Practice Areas :
Energy and Natural Resources
Energy Efficiency and Smart Grid
Federal and market incentives to improve energy efficiency and conservation, as well as regulatory and technological developments to create a smarter grid, are revolutionizing the way electricity is produced, transmitted and consumed. Patton Boggs’ Energy Efficiency and Smart Grid team helps clients understand and capitalize on business opportunities created by the energy efficiency and smart grid policies of the federal government and states.
Our strength comes from years of counseling clients in telecommunications, energy, intellectual property, environmental law, business and finance, tax, public policy, and homeland security matters. Our expertise in each of these substantive areas of law provides the foundation for our provision of a full-range of services to clients who build and operate components of the smart grid, such as smart meters, renewable and distributed energy systems, and applications to “run” the smart grid.
Our team includes a former Commissioner of the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) and a former Chair of the Federal Communications Commission (FCC), two key federal agencies spearheading the development of smart grid policies, as well as attorneys with Congressional and executive branch agency experience. Our partner, Suedeen Kelly, is currently serving a three-year term on the Smart Grid Advisory Committee of the National Institute of Standards and Technology. We regularly advise clients on matters pending before Congress and federal agencies, including FERC; the FCC; the Departments of Energy, Homeland Security, and Commerce; the Environmental Protection Agency; and the Federal Trade Commission, as well as before state public utility commissions and legislatures.
Our lawyers represent domestic and international clients who are key participants in the development and deployment of the smart grid, from generation and transmission companies and electric distribution systems, to telecommunications network and technology companies, to clean tech investment funds and municipalities.
Our team also advises corporations and public entities on the impact of energy efficiency policies on their specific business strategies and projects, as well as on the marketplace in general. As additional federal and state energy efficiency incentives have become available in recent years, we have assisted localities in taking advantage of Energy Efficiency Community Block Grant funds for energy efficiency projects, assisted municipalities with broadband deployment for use in smart grid communication applications, and helped major manufacturers pursue Energy Star and other recognition for their products.
In addition, our team has worked on behalf of clients to advance energy and tax legislation providing tax incentives to homeowners, developers, and rural electric cooperatives for the purchase and installation of energy-efficient appliances, windows and other fixtures. We have also assisted clients in their pursuit of Advanced Energy Manufacturing Tax Credits under the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act for the construction of new, expanded, or re-equipped manufacturing facilities.
- Advised a manufacturer of renewable energy equipment on federal statutes and regulations governing smart grid protocols and energy policy and assisted in development of solar markets for client’s international subsidiary.
- Advised a federal contractor regarding grant opportunities through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act for smart grid grants.
- Advised a techcomm company and wind generation project developer on the interrelationship between smart grid and wind generation, including benefits derived from use of smart grid technologies for a wind project.
- Advised an electric utility and other techcomm clients on the FERC’s policies regarding smart grid operational and business standards, as well as the recovery of smart grid project costs in electric utility rates.
- Drafted a “Red Flags” policy and procedures for an electric utility in compliance with FTC anti-identity theft rules.
- Advised a manufacturer of battery storage about the regulatory characteristics of alternative market channels and the regulatory requirements associated with cost recovery if characterized as an electric generator, demand response provider, or transmission asset.
- Counseled a major multinational water heater manufacturer in the pursuit of legislation to reauthorize tax incentives for the purchase of energy-efficient products.
- Advised clients on FERC’s proposal to develop rules for market-based demand response compensation in the wholesale power markets.
- Advised electric cooperatives on FERC policies impacting their ability to manage a portfolio of load-side resources, including both distributed generation and demand response mechanisms.