Energy & Natural Resources

Our dedicated Energy & Natural Resources Group is a recognised market leader and has represented the largest global energy players active in the Irish market.  We have acted on almost all of the pivotal energy and natural resources developments/transactions in Ireland and advise all participants in the Irish energy market, including renewable and conventional generators, shippers and suppliers, traders, project developers, funders, end users and other energy service providers.  We offer an all-island service.

We have longstanding relationships with many of our energy and natural resources clients.  Clients value and appreciate the quality service we provide and our specialist expertise and commercial attitude.  We continually leverage our legal, commercial and technical expertise, experience, and insight to ensure the optimum outcome for our clients and enhance the long-term value of those projects and transactions whatever the market conditions.

We have advised on the full spectrum of energy and natural resources matters, including: energy regulation; licensing; grid connection; energy infrastructure projects; energy related commercial contracts; energy related M&A; financial and physical power purchase agreements (including corporate PPAs); gas commodity and capacity arrangements; carbon trading contracts; onshore wind; offshore wind; solar; battery storage; carbon trading; procurement; shipping and storage; data centres, project financing; and oil and gas development.

Key projects and clients we have worked on and within recent years include:

  • EirGrid in connection with the development and financing of the proposed 700MW HVDC Celtic Interconnector between Ireland and France, capital cost in excess of €1bn.
  • ESB on the acquisition of Northern Ireland Electricity plc (NIE), the Northern Ireland electricity transmission and distribution business of the Viridian Group.
  • Green Investment Group (GIG) in relation to its investment in and subsequent sale of a portion of its interest in the Dublin Waste to Energy Facility located in Poolbeg, Dublin Port.
  • Brookfield Renewables on its development and financing of the Slieve Callan wind farm project in South West Ireland (which included a 25km 110KV contestable grid connection).
  • European Investment Bank in its financing of the Oweninny Wind Farm in County Mayo. 
  • Parkwind NV, one of Europe’s leading offshore Wind Farm developers, in its strategic investment in the Oriel Wind Farm – a 330MW offshore wind farm project proposed in the Irish Sea.
  • EirGrid on numerous regulatory matters including in respect of the capacity market.  
  • Aughinish Alumina Limited in relation to all its activities undertaken in Ireland, including: the procurement, construction and creation of its 160MW CHP plant; its significant gas supply arrangements; its participation in I-SEM; its carbon hedging and trading arrangements; on its extension to its Bauxite Residue Storage Facility at its alumina refinery; and in relation to one of the largest global energy and commodities transactions where Rusal acquired the alumina assets of Glencore International.
  • Keelings in relation to its CHP plant with associated carbon capture facilities.
  • ConocoPhillips on providing a serviced site to Bord Gáis on which to construct a 440MW gas fired CCGT plant at Whitegate, Co. Cork.
  • ESB Novusmodus on its investment in Wind Energy Direct, an 'on-site' wind energy developer.
  • RWE Ireland in relation to its O&M contract with a 380MW gas fired CCGT plant and its gas supply and tolling agreement.
  • RWE Gmbh in relation to the disposal of its Irish gas supply division.
  • Atlantic Fuel Supply Company on the design, build and financing of a major oil terminal facility at Foynes Port County Limerick.
  • Atlantic Petroleum on its oil exploration activities in Ireland, including local regulatory compliance issues.
  • Flogas Natural Gas in relation to its gas procurement and trading arrangements and its downstream domestic gas supply business.
  • Co-gen in respect of its proposals to roll out small/medium sized CHP generators to industrial demand sites.

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Department 

  • One client notes that "William Fry have been our-go to lawyers for over 20 years and are an integral part of our team. We demand a lot from our legal advisers and the team at William Fry consistently deliver. They really understand the complexities of our business and have an in-depth legal and commercial understanding of the Irish energy sector." Another source notes that "William Fry has represented the largest global energy players active in the Irish market, They have experience advising all players in the market" Legal 500 2020
  • A client describes the firm’s performance as “very impressive,” noting in particular that the team’s “client service and commercial awareness are both excellent.” Chambers Europe, 2020
  • "William Fry’s broad practice advises domestic and international clients such as utilities, lenders and developers in the gas, water and commodities space, as well as the renewable energy sector." Legal 500, 2019
  • ‘Business acumen is excellent’ at William Fry, where the team’s growing client base includes oil, gas and manufacturing companies, utilities, independent project developers and commercial banks. Legal 500, 2018
  • The firm's "depth and versatility to provide the entire range of legal requirements" is often praised, with clients saying: "It is invaluable to have it all under one roof." 
    Sources also remark that the team is "very responsive and knows the sector well." Chambers Europe, 2017
  • William Fry excels at electricity and gas work, where its advice is ‘always focused on the key issues’Legal 500, 2017

Team

Fergus Devine

  • Legal 500 2020 have ranked Fergus in the 'Hall of Fame'. One client said Fergus has "a particularly in-depth level of knowledge on the workings of the transmission and distribution network and the complex regulatory framework that comprises that SEM in Ireland. We found his advice to be timely, pragmatic and commercial. "Another client added that they work with Fergus on a daily basis: "He is our go-to lawyer for all our important transactions and projects. We leverage his extensive legal knowledge of the energy and natural resources market to drive real value for our business. He continues to provide the best legal advice when we need it and is not afraid to give a view. He has a real affinity for this sector."
  • "Excellent. Can't think of any weakness affecting the given energy advice." IFLR1000 2020
  • One source admires Fergus's "ability to make very complex regulations and legislation simple. He is very knowledgeable and commercially aware, whilst also ensuring that everyone involved is fully conversant with the issues at hand."Chambers Europe 2020
  • According to Legal 500 2020 Fergus was "available round the clock during the transaction" and "excellent at minimising the stress that accompanies a large scale PPP transaction working to a tight timeline."
  • Fergus Devine has two decades of experience, advising clients on a wide range of energy projects. "I have great respect for Devine," remarks one admiring market source, adding that "he's a brilliant energy lawyer." Chambers Europe 2019
  • "Strengths are numerous but outstanding leadership from Fergus Devine stands out the most." IFLR 1000 2019
  • Department head Fergus Devine is "very responsive, exceptionally pleasant and has a broad and in-depth knowledge of the energy sector," according to interviewees. Chambers Europe 2018
  • The "business-focused" Fergus Devine is highly active in the energy sector and is a "clear communicator". Legal 500 EMEA 2018
  • In Chambers Europe 2017, Fergus is praised for his "huge depth of knowledge and dynamism." According to Legal 500 EMEA 2017, Fergus "does not shirk the difficult messages."
  • In Chambers Europe 2016 Fergus draws plaudits from interviewees for being "able to understand complex, technical issues" and "grasping the mechanics of the energy markets".

 

Key Contacts

Fergus Devine Partner

Bryan Bourke Managing Partner

Liam McCabe Partner

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