Wind Energy

windmills arrayed across the landscape

Despite the challenges of transmission and grid interconnection, the U.S. has become one of the fastest-growing wind markets in the world. 

Saul Ewing attorneys advise a variety of clients in this industry, including wind power developers, owners and users, power companies, electric utility companies, transmission companies, investors, and lenders in environmental, regulatory, transactional and litigation matters related to wind energy projects. We have helped clients develop onshore wind energy projects for many years, and our work has evolved alongside the burgeoning offshore wind industry. We currently represent major developers of offshore wind energy, serving both as developer’s counsel, guiding clients from leasehold sale through commercial operation, as well as local counsel advising on due diligence, land use, and permitting issues. 

Our Wind Energy team advises on the following areas:

  • Corporate: advising on all aspects of business formation, governance, commercial agreements and partnership matters 
  • Due Diligence: performing state and local environmental, real estate, land use, permitting and state utility commission regulatory due diligence 
  • Real Estate: drafting and reviewing deeds, leases and licenses; negotiating easements and rights-of-way; handling title, conveyance and recordation matters 
  • Ports and Maritime: counseling on the onshore facilitation of offshore wind projects, including access agreements, interconnection approvals, and compliance with federal and state ports and maritime law
  • Environmental Permitting: securing permits, including air, water and solid waste permits required by local, state, and federal environmental authorities
  • Zoning, Land Use and Subdivision: securing approvals at local and state levels
  • Federal, State and Local Tax: advising on income (including tax credits), property, transfer and other tax issues
  • Financing: representing lenders, investors and owners in funding wind energy projects
  • State Regulatory Commissions: representing clients at all stages of project approval proceedings
  • Contracting: drafting and negotiating contracts, including equipment and procurement agreements, construction and installation contracts, power purchase agreements (PPAs), operation and maintenance agreements, and agreements for the purchase or sale of wind energy projects
  • Government and Community Relations: managing a variety of political and local issues on behalf of our clients
  • Disputes and Litigation: representing clients in federal and state trial and appellate courts and alternative dispute resolution forums when disputes arise from projects


Key Contacts
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Pamela S. Goodwin
Thomas K. Prevas
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Saul Ewing attorneys represented clients in these select wind energy matters:

Onshore Wind

  • An industrial group that operates and supplies components within the renewable energy sector in environmental, real estate, regulatory and tax matters on local and state levels and PPAs in the acquisition and financing of a wind project in the Allegheny Mountains of Western Maryland, including providing required legal opinions.
  • Lenders in conducting state and local due diligence on a $286 million construction loan for a 200-megawatt wind project in Minnesota, with a footprint of about 25,000 acres. We also advised on a judicial challenge to the regulatory approvals.
  • Investors as Pennsylvania counsel for the refinancing of a 100-megawatt wind project in Central Pennsylvania. We performed due diligence and prepared environmental permitting opinions for investors in connection with the refinancing.
  • A non-utility owner of developed wind farms on lease issues and regulatory compliance and filings with the Minnesota Public Utilities Commission and the Minnesota Department of Agriculture.
  • A multinational electric utility company as state counsel in permitting, analyzing zoning for wind farms, and securing various approvals for wind power projects.
  • A wind turbine manufacturer in performing state utility commission regulatory diligence in Minnesota and North Dakota and assisting with regulatory advocacy.
  • An equity investor in providing state and local support on its construction period investment in a 200-megawatt wind energy project in Minnesota, including performing environmental and regulatory due diligence on the project and transmission route and supporting membership interest agreement and permit opinion negotiations.
  • Lenders as North Dakota counsel in a $222 million construction loan for the approximately 18,000 acre, 150-megawatt wind project and transmission line, including performing state and local environmental, real estate, and regulatory due diligence.
  • A U.S. real estate development firm in connection with a planned wind farm in Argentina.
  • A developer and manufacturer of micro wind turbines in connection with a private offering of convertible promissory notes using an online crowdfunding site to conduct the offering, which utilized registration exemptions under both Regulation CF and Regulation D of the federal securities laws.
  • A lender as local Illinois counsel in a wind energy development deal for a 33-turbine wind farm. Our team performed due diligence on Illinois permitting, land use, environmental and real estate matters; prepared a leasehold mortgage; and reviewed and advised on drafts of tax equity, cash equity, energy hedge and construction loan agreements, permitting and zoning issues, title commitments, schedules, and opinion letters.

Offshore Wind

  • An offshore wind company as developer’s counsel, handling contract and lease negotiations, land use and property acquisitions, environmental permitting and brownfields projects, compliance matters, and approvals of construction plans in both Maryland and Delaware associated with its federal leases off the coast of Maryland. Among other aspects of this engagement, we represented this client before the Maryland Public Service Commission, which awarded the company Offshore Renewable Energy Credits (ORECs) to fund the construction of the company’s Maryland offshore wind project. Throughout that process we collaborated with experts who assessed energy markets and sales, construction costs, environmental impacts, and community sight impacts. 
  • An offshore wind developer as local counsel on issues including state and local sales tax, labor, mechanic’s liens, specific construction contract requirements of New Jersey and anti-indemnity statute requirements regarding the construction of a wind project located off the coast of New Jersey, including onshore assets such as interconnection and manufacturing facilities.
  • A national power company in its efforts to develop offshore windfarms in New Jersey, Maryland and Delaware prior to its sale of offshore wind assets. 
  • A university in development and operation of a research wind turbine. 
  • A renewable energy company in lease negotiations with a global logistics center in Maryland to manufacture steel that will be used for its offshore wind turbine bases, and to build massive wind turbines for use offshore. 
  • A wind energy development company in successfully litigating an appeal following the dismissal of a mechanic’s lien action in which a global subsea services company sought a lien on our client’s right to develop an offshore wind farm. 
  • A renewable energy company in persuading a Texas court to dismiss for lack of jurisdiction a breach of contract action concerning the transportation of a meteorological tower for use at the client’s offshore windfarm. 
  • An offshore wind-generated electricity producer in the mid-Atlantic in negotiating and documenting certain easements and rights of way with a power company relating to development plans.
  • A public entity in its negotiations with an offshore wind turbine developer, including a proposed easement agreement pursuant to which electric power generated by offshore wind turbines would be brought ashore across and onto the entity’s property.
  • An offshore wind company in the purchase and sale agreement to acquire land from an integrated power company to create an onshore substation and point of interconnection with the grid for the company’s electrical transmission cable. 
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