Susitna-Watana Hydroelectric Project

The firm serves as environmental licensing and permitting counsel to the State of Alaska through its Alaska Energy Authority (AEA), on the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) licensing of the Susitna-Watana Hydroelectric Project — a proposed multi-billion dollar mega-project that, if constructed, would be the largest greenfield new dam project developed in the United States in nearly 50 years.  The firm is the only outside counsel retained by the State of Alaska in the licensing and permitting effort and has a substantial role in all legal, policy, and strategic matters related to environmental, energy, public lands, natural resources, and cultural resources issues arising in the licensing and permitting process.  This representation includes providing strategic and regulatory counsel on compliance with the Federal Power Act, National Environmental Policy Act, Endangered Species Act, Fish and Wildlife Coordination Act, Magnuson-Stevens Fishery Conservation and Management Act, Clean Water Act, Coastal Zone Management Act, National Historic Preservation Act, and Federal Land Policy and Management Act.  The firm was intimately involved in advising AEA on the scope of the proposed environmental study plan, which includes a suite of nearly 60 individual studies across numerous disciplines.  The firm also provides regulatory and strategic counsel during consultation with federal and state regulators, Native Alaska entities, nongovernmental organizations, and members of the public.