Our fifth year of writing and publishing The Energy Regulation and Markets Review has been marked by significant efforts to reduce greenhouse gases (GHGs), important infrastructure development needs and continued low oil and gas prices. We have also seen divergent positions on existing and future nuclear power generation, and further liberalisation of the energy sector.
With respect to climate change efforts, 177 countries signed the Paris Agreement and 17 countries have ratified the Paris Agreement, which will enter into force after at least 55 countries representing at least 55 per cent of the global greenhouse gas emissions ratify the Agreement. Even prior to the effectiveness of the Paris Agreement, we are seeing significant carbon reduction efforts, such as increased development of renewable resources, as well as energy efficiency and demand reduction measures.
For many countries, reliable energy supply is the key concern, regardless of fuel source. Coal still plays a dominant role in meeting energy supply for Poland, India, Turkey and China. Indonesia’s primary challenge remains to reach its goal of 90 per cent electrification by 2020. The primary concern for India’s energy sector remains the challenge of providing reliable, uninterruptible electricity to its population and India has begun to employ a variety of creative measures (including a transitional state financing programme) to allow distribution companies to expend greater resources on investment in procurement and infrastructure over the next five years.
Low oil and gas prices continue to have adverse impacts for the United Arab Emirates, Mexico, Angola and Nigeria. Exploration and production activity has slowed in the United States because of current oil and gas prices, and low gas prices have led to increases in coal plant retirements.
I would like to thank all the authors for their thoughtful consideration of the myriad of interesting, yet challenging, issues that they have identified in their chapters in this fifth edition of The Energy Regulation and Markets Review.
David Schwartz is a partner in the finance department of Latham & Watkins’ Washington, DC office. He serves as global chair of the energy regulatory and markets practice, is a member of the project finance group, and is co-chair of the firm’s global power industry group. He has extensive experience representing entities involved in electric generation, transmission and distribution, electric and gas marketing and trading, and gas transportation and distribution.
Mr Schwartz has been active in the formation of the developing electricity markets in the United States; led transactional and regulatory teams in mergers and acquisitions and divestitures of energy companies and assets; litigated contract, rate and transmission access disputes; and drafted federal and state energy legislation. He also has extensive experience in negotiating power purchase and sale agreements, electric transmission agreements, natural gas transportation agreements, energy management agreements, and electric and gas interconnection agreements.
Mr Schwartz regularly advises clients on energy matters before the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC), various state public utility commissions, the US Department of Justice (DoJ), the Federal Trade Commission (FTC), the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC), the Commodity Futures Trading Commission (CFTC) and the Department of Energy (DoE).
Mr Schwartz is regularly named as a leading energy lawyer in Corporate Counsel magazine, The Best Lawyers in America, The Legal 500 – United States and both the global and the US Chambers and Partners guides to leading business lawyers. Mr Schwartz is a member of the American Bar Association and has held leadership positions in the Energy Bar Association.
The publisher acknowledges and thanks the following for their learned assistance throughout the preparation of this book: