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Andrew Jack has a diverse corporate and securities practice with clients principally in the energy, industrial manufacturing, technology and sports and entertainment industries. He regularly represents corporations, board committees, and other forms of enterprises in mergers and acquisitions, strategic alliances, financing activities, securities law compliance, corporate governance counseling, and executive compensation arrangements. Mr. Jack also co-chairs the firm's Energy Industry Group.

Today The Vanguard Group, the Nation’s second largest fund group with over $4 trillion in assets under management, issued three publications — a press release, an open letter by Vanguard’s CEO, and its 2017 Investment Stewardship Annual Report  — highlighting Vanguard’s evolving view that responsible disclosure and management of climate risk is an

While the direction of Trump Administration policymaking on climate risk appears to deny concern, the largest U.S. public equity funds are sharpening their focus and concern about this subject.

Last week BlackRock, the Nation’s largest funds group with $5.1 trillion in assets under management, updated its investment stewardship guidance and highlighted climate risk management as

Moving forward, in part, on a campaign promise to adopt an infrastructure plan to “transform America’s crumbling infrastructure,” today President Trump issued an Executive Order titled “Expediting Environmental Reviews and Approvals for High Priority Infrastructure Projects.”
Continue Reading Trump Executive Order Labels “Improving the U.S. Electric Grid” as a “High Priority Infrastructure Project”

As expected, with the inauguration of President Trump all Obama Administration content on the White House website has been replaced with content of the new Administration. The new content includes “An America First Energy Plan”, the entire focus of which is national security and job creation benefits of the Administration’s “embrace” and promotion of

Official publications of the Trump campaign and transition team propose significant changes in energy policies.   The principal focus of the proposed policy changes addresses energy independence and job creation through greater production of fossil fuel resources.  But apart from pronouncements to “scrap … the Clean Power Plan” there is little to glean from the official publications regarding the incoming administration’s plans to address the much needed transformation of the Nation’s electricity system.

Additional insights about potential Trump administration policies affecting the electric power sector can be gleaned from assorted comments by the President-elect and transition team officials. Since the election, they have signaled possible policy initiatives to scrutinize wind energy subsidies and bird kill impacts, promote nuclear energy and lift restrictions on “clean coal”.  But these hints at policy direction, coupled with an intention to move away from the Clean Power Plan, still leave the electric power industry awash in uncertainty regarding future federal policies to modernize and increase the efficiency, resiliency and security of the Nation’s power grid.

Meanwhile the corporate sector continues to demand federal policies to promote American prosperity through clean energy transformation and is focused on locating business operations in states that facilitate corporate procurement of clean energy.  Independent of clean energy and climate change considerations, the leading trade association of the electric utility industry is highly focused on grid modernization through efforts to redesign and transform the use and operation of the grid to integrate distributed energy resources, replace distribution lines and deploy new technologies and systems that will enhance reliability, resiliency and efficiency.    
Continue Reading Transforming the Nation’s Electricity System: Survivable Elements of Obama’s Policy Roadmap for the Trump Administration

Fundamental changes in the way that the electric utility and power sector operates, interacts with customers, and relates to its regulators are occurring on a massive scale and at an unprecedented pace. Covington is committed to exploring these transformations affecting the power sector, helping our clients to understand and navigate the changes, and fostering collaborations to respond to the evolving nature of the power grid.

To this end, Covington has hosted a series of conversations with key thought leaders in industry and government to address the ramifications of these transformations. The first two conversations in the fall of 2015 focused on both the technology that underlies and enables these changes, and the response of the regulatory framework to the rise of distributed generation and a far more nimble and customer-oriented array of electricity services. A summary of these conversations can be found here.

On October 5, 2016 Covington, in collaboration with the American Council on Renewable Energy (ACORE) and Advanced Energy Economy (AEE), hosted a conversation devoted to the issue of corporate energy procurement. Senior representatives of corporations, utilities, developers, government agencies and NGOs participated in person and by webinar. Followers on Twitter joined the conversation at #CovingtonGOTF. Highlights of the discussion appear below with a link to the full audio replay.

October 5, 2016 – Covington’s Washington, DC Office Corporate Procurement & Renewable Energy: Market Overview (click here for the recording)


Continue Reading Grid of the Future: Opportunities, Challenges, and Solutions in Corporate Energy Procurement

As has been widely reported, on November 12 President Obama and China’s President Xi Jinping released a joint announcement on climate change and clean energy cooperation.  Beyond the announced greenhouse gas emission targets—for the U.S., to reduce emissions 26-28% below 2005 levels by 2025; for China, (i) to peak CO2 emissions by around 2030, with

On March 28, His Serene Highness, Prince Albert II of Monaco bestowed innovation awards for excellence in the field of environmental technology to three emerging technology companies — Mango Materials, Frigesco, and One Earth Designs — out of a field of 22 companies from 11 countries that participated in the annual three-day CleanEquity

On Monday this week a consortium of thirteen investment banks announced their support for a set of “Green Bond Principles” that are intended as voluntary guidelines to encourage greater and more consistent transparency, disclosure and integrity in the development of the burgeoning Green Bond market.

Green Bonds are a category of debt instruments issued by multilateral development agencies and other commercial project development financiers the proceeds of which are applied exclusively to projects that promote climate or other environmental sustainability.  Projects that have tapped Green Bond funding include renewable energy projects, energy efficiency retrofits, clean water resources and sustainable waste management projects.  These instruments provide a vehicle for investors in fixed income securities to support clean energy and other sustainability initiatives.  According to a Reuters report, over $10 billion in Green Bonds were issued in 2013.
Continue Reading Major Banks Sign On to Disclosure Guidelines for Green Bonds