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As leading companies continue to renew and execute their strategic plans, they must take proper account of risks to capital and goodwill arising from climate change.  Bracewell applies decades of experience in advising senior corporate leadership on effective risk management and public disclosure of environmental issues, including specifically climate change.  Whether contemplating the acquisition or divestiture of major assets, the development of new or improved infrastructure such as plant modifications or new-build, or leveraging the balance sheet through financing to fulfill a strategic mandate, corporate boards face regulatory uncertainties, litigation risk, shifting legislative signals, and vocal shareholder advocacy about the proper role of climate-related risk in corporate decisions.  The increasing oversight of federal agencies and state attorneys general only complicates the task.

Our team includes noted authorities on corporate governance systems designed to integrate risks such as climate change into a company’s operational and managerial systems.  Likewise we have deep experience advising corporate management on the legal and non-legal demands for effective disclosure of climate-related issues to shareholders and the public.  We are as comfortable advising senior leadership on internal governance strategies as on the climate change aspects of mergers and acquisitions, private and public financing, bids in 363 bankruptcy sales, periodic reporting to the SEC, shareholder initiatives, Congressional inquiries, and state and federal investigations.

Selected Experience

Advised a major energy company in responding to a shareholder proposal concerning climate change, including the development of a public climate-change report that adequately addressed the proposal’s constituencies while maintaining the company focus on corporate objectives.

Comprehensively advised senior management of a market-leading company based abroad concerning the climate- and environment-related risks associated with the contemplated acquisition of a major company in the United States.

Represented one of five energy companies against whom the New York Attorney General initiated a highly public Martin Act investigation into the adequacy of corporate disclosures to shareholders concerning climate change risks and opportunities, securing the AG’s agreement to discontinue the investigation.

Represented a leading bank in the $2.1 billion refinancing of an oil refining and distribution company in the context of substantial concerns about new climate change legislation and regulatory requirements.

Represented a major investment house with respect to the federal permitting of an infrastructure project in which the lead agency required some of the earliest analysis ever required with respect to the anticipated effects of climate change, including sea level rise and emissions criteria.

Assisted an independent power producer in its effort to build public support, secure state legislative action and obtain permits for a large coal-fired plant on Navajo Nation lands in the Four Corners area of New Mexico. This project included counseling and advocacy on how climate change concerns would be dealt with under pending GHG regulation and legislation, National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) analysis, public affairs management, interaction with the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Fish and Wildlife Service, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, Council on Environmental Quality, and the Bureau of Land Management.