The biofuels sector is a key part of our renewable energy practice. We are advising on the development, construction, operation and financing of the world’s first ‘plasmagasification’ facility, which is being developed in the UK to convert refuse-derived fuels into power and biojet fuel. We worked on the development of Europe’s largest bioethanol plant and have worked on some of the most high-profile biofuels projects developed in Europe to date as well as projects in Africa, Latin America and Asia.
We have had a leading project finance practice globally for 20 years and we are one of the few law firms in Europe to have acted for lenders on bioethanol projects which have reached financial close (Ensus and ABF).
We have legal advisers who understand the mechanics involved in the sale of bioethanol or biodiesel and are able to draft and/or review offtake arrangements and have a depth of experience in drafting and negotiating off-take agreements in both oil and gas and renewable projects globally, which allows us to offer market savvy and benchmarked advice to our clients.
The construction of a bioethanol project is not as technically challenging as an LNG project or a large gas-fired power project. However, there are issues which are sector-specific and we have experience of dealing with these issues, such as testing and ramp-up periods, the licensing of technology and the interface with the operation and maintenance aspects.
If the by-product is to be used as a feedstock for a captive power station, we have directly relevant experience developing and financing such power stations as well as acting for power stations purchasing such product for their own plants.
We have a strong trade/commodity finance practice and we understand the issues relating to the trading of soft commodities and oil and gas. This is critical when assessing the terms of supply for the feedstock for biofuels projects and the offtake of by-products such as DDGS.
We are closely involved in the development of the regulatory regimes relating to biofuels. We have been working for clients on the “Food vs. Fuel” debate and the development of sustainability criteria in relevant markets.
We have intellectual property specialists who are familiar with the key licensing terms and the issues raised with the key technology producers.
African Renewables Deal of the Year 2011, Addax Bioenergy, Project Finance Magazine
European Biomass Deal of the Year 2011, Helius CoRDe, Project Finance Magazine
Energy & Natural Resources Team of the Year 2011 Legal Business Awards
Best Law Firm in Europe 2010 Renewable Energy Finance Environmental Finance and Carbon Finance magazines Annual Market Survey 2010
Legal Advisor of the Year 2009 Euromoney and Ernst & Young Global Renewable Energy Awards