Joel E. Meister

Senior Counsel

Joel E. Meister

Senior Counsel

Joel Meister represents financial institutions and developers involved in a variety of complex project financings. As a senior counsel who works within our Finance Practice and Energy Sector, his experience includes partnership flips, sale leasebacks, asset acquisitions and sales, and debt financings, primarily for solar and other renewable energy technologies. He has assisted clients on projects comprising several gigawatts of electric generating capacity in aggregate.

Since 2013, Joel has developed an extensive practice advising clients on the development, acquisition, and financing of battery energy storage projects, on a standalone basis and paired with energy generation like solar – from distributed residential and C&I applications to some of the largest energy storage projects in the world. His practice spans the structuring of key energy storage project agreements (battery supply and equipment procurement contracts; SCADA and other BESS subcontractor agreements; EPC, BOP, and other construction contracts; battery O&M, and long-term service contracts; solar+storage PPAs, tolling agreements, and energy storage service agreements, etc.), due diligence, M&A, and tax equity financing.

Actively working on clean energy issues since 2008, Joel was a manager focusing on renewable energy issues in Deloitte Tax’s Washington National Tax (WNT) office before joining Foley. Joel previously served as assistant general counsel at an energy storage start-up before it was acquired. His duties included all legal and regulatory matters, with an emphasis on project financing structures and energy storage assets’ participation in grid services markets. Joel began his work in the solar industry in 2009 concentrating on tax and financing issues at the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA), the national trade association for the U.S. solar industry.

Joel currently serves as the co-host and showrunner of Foley’s energy podcast, Powered by Foley, covering industry developments and Foley’s practice insights. As the energy sector continues to evolve, Joel’s industry analysis and research into the complexities of renewable energy financing has been cited by leading industry publications, the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), academia, and in congressional testimony.

Representative Experience

  • Tax equity investor counsel for investment in 140 MW/561 MWh battery energy storage project paired with 300 MW solar project in California with five contracted offtakers.
  • Sponsor counsel for the acquisition and simultaneous tax equity and debt financing of 300 MW solar and 600 MWh battery energy storage project in New Mexico involving nearly US$1bn in combined capital commitments.
  • Tax equity counsel for investment in 100 MW solar project paired with 200 MWh battery energy storage facility in California.
  • Sponsor counsel for negotiation of master battery supply contract and long-term services agreement for 561 MWh battery energy storage project in New Mexico.
  • Sponsor counsel for negotiation of engineering, procurement, and construction (EPC) contract for 561 MWh battery energy storage project in New Mexico.
  • Investor counsel in negotiation of PPA and Interconnection Agreement amendments to add 80 MW/320 MWh energy storage facility to existing 200 MW solar facility in California.
  • Buyer M&A counsel in due diligence review of 100 MW/400 MWh standalone energy storage facility in California.
  • Buyer M&A counsel in acquisition of four development-stage community solar projects in Massachusetts with an approximate aggregate energy storage capacity of 7 MW/15.65 MWh to be added.
  • Sponsor counsel in debt and tax equity financings of a portfolio of three Massachusetts community solar+storage projects with aggregate capacity of 18 MW solar PV and 9.5 MWh storage.
  • Lender counsel in one of the first debt facilities for a portfolio of four standalone energy storage projects totaling approximately 14 MW/57 MWh in New York that will incorporate tax equity with standalone storage ITC.
  • Buyer counsel in the due diligence review for the potential acquisition of a 300 MW standalone battery energy storage project in Texas with contracted and merchant offtake.
  • Sponsor counsel in the development of a microgrid comprised of solar, combined heat and power (CHP), and battery energy storage technologies for a commercial property in Puerto Rico, including the negotiation of offtake agreement, construction agreement, and long-term operations & maintenance (O&M) agreement.
  • Buyer counsel for due diligence review of a portfolio of nearly 100 distributed/C&I standalone battery energy storage projects at commercial sites in California.
  • Sponsor counsel for tax equity investment in nationwide portfolio of distributed solar plus energy storage facilities

Additional Tax Equity, Project Development, and M&A Experience

  • Tax equity counsel for client investments and syndications for over 1,400 MW of solar projects across the United States, including in Texas, California, Indiana, Iowa, Oregon, Ohio, Louisiana, Arizona, Connecticut, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Nevada, New York, Pennsylvania, Vermont, Wisconsin, Alabama, South Carolina, North Carolina, and Tennessee.
  • Manufacturer counsel in the negotiation of a master framework/supply agreement for up to 3 GW of hydrogen electrolyzers for green hydrogen projects, and corresponding form of long-term services agreement (LTSA).
  • Seller counsel in the negotiation of the sale of two community solar projects in New Jersey and associated EPC contracts.
  • Sponsor counsel for tax equity investment in a portfolio of three solar projects in California with an aggregate generating capacity of 25 MW.
  • Sponsor counsel for tax equity financing of 88 MW solar project in North Carolina.
  • Sponsor counsel for tax equity and debt financing of 140 MWac portfolio of solar projects in Michigan.
  • Seller counsel for client syndication of tax equity investments in a portfolio of four utility-scale solar projects in Ohio and California with an aggregate generating capacity of approximately 400 MW.
  • Tax equity counsel in the syndication of an investment in a portfolio of solar projects in Texas with an aggregate generating capacity of approximately 100 MW.
  • Tax equity counsel for client investments in several dozen sales leaseback financings of C&I solar projects across the United States.

Presentations and Publications

Joel has been a regular author, speaker, panelist, and moderator on clean energy trends. Examples of prior speaking engagements and writing include:

  • Co-host and Showrunner, Powered by Foley podcast
  • Moderator, Solar+Storage Infocast Conference
  • Moderator, Solar Power Northeast
  • Panelist, SEIA Finance and Tax Seminar
  • Guest Speaker, George Washington University Law School
  • Article co-author in Tax Notes
  • Article co-author in The Tax Adviser
  • Article co-author in The Journal of Multistate Taxation and Incentives

In 2013, Joel received the Jamie Grodsky Prize for Environmental Law Scholarship, which is awarded for the best paper written in the field of environmental law by a GW Law JD, LLM, or SJD student. The award is given based on originality, innovation, depth of scholarship, the importance of the environmental issue addressed, and the quality of the writing and analysis.

12 December 2023 Article

Energy Sector Takeaways From Biden's AI Executive Order

President Joe Biden's recent executive order to manage risks associated with artificial intelligence is intended to establish new standards governing AI safety, security and privacy concerns, while promoting innovation and competition.
27 November 2023 Energy Current

Back to the Future: Tax Credit Transfers and Debt Structuring

The tax code underwent historic changes with the passage of the Inflation Reduction Act, perhaps most notably with changes permitting the direct transfer of various energy tax credits to tax credit buyers.
16 November 2023 Energy Current

Biden Administration Executive Order on AI: Implications for the Energy Sector

President Biden’s recent executive order to manage risks associated with AI is intended to establish new standards governing AI safety, security, and privacy concerns while promoting innovation and competition.
06 November 2023 Powered by Foley

Live from Dallas: The Peaks and Valleys of Investing in the Energy Transition

On this episode of the Powered podcast, we are joined by Dallas partners Nick Peters and Glenn Singleton to take us inside the room and give us a sense of chatter plus key takeaways for the energy sector.
06 July 2023 Powered by Foley

Overcoming Energy Regulatory Barriers to Renewables and Hydrogen Build-Out in the U.S.

Developing projects with renewable energy, energy storage, and hydrogen requires navigating a sophisticated collection of federal and state energy regulatory regimes
30 May 2023 Powered by Foley

Challenges in Energy Project Development

On this episode of the Powered podcast, we are joined by Morten Lund who recently joined Foley’s Energy Team, to discuss tips for approaching project structuring and contract negotiations and navigating an ever-changing supply chain environment.