ESG and sustainability
The energy transition is one of the greatest industrial challenges of the 21st century.
To achieve net-zero emission targets, massive structural changes are needed across the global energy value chain. Success requires considerable technological advancement, unprecedented levels of private and public sector investment, and buy-in from the global population.
The transition presents a plethora of opportunities and challenges for all businesses, including those at the core of the energy sector, suppliers and funders, and energy intensive industries such as automotive, aviation and heating sectors.
Freshfields’ energy transition work ranges from project licensing, development and financing to complex corporate transactions, multi-jurisdictional regulatory processes, strategic logistical and commercial planning and negotiation, and some of the world’s highest-profile energy disputes.
From managing legacy assets and risk, to the development of new projects, technologies and investment strategies, Freshfields offers comprehensive support as clients navigate these critical changes. With experience across sectors, practices and jurisdictions, we provide strategic legal advice to support the world’s leading companies and investors.
Carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS)
Effective implementation of carbon capture, utilisation and storage (CCUS) is critical to achieve net-zero and meet the targets set out in the Paris Agreement and at COP26.
Freshfields supports clients from all sectors on CCUS technology and projects on a global basis. Though carbon capture projects are predominantly in their infancy, we have advised on many ‘first in kind’ projects and understand not just how they operate, but the specific challenges they involve.
From negotiating and delivering carbon offsetting arrangements to developing complex and novel project documentation and structures for bespoke joint ventures and financing, we have a proven track record of engaging with clients on strategic, precedent-setting projects. We understand how to balance the needs of stakeholders throughout the transaction whilst working within the growing regulatory framework.
Fuelled by government incentives and private sector demands, the need for renewable energy continues to grow under the global energy transition.
We work with some of the largest players in the renewable resources field, guiding projects through to completion in the fight for net-zero. Navigating issues from supply chain risks to alternative ways of structuring projects, technology and evolving regulation, we advise across the full spectrum of renewables.
Our multi-disciplinary team has deep seated experience covering offshore/onshore wind, solar, hydrogen, biomass, waste-to-energy, geo-thermal energy, and hydropower projects.
A viable hydrogen economy was recognised at COP26 as a key factor in achieving the global transition to net zero.
As a result, hydrogen production continues to gather momentum, with rapid acceleration of investment, government commitments to accelerated decarbonisation and expected decreasing clean hydrogen costs.
Our global team of multidisciplinary lawyers, comprising regulatory, state aid, M&A and finance, have wide-ranging experience, advising clients on issues encountered from strategy to production and everything in between.
Nuclear power is central to the fight against climate change, with nuclear energy currently providing more than a quarter of the world’s clean power – a number expected to rise as efforts to decarbonise the energy sector continue.
Freshfields is a leader in nuclear law, with a team of internationally recognised experts combining sector knowledge and legal advice. We advise across the full nuclear lifecycle, from legal structure through to operations, company obligations, safety, security and safeguards regimes and the final decommissioning.
We work alongside clients on market leading projects, developing innovative nuclear technology such as fusion and SMRs. Our clients include governments and regulators, investors, financiers, developers, and suppliers.
Advising SSE and Equinor in relation to their proposed Keadby 3 and Peterhead Carbon Capture Utilisation and Storage (CCUS) projects.
Our advice included consultation with the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) in relation to the proposed form of Dispatchable Power Agreement.
Advising SSE on its ‘Just Transition’ climate strategy.
Our advice included various aspects of its offshore wind portfolio, the sale of interests in its transmission networks and in three multi-fuel waste-to-energy plants, and the ongoing development of its UK carbon capture and storage CCGT projects.
Advising one of the world’s leading energy companies on the development of its global contracting framework for hydrogen sales, including for export arrangements from Australia and the Middle East.
Advising EDF Energy on the 2.4GW Sizewell C nuclear power project in England, including negotiating the terms of investment by the UK Government, project development and governance, and the ongoing capital raise under a novel regulated asset base model.
Advising Toray Industries on a JV with LG Chem under which LG Chem will invest $375m in Toray Industries Hungary Kft., a 100 per cent subsidiary of Toray engaged in the manufacture and sales of battery separator film in Hungary.
This was a key strategic deal for Toray, being part of their efforts to pivot in the EV market in response to changing market dynamics.