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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.
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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.

What’s new?

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.

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Forthcoming Castle Debate: Solar Power (11 November 2014 at CMS Cameron McKenna, Solicitors, Aldersgate Street, EC1A 4DD) – 9.00am registration for 9.30am to 11am

The next Castle Debate, hosted by the Law Society and run in association with the LSA and Sykes Environmental, will take place on 11 November 2014 and will consider the issue of solar power.

The debate will provide the opportunity to review the science behind solar power, as well as looking at legal and policy issues. The Government’s current policy appears to be a move from large solar farms (or solar parks) which mainly supply electricity to the utilities to enabling the widespread building of solar installations on the roofs of warehouses, factories and supermarkets and increasing the domestic use from 500,000 homes to 1 million by the end of 2015.

Speakers at this debate will include John Hanna, Vice-President, Balfour Beatty Infrastructure Partners (BBIP) who will consider the science behind solar power; Munir Hassan, Partner, CMS Cameron McKenna, who will look at the legal aspects and Trevor Raggatt, Head of Small Scale and Emerging Renewables, Industry and Investment Team, DECC who will address policy issues. Please visit the Castle Debates website for more information and to register to attend.

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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: clairegoody@eversheds.com

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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 jim@achillmanagement.com and +44 7794 657015

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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.

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LSA Carbon Reporting Portal now closed

The carbon reporting portal has now closed. Thanks to all who submitted a response - these are being analysed and a report will be produced later this year.