Experience

Defending Constitutionality of the Wind Energy Act

Verrill successfully defended permits in which the constitutionality of the Wind Energy Act was challenged as well as numerous decisions involving the interpretation and application of sound and scenic standards that govern wind energy developments.

Weaver Wind Project Development

Verrill represented Longroad Energy on development of the Weaver wind project in Maine. Longroad Energy is a Boston, MA-headquartered renewable energy developer focused on the development and operation of wind and solar energy projects throughout North America. The Weaver project is a grid-scale wind energy project located in Hancock, County, Maine. Verrill worked successfully with applicant to obtain State and local approval of the project, including development of a mitigation proposal to address concerns expressed by the state wildlife agency on potential avian impacts. The state permit was issued in May, 2019, and Verrill is currently working with the company on financing and construction of the project. Verrill also advises Longroad Energy on solar development projects in Maine.

Interstate Pipeline

Secured state and federal environmental approvals for Maritimes & Northeast Pipeline, LLC, to construct more than 200 miles of interstate natural gas pipeline facilities connecting New Brunswick to Massachusetts, as well as a subsequent expansion of those facilities.

New Transmission Line

We represented a wind developer in obtaining the environmental and land use permits for a 15-mile 115 kV transmission line connecting the Northern Maine transmission system to ISO-New England.

New Transmission Line

Represented a wind developer on the environmental and land use permits for a 15-mile, 115 kV transmission line connecting the Northern Maine transmission system to ISO-New England.

Permitting

Served as counsel to Novatus Energy LLC on several wind power projects it owns and operates in Maine, including the Bingham Wind Project, which at 186 MW is the largest wind power project in New England. Worked on financings, regulatory compliance, and stakeholder engagement for the Maine projects.

Power Purchase Agreement Approvals

Represented a New York wind developer in proceedings in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island to obtain regulatory approval of power purchase agreements with utilities in those three states pursuant to their tristate clean energy RFP.

Sale of Wind Projects

Served as outside environmental counsel to SunEdison in connection with wind power projects in Maine. Following SunEdison's voluntary petition for reorganization under Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code, Verrill provided advice and support in connection with disposition of certain Maine wind power assets.

Aquaculture

Verrill represents both growers and coastal landowners regarding leasing and licensing of aquaculture enterprises.

Enforcement

Verrill has negotiated and litigated with federal, state, and local entities to resolve violations related to coastal development, including homes, docks, seawalls, shoreland clearing, and commercial fishing operations. We have also negotiated beach management agreements to balance coastal property rights with protection of federal and state endangered species.

Piers, Seawalls and Sand dunes

We have assisted clients in obtaining federal, state, and local regulatory approvals for seawalls, piers, boat ramps, other water-dependent structures, and dune nourishment projects up and down the coast of Maine.

Shoreland Zone Development and Land Use

Verrill represents landowners and developers in siting structures in the shoreland zone (including the seacoast) and ensuring ongoing compliance with the restrictions that govern clearing and development in the shoreland zone.

Bingham Wind Project

Verrill's environmental team successfully permitted the Bingham Wind project, which at 185 MW is the largest wind power project in New England. The project includes fifty-six 3.3 MW Vestas turbines, a transmission line, an O&M building, meteorological towers, and access roads and crane paths, which collectively required permits from the Department of Environmental Protection, the Army Corps of Engineers, and the towns of Bingham, Parkman and Abbott. Verrill continues to work with the project owner to ensure the long-term success of the project.

Champion of Wind Energy Projects

Verrill successfully permitted eleven wind power projects in Maine with an installed capacity of more than 1,000 MW. The team shepherded projects through the Land Use Regulation Commission, Department of Environmental Protection, Army Corps of Engineers, and multiple towns where project elements are located.

In the Bingham Wind project, Verrill permitted a 17 mile generator lead line that traversed organized and unorganized jurisdiction in Maine. The permits included a federal Army Corps of Engineers Section 404 permit, Maine Department of Environmental Protection Site Law and NRPA permits, as well as several local permits.

In the Saddleback Ridge Wind project, Verrill assisted Patriot Renewables in permitting 9.5 miles of generator lead in the towns of Carthage, Dixfield and Canton, Maine. The permits included a federal Army Corps of Engineers Section 404 permit, Maine Department of Environmental Protection Site Location and NRPA permits, utility location permits from the Maine DOT and the Town of Carthage, and a building permit from the Town of Dixfield.

Approval of Interstate Natural Gas Pipeline

Verrill secured state and federal environmental approvals for Maritimes & Northeast Pipeline, L.L.C. to construct more than 200 miles of interstate natural gas pipeline facilities connecting New Brunswick to Massachusetts, as well as a subsequent expansion of those facilities.

Defending Constitutionality of the Wind Energy Act

Verrill successfully defended permits in which the constitutionality of the Wind Energy Act was challenged as well as numerous decisions involving the interpretation and application of sound and scenic standards that govern wind energy developments.

Independence Wind: Wind Power Development

We represented Independence Wind in the development of its Record Hill Wind project in Roxbury, Maine. The Record Hill Wind project is a 22-turbine, 50-megawatt facility located along the ridgelines of Record Hill, Flathead Mountain, and Partridge Peak. We obtained the following favorable rulings in appeals of Record Hill Wind's permits issued by the Maine Department of Environmental Protection:

  • On March 24, 2011, the Maine Supreme Court comprehensively denied opponents' appeal of the Maine Board of Environmental Protection's approval of Record Hill Wind's DEP development permit.
  • On March 18, 2010, the Maine Board of Environmental Protection rejected all claims made by project opponents and affirmed Record Hill Wind's DEP development permit.

Patriot Renewables: Wind Power Development

We represented Patriot Renewables in the development of several wind power projects in western Maine. In addition to assisting Patriot in obtaining federal, state, and local permitting approvals, our appellate work for Patriot has included the following favorable decisions:

  • On February 3, 2011, the Maine Board of Environmental Protection rejected all claims made by opponents of Patriot's Spruce Mountain Wind project and affirmed the project's development permit issued by the Department of Environmental Protection.
  • On December 16, 2010, the Town of Woodstock Board of Appeals dismissed an opponent's challenge to the Spruce Mountain Wind project's municipal land use permit issued by the Town of Woodstock.

Purchaser Representation: 300,000 Acre Timberland Deal

We represented the purchaser in the acquisition of more than 300,000 acres of timberland in Northern Maine, including negotiation of purchase and sale agreement, entity formation, tax advice, loan representation, environmental due diligence and ongoing operational assistance.

Shoreland Zone Development and Land Use

Verrill represents landowners and developers in siting structures in the shoreland zoning and ensuring ongoing compliance with the restrictions that govern clearing and development in the shoreland zone. We recently resolved an enforcement matter due to a contractor erroneously clearing vegetation in the coastal zone and have worked with landowners and municipalities to incorporate the State's recent amendments to the model shoreland zoning ordinance to address removal of danger trees and invasive species.

SunEdison Massachusetts Solar Projects

In 2013, Verrill represented First Wind in its acquisition and subsequent re-financing of several solar projects in Massachusetts. The projects are now supplying power to off-site users including the University of Massachusetts system.

TransCanada: Wind Power Permitting

We represented TransCanada on the development and permitting of its wind power projects in Maine. TransCanada's first Maine project, the Kibby Wind Project, is a 132 MW wind power project located in the Western Boundary Mountains of Maine, and an associated 27-mile transmission line connecting the project to the electrical grid. Permitting of the Kibby Wind Project required rezoning and environmental permitting before the Land Use Regulation Commission (LURC), which is the zoning and planning body for Maine's more than 10 million acres of unorganized territories. In addition to permitting before LURC, the project required permits from the Maine Department of Environmental Protection, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, and selected local permits. When it was completed, the project was the largest operating wind power project in New England. In 2011, TransCanada was awarded the Environmental Business Council of New England's Outstanding Environmental - Energy Achievement Award for the Kibby Wind Project.

We also represented TransCanada in connection with development and permitting of the Sisk Wind Project, a 33 MW wind power project, in close proximity to the Kibby Wind Project. As a result of wind power legislation passed during 2008, the proposed Sisk Project is located in a newly designated "expedited wind permitting area."

Click below to access specific examples of Real Estate experience related to TransCanada.

TransCanada Maine Wind Development Inc.

Waste Management: Solid Waste and Air Permitting

We represented Waste Management on the solid waste and air permitting associated with its Crossroads landfill in Norridgewock, Maine, including the permitting of its landfill gas to energy facility located there. We provide ongoing regulatory compliance counsel to Waste Management in its operation of Crossroads, the only remaining commercial landfill in Maine.

Wind Generator Lead Lines

In the Kibby Wind project, Verrill permitted 27 miles of generator lead line that traversed both organized and unorganized jurisdictions in Maine. The permits included a federal Army Corps of Engineers Section 404 permit, Maine Department of Environmental Protection Site Location and NRPA permits, and Maine Land Use Regulation Commission approvals.

In the Stetson Wind project, Verrill permitted 38 miles of generator lead line that traversed both organized and unorganized jurisdictions in Maine. The permits included a federal Army Corps of Engineers Section 404 permit and Maine Department of Environmental Protection Site Law and NRPA permits.

In the Oakfield Wind project, Verrill permitted 56 miles of generator lead line that traversed both organized and unorganized jurisdictions in Maine. The permits included a federal Army Corps of Engineers Section 404 permit, Maine Department of Environmental Protection Site Law and NRPA permits, as well as several local permits.

In the Bingham Wind project, Verrill permitted a 17 mile generator lead line that traversed organized and unorganized jurisdiction in Maine. The permits included a federal Army Corps of Engineers Section 404 permit, Maine Department of Environmental Protection Site Law and NRPA permits, as well as several local permits.

In the Saddleback Ridge Wind project, Verrill assisted Patriot Renewables in permitting 9.5 miles of generator lead in the towns of Carthage, Dixfield and Canton, Maine. The permits included a federal Army Corps of Engineers Section 404 permit, Maine Department of Environmental Protection Site Location and NRPA permits, utility location permits from the Maine DOT and the Town of Carthage, and a building permit from the Town of Dixfield.

Firm Highlights

Matter

Weaver Wind Project Development

Verrill represented Longroad Energy on development of the Weaver wind project in Maine. Longroad Energy is a Boston, MA-headquartered renewable energy developer focused on the development and operation of wind and solar energy projects...

News

Nearly 80 Verrill Attorneys Recognized by Best Lawyers® 2021, Including a Dozen Named Lawyers of the Year

(August 24, 2020) – Nearly 80 Verrill attorneys were recognized as "Best Lawyers" by Best Lawyers® 2021 , including 12 attorneys named “Lawyer of the Year,” a distinguished recognition for only a single lawyer...

Publication/Podcast

7th Annual Maine Natural Gas Conference

On Thursday, October 3, 2019, Verrill and Pierce Atwood hosted our 7th Annual Maine Natural Gas Conference. Verrill attorney William Harwood and Pierce Atwood attorney John Gulliver led the day as our industry professionals...

Matter

Defending Constitutionality of the Wind Energy Act

Verrill successfully defended permits in which the constitutionality of the Wind Energy Act was challenged as well as numerous decisions involving the interpretation and application of sound and scenic standards that govern wind energy...

Blog

Maine Law Court Holds Citizen's Initiative Cannot Block CMP's NECEC Transmission Line

Blog

Verrill Helps State’s Largest Solar Project Obtain Principal Environmental Permit

Matter

Power Purchase Agreement Approvals

Represented a New York wind developer in proceedings in Connecticut, Massachusetts, and Rhode Island to obtain regulatory approval of power purchase agreements with utilities in those three states pursuant to their tristate clean energy...

Blog

Verrill Helps State’s Largest Solar Project Obtain Principal Environmental Permit

News

38 Verrill Attorneys, Across Four Offices, Recognized in 2020 Chambers & Partners Guide

(April 27, 2020) – Verrill has been rated as a Leading Firm in a total of ten categories and subcategories as evaluated by London-based Chambers & Partners , one of the world's most respected...

Blog

Verrill’s Jim Cohen to Moderate Portland Chamber’s “Eggs & Issues” Discussion with Key State Officials regarding COVID-19

On Wednesday April 8, Verrill attorney and Portland Community Chamber of Commerce president James Cohen will moderate the Portland Chamber’s first-ever “virtual” Eggs & Issues on the subject of Maine’s response to the COVID-19...