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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
State Aid in the en­ergy sec­tor
Cur­rent is­sues - Sum­mer 2014
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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.
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.
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.
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.
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”).
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.
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”).
Gov­ern­ment cuts pay­ments to lim­ited dur­a­tion stor­age
On 4 Decem­ber 2017, the Gov­ern­ment pub­lished its re­sponse to the con­sulta­tion on im­prov­ing the frame­work of the Ca­pa­city Mar­ket (the “Con­sulta­tion”) (the “Re­sponse”). The Gov­ern­ment con­cluded that the ma­jor­ity of the pro­pos­als it put for­ward in the Con­sulta­tion.
Elec­tri­city net­work char­ging re­form re­cent up­dates from Ofgem
On Monday 6 Novem­ber, Ofgem pub­lished up­dates on two in­ter­re­lated re­views in re­la­tion to elec­tri­city net­work char­ging, in­ten­ded to in­form dis­cus­sions with stake­hold­ers on their sub­ject mat­ter: Re­view.
Sink or swim: No new sub­sidies for UK re­new­ables un­til 2025? 
The 2017 Au­tumn Budget ap­peared not to de­liv­er on the prom­ise in the Clean Growth Strategy to put clean growth at the “centre” of the gov­ern­ment’s mod­ern In­dus­tri­al Strategy. New low car­bon elec­tri­city levies will not be in­tro­duced for at least eight years.
UN Cli­mate Change Con­fer­ence 2017 - high­lights
The twenty-third an­nu­al con­fer­ence of the parties (“COP23”) un­der the UN Frame­work Con­ven­tion on Cli­mate Change (“UN­FC­CC”) came to a close on 18 Novem­ber 2017 (see our pre­vi­ous Law-Now). The pre­ced­ing fort­night saw the parties ne­go­ti­ate tech­nic­al de­tails of.
EU Ex­pert Group pub­lishes re­port on elec­tri­city in­ter­con­nec­tion tar­gets
The European Com­mis­sion’s Ex­pert Group on elec­tri­city in­ter­con­nec­tion tar­gets has pub­lished its re­port “To­wards a sus­tain­able and in­teg­rated Europe” (the “Re­port”). Ac­know­ledging that the stand­ing 10% tar­get has giv­en a key sig­nal to the in­teg­ra­tion of the.
UN Cli­mate Change Con­fer­ence 2017
The twenty-third an­nu­al con­fer­ence of the parties (“COP23”) un­der the UN Frame­work Con­ven­tion on Cli­mate Change (“UN­FC­CC”) is tak­ing place through­out the fort­night com­men­cing 6 Novem­ber 2017. For the first time, the event is be­ing gov­erned by one of the small.
The Auto­mated and Elec­tric Vehicles Bill: the fu­ture of UK road trans­port...
The long awaited Auto­mated and Elec­tric Vehicles Bill (the “Bill”), an­nounced in the Queen’s Speech earli­er this year, had its first read­ing in the House of Com­mons on Wed­nes­day 18 Oc­to­ber and passed its second on Monday 23 Oc­to­ber.