and contracts for the project prior to its disposal. Such contracts included the grid connection, power purchase agreement, EPC and O&M, fuel contracts, ash offtake agreement and the management services agreement for the project
- Advising on the sale of a straw-powered biomass plant in Sleaford, Lincolnshire to specialist investment fund BNP Paribas Clean Energy Fund in a landmark £170 million deal. We advised on the development of the project and the financing of the project through a combination of equity and debt from a consortium of lenders led by the Royal Bank of Scotland
- Advising Sussex County Council on a range of renewables projects including the development of a solar farm project by Carillion at Tangmere airfield
- Providing a full legal service to Dulas, and advising on all aspects of its commercial operations, including matters ranging from advising on the terms relating to the sale of solar fridges to the developing world to advising on the supply and construction of large-scale wind, solar, hydro and biomass schemes
- Acting for Sesti Energy, which is developing a behind-the-meter hybrid project for solar coupled with battery storage, helping it negotiate option agreements, land leases and power purchase arrangements
- Advising Kinetica Energy Limited on the development of its portfolio of wind projects. As part of this, we advised on all matters relating to the development of the projects, including negotiating and agreeing the terms of its land leases, grid connections turbine supply agreements, operational and maintenance agreements and power purchase agreements
- Advising Hartham Park Community Energy in relation to the installation of a PV energy array on its estate. We provided comprehensive advice on the corporate, property and project documents in connection to this innovative project (including advising on and agreeing the terms of the power purchase agreement relating to the energy generated at the site)
- Advising Tidal Energy on procurement and state aid issues concerning its innovative pilot tidal energy project
- Advising longstanding clients Coastal Oil & Gas Limited and UK Methan Limited in connection with the purchase of Gas Exploration Finance Limited. The deal saw Gas Exploration Limited purchased from its existing owners in consideration for the issues of shares in AIM-listed Global Brands and various funding and commercial arrangements put in place
- Advising West Sussex County Council on its procurement and award of a contract for the treatment of waste arising in the County. We continue to provide ongoing support concerning the contract following award
- Acting for Danish investment vehicles in the acquisition of five solar sites in the UK, ultimately pursuing claims against the EPC and Offshore parent company Guarantor for delays and failures in completion of construction. With our partner-led disputes team, we worked with our clients to secure a substantial award in excess of £2 million arising out of fundamental issues affecting all operators and contractors such as delay damages, missed commercial operation dates and tariffs
- Acting for Spanish and Danish solar developers on their acquisition and development of circa 250MW of solar in the UK, for Float Capital Limited on its funding of Elgin Energy on various solar PV sites in Scotland, Ireland and the UK; for EPC providers on their contractual relationship with developers and for ICP providers on their contractual needs
- We are the retained legal advisor for Eco2 Management Services. Eco2 Management Services provides management services to renewable energy facilities throughout the UK and Ireland. Acuity regularly advises on matters relating to the management services agreements entered into by Eco2, and assists Eco2 with ad hoc queries and arrangements relating to the management of the facilities
- Working in conjunction with local lawyers, we acted for a group of solar developers in connection with the financing and development of two 12-megawatt solar farm projects in Ukraine, each qualifying for Ukraine’s Green Tariff (FIT) programme. We advised on the development of the projects and the non-recourse debt facilities put in place to fund the development of the projects. The projects are the first to be developed from our client’s pipeline of 100MWp solar projects in Ukraine
- Advising developers in the disposal of a 50 MW waste-to-energy project in the North East of England which utilises, in part, non-hazardous clinical waste as fuel
- Acted for Dulas Limited in its acquisition of 100% of Polestar Cooling, a specialist in manufacturing solar laboratorial and medical fridges. In 2016, Dulas bought a 50% stake in Polestar to strengthen the relationship between the two companies and improve its portfolio of products. We supported Dulas in its initial investment in Polestar in 2016 and its subsequent acquisition of the remaining 50% of the share capital of Polestar
- The Times’ Best Law FIrms 2020 – Acuity Law.
“Corporate Partner Christian Farrow excels at handling corporate deals in the renewables sector.”
“Notably skilled in the renewable energy sector.”
“We were once again delighted by the service that we received from the energy team at Acuity and the quality of the advice over the full course of the project. To succeed with a project such as Margam you need long-standing and trusted legal advisers who can deal with a vast range of issues and Acuity ticked all of the boxes. The team went over and above to deliver a great outcome.”
“The Energy team at Acuity consistently provide sound commercial legal advice. They understand our sector and business and assist us by working alongside us rather than just responding to the things we put before them. We are always impressed with their pro-active approach and ability to focus on the key issues.”