Renewable Energy Projects: Siting and Permitting Legal Challenges

Selecting the Site, Choosing the Permitting Authority, and Managing Environmental Constraints

Recording of a 90-minute CLE webinar with Q&A

Conducted on Tuesday, April 4, 2017
Recorded event now available

This CLE webinar will provide guidance for counsel to companies participating in renewable energy projects to understand and navigate the challenges involved in siting and permitting renewable energy facilities.


Demand for energy, availability of funding and concerns over climate change have shifted focus to renewable energy development. However, the remote locations and sensitive environment of renewable resources make siting and permitting of renewable energy facilities difficult.

Counsel must consider a variety of risks—from resource availability to public opposition and regulatory roadblocks—in planning a renewable energy facility.

Facility developers, property owners and their counsel must also navigate a battleground between federal, state and some local authorities to obtain siting and permitting approval.

Listen as our authoritative panel of legal specialists examines the factors involved in selecting the facility site and the appropriate siting and permitting body. The panel will also discuss environmental issues impacting permits for renewable energy facilities and offer their approaches for siting and permitting renewable energy projects.


  1. Site selection
    1. Transmission lines (and other infrastructure)
    2. Availability of renewable resource
    3. Regulatory roadblocks
    4. Addressing public opposition (NIMBY)
    5. Meeting state renewable portfolio standards
    6. Environmental constraints
  2. Siting and permitting body
    1. Federal authority
    2. State authority
    3. Local authority
    4. Debate over authority
  3. Environmental issues that impact permits for renewable energy facilities
  4. Strategies for siting and permitting


The panel will review these and other key issues:

  • What factors must a company and their counsel consider when selecting a site for a renewable energy facility?
  • What are the key infrastructure concerns to resolve before a renewable energy facility can proceed?
  • What environmental issues will impact obtaining a permit for a renewable energy facility?
  • What approaches can counsel to developers and property owners use for siting and permitting a renewable energy facility?


James H. Barkley, Partner
Baker Botts, Houston

Mr. Barkley has been involved in most phases of wholesale and retail deregulation of the Texas electric market. He represents clients facing siting and permitting challenges for their facilities, including electric transmission service providers. He represented large wind developers before the Texas Public Utility Commission that will determine where and how Texas will encourage wind generation development.

William K. Kroger, Partner
Baker Botts, Houston

Mr. Kroger concentrates in litigation involving energy and alternative energy, commercial disputes, personal injury and products liability. He has represented wind generators against claims by environmental group for injunctive relief to shut down construction of wind farm and on numerous disputed controversies before the state public utilities commission.


CLE On-Demand - Streaming Video

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On-demand is the only recorded format recognized for CLE credits in DE, IN, KS, LA, MS, NC, OH, OK, SC, TN, VA, WI.

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*Only available for attorneys admitted for more than two years. For OH CLE credits, only programs recorded within the current calendar year are eligible - contact the CLE department for verification.

**NH attendees must self-determine if a program is eligible for credit and self-report their attendance.

CLE On-Demand Video $297.00

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AK, AZ, CA, CO, CT, FL, GA, HI, IA, ID, IL, KY, ME, MN, MO, MT, ND, NJ, NM, NY, OR, PA, TN, TX, UT, VT, WA, WV, WY (Note: Some states restrict CLE eligibility based on the age of a program. Refer to our state CLE Map for additional information.)

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Environmental Law Advisory Board

John J. Allen


Allen Matkins

Albert M. Cohen


Loeb & Loeb

Aaron Courtney


Stoel Rives

Andrew N. Davis


Shipman & Goodwin

David R. Gillay


Barnes & Thornburg

Brian D. Israel


Arnold & Porter Kaye Scholer

Thomas J. P. McHenry


Gibson Dunn & Crutcher

James B. Slaughter


Beveridge & Diamond

Jeffrey A. Smith

Senior Counsel

Sidley Austin

E. Gail Suchman

Special Counsel

Stroock & Stroock & Lavan

Gregory D. Trimarche

Senior Counsel

Ring Bender

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