Climate-Related Business & Technology

Climate change – and the measures required to address it – raise fundamental business, legal and risk management issues. Working in this evolving arena calls for a keen understanding of the complex interaction between energy and environmental regulation, tax and intellectual property, and a firm grasp of trends in the venture capital, private equity, and capital markets.

ZAG-S&W brings together practitioners with expertise in each of these fields, thus enabling the firm to provide a comprehensive and solution-oriented representation that facilitates opportunities for clients to participate in climate-related programs, businesses, and markets.

Our lawyers have helped clients in matters such as the potential effect of future climate-change legislation, approval of the first carbon-offset credits under California’s AB-32 program, and assistance with energy-technology projects, including the development and transfer of new clean-energy generation facilities.

We routinely help contractors and manufacturers to fulfill Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) green building standards. LEED certification is a globally recognized symbol of sustainability achievement.

Furthermore, our commitment to city-wide and nation-wide sustainability is showcased by a number of instructions, such as the establishment of the “Energy Smart New Orleans” efficiency program, working closely with the Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory, to advise the City of New Orleans. We have also provided counsel regarding a program to significantly reduce energy and water use and carbon emissions in Cambridge, Massachusetts.

  • Advised a California forest trust in negotiating one of the country’s first contracts for the sale of carbon credits from a forest trust
  • Represented a new casino in the development of thermal and retail power supply agreements, including provisions to address potential effect of future climate-change legislation and to require that contractors fulfill LEED green building standards
  • Gained inclusion in LEED for homes credits for a manufacturer of energy-efficient faucets and shower heads
  • Gained inclusion in LEED for existing buildings credits in the operations and maintenance category for a manufacturer of battery-powered, non-greenhouse gas- or particulate-emitting outdoor power equipment
  • Advised the City of New Orleans in establishing its energy efficiency program (“Energy Smart New Orleans”) by helping to evaluate the feasibility of options including renewable credits, distributed generation from local solar and other renewable energy sources, green-building initiatives, consumer education and incentives, and the full range of available funding mechanisms, while working closely with the Department of Energy’s National Renewable Energy Laboratory
  • Advised regarding the structuring of a financing by Cambridge Energy Alliance (CEA), a city-sponsored non-profit organization in the creation of a program to significantly reduce energy and water use and carbon emissions in Cambridge, Massachusetts
  • Advised a manufacturer of new energy-efficiency and conservation products regarding opportunities to enhance product marketing through existing incentive and consumer-education programs, and regarding legislative and regulatory opportunities to gain marketplace advantages
  • Advised a project sponsor on the aggregation and sale of carbon credits to help fund water treatment initiatives in Kenya

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