Law Society announces next phase of climate crisis response

Law Society announces next phase of climate crisis response

The Law Society of Scotland has announced further steps in response to the escalating climate crisis, seeking to act and lead change across the legal sector.

On Friday the Law Society’s governing Council passed a resolution formally setting out the society’s strong commitment to climate action at an organisational and sector-wide level, while also announcing further plans to support the profession.

In time for the upcoming COP28 conference in the UAE, the society’s recently formed Sustainability Committee has pulled together a new climate action hub that will support the legal sector with resources, information and events focused on the adoption of climate-conscious legal practice.

The new initiatives build upon the Society’s COP26 and Climate Change Working Group formed three years ago, and its five-year strategy launched late last year.

Law Society of Scotland president Sheila Webster said: “It’s hard to overstate the scale of the challenge facing humanity. The legal profession must contribute to the response and ensure the rule of law, human rights and access to justice are upheld.

“The climate crisis is not just an issue for larger firms, but one which needs to be tackled by every corner of the Scottish legal system. We’re committed to supporting every member and every corner of the profession to take action.”

The convener of the society’s Sustainability Committee Paul Gostelow said: “This is just the beginning of what we need to achieve as a committee to help solicitors adapt to the challenges of climate change. There are already several ways the legal profession can respond to the climate crisis, but that’s not to say there isn’t more we can do.

“As a start, it is vital that every solicitor has the information to understand why sustainability is important and what we can all do now to move towards more sustainable practice, which is why we are creating the climate action resource hub.”

Diane McGiffen, chief executive of the Law Society of Scotland, said: “The changes we ourselves make at the Society in response to climate change must stand alongside our work with the profession. We’ve significantly reduced our carbon footprint and continue to search for further steps that will reduce our environmental impact.”

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