The energy sector is a key economic driver around the world and it is inextricably intertwined with the volatility of local and global politics. Investment and development activity in the sector is heavily influenced by issues such as increasing energy demands, investment needs, fluctuating pricing and costs, climate change and environmental compliance. However, when political, regulatory, economic or commercial stresses and strains arise, the financial impact on companies operating in the energy sector can be immediate, direct and highly significant. For these reasons it is a sector in which disputes regularly arise, and which frequently require expeditious but sensitive handling.
Businesses in the energy sector and those supplying into the sector, whether in relation to electricity, gas, oil, coal or renewables, require specialist lawyers who understand the industry and who have experience in the dynamics and complexity of energy disputes, which can be high-value and which can span across a range of jurisdictions.
How we can help
We have the specialist experience to help our clients by effectively and efficiently managing the complete range of disputes which can arise in the sector, whether through domestic or international arbitration (including the LCIA and ICC), litigation, expert determination, mediation, or negotiation. We are also able to advise on the related regulatory compliance and enforcement issues that arise.
Those companies that we can assist include power generators and distribution network operators, oil and gas exploration and production companies, large energy users, waste companies, investors, governments, suppliers of IT and other services and products into the sector, including energy management and metering solutions.
The range of disputes in which we have experience includes financial and performance disputes arising in oil and gas joint ventures and operations, associated government relations and negotiations, the transfer of interests in licences and joint ventures, price adjustments, duties and liabilities under exploration and production licences, liability to host governments, environmental compliance, wayleave disputes relating to power lines, land compensation claims, contractor and supplier disputes, power outages, power purchase and supply agreements, environmental protest action, plant operation and maintenance, IT and telemetry systems, product and services quality and defect issues, product recall, commercial customer compensation claims, fraud and bribery.
Apart from our UK based work, we frequently work on English law disputes arising outside the UK, particularly across Africa, where English law is often the preferred choice of law for energy projects, investments and joint ventures. When disputes have an international element we also work with our selected best friend law firms outside the UK to streamline and coordinate action on an international level to ensure a consistent and aligned approach.