Legal Sector Alliance
The Legal Sector Alliance (LSA) is an inclusive movement of law firms and organisations committed to working collaboratively to take action on climate change by reducing their carbon footprint and adopting environmentally sustainable practices.
NEWS UPDATE: LSA 2015 Reporting "window" OPEN
The window is now open for all LSA members to report their progress over the past year in reducing their carbon footprint using the LSA’s bespoke and free to use Carbon Reporting Portal. LSA members can also report progress in meeting the LSA’s seven membership principles by following a link from the Portal to a separate survey.
To access the LSA Carbon Reporting Portal, follow this link
We encourage all LSA members to report their carbon footprint using the LSA Carbon Reporting Portal – designed for and with input from the legal sector alongside Greenstone. The Portal is free to use and should take 30-45 minutes to load data. Firms who have used the Portal find it a valuable resource. Water use has been included in the Portal for the first time this year.
(For those firms wishing only to report progress against the LSA’s seven membership Principles, follow this link to go straight to the survey for that.
PLEASE NOTE – the cut off date for reporting this year is 31 March. No submissions can be accepted after that date.
We are aiming to publish the 2015 LSA Report on World Environment Day, Friday 5 June 2015
Regional Network Launch Events – January 2015
The LSA is holding events in Newcastle and Bristol later this month to launch the LSA North East and South West regional networks and, in partnership with Greenstone, provide hands-on introduction to the LSA Carbon Reporting Tool. The events are being hosted by LSA members Bond Dickinson (Newcastle – 27 Jan) and Burges Salmon (Bristol – 29 Jan). As well as meeting up with existing LSA members in these regions, we would be delighted to welcome new members. There are still places available – please contact us if you would like to attend.
Newcastle event: Tuesday 27 January, 12pm-2.30pm hosted by Bond Dickinson
Bristol event: Thursday 29 January, 12pm-2.30pm hosted by Burges Salmon
LSA Carbon Reporting Portal - free Webinars
Each year we encourage all LSA members to report progress against the seven Principles which they signed up to when joining the LSA, as well as reporting their organisation's carbon footprint. A significant number of members did so last year – their details are contained in the 2014 LSA Annual Report which is available to download from the LSA website. Many members reported using the free LSA Carbon Reporting Portal which has been developed specifically for and by the LSA in conjunction with Greenstone. The “window" for reporting in 2015 will open towards the end of January and we would like to encourage as many LSA members to use this Portal. To help LSA members get a feel for what this might involve, and to hear the experience of others who have used the portal (both larger and smaller firms), we ran two webinars in conjunction with Greenstone on Weds 21 Jan and – 3pm to Fri 23 Jan.
During the webinar participants had the opportunity to hear from both large and smaller firms who have used the LSA Carbon Reporting Portal in the past, including representatives from Allen & Overy, Herbert Smith Freehills, Muckle and Gregg Latchams. Colleagues from Greenstone were also be available to answer any technical questions about the Portal.
It was encouraging to have so many firms participating in the webinars - even if it was just to put a toe in the water to see what is involved!
Information about the LSA Carbon Reporting Portal, copies of slides used and Questions & Answers are available on request (email@example.com).
LSA 2014 Annual Report available for download
The LSA 2014 Annual Report is now available to download (please click on the button on this page).
This report is the latest in a series of annual reports of LSA members’ progress in their journey to tackle climate change and address sustainable business practices through their activities. As well as highlighting collective progress across the LSA against the seven LSA Principles, the report provides more details on the performance of individual participating member firms.
We hope that this provides tangible evidence of real commitment as well as encouragement to all LSA members to continue the journey.
Energy Management Exhibition (EMEX 2014) at London Excel, 19-20 Nov 2014
The LSA was one of the supporting partners of this year's Energy Management Exhibition, held at London's Excel centre on 19 and 20 November. Throughout the two days of EMEX, the LSA was represented alongside our partners Greenstone. EMEX is heralded as the energy management show that connects all energy users with leading experts, policy makers, suppliers and technical solutions. The event was well attended with several visitors to the LSA/Greenstone stand.
2014 LSA Award for Excellence in Environmental Responsibility
We are delighted to announce that international law firm Slaughter & May has won the 2014 Legal Sector Alliance Award for Excellence in Environmental Responsibility. The firm was presented with their award at the recent Law Society's Excellence Awards ceremony by BBC journalist Mishal Husain, with over 600 people in attendance at the Gala Awards evening at the Westminster Plaza Hotel, London.
Slaughter and May reached its ambitious energy reduction target of 40 per cent by 2020, seven years ahead of schedule. As well as directly improving the firm's environmental performance, this achievement has positively impacted clients and employees and has helped to champion change in the legal industry.
See more at the Law Society's website .
Is Your Firm Ready for ESOS?
ESOS – the Energy Savings Opportunity Scheme introduced recently by the UK Government to implement the EU Energy Efficiency Directive - is an energy assessment scheme that is mandatory for organisations in the UK that meet the qualification criteria.
If your firm (or UK member of a parent group) has at least 250 staff or fewer than this but has an annual turnover in excess of €50m and an annual balance sheet in excess of €43 million euro, then ESOS could apply to you.
Organisations that qualify for ESOS must carry out ESOS assessments every 4 years, with the first being completed by 5 December 2015 for organisations that qualify by 31 December 2014. These assessments are audits of the energy used by their buildings, industrial processes and transport to identify cost-effective energy saving measures. Organisations must then notify the Environment Agency by a set deadline that they have complied with their ESOS obligations.
Several larger LSA members already know they will be affected by ESOS and are busy preparing for it. Capturing your carbon footprint data using the LSA reporting tool is a great start. To find out more and check if ESOS applies to your firm, see the information on the Government’s website and associated ESOS guidance.
Castle Debate: Sustainable agriculture and the Common Agricultural Policy - 2 Dec 2014
The last Castle Debate of 2014, hosted by the Law Society and run in association with the LSA and Sykes Environmental, took place on 2 December 2014 and considered the issue of sustainable agriculture and the CAP.
Please see the News section for further details or visit the Castle Debates website to download a podcast of proceedings and to see more information about the Castle Debates.
Inter Law Firm Forum on Disabilities
LSA members may be interested to learn about a recently established Inter Law Firm Forum on Disabilities. This Forum aims to share best practice, highlight areas for improvement and seek solutions from which all law firms can learn.
For more information, contact Claire Goody, EHS Manager, Eversheds - email: firstname.lastname@example.org
Achill Management provide interim management support to LSA
Following Micael Johnstone's move to DLA Piper after 5 years at the helm as LSA Manager, we are pleased to announce that Jim Haywood and Amanda Carpenter from Achill Management have been appointed to provide interim management support to the LSA for the next six months. Jim, who has been involved with the LSA from its early days, is Achill Management's main point of contact for LSA members. Contact details are email@example.com and +44 7794 657015
Improving corporate governance: Europe’s largest companies will have to be more transparent about how they operate
On 15 April the European Parliament adopted the Directive on disclosure of non-financial and diversity information by large companies (more than 500 employees) and groups. Companies concerned will need to disclose information on policies, risks and results as regards environmental matters, social and employee-related aspects, respect for human rights, anti-corruption and bribery issues, and diversity on boards of directors.
According to EU Internal Market and Services Commissioner Michel Barnier: "Companies, investors and society at large will benefit from this increased transparency. Companies that already publish information on their financial and non-financial performances take a longer term perspective in their decision-making. They often have lower financing costs, attract and retain talented employees, and ultimately are more successful. This is important for Europe’s competitiveness and the creation of more jobs. Best practices should become the norm"
More at the EU Single Market website.