United States: Law Firm Sustainability Network Official Launch: Law Firms Promoting Sustainability
Last Updated: August 12 2013

A group of top U.S. law firms have come together to promote environmental sustainability across the legal industry under the newly incorporated Law Firm Sustainability Network. The LFSN's mission is to develop key performance indicators, foster knowledge-sharing, develop best practice guidelines, and recognize and promote sustainability innovations in the U.S. legal sector.

The LFSN is a nonprofit organization of law firms and legal departments committed to promoting the benefits of environmental sustainability and corporate social responsibility throughout the legal industry. The Leadership Council and Board of Directors of the LFSN include the law firms Alston & Bird, Beveridge & Diamond, Drinker Biddle, Morrison & Foerster, Nixon Peabody, Seyfarth Shaw, and Wendel Rosen, as well as the eco-consulting firm, ecoAnalyze. LFSN members include both national and boutique firms such as Cadwalader, Cahill Gordon, Blank Rome, BuckleySandler, Exemplar Law, Hogan Lovells, K&L Gates, Kilpatrick Townsend, Kirkland Ellis, Manko Gold, McKenna Long & Aldridge, Miller & Martin, Neal Gerber Eisenberg, Paul Hastings, Pillsbury, Shearman & Sterling, Sutherland, and White & Case.

The LFSN affords members the opportunity to learn new ways to enhance their sustainability programs, act as leaders in developing best practice guidelines, and network with their peers. Recent programs have focused on how to enhance market reputation, increase business efficiencies, and retain talent. Most recently, the LFSN held a session on employee engagement with speakers from notable companies such as State Street Corporation and EnerNOC, Inc.

The LFSN is currently working to finalize the American Legal Industry Sustainability Standards (ALISS), a self-assessment tool that comprehensively measures law firms' implementation of practices that promote energy efficiency, conservation of energy and resources, recycling, and related measures. The LFSN intends to launch ALISS next year and plans to publish the results of its benchmark survey, a statistical analysis of top firms' current implementation of sustainable practices, later this year.

The LFSN is also announcing its international partnership with the Legal Sector Alliance UK and the Australian Legal Sector Alliance to further raise awareness and reduce environmental impacts globally within the legal industry. Sir Nigel Knowles, Chairman of the Legal Sector Alliance UK, said, "We are delighted that law firms in the U.S. have adopted a collaborative approach to sustainability and very much look forward to working with the LFSN on this global challenge."

The Law Firm Sustainability Network was founded in August 2011 as an informal platform for law firm professionals to share ideas, network, and develop best practices and industry standards for sustainability in the legal industry. With growing success, the LFSN incorporated in November 2012 and formed its governing body, the Leadership Council, earlier this year. The LFSN is a pending 501c3 nonprofit organization. ecoAnalyze, believed to be the first eco-consulting firm dedicated to the law firm community, provides services and administration to the LFSN.

Peter Masaitis, President of the LFSN and partner at Alston & Bird, said: "The legal profession has historically taken a leadership role in many important societal causes.. Today, the needs of the environment and our role as its custodian have become a critical part of our individual and organizational responsibilities, making sustainability an integral part of corporate responsibility policies throughout the business community. Clients ask about it, law students expect it, and employees appreciate it. The LFSN is enthusiastic about its leadership role in the promotion of sustainable practices for the legal industry."

Previously published by Law Firm Sustainability Network

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