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The PG&E Bankruptcy: Potential Implications for California's Clean Energy Future

When:

March 18, 2019

Where:

San Francisco, CA (and teleconference)


Co-Sponsored by Farella Braun + Martel LLP and the Environmental Law Institute


Unplugged Renewable Energy Series

The recent PG&E bankruptcy filing has fundamentally shaken the California utility industry and poses a number of potential challenges and risks to the State’s renewable energy industry. These include the potential restructuring of one of the State’s three investor owned utilities that is heavily invested in renewable energy and the potential rejection or renegotiation of over $36 billion worth of renewable power purchase agreements (PPAs) with hundreds of project owners. The potential changes at issue in the PG&E bankruptcy are likely to result in substantial impacts on current renewable energy project owners and developers and on California’s ongoing efforts to decarbonize the State’s electrical generation grid.

The roundtable panel discussed these issues and attempt to answer the following questions:

  • What is the legal framework that will govern the disposition of the PPAs, including:
    • Respective roles of the bankruptcy court and FERC with respect to any determination 
    • How would rejection and/or renegotiation play out in practice?
  • Prospects for and likelihood of rejection and/or renegotiation of PPAs and potential impacts on current project owners and future project development
  • Potential broader impact of various bankruptcy outcomes on the renewable energy industry in California and California’s energy goals

Panelists:
Gary Kaplan, Partner, Farella Braun + Martel LLP
Sean Gallagher, Vice President of State Affairs, Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA)
Joe Henri, Vice President of Business Development, Dimension Renewal Energy