Overview

Lisa Cottle is a partner in the Real Estate and Land Use Practice Group in the firm's San Francisco office, and a member of the Energy, Infrastructure and Project Finance Team.

Areas of Practice

Lisa’s practice focuses on energy project development and regulatory matters in the electric power industry. She is recognized by Chambers USA, The Legal 500, Lawdragon, and Best Lawyers in America as a leading practitioner in these areas. Testimonials in these publications include: “She is incredibly responsive, a creative thinker, and very persistent in finding and developing the right answer;” and “She has a deep knowledge of how utilities approach negotiations and how to get power purchase agreements approved.”

Lisa has extensive experience with electricity generation, storage and transmission projects, including negotiating power purchase agreements (PPAs) and the full range of project contracts, obtaining key permits and regulatory approvals, and supporting project finance transactions. Her PPA experience includes energy sales and purchases, capacity and resource adequacy agreements, tolling agreements, and storage agreements. She has experience with a broad range of projects, including solar, battery energy storage, geothermal, wind, biomass, and natural gas. She handles wholesale and retail transactions for sellers and buyers.

Lisa also has extensive energy regulatory experience. She represents energy companies and project developers in regulatory proceedings before administrative agencies, particularly the California Public Utilities Commission (CPUC) and the California Energy Commission (CEC). She represents developers of transmission projects in obtaining certificates of public convenience and necessity (CPCNs) and permits to construct (PTCs) from the CPUC and in compliance matters. She has obtained CEC certification for large thermal projects in California. Her permitting experience includes review under the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA).

Experience

Experience

Representative matters include the following.

Transmission

  • Represent transmission utility in obtaining a CPCN and related approvals from the CPUC for a first‑of‑its‑kind electric transmission project in California that was awarded through a competitive solicitation conducted by the California Independent System Operator Corporation (CAISO).
  • Represent transmission utility in application for a PTC from the CPUC to construct a new 230 kV substation in California that was awarded through a CAISO competitive solicitation.
  • Represent transmission utilities in CPUC proceedings relating to wildfire mitigation plans and implementation of related California statutory requirements for wildfire mitigation.
  • Represent transmission utility and its owners in obtaining CPUC approval for a change of control of the utility.
  • Represent renewable project developers as intervenors in CPUC proceedings involving public utility applications for approval of transmission projects, including environmental review under CEQA.

Generation, Storage, and Electricity Sales

  • Represent developers of solar generating facilities in negotiating PPAs for projects across the U.S.
  • Represent developers of co‑located and standalone energy storage projects in negotiating PPAs and energy storage agreements.
  • Represent California community choice aggregator in negotiating PPAs for solar, storage, and wind facilities, and in negotiating resource adequacy agreements.
  • Represent large commercial and industrial energy consumers in negotiating energy management and electricity and gas supply agreements.
  • Represent publicly owned utility in negotiating structured energy services agreement for large hydroelectric projects.
  • Represent developers and owners of gas-fired generating projects in negotiating PPAs, resource adequacy agreements, and other project contracts; CEC licensing proceedings; CPUC contract approval proceedings; and project financings.
  • Represent energy project developers as real parties in interest in successfully defeating writ petitions seeking to overturn CPUC decisions approving PPAs for new energy projects in California.
  • Represent developers of on-site solar and combined heat and power facilities in negotiating retail power sales agreements with end use customers.
  • Represent project developers in CPUC proceedings addressing long-term procurement planning, resource adequacy requirements for load serving entities, and implementation of California’s renewables portfolio standard.
  • Represent energy project owners in compliance matters relating to California Assembly Bill 32 and carbon emissions cap and trade program.

Honors

Honors

Leading Lawyer in Energy: State Regulatory & Litigation, Chambers USA since 2012 (individually ranked in Band 2)

“Key Lawyer" for Energy Regulation: Conventional Power, The Legal 500 U.S., 2021

500 Leading Environmental & Energy Lawyers, Lawdragon, 2021

Recognized for Energy Law, The Best Lawyers in America® since 2013

“Lawyer of the Year” for Energy Law, The Best Lawyers in America®, 2020

Ranked in Energy Transactions: Conventional Power, The Legal 500 U.S., 2016 and 2018

Ranked in Energy: Regulatory, The Legal 500 U.S. since 2016

Women in Law Award for Up-and-Coming Lawyer of the Year in Energy & Projects, Chambers, 2013

Guide to the World’s Leading Women in Business Law in the Energy and Natural Resources practice area, Expert Guides, since 2015

Women Leaders in the Law, Martindale-Hubbell

Insights

Media Mentions

Education

J.D., University of Pennsylvania, 1993

B.A., Colgate University, 1990, cum laude

Admissions

  • California
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