William W. Westerfield, III
William (Bill) Westerfield is Senior Of Counsel in the Land Use & Environmental Law Practice Group and has nearly two decades of specialty experience serving clients in California’s energy and electricity sectors.
Bill’s career includes 11 years as a Senior Attorney with the Sacramento Municipal Utility District, three years as Senior Counsel to the California Energy Commission, and three years in private practice as an energy and environmental lawyer. He also spent eight years as a Trial Attorney in the Environment and Natural Resources Division of the U.S. Department of Justice in Washington, DC. For four years, Bill also served as the primary regulatory specialist at Tetra Tech EMI, a global engineering and consulting services firm, where he provided remedial investigation, feasibility study and action plan assistance for a $265 million installation restoration contract for U.S. Navy CLEAN, Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Southwest Division. His work included negotiating with state regulatory agencies over clean-up goals and other compliance requirements.
Bill is also a Co-Founder of Pacific Fleet Charging, LLC, which facilitates and accelerates the adoption of electric vehicles for commercial applications. PFC provides consulting services and policy and regulatory guidance primarily to governmental entities throughout California. Bill currently serves as an Advisor to the Executive Committee of the California State Bar’s Environmental Law Section.
Bill’s comprehensive experience includes developing electric vehicle charging stations, developing utility scale renewable energy projects, negotiating power purchase agreements, managing natural gas procurement and rate case litigation at the California Public Utilities Commission, preparing contracts for electric utility R&D projects, handling litigation and permitting related to legacy spent nuclear fuel, and advocating for regulatory policies for energy storage, greenhouse gas reduction, renewable energy, and energy-related environmental issues.
- As private practice attorney
- Represented investor-owned utilities before the CPUC and other California state agencies, in proceedings involving general rate case and energy cost adjustment filings, energy efficiency and low-income assistance compliance, resource adequacy requirements, and RPS compliance
- Represented the Western Electricity Coordinating Council on commencing operations of the Western Renewable Energy Generation Information System (WREGIS), and principal author of account holder agreements at WREGIS
- Represented investor-owned electric utility before the CPUC and other California state agencies, in proceedings involving transmission line permitting, and solar energy policy development
- As Senior Attorney for the Sacramento Municipal Utility District
- Oversaw and managed complex litigation resulting in complete recovery of costs to store spent nuclear fuel: $53 million in SMUD 1 (2014), and $22.5 million in SMUD 2 (2015), and $28.87 million in SMUD 3 (2017)
- Negotiated power purchase agreements for solar energy (11 MW), wind (128 MW), geothermal (120 MW) and biomass energy (7,000 MMBtu/day)
- Led negotiations with PG&E to resolve disputed gas transmission rights of net value to SMUD in excess of $10 million (2016)
- Lead counsel for SMUD’s successful intervention in the 2014 PG&E gas transmission rate case at the CPUC, valued at over $2 million per year (2016)
- Negotiated agreements in support of SMUD research and development into energy efficiency, demand response, electric vehicles, and micro-grids
- Secured favorable treatment of SMUD’s historical renewable energy carryover, valued at $10 million to $20 million (2016)
- Provided legal and compliance support for development of electric vehicle charging stations
- Developed and advocated for innovative policies to support electric vehicle penetration, including the Low Carbon Fuel Standard, before CARB, the CEC and CPUC
- Advocated for pragmatic policies on carbon reduction before CARB, the CEC and CPUC
- As Senior Counsel for the California Energy Commission
- Represented California Energy Commission Staff in power plant siting cases pursuant to the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA); drafted Charter of WREGIS and advocated for its adoption before the WECC Board; represented CEC in state court and state and federal administrative proceedings; counseled Staff on early development of the California RPS
- As Regulatory Specialist at Tetra Tech EMI
- Supported the $265 million installation restoration contract for U.S. Navy CLEAN, Naval Facilities Engineering Command, Southwest Division. Counseled the Navy on preparing and reviewing remedial investigations/feasibility studies, remedial action plans, records of decision; and negotiated with state regulatory agencies over installation clean-up goals and other requirements.
- As a Trial Attorney in the U.S. DOJ Environmental and Natural Resources Division
- Prosecuted environmental enforcement litigation on behalf of EPA and other federal agencies under federal environmental laws and recovered over $10 million in fines and injunctive relief. Lead counsel for the United States in CERCLA cases, including United States v. Miami Drum (S.D. Fla. 1986), Clean Air Act cases, including United States v. Mobil Chemical Company (E.D. Cal. 1988), and cases under the Clean Water Act, including United States v. Ketchikan Pulp (Alaska 1994) and Simpson Paper Company and Louisiana-Pacific Corporation (N.D. Cal. 1989). Lead counsel in bench and jury trials, including United States v. Allied Corporation (N.D. Cal. 1990), and United States v. Trident Seafoods (W.D. WA. 1993).
Honors and Awards
- Energy Prize, “Big Bang” competition, UC Davis Institute of Innovation and Entrepreneurship, 2020 (business plan to finance EV fleet charging by school districts)
- Western Energy Institute Business Acumen for Emerging Leaders Program, 2014
- Power Done Right Award (Ingenuity) – Solano 3 Wind Farm Sale, 2013
- Power Done Right Award (Ingenuity) – AB 32 Implementation, 2012
- Building Leadership Talent Step-Up Award, 2011
- Power Done Right Award (Community Service) – Foster Youth, 2011
Presentations and Publications
- Presenter, “Logistics and Implementation: How are Energy Providers Actually Planning to Convert to 100% Carbon-Free Electricity,” 2019 Energy Law Conference, Oakland, CA, March 2019
- Presenter, “Controlling Air Pollution from Mobile Sources in California, Environmental Law Conference at Yosemite,” Fish Camp, CA, October 2017
- Presenter, “The Rise of Distributed Energy Resources,” 2017 Energy Conference, Los Angeles, CA, April 2017
- Presenter, “Optimizing Carbon Market Mechanisms in the Western Interconnect,” EUCI, Los Angeles, CA, January 2016
- Author, Westerfield, Wm. and Leonenko, Anna. “Where the Rubber Meets the Road: Implementing the Low-Carbon Fuel Standard and Cap-and-Trade for Transportation Fuels to Reduce Carbon Emissions,” Environmental Law News, Summer 2015
- Author, Westerfield, Wm. “California’s First Step to Limit Emissions of Greenhouse Gases,” Environmental Law News, Summer 2007
- Author, Novick, S. and Westerfield, Wm. “Whose SIP is it Anyway?” State–Federal Conflicts in Clean Air Act Enforcement, 18:2 William & Mary Journal of Environmental Law, Spring 1994
- Current Member, The State Bar of California
- Current Executive Committee Advisor, California State Bar, Environmental Law Section
- Former Co-Chair, National Energy Bar Association’s Renewable Energy Committee
- University of Texas School of LawJD, 1981
- University of North Carolina, Chapel HillBA, Independent Studies, 1978