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Renewable Energy Workshop

Event Details

Chicago, IL
September 14, 2011

EPA's RE-Powering America's Land Initiative and the Office of Brownfields and Land Revitalization

Siting and Financing Renewable Energy Projects on Contaminated Properties – New Market Opportunities for Lenders, Investors, Developers, and Communities
September 14, 2011

Reuse of contaminated properties is an untapped economic opportunity for renewable energy developers and financiers. Thousands of contaminated properties are immediately available for renewable energy development. Many have existing infrastructure (transmission lines, railways, roads, etc.), cheaper property prices, and public and municipal support for reuse.

- Why potential liability for existing contamination on such sites is no longer a barrier to reuse
- Renewable energy projects that have been successfully and profitably sited on contaminated properties
- Financial incentives from the federal government for siting renewable energy on contaminated lands

Session 1

Siting renewable energy projects on contaminated properties - introductions
Brigid Lowery, Director, Center for Policy Analysis, US EPA

  1. National direction, overview of RE-Powering America Initiative, and trends of "projects in progress"
    Mathy Stanislaus, US EPA Assistant Administrator, Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response (OSWER)
  2. US Department of Agriculture (USDA) Rural Development perspective - prospective renewable energy development partnerships in small town America
    Judith Canales, Administrator of USDA Rural Development Business and Cooperative Programs

Session 2

Opportunities and examples - how it's been done and where, and who's done it and why?

  1. Renewable energy siting opportunities in EPA Region 5: why financiers/developers/utilities communities have interest
    Susan Hedman, EPA Regional Administrator
  2. Developer perspective: approaches to, advantages of pursuing contaminated sites for renewable energy projects
    John Hanselman, Brightfields Development, LLC
    Siting Renewable Energy on Contaminated Lands (PDF) (13pp, 646K)
  3. Community perspective: how communities can be engaged, how local governments can promote renewable energy projects
    Karen Weigert, Chief Sustainability Officer, City of Chicago Department of Environment
    Developing Brownfields for Renewable Energy: City Solar and Beyond (PDF) (14pp, 702K)
  4. Participant Q&A

Session 3

Liability and risk management - overcoming barriers to using contaminated sites

  1. Overview and context for barriers, and how to overcome them
    Brigid Lowery, Director, Center for Policy Analysis, US EPA, moderator
  2. Working through lender/owner liability issues to advance renewable energy projects
    Larry Kyte, Associate Branch Chief, Multi-Media Branch II, US EPA Region 5
    Renewable Energy Development on Contaminated Lands: Addressing Potential Liabilities (PDF) (26pp, 549K)
    1. All appropriate inquiry and its applicability to renewable energy projects on brownfield sites
    2. Lender liability exemptions
    3. Liability protections for innocent purchasers
    4. Addressing RCRA concerns - comfort letters, covenants not to sue, other strategies
  3. State issues and liability relief/management strategies
    Michael Ohm, Managing Partner, Bryan Cave LLP
    State issues and liability relief management strategies (PDF) (13pp, 98K)
    1. Acknowledgement of state Volunteer Cleanup Program (VCP) officials in audience
    2. Role of state VCPs, Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) in providing liability protections
  4. Role of insurance as a risk management tool for renewable energy project transactions on contaminated sites
    Bob Hallenbeck, Senior Vice President, XL Insurance
  5. Participant Q&A

Session 4

Supply chain perspective - manufacturing for renewable energy facilities
Scott Viciana, Vice President, Business Development, Ventower Industries
Utility-Scale, Wind Turbine Tower Manufacturer (PDF)
(34pp, 993K)

Session 5

Financing RE Projects - what federal program support, private resources are available?

  1. Overview of key financial packaging and partnership opportunities in the context of renewable energy development
    Charlie Bartsch, Senior Advisor for Economic Development US EPA/OSWER, moderator
    Financing Renewable Energy Projects – What Federal Support, Private Resources are Available? (PDF) (19pp, 192K)
  2. Private debt and equity strategies - why contamination need not be an impediment: hints, lessons, and examples
    1. Debt strategies
      Greg Hummel, Partner, Bryan Cave LLP
      Private Debt and Equity Strategies – Why Contamination Need Not Be An Impediment: Hints, Lessons, and Examples
      (PDF)
      (49pp, 1.5MB)
    2. Equity strategies
      Mike McMullen, EnviroFinance Group, LLC
      Private Debt And Equity Strategies: Why Contamination Need Not Be An Impediment (PDF) (12pp, 228K)
  3. Federal Resources
    1. US Department of Energy/loan guarantees and other prospects
      Kerry Duggan, Senior Advisor, Legislative Affairs, Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy, US Department of Energy
    2. USDA rural development/utility programs
      Judith Canales, Administrator of USDA Rural Development Business and Cooperative Programs
  4. Participant Q&A

Session 6

EPA/participant dialogue - What can EPA and communities do to make these sites attractive?
What do lenders, investors, and developers need?

Mathy Stanislaus, US EPA Assistant Administrator, Office of Solid Waste and Emergency Response (OSWER)

Facilitated discussion of topics such as:

Session 7

Workshop wrap-up
Susan Hedman, EPA Regional Administrator

  1. EPA next steps - working with the US DOE, the USDA, and other agencies to promote renewable energy projects, outreach to private investment interests
  2. Final participant questions and comments

Contact Allen Melcer (melcer.allen@epa.gov) to ask a question, provide feedback, or report a problem.

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