Taking on One of the World's Largest Power Plant Construction Contractors
Successfully represented the owner, New Athens Generating Company, LLC, a merchant power company, on a $533 million power plant construction project in upstate New York in a series of complex arbitration proceedings, against the EPC contractor, Bechtel Power Corporation, one of the world's largest power plant construction contractors. Bechtel sought more than $94 million in additional compensation for alleged changes in the new power generation technology incorporated into the plant, alleged force majeure severe winter weather encountered during construction, and other alleged changes, delays and force majeure events. New Athens, sought approximately $33 million in liquidated damages due to Bechtel completing the construction more than 200 days late. Due to the complexity of the case, the arbitrators divided the hearing into four phases, with each phase focusing on one of the areas of construction in dispute. The arbitration involved extensive testimony as to power plant combustion turbine engineering, construction scheduling, construction craft labor productivity and ergonomics, meteorology/climatology, chemistry, power industry economics, and construction cost accounting. Altogether, the arbitrators heard 53 days of testimony, from 53 witnesses, received more than 1,300 exhibits, with a transcript of nearly 15,000 pages. The arbitrators rendered several detailed written opinions throughout the arbitration. The result of the arbitration was that New Athens successfully defeated 95% of Bechtel’s claims and the arbitrators awarded New Athens $26,950,000 in liquidated damages.