Ennova Renewable Energy Law has scored a significant first by advising wind farm developer PNE WIND UK Limited on one of its major projects in Scotland.
The appointment is the first major client commission for the Edinburgh based legal firm, which has been specifically established to offer bespoke expert advice for investment in the renewable energy sector in Scotland.
Ennova negotiated the option agreement and legal terms to secure a 2000 hectare site for PNE WIND UK near the village of Glespin in South Lanarkshire.
PNE WIND UK have filed a Formal Scoping Opinion Request with the Scottish Government Energy Consents Unit for the site, known as Kennoxhead, and expect to come forward with a formal planning application in 2013.
Ennova Partner John Cumming said the Kennoxhead project provided a perfect platform to illustrate their expertise in renewable law.
He said: “Scotland is now firmly established as one of the fastest growing areas for renewable energy in Europe and increasingly companies are seeing it as the perfect location for development, investment and private equity funding.
“While the creation of the Ennova brand is new, the reality is we have been working with clients in the renewables sector for a number of years.
“Some of our clients have been among the first early adopters of renewable energy projects, not just in Scotland but in the world. That’s meant we have been growing our knowledge of the often complex and comprehensive legal aspects of the sector for a considerable time.
“It this expertise that has been attractive to PNE WIND UK and we are delighted to have helped them advance this major project in Scotland by securing this site.”
Ennova completed the heads of agreement on the site acquisition as well as advising on due diligence, title investigation and commercial advice.
PNE Wind UK, who recently opened an Edinburgh base, is the latest expansion by German parent company PNE Wind AG and its JV Partner New Energy Developments Limited.
As a Group, PNE WIND AG has a workforce of highly qualified and motivated employees with more than 15 years’ experience in the development of sites, project engineering, construction, financing and operation of wind farms. PNE WIND AG has achieved consistent growth having developed 97 wind farms, comprising 563 wind turbines with an installed capacity of 804MW as of 31/12/2010.
The Group has been successful in gaining consent for three offshore wind farms in German waters with a combined capacity of 1,200MW. Construction on the first of these is scheduled to commence construction in 2011.
Alongside the business activities in the established German home market, PNE WIND AG is also increasingly investing in dynamic growth markets and in addition to its UK activities has subsidiaries in Hungary, Bulgaria, Turkey, Romania, USA and Canada. Onshore wind farm projects with an installed capacity of up to 3,400MW are currently under development in these countries and are scheduled for construction in the medium term.
PNE Wind UK is looking to develop its portfolio of wind farms across Scotland, England and Wales with the capacity to provide more than 300MW of sustainable energy to help meet the UK’s renewable energy target of 15 per cent by 2020.
UK Director George Mager said Ennova’s expertise has been helpful in assisting PNE WIND UK in gaining some early wins in the development of its Scottish portfolio.
He said: “While the case to advance renewable schemes in Scotland remains strong, there are significant sensitivities and neighbourhood concerns that need to be addressed when applications for wind farms are proposed
“We have been very pleased with the job Ennova has done in understanding these issues and in being very proactive in identifying and resolving legal challenges.
“We will continue to work with Ennova as we continue to progress other projects and proposals in Scotland.”
Ennova has a dedicated team of seven senior lawyers and additional support staff exclusively dedicated to the renewable energy sector.
John Cumming added: “Ennova is acting for a growing number of developers and investors directly but also offers third party support to other law firms in England advising on Scottish aspects of renewable energy projects and also providing support to other Scottish law firms who are looking for help to resource the work for their clients.”
Ennova is currently involved in a range of renewables projects for clients in Scotland that will potentially provide a combined output of in excess of 750megawatts of power.