Shailesh Sahay

Washington, DC

I shape climate, energy, and environmental policy so that regulatory programs recognize the value of our clients’ products.

Shailesh Sahay is one of the leading energy and environmental attorneys in the nation. He comes to Foley Hoag after serving for over six years as in-house counsel to the largest renewable fuels producer in the world, and as acting general counsel of the largest renewable fuels trade association. He directs legal and policy strategy on climate, environmental, and sustainability issues at the federal, state, and international levels.

Shai also actively advises clients on community and stakeholder engagement relating to Native American and environmental justice groups, among others.

As an attorney in Foley Hoag's Energy & Climate group, he represents clients in a variety of industries, helping them shape laws through legislative and regulatory advocacy, then helping them maximize value under established legal frameworks by obtaining regulatory approvals and ensuring regulatory compliance. 

Shailesh's professional highlights include:
  • Serving at the forefront of regulatory and legislative engagement on climate and vehicle fuel issues related to federal Renewable Fuel Standard, California Low Carbon Fuel Standards, and Clean Air Act mobile source provision,.
  • Establishing a leading new trade association that successfully reversed EPA’s regulation holding down renewable fuel blending in the United States Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit.
  • Assuming industry leadership, including by serving on the Environmental Law Institute’s Leadership Council and the Board of Directors of the Low Carbon Fuel Coalition.
  • Representing domestic minerals exploration companies seeking to supply materials necessary for electricity and transportation decarbonization.
  • Assisting a leading environmental justice organization in protecting community interests relating to development proposals.


  • Harvard Law School, J.D., 2007
  • Harvard College, A.B., Earth and Planetary Sciences, 2002

Bar and Court Admissions

  • District of Columbia


  • Assist with evaluation of regulatory issues associated with CO2 to fuels technology
  • Advise RNG producer on opportunities associated with federal Renewable Fuel Standard and California Low Carbon Fuel Standard
  • Advise biomass to power entity on potential credits under the federal Renewable Fuel Standard
  • Advise investor groups on carbon-related value associated with potential acquisitions
  • Assist leading agricultural technology company with application for climate smart grant funding from United States Department of Agriculture
  • Evaluate environmental regulatory and policy issues in corporate transactions, and assist with structuring transactions in response
  • Assist crop cultivation company in evaluation of regulatory approvals needed for potential target company
  • Aid sustainable aviation fuels producer in the evaluation of environmental credit issues in sales contracts
  • POET, LLC, Senior Regulatory Counsel
  • Growth Energy, Acting General Counsel
  • Cambridge Environmental Inc., Staff Scientist

Honors & Involvement

  • Leadership Council, Environmental Law Institute, Member (2017 – present)
  • Low Carbon Fuel Coalition, Board of Directors & Secretary (2019 – present)

Speaking Engagements