Picture of Robert Lane

Robert Lane

Head of the CMS Energy Group

CMS Cameron McKenna Nabarro Olswang LLP
Cannon Place
78 Cannon Street
United Kingdom
Languages English

Robert Lane is Head of the CMS Energy Group.

Robert is Head of the Regulated Industries team (power, water, gas, clean energy), and has been advising in the energy sector for over 25 years. The practice is the market leader and has advised on, and created, many of the innovative and ground breaking elements of the developing electricity industry structures and markets in the UK and throughout the world.

His work covers all elements of the power industry, from nuclear through networks and renewables, and includes restructurings and market reform, privatisations, regulatory and commercial advice, M&A, financings, competition/regulatory appeals, trading and disputes

Robert advises utilities, infrastructure funds, governments, banks, regulators and large users of electricity on generation (conventional, nuclear and renewables), transmission, distribution, supply and interconnectors, structure, legislation, licences, secondary legislation, industry Codes including Grid Codes, Distribution Codes, Trading Codes, industry agreements, including connection agreements, capacity agreements, CfDs, on ancillary services, metering, disputes and CMA Appeals.  He also advises on M&A transactions, joint ventures and projects. He works extensively throughout the world with recent advice including in Saudi Arabia, Iceland, Japan and Mauritius.

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"Robert Lane is at the forefront of power work both in the UK and abroad. He is an acknowledged expert on electricity markets and is frequently consulted by governments on their regulation and structure. "He is very personable and extremely knowledgeable," say sources; "it is his many years of experience that allows him to turn problems into solutions." He is a Star Individual."


Relevant experience

  • Transmission and Distribution:  all aspects of transmission and distribution issues, having originally restructured and privatised National Grid in 1990.  He wrote the E&W Grid Code, which has been one of the main templates for grid codes throughout the world, and developed the connection agreement and now code, the ancillary services arrangements, the wholesale trading arrangements (the Pool and subsequently NETA and BETTA).  In Northern Ireland, he restructured and privatised the industry in 1992 acting for Northern Ireland Electricity, developing the Grid and Distribution Code, connection arrangements, Power Purchase Agreements, Wholesale trading arrangements, and supply arrangements.  He has continued to advise in both jurisdictions covering issues such as Contestability, Balancing Arrangements, Incentives and price controls generally, and has worked on transmission and distribution related issues throughout the world, including in Australia, New Zealand, the Philippines, Inia, the US, Canada, Mexico, Italy, Slovakia, Belgium, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Japan and South Africa.  He also advises on Offshore Transmission (OFTOs).  In Ireland he advised on the restructuring of ESB, including on the Grid Code, connection arrangements, legislation and licensing, trading, and wholesale market reform.
  • Nuclear:  all aspects, with advice over the years including on Sizewell B, on the nuclear provisions in the Grid Code, on decommissioning in Slovakia, where he authored the funding legislation, on the creation of Horizon Nuclear Power and the development of the projects at Anglesey and Oldbury, on the bid for British Energy by an overseas utility, EDF Energy on nuclear new build in the UK.
  • Electricity Market Reform:  all elements of electricity market reform, restructurings and privatisations, having advised originally on the England & Wales and Northern Ireland restructurings between 1988 and 1993.  Most recently he advised National Grid on EMR in the UK, covering the CfD and capacity market regimes, which involved working closely with government and Ofgem, and the industry parties.  Other restructurings throughout the world include Victoria Australia, New Zealand, India, South Africa, Mexico, Russia, Ontario, Ireland, Greece, Saudi Arabia, Japan, Italy, Belgium and Turkey.
  • CMA Appeals:  successful on the first appeals to the CMA in relation to price controls, where he acted for a DNO in connection with the appeals brought by British Gas and by NPG against the ED1 distribution system price controls.  This was a brand new process, applied for the first time, and undertaken in a short time window. 
  • Interconnectors:  in 1988 in relation to the position of the existing England-France interconnector in the context of the E&W restructuring and privatisation, and has subsequently advised on nearly all the interconnectors since built and is currently advising on a number being planned and developed.  Recent advice has included on the Western Link, on the interconnectors to Belgium, to Norway, the Netherlands, on the Channel Islands Electricity Grid, on FAB Link and on IFA2.  He has also advised on the UK-Iceland link, on Eastern Link and the Moyle.  As well as HVDC links, he has also advised in relation to a number of AC links, and on capacity allocation arrangements, interconnector operating arrangements and interconnector trading generally. 
  • IME3:  all the internal market in electricity directives and their implementation in a number of European States, and recently has advised widely on certification of transmission under the IME3 Directive, including on the exceptional Article 9(9) models.  He advises on all aspects of European directives and regulations affecting the electricity industry. 
  • Conventional generation and renewables:  gas and coal powered projects, biomass, offshore wind, storage, district heating and cooling, and solar. 
  • Supply:  all aspects of supply businesses including licensing, regulatory requirements, M&A, supply terms, trading, metering, supply competition and establishing new supply businesses.  Philippines: on restructuring issues.
  • M&A:  purchasers and sellers in relation to nuclear, conventional generation, networks, supply and OFTOs.
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  • 1982 - Solicitor of the Supreme Court
  • 1979 – LLB, UCL, London
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  • Past Chairman, The UK Government's Power Sector Advisory Group
  • Executive Member, The Parliamentary Group for Energy Studies
  • Board Member, The British Electricity Association
  • Board Member, The Energy Industries Club
  • Chairman, The Energy Committee of the City of London Solicitors Company
  • Board Member of the Nuclear Industry Association
  • Appointed CBE in 2001 for services to trade and business.
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Show only
25 April 2018
De­liv­er­ing first-class ex­pert­ise to the wa­ter sec­tor
European Com­mis­sion is­sues guid­ance doc­u­ment on en­ergy trans­mis­sion...
On 8 May 2018, the European Com­mis­sion pub­lished guid­ance on how en­ergy in­fra­struc­ture pro­jects on land and at sea can op­er­ate in ac­cord­ance with re­quire­ments of the EU Hab­it­ats and Birds Dir­ect­ives, (to­geth­er the “Nature Dir­ect­ives”).
CMS scoops En­ergy Team of the Year at The Law­yer Awards
Re­forms pro­posed to al­low DNOs to charge for con­nec­tion of­fers
The draft Elec­tri­city (Con­nec­tion Of­fer Ex­penses) Reg­u­la­tions 2018 (the “Reg­u­la­tions”) were pub­lished on 28 Feb­ru­ary 2018. The Reg­u­la­tions provide for dis­tri­bu­tion net­work op­er­at­ors (“DNOs”) to re­cov­er cer­tain charges in re­la­tion to dis­tri­bu­tion con­nec­tion.
CMS se­lec­ted to ad­vise the Mex­ic­an Gov­ern­ment on Elec­tri­city...
Cus­tom­er data in the util­it­ies sec­tor
Fol­low­ing our pre­vi­ous art­icle on Ofwat’s fi­nal meth­od­o­logy for the 2019 Price Re­view (“PR19”), this art­icle fo­cuses on one of the areas that Ofwat is ex­pect­ing to see covered in un­der­tak­ings’ 2020-2025 busi­ness plans: cus­tom­er data.
CMS strengthens plan­ning team with new ap­point­ment
Clear­ing price plum­mets in T-4 Ca­pa­city Auc­tion
On 9 Feb­ru­ary 2018, Na­tion­al Grid pub­lished the Pro­vi­sion­al Auc­tion Res­ults for the 2017 T-4 Ca­pa­city Mar­ket Auc­tion (the “2017 Auc­tion”), which com­menced on 7 Feb­ru­ary 2018. The suc­cess­ful bid­ders have been pro­vi­sion­ally awar­ded Ca­pa­city Agree­ments for de­liv­ery.
State Aid in the en­ergy sec­tor
Cur­rent is­sues - Sum­mer 2014
Off­shore re­new­ables: pro­posed up­dates to the BEIS de­com­mis­sion­ing...
The gov­ern­ment De­part­ment of Busi­ness, En­ergy and In­dus­tri­al Strategy (BEIS) pub­lished a con­sulta­tion on Wed­nes­day 7 Feb­ru­ary pro­pos­ing amend­ments to its guid­ance for de­velopers and op­er­at­ors of off­shore re­new­able gen­er­at­ing sta­tions and trans­mis­sion as­sets.
Ten Year Net­work De­vel­op­ment Plan up­date: ENTSO-E pub­lishes re­ports...
On 2 Feb­ru­ary 2018 the European Net­work of Trans­mis­sion Sys­tem Op­er­at­ors for Elec­tri­city (“ENTSO-E”) re­leased Europe Power Sys­tem 2040: com­plet­ing the map (the “Pan-European Re­port”), to­geth­er with six Re­gion­al In­vest­ment Plans.
Ofwat's price re­view mod­el: track­ing pro­gress against PR14
Fol­low­ing our pre­vi­ous art­icle on the fi­nal meth­od­o­logy for the 2019 Price Re­view (“PR19”), this week we ex­am­ine pro­gress to date in light of the pre­vi­ous re­view (“PR14”). Back­ground Since privat­isa­tion, the life of the wa­ter in­dustry has been split in­to “as­set.
Res­ults of the 2017 CEF En­ergy Call for Pro­pos­als
The EU In­nov­a­tion and Net­works Ex­ec­ut­ive Agency (IN­EA) an­nounced on 25 Janu­ary 2018 the ap­prov­al of €873 mil­lion of fund­ing for 17 European in­fra­struc­ture pro­jects in the elec­tri­city and gas sec­tors. The fund­ing will be provided un­der the Con­nect­ing Europe.
House of Lord­s' European Com­mit­tee pub­lishes re­port on en­ergy se­cur­ity...
On 29 Janu­ary 2018 the House of Lords European Com­mit­tee (the “Com­mit­tee”) pub­lished their re­port on en­ergy se­cur­ity in the UK (the “Re­port”) fol­low­ing with­draw­al from the European Uni­on (the “EU”).
Ofwat price con­trols: PR19 fi­nal meth­od­o­logy
On 13 Decem­ber 2017, Ofwat pub­lished the fi­nal meth­od­o­logy for its 2019 Price Re­view (“PR19”). Ofwat’s fi­nal de­term­in­a­tion in Decem­ber 2019, based on this meth­od­o­logy, will set lim­its on the prices that each wa­ter and/or wastewa­ter un­der­tak­ing can charge its.
New Sit­ing Cri­ter­ia for large Nuc­le­ar Power Sta­tions
On 7 Decem­ber 2017, the De­part­ment for Busi­ness, En­ergy & In­dus­tri­al Strategy is­sued a con­sulta­tion on sit­ing cri­ter­ia and pro­cess for a new Na­tion­al Policy State­ment (“NPS”) on nuc­le­ar power (the “Con­sulta­tion”).
CFD Re­gime: Changes for Fu­ture Al­loc­a­tion Rounds
In­tro­duc­tion On 15 Decem­ber 2017, the Gov­ern­ment re­leased their con­sulta­tion on amend­ments to the Con­tracts for Dif­fer­ence (“CfD”) re­gime (the “Con­sulta­tion”). Fol­low­ing much un­cer­tainty over the status of re­mote is­land on­shore wind (“RIW”) (dis­cussed in our.
Ofgem seeks to fa­cil­it­ate co-loc­a­tion of stor­age with re­new­ables
On 14 Decem­ber 2017, Ofgem pub­lished its “Draft Guid­ance for gen­er­at­ors: Co-loc­a­tion of elec­tri­city stor­age fa­cil­it­ies with re­new­able gen­er­a­tion sup­por­ted un­der the Re­new­ables Ob­lig­a­tion or Feed-in Tar­iff schemes” (the “Draft Guid­ance”).