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Expertise / Sectors / Power
A client attested that the team's core strengths include ‘extreme thoroughness, depth of knowledge and experience, and ability to provide advice and direction beyond strictly legal matters’…. Another market commentator … added: ‘The team anticipates needs and brings in valuable partners or associates as required.’
Chambers Canada: Canada’s Leading Lawyers for Business 2020

Canada is experiencing significant power-generation investment opportunities, deregulation and redesign of long-standing electricity-sector regimes and public trends favouring clean technology and green energy supply sources. As these converge, electricity market participants require experienced counsel who can integrate legal, business and regulatory expertise to help them avoid pitfalls and attain a competitive advantage.

With a leading national Power group, Blakes has experience throughout Canada, familiarity with province-specific requirements and the ability to serve clients wherever they do business. Clients rely on us because of our impressive successes with respect to many of the largest and most high-profile projects in Canada.

The Blakes Power group has advised on diverse issues impacting power and energy-related projects, including thermal, gas-fired and combined heat and power (CHP), nuclear, district energy, and renewable energy (including wind, solar, hydro and biomass) projects. Owners and developers of electricity-generating projects, as well as energy suppliers and consumers, regularly seek our guidance on the impact of evolving markets, facilities operations, and management, development, operation and financing of power projects as well as infrastructure issues, environmental compliance, aboriginal and treaty claims, power supply, transmission and distribution challenges, and a host of other issues.

We have acted as counsel to the Ontario Ministry of Energy in negotiating the Bruce Power nuclear refurbishment and implementation agreement and both the Ontario Power Authority and Infrastructure Ontario on their request for proposals (RFPs) and vendor selection processes, making us a firm of choice for guidance on government relations, regulatory compliance and RFP responses. 

Advising power generators, marketers, distributors and transmitters on the structure and functioning of the electricity industry throughout Canada, we regularly negotiate the full range of energy-related transactions and ancillary contracts, including power purchase agreements, operating agreements, connection and interconnection agreements, wholesale and retail transactions, new generation development, and financing arrangements. We also advise investors and financiers funding such energy-related projects.

Serving a diverse national and international client base, our national Power group also has energy-specific market restructuring, regulatory and government relations expertise, and is often called upon to advise on market policy and rate setting.

Working collaboratively with our pre-eminent finance, M&A, corporate, environmental and regulatory lawyers and other specialized practitioners, we provide comprehensive advice on M&A deals, joint ventures, collaborative arrangements, project and equipment finance, procurement, environmental restrictions, permitting and reporting, regulatory approvals, and compliance matters.

We frequently represent clients in hearings, on applications, in rule-making proceedings and on appeals before key regulatory bodies, including the Ontario Energy Board, the National Energy Board, and in court proceedings at all levels. We also regularly advocate for public and private power industry suppliers and customers on government policy and regulatory matters

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Recent Experience
  • Canadian counsel to Real Assets Advisers in the proposed €445-million sale of KKR’s 33.33 per cent equity stake in ACCIONA Energía Internacional to AXA Investment Managers - Real Assets and ACCIONA S.A.

  • Ontario Power Generation in relation to the mid-life refurbishment of the Darlington Nuclear Generating Station, which recently achieved first criticality for Unit 2.

  • Voltage Power on its acquisition by Aecon Group Inc.

  • Pattern Energy Group Inc. on its approximately US$6.1-billion proposed all-cash acquisition by Canada Pension Plan Investment Board

  • Vistra Energy, as Canadian counsel, on its proposed acquisition with Crius Energy Trust of Crius Energy to form the leading residential electricity provider in the U.S.

  • Algonquin Power & Utilities Corp. on its C$331-million acquisition of Enbridge Gas New Brunswick, Inc.

  • Canadian counsel to Heartland Generation Ltd., an affiliate of Energy Capital Partners, on its C$835-million acquisition of Canadian Utilities Ltd.’s natural gas and coal electricity generation interests in Alberta, B.C. and Ontario

  • The Desjardins Group Pension Plan on the acquisition of a portion of EDF Renewables Canada Inc.'s stake in the Cypress wind-power project near Medicine Hat, Alberta

  • Suncor Energy on the sale of its half interest in the Cedar Point II wind project to Fiera Capital.

  • Canadian Imperial Bank of Commerce in connection with a C$100-million syndicated revolving credit facility provided to Northland Power Inc.

  • BluEarth Renewables on the project financing of the Narrows Inlet hydro project.

  • IAMGOLD Corporation on its development of a 15 MW solar power plant at IAMGOLD's Essakane gold mine.

  • Ontario Power Generation in relation to the mid-life refurbishment of the Darlington nuclear power station in Ontario.

  • Capstone Infrastructure Corporation in respect of the C$83-million credit facilities provided to Cardinal Power of Canada, L.P. to refinance its 156 MW natural gas cogeneration facility.

  • Dalkia, a subsidiary of Veolia, in connection with the development of two large biomass electricity projects in British Columbia, including in connection with the negotiation of a joint development agreement, EPC contracts, O&M contracts and long term fuel supply agreements.

  • Represent SNC-Lavalin Capital Inc. and InPower BC General Partnership, the successful contractor for the design, construction, financing, testing, commissioning, maintenance and life-cycle rehabilitation of BC Hydro’s John Hart Generating Station Replacement Project in Campbell River, British Columbia, which closed in February 2014.

  • ENMAX Corporation as counsel on all commercial matters relating to the development of the C$1.4-billon, 800 MW combined-cycle Shepard Energy Centre, and on ENMAX's commercial joint venture arrangement with Capital Power in that regard. 

  • Fiera Axium Infrastructure Canada L.P. on its acquisition of a 100 per cent equity interest in 47 MW of solar generating projects in Ontario from EDF EN Canada Inc.

  • GE Energy Financial Services on the acquisition of an interest in, development and financing of the 196 MW Toba Montrose hydroelectric project and the 144 MW Dokie wind project, both located in British Columbia.

  • Ontario Power Authority in developing the RFPs and contracts for the initial up to 1,000 MW of combined heat and power RFP.

  • Toronto Waterfront Revitalization Corporation on the design, procurement and development of its district energy system for the Toronto waterfront

Awards & Recognition

Members of the Blakes Power team are recognized as leaders in the following publications:

  • Chambers Global: The World's Leading Lawyers for Business – Energy: Power; Energy: Power (Regulatory)

  • Chambers Canada: Canada's Leading Lawyers for Business – Energy: Power; Energy: Power (Regulatory)

  • The Canadian Legal Lexpert Directory – Energy (Electricity)

  • Lexpert Special Edition − Canada's Leading Energy Lawyers

  • Who's Who Legal: Energy

  • Who’s Who Legal: Canada – Energy

  • Who’s Who Legal − Energy

  • Legal 500 Canada − Energy: Power

  • The Best Lawyers in Canada – Energy Law; Energy Regulatory Law

  • Benchmark Canada: The Definitive Guide to Canada's Leading Litigation Firms and Attorneys – Energy and Natural Resources