The best way to tap into renewable project funding.
Glenn J. Berger is a partner, Frank C. Shaw a counsel, and J. Alexander Cooke an associate, at the law firm of Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP.
Renewable generation resources have become the rallying cry for policymakers and developers alike as the movement grows to generate electricity in a more climate-friendly manner. Pending federal legislation creating a carbon cap-and-trade market and a national renewable portfolio standard (RPS), together with existing state requirements, is spurring utilities that lack renewable generation to acquire some—no matter the federal legislative outcome—and causing utilities with sizeable renewable generation to expand their existing portfolios. The economic downturn also has lowered the cost of certain renewable projects, making them more affordable: Cambridge Energy Research Associates reports that project costs for wind projects have declined by 11 percent in the first six months of 2009.