COVID-19 has significantly impaired the global economy. In the Global Economic Prospects Report of June 2020, the World Bank forecasted that the global GDP in 2020 will contract by 5.2%, creating the worst recession in 80 years. More than 90% of the global economies are contracting, a percentage higher than that of the Great Depression of 1930-32. While the US equity market has seen a modest recovery due to its alternative, the debt market, producing meager return rates, the outlook for the real economy is far from optimistic. In spite of expecting a rebound in the second half of 2020 and in 2021, researchers predict that it will be limited and that the prospect of a V-shaped recovery is hopeful at best.

Continue Reading COVID-19: Economic Consequences and Recovery Measures

On April 23, 2020, the New York Public Service Commission (NYPSC) issued an order authorizing the New York State Energy Research and Development Authority (NYSERDA) to conduct a 2020 solicitation to procure 1000MW of offshore wind (OSW) renewable energy certificates (ORECs) and with the flexibility to allow evaluation of bids for up to a total

On April 2, 2020, the US Federal Energy Regulatory Commission (FERC) adopted a policy to expeditiously review and act on requests for relief in response to the national emergency caused by COVID-19, and that it will give its highest priority to processing filings made for the purpose of assuring the business continuity of regulated entities’ energy infrastructure and issued several orders[1] to provide the following specific regulatory relief:

Continue Reading US FERC Acts to Provide COVID-19 Regulatory Relief and to Prioritize Reliability Filings and Proceedings

CARES Act Enacted into Law! This is the biggest economic stimulus in our nation’s history, and will have far reaching effects on individuals and commercial businesses across industry sectors.  Stay tuned for further analysis.  See the full text of the Act here.

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In response to the COVID-19 outbreak in the United States, all 50 states, Puerto Rico, and the District of Columbia have adopted certain measures intended to encourage “social distancing” in an effort to limit human contact and thus slow down the spread of the virus. Cities and states have adopted various measures to try to achieve this goal, including by closing schools and/or limiting or prohibiting large gatherings (such as by cancelling concerts, plays, museums, and eating in restaurants and bars). Some governments are also acting to protect people who get sick and cannot work or who are laid off. Several states have recently taken even more aggressive action.

In just the last week, some jurisdictions have issued orders advising their residents to stay in their homes (i.e., “shelter in place” orders). Other states have imposed strict limits on which businesses can remain open and/or have imposed requirements that “nonessential” workers stay home. As of now, these types of restrictions are in effect in, among other places, California, New York, Illinois, Ohio, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, and Connecticut. At present, these types of orders reach one in four Americans. As a result, businesses and workers have been confronted with the critical issue of whether they can operate and who, if anyone, can leave home to work on premises.

These actions are similar to many of those that have been taken by other jurisdictions, such as in China, Italy, and France. As governments have imposed these tight restrictions, they have also recognized the need to allow certain businesses to continue to operate as necessary to provide essential goods and services. These orders have been imposed quickly, responding to the immediate needs of each community, and thus neither the orders nor the exemptions to the orders allowing certain activities to continue are consistent across jurisdictions or always well-defined.

This Update provides guidance on the scope of essential services or businesses in five US jurisdictions that have adopted restrictive measures to fight the spread of the virus: CA, NY, IL, OH and PA. Alerts covering additional jurisdictions across the globe, and updates regarding these jurisdictions, will follow.


Continue Reading Who or What Is an “Essential” Business or Service That May Be Exempt from Shelter in Place or Stay at Home Orders?