DLA Piper strives to be a leader in environmental sustainability. We undertake initiatives to reduce our own operational environmental impact and we believe that our greatest contribution to a sustainable environment is the advice and support we provide to our clients – both in managing their own environmental impacts and assessing and responding to climate-related risks and opportunities. We also make an active contribution to international climate policy discussions and the development of investments in low-carbon technology and infrastructure.
Our strategic approach to the environment is embedded across our firm through our Global Sustainability Initiative, which is the tool we use to determine priorities and monitor progress. The GSI is governed by a committee of senior leaders from across the firm that meets quarterly to discuss progress against strategic focus areas. In addition to senior partner representatives and environmental lawyers, the GSI includes representatives from the most relevant functions of our business for implementing change – Corporate Responsibility, Procurement, IT, Risk and Facilities Management.
We have a global Environmental Policy that applies to all of our offices and requires every employee to take reasonable care of the environment. Our employees also receive training on our environmental approach as part of their induction when joining the firm. As a signatory to the UN Global Compact (UNGC), the firm has committed to reporting progress against the UNGC Environment Principles in our Annual Communication on Progress.
Managing our environmental footprint
In 2007, DLA Piper introduced a Global Sustainability Initiative, providing us with a strategic and integrated approach to managing the environmental impact of our business. In the same year, our approach enabled us to become the first law firm to achieve global certification to ISO 14001, the worldwide standard for environmental management that ensures we take account of our environmental impacts and live up to our commitment to operating in a responsible way. Now in our twelfth year of certification, through our Global Sustainability Initiative and the sustained commitment of our people, we continually strive to reduce our environmental impact in four key areas:
Our target is to reduce energy consumption by 25 percent by 2020.
By 2020, we aim to reduce paper use by 25 percent and to increase the percentage of the waste we recycle.
Instead of traveling to meetings, we aim to use IT communications systems, such as Skype and teleconferencing, to reduce the amount of carbon emitted through travel. We are also implementing a new carbon offsetting strategy in 2019 to purchase carbon credits that offset the emissions associated with unavoidable business travel.
We are currently in the process of implementing a supplier portal to encourage all of our major suppliers to provide us with regular, consistent sustainability performance data. We have also adopted a sustainable procurement policy.