With experienced practitioners in the US, Europe, Asia and the Middle East, Latham & Watkins attorneys regularly assist multi-national companies in analyzing the critical issues facing them as the global climate market continues to develop. The ratification of the Kyoto Protocol in 2005, the associated development of the European Union Emissions Trading System (EU ETS) and the global carbon trading market, and the recent steps toward carbon trading mechanisms in the United States, have implications for businesses in all corners of the world.
Many multi-national companies that have carbon and other greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions are directly impacted by these developments, with companies in the power sector, and manufacturers who are heavy energy users, being particularly impacted. Moreover, shareholders and investors in companies in all jurisdictions are increasingly demanding information and disclosures about the potential financial risks associated with carbon and other GHG emissions. Carbon and GHG issues also impact cross-border investments in the project finance field, as investors become attuned to increased risks associated with some types of projects (such as heavy GHG emitting projects) and increased opportunities associated with others (such as energy efficient projects and GHG reduction and mitigation projects).
Our attorneys have expertise in all aspects of the global climate change landscape, including:
the structure and operation of the EU ETS and its national implementation in the 27 EU Member States,
the Regional Greenhouse Gas Initiative (RGGI) and California's Climate Change program,
legal and operational issues related to carbon credit transactions (including the Kyoto Protocol's Clean Development Mechanism (CDM) and Joint Implementation (JI) rules and approval process),
impacts on project finance transactions including the analysis and evaluation of Emissions Reduction Purchase Agreements (ERPAs), and
quantification and disclosure issues associated with carbon and other GHG emissions, and related issues.