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Sustainability

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As a global professional services business we are concerned about the impact of climate change both on a local and global scale. We are conscious of our environmental impacts and we constantly try to address them by developing sustainable business practices, based on a specific action plan, while we continue to grow in a complex environment. 

Sustainability action plan

Like many large businesses, our most significant sustainability challenges concern greenhouse gas emissions, natural resource depletion, and the generation and disposal of waste. To address these challenges, in 2015 we formalised a sustainability action plan driven by five key principles:

Key principle How we're responding
Resource reduction, energy saving, increased recycling

In the UK we recycle 12 different types of waste, and now recycle more than 77% of our total waste.

In Australia, 90% of all staff work in offices with centralised recycling stations. 

Responsible procurement

Among other things, our responsible procurement policy commits us to:

  • engaging with suppliers to determine the sustainability of goods and services we purchase
  • using sustainability criteria in the awarding of contracts
  • avoid causing or contributing to adverse human rights impacts, and address such impacts where they occur
  • purchasing goods and services that comply with local laws relating to environmental protection, occupational health and safety, non-discrimination and the protection of internationally recognised human rights
Sustainable transport We promote alternative forms of transport and encourage people to cycle to work by providing facilities for cyclists and a way to purchase bicycles tax-free.
Performance monitoring and reporting Measure, manage and report our most significant environmental impacts to internal and external audiences.
Collaboration and engagement

Collaborate across the legal sector to develop, apply and promote best practice.

Increase awareness among our people of the environmental impacts of our work, and how to minimise them.

 

Continuous improvement

Our commitment to responsible business practices recognises that sustainability is an ongoing work in progress. It is work that we undertake with pride, care and diligence, and in a spirit of collaborative learning with our suppliers, our partners and employees, and across the legal sector.

Leadership

We are active in business networks seeking to address the challenges of climate change and sustainable development. In 2008, we became a founding member of the Legal Sustainability Alliance (LSA) -  a collaborative industry effort to address climate change by reducing members’ carbon footprint and adopting environmentally sustainable practices. In 2014 we also joined the Australian Legal Sustainability Alliance.

Pro Bono

In addition to our own activities, we contribute to wider efforts to promote environmental sustainability by providing pro bono legal services on key initiatives and other forms of community investment.

Internationally we are a founding member of the Legal Response Initiative (LRI), which provides free legal support to the least developed country delegations and NGOs in relation to the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. LRI won the 'stand out' category in the Financial Times Innovative Lawyers Awards 2010.