One Essex Court has long been recognised as the pre-eminent set of chambers in this area, regularly ranked as the top set by both Chambers UK and The Legal 500.
Work here covers a wide range of industries, including water, oil and gas, coal, nuclear and electricity including hydropower, as well as renewable energy sources such as wind, solar, bio-fuel and geothermal. As such, we are able to field a deep bench of talent at all levels with cutting edge experience of the most up to date issues affecting the constantly evolving domestic and international energy markets.
We are regularly engaged directly by domestic and international energy companies and our expertise includes a detailed understanding of the complex contracts, joint venture agreements and regulation affecting companies operating in the various sectors.
In oil and gas work, we provide advice and assistance in relation a variety of issues affecting upstream, midstream and downstream operations, transportation, distribution and operating agreements, exploration and exploitation agreements, and pipelines, drilling and licensing in the blocks and fields on the UK continental shelf and abroad, as well as disputes concerning pre-emption rights, take-or-pay agreements and force majeure provisions.
Counsel provide advice and guidance in relation to pricing mechanism and tolling agreements, as well as industry-wide price reviews and more general questions of regulation surrounding the Gas Act and the Utilities Act, and all aspects of associated competition regulation.
In electricity, we regularly advise companies in relation to generation and distribution agreements, long term pricing and planning issues surrounding nuclear power installations, as well as associated regulation under the Electricity Act. In addition, we are able to offer expertise in relation to the various Electricity Codes, including the Balancing and Settlement Code (BSC), the Connection and Use of System Code (CUSC), the Distribution Code, the Grid Code and the System Operator-Transmission Owner Code (STC).
Counsel are also able to provide assistance in relation to the evolving ‘renewables’ market, providing guidance in relation to Renewable Obligations Certificates (ROCs) and the Feed-in-Tarriff scheme (FITs). Barristers at One Essex Court also undertake regular secondments to the Office of Gas and Electricity Markets (Ofgem), to assist with a varied range of issues and projects.
In the Water Industry, counsel provide advice and support both to water companies and to the Water Services Regulation Authority (Ofwat), on complex questions of pricing, monopolies, mergers and acquisitions, competition and licensing.
Where litigation or arbitration has proved unavoidable, counsel at One Essex Court have represented industry clients before a variety of courts and tribunals, including those concerned with competition and monopolies. We have also conducted cases raising important issues as to how energy is bought, sold and transported throughout the UK.