Record numbers of law firms have reported their carbon footprint for the past year, with regular reporters revealing a near 60% reduction in their combined footprint.

According to the Legal Sustainability Alliance (LSA), the 28 firms that have consistently reported the carbon emissions data have revealed a 56% reduction in their combined footprint.

The average reduction in the carbon footprint per employee decreased by 39% to 3.07 tonnes of CO2 (tCO2e). 

The figures appear in the annual report of the LSA, whose executive members include international firms Allen & Overy, Taylor Wessing, Herbert Smith Freehills and Norton Rose Fulbright.

Christina Blacklaws

Christina Blacklaws

In total, 59 firms reported their data with nine firms reporting for the first time. The total carbon footprint associated with all reporting firms was 191,836 tCO2e. This represents an average figure of 3.24 tCO2e per employee — an 11% reduction on last year.

Law Society vice president Christina Blacklaws said: ‘It is a pleasure to support the LSA and to see it grow year by year. The Law Society supports and applauds law firms’ initiatives to become increasingly sustainable and to reduce their carbon footprint. This is not only in the interests of the planet — it also makes good business sense, helping to reduce costs and retain clients.

‘It is our hope that through the LSA’s collaborative network, our members continue to promote a cultural shift within their working practices, towards greater environmental sustainability.’