Latest project finance insights

Sector Reset all
  • Power
  • Renewable energy
  • Oil and gas
  • Infrastructure
  • Solar
  • Wind
Type
  • Publication
  • Blog article
  • Podcast episode
Ep76: FERC's Proposed Changes to PURPA
Read more

Bob Shapiro, partner in Norton Rose Fulbright’s Washington office, discusses FERC’s proposed changes to PURPA. We go over what PURPA is and why it was created, its relevance today, the most significant chang

Ep75: The Business of Hydro with Hydro-Québec
Read more

Serge Abergel, director of media relations at Hydro-Québec, joins us to discuss how being state-owned affects the company's business decisions...

Prepaid power contracts
Read more

Prepaid power contracts may have gotten a new lease on life in proposed regulations the IRS issued in September.

Other data points
Read more

A study in September said that 90% of the 68,000 megawatts of new gas-fired power plants currently proposed in the US will be uneconomic compared to new solar and wind projects equipped with storage by 2035.

Wind data
Read more

The national average price of wind power purchase agreements has dropped below 2¢ a kilowatt hour.

Related-party loans
Read more

Prepayment options in loans from affiliates could cause tax problems if not exercised once it becomes economically beneficial to do so.

Texas franchise taxes
Read more

Texas does not let companies providing services — as opposed to selling goods — deduct costs when calculating income subject to state franchise taxes.

Refined coal
Read more

A refined coal transaction landed in court. The taxpayers won.

Production tax credits and "sales"
Read more

No sale occurs if the seller must pay the buyer to take a product, a US appeals court said.

Inherited sales tax liability
Read more

Unpaid sales taxes that should have been paid in the past on equipment sales follow the equipment and can become an obligation of a later owner.

Timing of income from purchase money note
Read more

A solar equipment manufacturer lost an attempt in court to spread its taxable income from equipment sales over time.

PURPA projects become more difficult to finance
Read more

Independent cogeneration and small renewable energy projects known as “qualifying facilities” may lose key protections from merchant risks that they have relied on...

California moves forward
Read more

The amended plan of reorganization that PG&E Corporation and its subsidiary utility, the Pacific Gas and Electric Company, filed with the bankruptcy court in late September...

Scrutiny for inbound US investments
Read more

Acquisitions of non-controlling interests in certain power projects by foreign investors are now subject to review by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States or CFIUS.

Bankability of Colombian projects
Read more

Colombia is in the process of awarding 1,500 megawatts of new power purchase agreements to buy renewable power.

Community solar: Current issues
Read more

A panel of community solar developers talked about new trends in community solar projects.

Energy storage in ERCOT
Read more

Who ought to own standalone energy storage in ERCOT? The implications for generators, transmission and distribution utilities, developers and ratepayers are big.

ERCOT price spikes
Read more

The price to buy wholesale power in ERCOT — the grid that serves Texas — spiked to $9,000 a megawatt hour at certain intervals over the course of a few days in August 2019.

Depreciation bonus questions answered
Read more

New depreciation bonus regulations that the IRS issued in September answer a number of questions that have been coming up in M&A and tax equity transactions.

Greening the fertilizer sector
Read more

Fertilizer companies may become an important new market for renewable energy developers.

Environmental update
Read more

As the November 2020 election nears the start of its one-year countdown, a number of significant environmental regulatory reversals being pushed by the Trump administration look likely to depend on the outcome.

Financing distributed batteries and electric vehicle charging stations
Read more

A developer and two investors talked about opportunities and challenges with financing distributed batteries and electric vehicle charging stations at Infocast Storage Week Plus in San Francisco in late July.

Ep74: RadiantREIT: Solar Market Disruptor
Read more

Jim Spano, co-founder of RadiantREIT, joins us to discuss the evolution of the solar market and the idea behind his new company. RadiantREIT has an interesting business model for providing long term...

Ep73: Superpower: One Man's Quest to Transform American Energy
Read more

Russell Gold, senior energy reporter for The Wall Street Journal, and Michael Skelly, a senior advisor at Lazard and founder of Clean Line Energy Partners, join us for a discussion about Gold’s new book on the

Are you using the right version of the IRS’s Solar Start of Construction Notice?
Read more

IRS Notice 2018-59 was generally welcomed news to the solar industry as it provided the industry specific guidance as to how to start construction to ensure that a project would qualify for ...

Ep72: The ITC Extension Bill and What it Means for the Industry
Read more

Jessie Robbins, senior director of structured finance at Sol Systems, joins us to talk about the ITC extension bill. We talk about whether developers still need to worry about safe harboring, how the ITC step

Ep71: BloombergNEF's New Energy Outlook
Read more

Ethan Zindler, head of Americas at BloombergNEF, joins us to discuss their New Energy Outlook. We get into how the outlook differs from others in the market, some of the biggest and most surprising findings...

Ep70: Solar Refinancing and M&A
Read more

Richard Matsui, founder and CEO of kWh Analytics, is back to give us an update on their Solar Lendscape from the asset owners’ perspective.

Investing in US Solar: US Tax Aspects for Japanese Investors
Read more

David Burton gave a presentation at the Japan Institute for Overseas Investment on US tax fundamentals for Japanese investors investing in US solar projects.

ITC extension?
Read more

An investment tax credit extension is back before Congress.

Extending the four-year window
Read more

The four-year window to finish some renewable energy projects to qualify for federal tax credits will be extended in one situation, the IRS said.

Reportable transactions
Read more

Some transactions must be reported to the IRS as potential corporate tax shelters.

Section 195 deductions
Read more

Start-up companies can be actively engaged in business even though there are no sales.

Inverted leases
Read more

Base case models in tax equity deals can take a person quickly into the weeds, but the details are important.

Data points
Read more

Moody’s said in early July that it expects coal to account for as little as 11% of US power generation by 2030.

California on edge
Read more

What does the PG&E bankruptcy suggest for the utility business model? Some banks have stepped back from financing new projects in California for fear that future wildfires may threaten other utilities.

Raising capital in a market in transition
Read more

Capital is usually harder to raise during periods of uncertainty about government policy. Lenders and investors adjust to changes in the market itself.

Storage versus gas
Read more

Developers are pushing ahead with more gas-fired power projects, and lenders stand ready to finance them, but equity may be in short supply.

Developers on financing issues
Read more

A group of top finance officers at wind and solar developers talked about current issues crossing their desks at the 30th annual global energy and finance conference in California in June.

C-PACE poised to grow in New York
Read more

Commercial PACE lending to make energy efficiency improvements and install renewable energy systems in office buildings and other commercial properties is expected to increase in New York...

Environmental update
Read more

The US Department of Agriculture has taken a significant step toward finalizing its revisions to Obama-era policies for conserving the greater sage grouse and its habitat in five Western states.

Buying a wind farm
Read more

Anyone buying a wind farm should be aware of a number of issues that can affect the value or even viability of the project.

“Protected” versus “registered” series LLCs
Read more

Under the Delaware limited liability company statute, an LLC can create different combinations or series of members, managers, interests or assets by p...

Unpredictable tariffs
Read more

Tariffs remain a significant hazard for developers who must commit to supply electricity at fixed prices only to have the US slap an import tariff on key equipment before the project can be built.

FOIA: Keeping information confidential
Read more

A US Supreme Court decision in late June will make it easier for federal agencies to withhold confidential information received from private companies from public disclosure when responding to Freedom of Inf...

Cryptocurrency crackdown
Read more

Cryptocurrencies are in the IRS crosshairs.

Developer fees
Read more

Developer fees are in less favor after a decision by the US claims court in June to bar a wind developer from adding developer fees to the tax basis it used to calculate Treasury cash grants on two wind farms.

PJM capacity, grid reliability and PURPA
Read more

Several major issues that affect large segments of the power industry remain on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission agenda as it heads into the fall.

Capital gains indexing and tax equity
Read more

Capital gains indexing could affect tax equity deals.

Floating solar projects
Read more

Floating solar projects may not command the same market share ultimately as offshore wind, but they are starting to get traction.

Financing in an era of shorter PPAs
Read more

What is the future for project finance when corporate PPAs and hedges make up a growing share of the market, and corporations are losing interest in committing to contracts even with 10-year terms? Banks fin...

Deteriorating service
Read more

Taxpayers got through to the Internal Revenue Service, when calling during the last filing season about compliance issues, only 33% of the time after an average wait of 41 minutes, according to Nina Olson, the

The LIBOR transition
Read more

The LIBOR transition is getting high-level attention in Washington.

The shift to electric vehicles
Read more

The transportation sector is headed toward mass electrification. It accounts currently for 29% of energy usage in the United States.

Ep69: The Re-entrance of US ExIm Bank
Read more

John Schuster, founder and president of JLS Capital Strategies, LLC and former vice president and head of the structured finance division of US ExIm Bank, joins us to discuss US ExIm Bank’s re-entrance.

Ep68: The Current State of the California Market
Read more

Jan Smutny-Jones, CEO of the Independent Energy Producers Association, joins us to discuss the California market. We discuss the current appetite for new investment in the state...

Two Favorable IRS Notices: “Start of Construction” Relief for Department of Defense Delays and PTCs Increased from $24/MWh to $25/MWh
Read more

The IRS has issued two notices that are beneficial to the wind industry.  The first, which applies to all wind projects (including those in their first ten years of operations) increases the OTC

Ep67: The M&A Landscape for Renewables
Read more

Ted Brandt, CEO and founder of Marathon Capital, joins us again to discuss his overall perspective on how active the M&A market is for renewables right now and what he sees in the next six months.

Ep66: Tax Market Update
Read more

David Burton, partner in our New York office, joins us for an update on recent headlines in the tax market. We discuss the recent opinions of the US Court of Federal Claims, repowerings and more.

Ep65: The Solar Market: Today and Tomorrow
Read more

Tom Buttgenbach, CEO and president of 8minute Solar Energy, one of the most successful developers of utility-scale solar projects in the United States, joins us to discuss what he sees in store for the market

Claims Court finds related-party developer fee lacks economic substance
Read more

The renewable energy industry has been waiting since January for the opinions of the US Court of Federal Claims in Bishop Hill Energy, LLC and California Ridge Wind Energy, LLC.

Cost of capital: 2019 Outlook
Read more

Around 2,000 people patched into a call in January for a discussion about the outlook for tax equity, bank debt, term loan B debt and project bonds in the US project finance market.

Offshore wind and state laws
Read more

Offshore wind projects more than 12 miles offshore are less likely to be subject to state laws after a US Supreme Court decision in mid-June.

Electricity data points
Read more

Strong growth in natural gas production in the US will keep downward pressure on natural prices in 2019 and 2020.

Development banks: Immunity from lawsuits
Read more

A US Supreme Court decision has left room for debate about when development banks can be sued in US courts.

Physical fixed-volume hedges
Read more

Norton Rose Fulbright holds internal training sessions for lawyers in its projects group. The following is from a session in mid-June about physical fixed-volume hedges.

US solar financing update
Read more

Senior executives of four solar companies talked at the annual Solar Energy Industries Association finance workshop in New York this spring about the state of the market.

Opportunity zones and renewable energy
Read more

Opportunity zones have been something of a disappointment so far to renewable energy developers. Developers have been looking at them as a possible way to raise equity for their projects.

Energy storage: Warranties, insurance and O&M issues
Read more

Standard warranties for lithium-ion batteries covering both performance and defects are two years, but extended warranties can be purchased.

Covariance risk: What it is and how to manage it
Read more

Project sponsors, banks and tax equity investors in transactions with hedges may be overlooking some risks that wind projects are bearing. Each risk should be borne by the party best able to manage it.

Nuclear abandonment loss allowed
Read more

An abandonment loss can be claimed on a cancelled nuclear power plant, even though the utility plans to pursue recovery of its costs through a rate increase.

Foreign subsidiary loan guarantees
Read more

Pledging a foreign subsidiary's assets to guarantee repayment of a loan to the parent company triggered income taxes.

Refined coal credits draw fire
Read more

Refined coal tax credits drew fire from three US Senators in early June.

Solar projects and "public utility property"
Read more

Solar projects owned by regulated utilities are not “public utility property” if the electricity is sold at market rates, the IRS confirmed.

PTCs: 2019 inflation adjustment
Read more

Production tax credits for some renewable energy projects will be slightly higher in 2019.

Tax extenders start moving
Read more

Tax extenders are starting to move through Congress.

Beneath the surface: The emerging US consensus on climate change
Read more

A conservative Republican former congressman, an associate editor of the conservative National Review, a former policy analyst for the National Association of Manufacturers ...

How to plan ahead for back-leverage
Read more

Cash is king as developers race to start construction on US projects before wind and solar tax subsidies disappear.

Environmental update
Read more

US economic growth is causing carbon dioxide emissions from sources like factories, planes and trucks to surge.

How storage will grow
Read more

Energy storage is a solution to a range of problems. Different “use cases” are getting traction. Storage has not yet reached a tipping point in the United States, but adoption is accelerating.

New Financial Products for Project Financiers
Read more

Here’s a link to a short presentation that Rob Eberhardt and David Burton prepared on six new financial products for project financiers.

Soundbites from Novogradac’s Renewable Energy Conference
Read more

Soundbites from Novogradac’s 2019 Financing Renewable Energy Tax Credits Spring Conference in San Francisco on May 23. The soundbites are from remarks made by panelists.

Ep64: Thermal Power Hedging
Read more

Noam Berk of Dean Street Capital Advisors joins us to discuss interesting developments in thermal power hedging as well as key hedge products. We get into the details of tolls, HRCOs, RPOs, spark spread swaps,

Ep63: The Business of Repowering
Read more

Ali Ghorashi, head of section, wind independent engineering at DNV GL, joins us to unpack the business of repowering, which has become relevant in the past few years.

Soundbites from Infocast's Solar Power & Finance Summit
Read more

Infocast’s Solar Power Finance & Investment Summit was held in San Diego on March 20 and 21.  Below are sound bites from the speakers and panelists. The sound bites are organized by topic...

Ep62: North American Development Bank
Read more

Alex Hinojosa, Calixto Mateos, Carlos Carranza, and Salvador Lopez of the North American Development Bank join us to talk about why the bank was formed, the types of projects it finances and more.

Ep61: Solar Risk Assessment Report
Read more

Richard Matsui, CEO and co-founder of kWh Analytics, and Dana Olson, solar segment leader at DNV GL, join us to discuss the recently published "Solar Risk Assessment" report.

Ep60: DOE's Solar Energy Technologies Office
Read more

Dr. Becca Jones-Albertus, deputy director of the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Energy Technologies Office, joins us to talk about what the office does and the programs it has funded in the past.

Hot topics in renewable energy tax, engineering and finance: Webinar Q&A
Read more

David Burton shares the answers to the questions submitted during our Hot topics in renewable energy tax, engineering and finance webinar on April 23.

Hot Topics in Renewable Energy Tax, Engineering, and Finance
Read more
Ep59: Quasi-merchant Gas Deals
Read more

Ralph Cho and Mike Pantelogianis, Power & Infrastructure Finance Co-heads for Investec in North America, join us to discuss quasi-merchant gas deals.

Greentech Media’s Renewables Financing Briefing Soundbites
Read more

Greentech Media (“GTM”) held its renewables financing briefing on March 14, 2019 in New York City. The briefing consisted of presentations from three Wood MacKenzie consultants and a discussion with...

Ep58: Energy Storage PPAs
Read more

Kat Gamache, senior counsel at Norton Rose Fulbright, joins us to discuss all things energy PPAs. We go into the biggest differences between traditional renewable PPAs and PPAs with storage...

Electric Vehicle Charging: Recent Developments in the United States
Read more

State-led renewable energy mandates and calls to reduce greenhouse gas emissions are bringing increased attention to electrifying the transportation sector. State governments are actively exploring policy...

Ep57: BayWa's Innovative PPA Approach and Market Overview
Read more

Jared Quient, Executive Vice President and General Counsel at BayWa r.e., joins us to discuss the innovative PPA structure the company recently used to finance its 100 MW solar deal in North Carolina.

Legal Update | Pemex to build new refinery in Dos Bocas, Tabasco
Read more

Mexico’s Minister of Energy Rocío Nahle announced the start of the procurement procedure for building a new refinery of Petróleos Mexicanos (Pemex) in Dos Bocas, Tabasco on March 18.

Ep56: The Orange Button Standard
Read more

Jon Previtali from Wells Fargo and Tom Tansy from the Sunspec Alliance join us to discuss the orange button data standard, explaining what it is and why the solar industry is in need of a data standard.

China's LNG demand
Read more

China’s Ministry of Transport recently proposed 34 coastal liquefied natural gas (“LNG”) terminals with a combined annual import capacity of 247 million tons by 2035.

Ep55: kWh Analytics' Solar Lendscape
Read more

Richard Matsui, CEO and co-founder of kWh Analytics, joins us again to share the company's popular Solar Lendscape and discuss the current solar market.

Ep54: The US LNG Market
Read more

John Mauel, partner in our Houston office, joins us to discuss the current US LNG market. We take the discussion from an overview of the global LNG industry to where the US market fits into the global...