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Hinckley Allen helps Deepwater Wind in the initial phase of developing country’s first offshore wind farm

Litigation, Environmental

Hinckley Allen played a pivotal role in advancing the Deepwater Wind project off Block Island, which will become the first offshore wind farm in the United States after closing last week on more than $290 million in financing.

“This is a trailblazing project, and we have been a close partner of Deepwater Wind since its inception,” said Jerry Petros, who leads Hinckley Allen’s energy practice and whose team has spent seven years working with the Providence-based developer on a novel array of legal, regulatory and business matters. “The breadth of the project required a multi-disciplinary approach. Our expertise in energy, regulatory and litigation matters and our ability to reach across practice areas and find practical solutions to challenging issues contributed to our success with Deepwater Wind.”

With its financing secured and all permits in place, the path is now clear to begin construction of the first-of-its-kind project. The 30-megawatt offshore wind farm will include five wind turbines located in Rhode Island state waters, approximately three miles south of Block Island.

“We are on the cusp of bringing offshore wind from theory to reality in the U.S., and we’re incredibly proud of our position at the forefront of the U.S. offshore wind industry,” said Deepwater Wind CEO Jeffry Grybowski. He added that the critical legal matters the project faced, including several lawsuits, involved complicated, cutting-edge regulatory issues. “Over the years, we’ve called on Hinckley Allen to help in virtually all of these areas. Very few of our legal issues are narrow in focus; most are broad strategic issues that are at the core of our business. We’ve come to rely on Hinckley Allen for their advice on these matters.”

With construction commencing this summer, Deepwater expects that “blades will spin” in the fourth quarter of 2016.