Renewable Energy



With our Legally Green® mindset, we understand the policy shifts and technological advances that affect the industry, allowing you to continue deploying and financing clean energy technologies.

Our Approach

Renewable energy now composes over 22% of the U.S. power fleet, with 244 gigawatts of installed capacity across the country—an 83% increase over 2007 levels. As the advent of renewable technologies contributes to an increasingly decarbonized grid, our Energy team helps companies successfully develop and deploy solar, wind, geothermal waste-to-energy, biomass, biofuel, fuel cells, tidal and hydroelectric projects.

We understand that regulatory certainty paves the way for smart investment decisions. However, with continuing, cutting-edge technological improvements and ever-changing regulatory guidance, such certainty is impossible. With offices in California, Washington, DC, and New York, we’re on the frontlines of state and federal changes that impact the clean energy market, allowing us to guide our clients through the constantly evolving legislation and regulations.

Collaborating across legal disciplines, we cover virtually every aspect of renewable power project development and finance, including site assessments, property acquisition, project financing and transmission access. And, we’re well versed in the approval, permitting and licensing processes that renewable energy projects require at the local, state and federal levels.

Whether we’re representing a large solar developer setting up a community solar facility or helping a global investment firm with the siting and permitting of a large wind project, we work hard to remain the trusted legal advisor to clients shaping the future of renewable energy.

In fact, our philosophy and practice go hand in hand. Our Legally Green® firmwide initiative incorporates innovative clean energy efforts that harness an understanding of state and local energy laws to deploy solar projects and contribute to the local community. Our team at Nixon Peabody has developed and installed the first Community Solar Project in the DC area: three rooftop arrays that form a collective 180kW system interconnected with a local utility. Rather than keeping or selling the renewable energy produced from the panels, we work with our partners to ensure that tenants of affordable housing projects receive all of the credits at no cost. We remain the largest solar installation on DC commercial property. As a pioneer in this arena, we are recognized as the go-to firm for domain knowledge in the renewable energy space. Let us help you implement similarly creative and innovative solutions for your organization and company’s energy initiatives.

IRS pushes out safe harbor deadline for US renewables projects

Power Finance & Risk | June 30, 2021

This article on the Internal Revenue Service’s one-year extension for renewable energy projects to qualify for federal tax credits quotes Washington, DC Community Development Finance partner Shariff Barakat for his outlook on the bifurcation of the safe harbor and the “continuous effort” rule.

REV LNG a leader in production, distribution of natural gas

Rochester Business Journal | April 23, 2021

This feature story on growth and expansion of NP client REV LNG LLC, which specializes in renewable energy project development and mobile energy services, quotes Rochester office managing partner Jared Lusk, of the Affordable Housing & Real Estate group, for NP’s close partnership and collaboration with REV LNG CEO David Kailbourne to help grow the company.

GREEN Act would bolster tax credits for renewables, introduce storage ITC

Power Finance & Risk | February 11, 2021

This article on the reintroduction of the GREEN Act in the House of Representatives quotes New York City Project Finance & Public Finance partner Ellen Friedman on the viability of the Act’s 85% refundable credit to make it through the Senate and her outlook on the 30% investment tax credit for standalone energy storage.

REV LNG grows renewable energy business locally

WROC-TV News 8 | November 18, 2020

This broadcast segment features Rochester office managing partner Jared Lusk, of the Affordable Housing & Real Estate group, and longtime client REV LNG CEO David Kailbourne discussing how the company has grown in the renewable energy sector while also making a positive impact on the Rochester community.

Clean Energy Market Shift and Politics Push U.S. Grid Expansion

Engineering News-Record | November 02, 2020

This story about boosting U.S. transmission capacity to integrate a growing backlog of renewable power projects into the grid quotes a recent Bloomberg Law article written by Albany partner Pete Trimarchi and associate Dana Stanton, and Rochester associate Sarah Lobe, all of the Environmental and Land Use team.

The Impact of New York's Renewable Energy Permitting Program, PFAS Regulation

Bloomberg Law | October 26, 2020

The following Bloomberg Law article comprises a two-part, contributed series on the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation’s transformative regulatory changes on climate change, renewable energy, and emerging contaminants. The articles are written by Albany partner Pete Trimarchi and associate Dana Stanton, and Rochester associate Sarah Lobe, all of the Environmental and Land Use team.

The Impact of New York's Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act

Bloomberg Law | October 23, 2020

The following Bloomberg Law article comprises a two-part, contributed series on the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation’s transformative regulatory changes on climate change, renewable energy, and emerging contaminants. The articles are written by Albany partner Pete Trimarchi and associate Dana Stanton, and Rochester associate Sarah Lobe, all of the Environmental and Land Use team.

Solar Power Access: A Matter of Justice

Washington Lawyer | March 01, 2020

This in-depth profile of New Partners Community Solar features Nixon Peabody’s role in the project and quotes Washington, DC, Community Development Finance senior counsel Jeff Lesk and senior counsel Herb Stevens.

Can DC meet its ambitious solar energy goals?

Washington City Paper | February 24, 2020

This article quotes Washington, DC, Community Development Finance partner Jeff Lesk discussing the social impact of NP Community Solar, which was the first project to join Washington’s community solar program and has expanded to several commercial rooftops throughout the district.

Deals & Dealmakers: Ugly buildings offer greatest rewards, says Brookfield’s Ric Clark

Real Estate Weekly | February 19, 2020

This article mentions Nixon Peabody in connection with New Partners Community Solar’s collaboration with Brookfield Properties to install solar panels on downtown rooftops in Washington, DC, and convert the energy generated into utility bill credits for low-income families.

The General Counsel’s Big Opportunity to Protect Reputation: 6 Tips

Corporate Counsel | December 16, 2019

This article, covering six tips for general counsel to fortify their corporate reputations, cites New Partners Community Solar Corporation as an example of effectively collaborating with others for greater impact. The authors mention Nixon Peabody’s collaboration with the District Department of Energy & Environment, Brookfield Properties, National Housing Trust Community Development Fund, Enterprise Community Partners, and Sol Systems in forming NP Community Solar.

2019 Building Tours: D.C. solar for all

Better Buildings ( U.S. Department of Energy) | August 06, 2019

The blog post from the U.S. Department of Energy chronicles a recent solar-focused learning session, hosted by New Partners Community Solar at Nixon Peabody’s Washington DC office.

DC affordable housing building gets solar panels, 'resilience center'

NBC 4 Washington | July 25, 2019

This broadcast news clip highlights New Partners Community Solar, the Nixon Peabody-adjacent nonprofit creating innovative sustainability projects throughout Washington, DC. New Partners helped to develop a ‘resilience center’ in a DC-area affordable housing complex, which will keep residents connected to key services and emergency resources in the event of a power grid disruption.

Introducing the resiliency center

National Housing and Rehabilitation Association | July 20, 2019

This story mentions New Partners Community Solar, the nonprofit founded in 2017 by senior counsel Herb Stevens and Community Development Finance partner Jeff Lesk, both of Washington, DC. New Partners played a crucial role in the development of the city’s first affordable housing resiliency center—a suite of rooms available to all residents that provides an emergency power supply for residents to use during disasters or outages.

This DC apartment building provides low-income families with solar power and a resilience center

Greater Greater Washington | June 27, 2019

This article highlights the work of New Partners Community Solar to establish a resiliency center in a low-income housing development in Washington’s Columbia Heights neighborhood. The center is designed to power essential services, such as lighting and communications, for up to three days after a disruption to the public power grid.

How solar panels give building owners a competitive advantage

BizNow | May 02, 2019

Nixon Peabody and New Partners Community Solar are mentioned in this story about the recent proliferation of solar panels on rooftops in downtown Washington, DC. The NP Solar program has installed these sustainable energy producers on buildings throughout the district, with low-income residents of the area seeing the economic benefits.

Top DC building owners install solar panels as city sets ambitious clean energy goal

Bisnow | April 09, 2019

This article highlights Nixon Peabody’s nonprofit, New Partners Community Solar. The piece covers phase one of the program and its continued efforts to partner with Washington, DC, building owners to install solar panels on multiple new sites, which will produce renewable energy to benefit local low-income residents. The piece also notes that Washington, DC, Community Development Finance partner Jeff Lesk will discuss this clean energy initiative at Bisnow’s upcoming Greater DC Solar and Sustainability Summit.

Trio of disputes set to shape burgeoning tax equity insurance biz

Power Finance & Risk | December 02, 2018

Albany Project Finance and Public Finance partner Rich Cogen is quoted in this article on his view of the cost of premiums in the young but competitive market for tax equity insurance related to renewable energy investments.

RFP issuance activity uptick

Power Finance & Risk | October 29, 2018

Albany Project Finance and Public Finance partner Rich Cogen is quoted in this article on the trend of increasing RFP activity for renewable energy projects, even in some unexpected states.

D.C. CRE leaders on the lending environment, architecture trends, PropTech and more

Bisnow | September 30, 2018

Washington DC Office Managing Partner Colette Dafoe and Community Development Finance partner Jeff Lesk are mentioned in this story about the DCSolar project, which began on Nixon Peabody’s rooftop and has expanded throughout the District.

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