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Energy and Resources

The energy and resources sector is facing a range of ongoing challenges with the uncertainty of commodity prices, increasing demand for power generation from renewable sources and higher costs of doing business.  Companies need to be aware of the regulatory framework within which they operate and have trusted legal advisers who are at the forefront of industry changes.

HWL Ebsworth has a dedicated team of experts providing specialist advice in relation to:

MINERALS

Our expertise includes regulatory advice relating to the grant and operation of tenements under State legislation, advice on overlapping tenement issues, advice on water rights affecting mining tenures, the emerging greenhouse gas storage legislation, land access and compensation issues, joint venture and joint operating arrangements, and royalty agreements.  Our national team has extensive experience in tenement acquisitions and divestments and we are experienced advisers to major mining companies on a range of different and complex issues relating to the production, transportation and sale of coal and other minerals both in Australia and internationally.

OIL AND GAS

Our national oil and gas team provides advice to major producers, distributors, retailers and customers on a range of different and complex issues.  Our advice includes the grant and operation of tenements, upstream exploration and production activities and the processing, transportation, distribution and sale of petroleum and gas in Australia. We understand the complexities of the legislative framework in respect of the regulation of the onshore and offshore petroleum and gas industry at both a State and Commonwealth level. Our expertise also includes advising on joint venture and joint operating arrangements, royalty agreements, land access and compensation issues, greenhouse gas storage legislation and advice on water rights affecting petroleum tenures.

ELECTRICITY

We provide legal services to electricity industry participants in relation to generation, transmission, distribution and retail services.  Our team has several key specialists who advise clients on offtake arrangements, power purchase agreements, retail electricity sale agreements, electricity demand side management arrangements, parallel generation consents, renewable energy contracts and hedging and progressive purchasing arrangements.  We understand the regulatory framework in Australia under the National Electricity Law and Rules and have advised State Governments, state regulators and the Australian Energy Market Operator as well as market participants.

RENEWABLE ENERGY

We are market leaders in the renewable energy sector, having advised on more than 30 renewable energy projects in Australia, New Zealand and Thailand.  Our team has worked with a variety of participants in the renewable energy industry in relation to the planning, development, connection, supply, construction and operation of wind, solar, biomass and wave energy projects.  The knowledge we have gained through these projects has enabled us to deliver exceptional value for clients beyond the provision of legal services. This includes advising on mergers and acquisitions, commercialisation of business models, land acquisition and due diligence, planning, project feasibility, grid connection, compliance, finance, off-take, construction and operation.

WATER LAW

Water law is a unique area requiring specialised knowledge and experience.  There are a number of challenges facing the industry such as sustainability of water supply to stakeholders, maintaining high quality drinking water, avoiding contamination, allocation and transfer of water rights and construction and maintenance of water infrastructure. HWL Ebsworth advises developers, bulk water suppliers and mining and energy companies on a range of matters involving commercial water supply and water infrastructure development projects.  Our team acts on major project approvals, legal compliance programs, ports use and access and water rights, catchment management, waste water re-use schemes, negotiating complex water trading arrangements and advising on legislative and policy changes. We have experience in acting for water authorities and private entities in water trading, hedging, options, temporary trades and environmental water management in a trading regime.

EXPERIENCE
  • Wind Energy Projects: Lead advisor for EPC, O&M and related undertakings for wind energy projects at Taralga (NSW), Challicum Hills (Vic), Wattle Point (SA), Starfish Hill (SA), Yambuk (Vic), Lake Bonney II (SA), Walkaway (WA), Chepstowe (Vic), Tararua III (NZ), White Hills (NZ).  Lead advisor for the development and sale of Mt Gellibrand, Moorabool, Lal Lal and Dundonnell Projects;
  • Solar Projects: Lead advisor for the development and sale of utility scale solar projects in Victoria and Queensland;
  • Power Stations: Conducting due diligence and advising on off-take arrangements, trading and regulation for over 50 power stations in Australia;
  • Major Oil & Gas Producer: Advised on key early works contracts and complex due diligence of critical upstream coal seam gas assets necessary to underpin production for the development of Queensland’s First Major LNG Project at the Port of Gladstone;
  • Major Resources Company: Acted in litigation regarding a multimillion dollar dispute between joint venture parties in a large Uranium Project;
  • ASX-listed Mining Company: Acted for an ASX-listed company in relation to underwritten pro-rata renounceable rights issues to raise AU$10 million and $14.1M respectively;
  • ASX-listed Energy Company: Acted in relation to its reverse takeover of another listed resources company;
  • Coal Projects: Advised on the acquisition and divestment of various coal exploration interests in Queensland and advised on the expansion of a large coal export facility at a major Queensland port; and
  • Federal and State Government: Advising various agencies on carbon trading schemes, renewable energy programs, interconnector and network upgrades and transmission connections.