Les Sherman


San Francisco

Les has represented developers, investors and others on renewable and traditional energy project transactions for over 35 years and, for many years, led Orrick’s U.S. Renewable Energy Practice.

Chambers publications identify Les as a Leading Lawyer and report that clients say Les is an “icon in California in the renewables space”, has "notable expertise spanning solar and wind generation projects as well as battery storage development" and has “established a reputation as the go-to guy in California”.  Chambers also reports that Clients say Les has "a brilliant mind," "his finger on the pulse of the market" and "a very good eye for detail when thinking through practical agreements and understanding how it is all going to work in practice". Clients note "he is one of the best PPA lawyers in the business." Les also is recognized by Euromoney, The Legal 500 and The Expert Guides as a Leading Lawyer in energy project development, M&A and finance.

Les represents many of the industry’s leading companies on project development, financing and M&A transactions for solar, wind, energy storage, biomass, gas and similar projects. Les has led the Orrick team’s thought leadership in the growing battery and hydrogen energy storage market, has published numerous articles on the topic, and has served as lead counsel on many of the largest storage and renewables+storage transactions completed to date.

  • Project Development

    • Leading U.S. sponsors on many dozens of stand-alone energy storage projects, hybrid solar + storage projects, and cutting edge hydrogen-to-energy projects.
    • Leading project developers on many thousands of megawatts of renewables and fossil fuel project PPAs and related offtake contracts with load serving entities and corporate offtakers throughout the country. 
    • Global project developers on hundreds of EP&C and related procurement contracts for many billions of dollars of energy and infrastructure projects around the world.  
    • A solar panel distributor and development company in all arrangements for the development of “solar communities” projects involving integrated PV roofing systems combined with long-term PPAs with homeowners.
    • Over a hundred bidders in connection over a thousand bids to utilities and other LSEs on RFOs throughout the U.S. for new renewables, gas and storage projects.  
    • Global developers in connection with offshore energy and infrastructure project development Asia, Africa and South America. 
    • A global project development company in the joint development, construction and long-term management arrangements for a recycled water production facility.
    • One of the world’s largest construction companies in joint venture arrangements with an Asian government agency in the development of privatized airport facilities around the world.
    • A major U.S. independent power company in structuring and negotiating contracts with a California municipality and municipal utility for the joint development of an electrical transmission line.
    • A European water utility company in preparing form documents to use for BOT water infrastructure projects in southern China.
    • A Korean company with development, concession and PPAs for the first privatized power plant in Papua New Guinea.
    • A U.S. independent power company in its structuring and negotiation of a Lease and Concession Rights Agreement with an Indian tribe in Nevada relating to the private development and construction of a power-generating facility on tribal lands.

    Project M&A

    • Leading U.S. and foreign buyers, sellers of thousands of megawatts of development stage and operating solar and wind facilities.
    • A leading U.S. project developer on all aspects of the due diligence and acquisition of a development stage 600+ MW gas fired power plant.
    • A leading U.S. solar developer on the due diligence and acquisition of a large portfolio of DG solar projects.
    • A leading European sponsor on the due diligence and acquisition of development stage solar projects.

    Project Construction and Operations Matters

    • A major U.S. construction company and utility services provider in the structuring and negotiation of a 10-year, US$10 billion contract for outsourcing of utility infrastructure construction, O&M and related technical services.  
    • A global construction company in connection with EPC contracts and related arrangements for new LNG facilities.
    • A consortium of contractors, architects and engineers on a US$1.5 billion D/B arrangement for a hospital campus in San Francisco.
    • A U.S. equipment vendor in structuring and negotiating onshore and offshore supply and installation of barge-mounted generating facilities on the Amazon River.
    • A Japanese EPC contractor in its bid to perform EPC construction work for a generating facility in southern California.