Lawyers can be a force for good in climate crisis

The legal profession can be a progressive force as the world responds to the climate crisis, said the Law Society of England and Wales as it launched its climate change resolution today (28 October).

The resolution urges solicitors to take the lead in developing a climate-conscious approach to their daily practice and sets out how the Law Society can provide support.

The resolution also carries a Law Society commitment to develop plans and take rapid action to reduce global warming by adopting science-based targets for our operations.

“The eyes of the world will be on the upcoming COP26 summit, and it is vital that its outcomes protect human rights and access to justice, as well as strengthening global climate justice,” said Law Society president I. Stephanie Boyce.

“Solicitors and law firms need to prepare for how the consequences of the climate crisis will affect them and contribute to the global drive to transition to net zero. This includes identifying climate change related risks and greener courses of action, as well as reducing the greenhouse gases associated with running any business.

“Like the COVID-19 pandemic and other transformational societal changes, the effects of the climate crisis will affect all of us, including the legal profession and their clients.

“Nearly a third of the UK’s largest businesses and many law firms have now pledged to eliminate their contribution to carbon emissions by 2050. Clients are also looking to law firms and lawyers to reflect their values and stance on climate change and sustainability.

“Solicitors can play a crucial role in the transition towards net zero and climate change will affect their daily practice. This is something we all need to educate ourselves on now, incorporate into legal practice and dedicate resources to. We hope our climate change resource hub will be a valuable support for our members.”

The Law Society is calling on solicitors and law firms to publicly endorse the resolution and follow its guidance.

Notes to editors

About the Law Society

The Law Society is the independent professional body that works globally to support and represent solicitors, promoting the highest professional standards, the public interest and the rule of law.

Press office contact: Ruth Murphy | 020 8049 3879

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