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Andrew Hedges

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Andrew Hedges is a climate change and clean energy lawyer based in London. He works on a range of transactions driven by the ongoing transition to a low carbon economy. His expertise spans the development of renewable energy projects, energy efficiency, sustainable energy procurement (including long term corporate PPAs) and carbon finance. Andrew also provides regulatory advice impacting on the design of a range of energy transactions. Andrew is ranked as a Band 1 individual by Chambers Global.

In November 2022 the UK Government announced a new, temporary 45% levy on “exceptional” receipts generated from the production of wholesale electricity and published a “technical note” on the operation of the levy. Despite heavy criticism of the move by many clean energy market participants, on 20 December 2022 the UK Government confirmed its intention to press ahead with the EGL by publishing a supplementary technical note and draft legislation outlining the details of how the new tax would operate. The EGL has been introduced from 1 January 2023 and will have an impact on existing and potential investors in the UK clean energy market.

Multinational groups are increasingly likely to use voluntary carbon credits as part of their efforts to decarbonize their businesses and achieve their climate goals. There are a number of tax complexities and risks depending on how voluntary carbon credits are going to be acquired and used by companies and further guidance from HMRC would be welcomed, particularly as the market grows and becomes more regulated. Where multinational groups are taking a strategic approach to their offset activity, tax functions should play an active role in design and implementing structured arrangements.

Baker McKenzie, Trench Rossi Watanabe*, ICC UK and ICC Brasil present “COP Casts”, a series of interviews exploring climate change issues with experts representing a wide range of industries. Discussions on opportunities, complexities and challenges related to carbon markets in particular will introduce our audience to some of the topics that will be centre-stage at the upcoming 27th United Nations Climate Change Conference (COP27) in Sharm El-Sheik, Egypt, from 6 to 18 November 2022.

*Trench Rossi Watanabe and Baker McKenzie have executed a strategic cooperation agreement for consulting on foreign law.

TMT companies are often the first to develop innovative solutions and to face increasingly sophisticated regulation of key technologies they develop. As such, they have a unique opportunity to shape many areas including data strategies aligned to I&D, the future of remote work, and due diligence requirements for supply chains. A focus on data ethics underscores companies’ management of tangled data regulations and obligations as stewards of data. Additionally, TMT companies will also continue to develop and support innovative technologies to access and store renewable energy.

Voluntary carbon credit markets are rapidly expanding with significant increases in both trade volumes and investors looking for emission reduction/sequestration projects. Key to investment decisions are assumptions on the ability to use GHG reductions/sequestration achieved in a host country as the basis for issuing voluntary carbon credits that can be traded internationally. Please join us on 27 July for a 45 minute webinar in which Baker McKenzie will provide an overview of these issues and some of the themes that can be drawn from recent developments in Asia and Africa.

On 7 April 2022 the UK published its Energy Security Strategy. The key aim of the strategy is for the UK to achieve long-term independence from foreign energy sources and decarbonise the nation’s power supply. The strategy echoes the communication released on 8 March 2022 by the European Commission in relation to the Joint European Action for more affordable, secure and sustainable energy.
The UK’s Energy Security Strategy reinforces the Government’s commitment to decarbonisation, with an ambitious new target for offshore wind by 2030 and a doubling of the previous target for hydrogen production in the same time frame.

As the penetration of renewable energy increases, maintaining grid reliability becomes ever more challenging and costly. This Baker McKenzie report highlights key opportunities and challenges for the energy storage sector both from a global perspective and from the perspective of several key jurisdictions, and the significance of its role in enabling the energy transition.