Blake is the global head of Orrick’s Energy and Infrastructure Group and is a transactional lawyer focusing on the downstream and midstream energy sectors.

Blake is recognized both nationally and globally by Chambers (Chambers USA and Chambers Global 2008-2019), which reports that he is "very strong in the industry and has a really good client following" and that clients describe him as "very pragmatic with good business judgment and a very effective negotiating style." Blake has also been named by Euromoney (2009-2019) as one of the “world’s leading project finance lawyers" and one of the "world’s leading energy and natural resources lawyers."

Blake advises clients on energy sector mergers, acquisitions, dispositions, and joint ventures, and on the development, structuring, and financing of large-scale energy projects in the United States and internationally. He regularly represents multinational energy companies, large private equity funds, project developers and sponsors, borrowers and debt issuers, investment banks, and other capital providers and investors in the energy industry.

Blake has significant experience in the electric power sector, including fossil fuel-fired, simple and combined-cycle and co-generation facilities, as well as wind, solar (central station and distributed), landfill gas, biomass and other renewable energy projects. He also represents clients in transactions involving oil, natural-gas and refined-products pipelines, gathering and processing systems and storage facilities (tank farms and underground), exploration and production investment platforms and operations, electric power and natural gas transmission and local distribution systems and alternative fuels production and marketing arrangements.

  • M&A and Dispositions

    • A private equity firm in the acquisition and project financing of a 625 MW, state-of-the-art combined natural gas-powered electric generation facility in Arizona.
    • A private equity firm in the acquisition and financing of a crude oil, natural gas, fresh water and waste water gathering and delivery system in North Dakota and in the negotiation of long-term gathering and transportation contracts.
    • A private equity firm in the sale of two natural gas-fired 349 MW and 180 MW simple cycle power plants in Illinois.
    • A private equity firm in connection with the formation of a master limited partnership with two major natural gas utilities, which resulted in a combined company with assets of nearly $11 billion.
    • A global energy company in the sale of a 50% equity interest in the 250 MW Cedar Creek II wind farm in Colorado, including complex governance, shareholding, equity contribution, and construction and operations management arrangements between the partners.
    • A private equity firm in the sale by competitive process of the Michigan Power Generating Facility, a 125-megawatt capacity combined cycle cogeneration plant located near Ludington, Michigan.
    • A private equity firm in the acquisition of equity interest in, and joint venture arrangements for, Enogex LLC, a midstream natural gas pipeline system with over 8,000 miles of pipe, nine processing plants and 24 billion cubic feet of natural gas storage capability.
    • A European-based renewable energy company in the acquisition of the 99 MW San Roman wind farm in development in Texas.
    • A global energy company in the acquisition of the 78 MW Black Oak wind farm in Minnesota.
    • A global energy company in the sale of a 50% equity interest in the 140 MW Mehoopany wind farm in Pennsylvania.
    • A private equity firm in its acquisition and joint venture arrangements for a 700 MW natural gas-fired, combined cycle power generation facility in New Jersey, subsequent sell-downs and co-investments, and the ultimate sale of its interest.
    • A global energy company in the sale of the Choctaw electric generating facility, an approximately 746 MW gas-fired combined-cycle power plant, to an energy-focused private equity fund.
    • A global energy company in the sale of the Hot Springs electric generating facility, a 720 MW gas-fired combined-cycle power plant to Arkansas Electric Cooperative Company.
    • A private equity firm in its investment in and structuring of joint venture arrangements with several management teams investing in oil and gas interests, including in respect of the Bakken, San Juan, Marcellus, Barnett and Utica formations.
    • A private equity firm in a joint venture to develop and own the Central Penn Line, a 177-mile natural gas pipeline in Pennsylvania.
    • A private equity firm in the acquisition of a 3.6 GW portfolio of coal-fired and natural gas-fired power plants.
    • A private equity firm in the acquisition of the Starfish system, composed of onshore assets located in Louisiana and 366 miles of offshore pipelines and gathering lines capable of transporting 560 MMcf of natural gas and condensate.
    • A private equity firm in the acquisition, joint venture arrangements, and financing related to the interstate Arkoma Connector Pipeline.
    • A private equity firm in the proposed acquisition of a three natural gas and dual-fuel capable electric generating facilities in the northeast United States with generating capacity of approximately 2.3 GW.
    • A private equity firm in the proposed acquisition of an approximately 5.7 GW portfolio of generating capacity of coal-fired and natural gas-fired power plants.
    • A private equity firm in the acquisition of a 50% ownership interest in a coal-fired power plant that uses circulating fluidized bed technology, allowing the facility to use waste coal and to operate with lower emissions than traditional coal plants.
    • A private equity firm in the proposed acquisition of a power plant portfolio comprising approximately 1.744 GW of generating capacity located in New Jersey and Pennsylvania.
    • A private equity firm in an investment in a 1.4 GW portfolio of power generation facilities located throughout Texas, in the subsequent preferred equity financing of the portfolio and in the refinancing of one of the facilities within the portfolio.
    • A private equity firm in the acquisition of general partner interests in an owner and operator of one of the largest independent refined petroleum products pipeline systems in the United States (measured by volumes delivered).
    • A global energy company in the proposed acquisition of the 520 MW Mexican IPP portfolio owned by a Canadian energy company.
    • The bidder in the Bankruptcy Code Section 363 sale of an approximately 2.5 GW IPP.
    • A European-based renewable energy company in the acquisition of a 200 MW wind-powered generating facility in Texas.
    • A private equity firm in the proposed acquisition of a portfolio of landfill gas projects located throughout the United States.
    • A private equity firm in the acquisition of a 570 MW generating facility located in New Mexico.
    • Various project developers and financial investors in due diligence and submitting bids to acquire interests in various assets, including gas- and coal-fired power generation facilities, wind and solar power generation facilities, landfill gas-to-energy projects, hydroelectric facilities, natural gas storage facilities and retail energy businesses.

    Project Development and Finance

    • Borrower’s counsel in the non-recourse project financing of the 625 MW Mesquite power plant, including a private placement of institutional notes, commercial bank-backed letter of credit and working capital facility, together with back leverage in the form of a holdco term loan.
    • Borrower’s counsel in the non-recourse project financing of the Van Hook pipeline system, which transports approximately 11,000 barrels of oil, 6,500 million cubic feet of natural gas, and 5,000 barrels of water per day in the Bakken shale formation.
    • Borrower’s counsel in the non-recourse project financing of a 69 MW West Virginia power plant, including the refinancing of tax-exempt energy revenue bonds and complete replacement and renegotiation of the non-recourse project financing credit facility that provided the credit support for the tax-exempt bond issuance.
    • Borrower’s counsel in the refinancing and restructuring of a project-financed electric generating facility in Texas.
    • Borrower’s counsel in the non-recourse project financing of oil and natural gas pipelines servicing a hub at Mississippi Canyon Block 711 in the deep-water Gulf of Mexico.
    • Borrower’s counsel in the $430 million Term Loan B financing of ownership interests in one of the largest midstream businesses in the United States.
    • Borrower’s counsel for a senior-secured revolving credit facility supporting a midstream company with onshore and offshore assets in the Gulf of Mexico region.
    • Borrower’s counsel to several exploration and production companies in connection with borrowing-base credit facilities.
    • An energy-focused private equity firm in the tax-equity financing of a 235 mile, 500 kV electric transmission line in Nevada.
    • A joint venture of a global energy company and a global infrastructure fund with partnership structuring and the project financing of a 25 MW solar project in Arizona and a 12 MW solar project in Texas.
    • A global energy company in its participation in various public tenders by PEMEX and CFE for natural gas-fired power plants and long-haul pipelines in Mexico.
    • Various energy companies in the development, construction and financing of wind-powered and other renewable generating projects throughout the United States.
    • Various energy companies in the negotiation and documentation of construction, term loan, and revolving credit facilities and letter of credit facilities, on a project-finance and corporate-credit basis.
    • Project counsel in development and structuring of ethanol and related power generation facilities located throughout Latin America.
    • Project counsel in the development and financing of a 1.06 GW generating facility in Mexico—a project that was named "Latin American Power Deal of the Year" by Project Finance.
    • Project counsel in the development, financing and refinancing of a 600 MW generating facility in Mexico, which was named "Latin American Merchant Power Deal of the Year" by Project Finance.
    • Project counsel in the development, construction and financing (and subsequent refinancing) of natural gas compression facilities located in Huimilpan, Mexico.

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