In the wake of increasing inflation and as a means of codifying several of the Biden administration’s legislative priorities, the Senate passed the $750 billion Inflation Reduction Act on August 7, 2022 (the “Act”), by a 51-50 party-line vote. The Act, which is comprised of sweeping healthcare, energy, and tax measures, was approved by the House of Representatives on August 12, 2022, and signed into law by President Biden on August 16, 2022, creating a significant number of renewable energy sector benefits.
Few propositions are as much of a win-win for both the holders of mortgages and the developers of renewable energy projects as non-disturbance and attornment agreements.
First, let’s review why a non-disturbance agreement is necessary. A lot of work goes into the design and layout of a renewable energy project, including studies and tests conducted to determine the feasibility of the land. Continue Reading Non-Disturbance Agreements: Beneficial to Both Renewables Developers and Banks
The state of Illinois continued its push to achieve 100 percent renewable energy by 2050 when, on July 14, 2022, the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) approved the Illinois Power Agency’s (IPA) 2022 Long-Term Renewable Resources Procurement Plan (LTRRPP) and finalized rules and programs established under the Climate and Equitable Job Act (CEJA), which passed in September 2021. The LTRRPP is a guidebook for CEJA’s implementation, and its approval authorizes over $1.1 billion to procure new renewable generation in Illinois over the next two years by helping to fund renewable energy projects across Illinois.
The Agricultural Foreign Investment Disclosure Act of 1978 (AFIDA) requires that foreign investors who acquire, transfer, or hold an interest in U.S. agricultural land report such holdings and transactions to the Secretary of Agriculture on Form FSA-153. The underlying purpose of AFIDA was to create a nationwide system for collecting information pertaining to the foreign ownership of U.S. agricultural land. The information collected from these disclosures is used in preparing periodic reports to the President and Congress concerning the effect of such holdings upon family farms and rural communities.
On June 6, 2022, United States Senators Cynthia Lummis (R-WY) and Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) released the first major bipartisan bill intended to regulate digital assets. Interestingly, the bill calls for additional information around the energy use of digital assets. If passed, the bill would require the preparation and submission by the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), in consultation with the Commodities Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), of an annual report to be submitted to the Committee on Energy and Natural Resources, the Committee on Environment and Public Works of the Senate and the Committee on Energy and Commerce, and the Committee on Natural Resources of the House of Representatives on the following five aspects of digital asset energy use: Continue Reading Proposed Legislation Aims to Regulate Digital Assets’ Energy Use
Direct pay proposals contained in the proposed Build Back Better Act promise to establish a system that would allow renewable energy developers to elect to receive ITC and PTC tax credits as a refundable credit. This would allow developers, who, under the current system, usually cannot efficiently utilize the non-refundable ITC and PTC credits due to not having sufficient tax liability to offset all of the otherwise available credits. This blog has covered the direct pay proposal in greater detail here.
On June 8, 2022, the Public Utility Commission of Texas (“Commission”) filed a memo from its Infrastructure Division requesting that electric utilities, power generation companies, municipally owned utilities, and electric cooperatives (“Entities”) operating outside of the Electric Reliability Council of Texas (“ERCOT”) provide to Commission Staff unredacted copies of their Emergency Operations Plans (“EOP”). Entities that operate both outside of the ERCOT power region and in the ERCOT power region, and entities that operate solely in the ERCOT power region and have already provided an unredacted EOP to ERCOT (as required by the Emergency Operations Plan rule (16 TAC §25.53), are not required to provide the Staff an unredacted EOP. Continue Reading Public Utility Commission Requests Unredacted Emergency Operations Plans From All Applicable Entities by June 24, 2022
It has been almost a year since Texas’ Lone Star Infrastructure Protection Act (“LIPA”) was signed into law by Governor Abbott on June 18, 2021, and took effect. In the past year, we have seen developers, tax investors, and purchasers of renewable energy projects alike address compliance with LIPA in varied ways. Continue Reading A Year Out: Renewable Energy Developer and Investor Compliance with the Texas Lone Star Infrastructure Protection Act
In order to keep pace with the federal government’s ambitious goal of permitting the production of at least twenty-five (25) gigawatts of renewable energy through projects placed on public land by 2025, the Department of the Interior (the “DOI”) recently announced several policy changes to ensure developing renewable projects on public land is attractive and affordable for third-party developers and investors.
On June 6, 2022, President Biden declared a national emergency (the “Declaration”) in relation to energy resources and temporarily extended the time of duty-free importation of solar panels and parts from Malaysia, Cambodia, Thailand, and Vietnam. This declaration comes in response to industry concerns over the implications, for ongoing solar energy projects, of the anti-circumvention inquiry by the U.S. Department of Commerce that was initiated on April 1, 2022. The Declaration permits the Secretary of Commerce to waive the collection of duties and other estimated duties on imported solar cells and modules from Thailand, Vietnam, Malaysia, and Cambodia for the next twenty-four months, regardless of the outcome of the anti-circumvention inquiry.