This Practice Note provides a guide to in-house lawyers on what the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs) are. It explains what the core responsibility for business is under the UNGPs and why in-house lawyers should be aware of them. It also provides some practical tips on what business should do.
This Practice Note outlines the implications of the UN Guiding Principles on Business and Human Rights (UNGPs), also known as the Ruggie Principles, for lawyers and law firms. It explains what the UNGPs are, what they mean for lawyers and law firms and also references emerging guidance, as well as considering the challenges and opportunities the UNGPs present for law firms.
This Practice Note discusses climate change in a public procurement context, noting the tools available to contracting authorities to assess climate change impacts when awarding public contracts.
This Practice Note outlines International Standard ISO 14001:2015 on environmental management. It was produced in partnership with Ardea International and is part of a series of notes on environmental management. It explains what environmental management system (EMS) ISO 14001 is and sets out the key changes brought about by the revisions to ISO 14001 published in September 2015 (ISO 14001:2015).
This Practice Note explains what Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) governance is and explains what the implications are for boards. It starts by explaining what CSR is and what governance means ie the system by which companies are directed and controlled. The Practice Note then looks at board members and the fiduciary responsibility that they have for the effective management of social and environmental risks. It also sets out the in-house lawyer’s role and practical steps to develop a CSR governance framework. It was produced in partnership with Ardea International and is part of a series on corporate responsibility
This Practice Note highlights the professional responsibility of lawyers in relation to human rights due diligence, particularly in the context of the United Nations Guiding Principles on business and human rights (UNGPs), also known as the Ruggie Principles. It was produced in partnership with Ardea International. It outlines the scope of human rights diligence, including references to human rights due diligence in international agreements, and the potential for liability under international frameworks.
This Practice Note outlines mandatory human rights reporting requirements in the UK, EU and US. It was produced in partnership with Ardea International. It covers current and future human rights reporting requirements and considers supply change management issues, including under the Companies Act 2006 (Strategic Report and Directors’ Report) Regulations 2013, SI 2013/1970, Modern Slavery Act 2015, EU Directive on non-financial and diversity information, the EU Conflict Minerals Regulation, Section 1502 of the Dodd-Frank Act, and the California Transparency in Supply Chains Act of 2010.
This risk management guide, written for in-house lawyers in partnership with Ardea International, aims to provide a useful checklist when considering how to address the environmental risks relating to your organisation and to provide the tools to monitor compliance with the laws.
This guide, written for in-house lawyers, provides an insight into some of the mandatory reporting requirements for companies on non-financial issues, including the strategic report and the Financial Reporting Council’s (FRC) guidance on this, additional social, human rights requirements for quoted companies, greenhouse gas reporting requirements, Modern Slavery Act 2015 requirements and rules coming from EU Directive 2014/95/EU on disclosure of non-financial and diversity information. It also explains what a sustainability report is, sets out the different voluntary reporting frameworks available in summary format and highlights the benefits of assurances.
This Practice Note outlines requirements for companies and limited liability partnerships (LLPs) to report on environmental impacts under the Companies Act 2006 such as through Streamlined Energy and Carbon Reporting (SECR) requirements introduced through the Companies (Directors’ Report) and Limited Liability Partnerships (Energy and Carbon Report) Regulations 2018, SI 2018/1155. This includes requirements for narrative reporting in the directors’ report including mandatory greenhouse gas (GHG) and energy use reporting by quoted companies, large unquoted companies and large LLPs. It also covers mandatory environmental reporting requirements in the strategic report, such as from the Directive on disclosure of non-financial and diversity information, or a section 172 statement, as well as requirements under the UK Corporate Governance (UKCG) Code and accounting standards. The Practice Note then focuses on environmental reporting in accordance with certain domestic regulatory reporting requirements, the US Securities Exchange Commission, pension funds and EU environmental reporting developments such as the Regulation on Sustainability-related Disclosures and disclosures under the Taxonomy Regulation. It also provides detail and guidance on the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures (TCFD), as well as how it is being implemented in the UK across seven organisation types (listed commercial companies, UK-registered large private companies, banks and building societies, insurance companies, asset managers, life insurance and FCA-regulated pension schemes and occupational pension schemes). The note also considers environmental reporting through the UK Sustainability Disclosure Requirements (SDR) and Green Taxonomy.
This Practice Note explains what terms such as ‘responsible’ or ‘sustainable’ business’, ‘corporate social responsibility’ (CSR), ‘sustainability’ and ‘environmental social governance’ (ESG) mean in the context of business. It sets out why General Counsel (GC) working in-house, as well as their external advisors, should understand these terms and how they can contribute to a company’s responsible business programme. It was produced in partnership with Ardea International and is part of a series on corporate responsibility. It provides examples of good business practice and some practical steps to developing sustainable business.
This Practice Note outlines the definition of sustainable development (SD) at the international level and international policy on sustainable development. It includes the most widely recognised definition of sustainable development from the 1987 United Nations Commission on Environment and Development (UNCED) report ‘Our Common Future’, known as the Brundtland Report. It also covers how sustainable development has been defined at other international meetings, in other international agreements and documents, and by other international organisations, such as the UN General Assembly, the World Bank, the International Institute for Sustainable Development (IISD), the UN Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD) and the United Nations High-Level Political Forum (HLPF). It also considers criticisms and shortcomings of the mainstream definition of SD and discusses the Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). It was produced in partnership with Ardea International.
This Practice Note outlines the definition and application of sustainable development at UK level. It covers the Brundtland definition and the three pillars of sustainable development, sustainable development as a policy objective in national Sustainable Development Strategies (SDS) issued by the UK government and devolved administrations, and mechanisms for implementing sustainable development including in UK legislation. This Practice Note also discusses the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) and Sustainable Development Indicators (SDI) as a means to measure progress toward the policy goal of sustainable development, and the influence of sustainable development policy on the National Planning Policy Framework (NPPF).
This Practice Note outlines the use of sustainability indicators and goals. It covers the origin and history of sustainable development indicators (SDIs), SDIs in the UK and the sustainable development goals (SDGs), including what they are, how are they implemented and monitored, and what lawyers need to know about the SDGs.
This Practice Note outlines what sustainable procurement is and why lawyers should understand how to apply the principles of sustainable procurement (not to be confused with green public procurement) in the private sector. It provides a practical outline of the issues, including the benefits of taking sustainability into account in purchasing decisions, sustainability criteria in tenders and the use of standards in sustainable procurement.
This Practice Note outlines various voluntary frameworks and initiatives for reporting greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions. It includes guidance on voluntary GHG reporting and a summary of international reporting guidance and frameworks, such as the Greenhouse Gas Protocol (GHG Protocol), Science Based Target Initiative (SBTi), Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP), Climate Disclosure Standards Board (CDSB), Global Framework for Climate Risk Disclosure, Securities and Exchange Commission guidance on disclosure related to climate change and Task Force on climate-related financial disclosures (TCFD). There is also reference to international standards, such as ISO 14064:2018.
This Checklist outlines key considerations when undertaking human rights due diligence as part of a corporate or other transaction. It was produced in partnership with Ardea International. It includes when human rights due diligence should be carried out, and key steps lawyers should take when assessing impacts, including reviewing documentation, requesting documents, raising questions and reporting on impacts and risks.
This Practice Note covers environmental legal registers in the environmental management context. It was produced in partnership with Ardea International and is part of a series of notes on environmental management. It includes what an environmental legal register is, why lawyers should be aware of environmental legal registers, who should develop the register, setting the scope of a compliance process, setting the scope under environmental management systems (EMS) and the Eco Management and Audit Scheme (EMAS), steps in developing an environmental legal register, what should be documented and maintaining the environmental legal register.
This Practice Note explains what an environmental policy is in the context of environmental management. It was produced in partnership with CLT envirolaw and is part of a series of notes on environmental management. It covers what an environmental policy is, why lawyers should be aware of environmental policies, why companies should consider adopting an environmental policy, what an environmental policy should include, what should companies do once they have an environmental policy in place.
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