Gilchrist Connell recognises that understanding and addressing environmental issues is critical to the long-term sustainability, success and viability of the firm, the profession and the communities in which we live and work.
The current level of global temperature increase is already taking a significant toll on natural and human resources. This has particular impact on the firm’s largest clients – insurers.
Conscious of our place within the broader community, we understand why our business must identify the impact our firm has on the environment and take steps to minimise our environmental footprint.
As a legal services provider we acknowledge that our most significant environmental impacts relate to carbon emissions from electricity consumption and business travel, the effect on the depletion of natural resources from the use of office supplies, and the production of waste in our offices.
This policy sets out a plan to progress our business in an environmentally responsible manner for the benefit of future generations.
This policy applies to all principals, employees and contractors of the firm, and across all services provided at each of our offices. We recognise that we all have a role to play in minimising the environmental footprint of the business.
Our Sustainability Committee, chaired by our Head of Risk and Compliance, is responsible for the implementation of this Policy. The Committee meets quarterly to develop and set targets, monitor progress, and make recommendations for continuous improvement.
All staff and contractors to the firm are required to be aware of, and to comply with, this Policy.
Implementation and practice
The below outlines the steps the firm is committed to in order to develop and embed sustainable practices and processes:
- Compliance with all applicable legal, regulatory and contractual requirements which relate to the firm’s environmental impacts;
- Development of a structured and strategic environmental management system (EMS);
- communicating with you,
- Benchmarking of the firm’s environmental performance to provide an evidence based approach to the development of mitigation strategies;
- Setting clear, measurable and targeted goals for environmental improvement;
- Ongoing monitoring and continuous improvement of our environmental performance;
- Reporting on the firm’s progress against its targets to our stakeholders;
- Mapping the firm’s supply chain to understand where the firm can influence and/or improve environmental outcomes through its relationships;
- Neutralising any remaining emissions in our operations with quantifiable, real, permanent, and socially beneficial offsets to achieve net-zero annual carbon emissions by 2030;
- Integrating the principles of this Environmental Policy into all business activities;
- Develop and foster collaborative relationships with other businesses and organisations to share knowledge and resources to achieve more efficient progress towards our goals.
The Head of Risk and Compliance in consultation with the Sustainability Committee will review this Policy every two years to ensure compliance, effectiveness, and relevance.