Sustainability legal services

EY Law teams can help your law department identify and manage risk associated with sustainability ambitions and operations to drive value. They provide a set of services that can be customized to provide knowledgeable legal guidance, operational improvements and scalable support.

How EY teams can help

Law departments are uniquely situated at the nexus of law, policy, investor relations, risk management and business operations.  Increasingly, they are being called on to play a more proactive role in protecting and creating value for the larger organization by helping drive the agenda for the business. This is causing some law departments to expand their involvement in daily business operations and manage non-legal risks in areas lacking clear regulatory guidance. Already facing concerns around talent, workload and budget, the growing volume and complexity of sustainability work is an additional challenge for many law departments.  

EY Law multidisciplinary teams include legal, project management and technology professionals who are at the forefront of regulatory developments and well placed to help clients across industries and around the globe with their growing sustainability needs. A full complement of sustainability legal services is available to law departments and can be customized to help address the highly differentiated sustainability priorities and challenges of your organization.

Legal Advisory Services provide knowledgeable legal advice to help law departments better manage risk and navigate complex and evolving sustainability regulations and issues. EY Legal Function Consulting and Legal Managed Services teams offer strategic guidance and the support of over 1,000 legal professionals to help law departments more efficiently and cost effectively manage growing sustainability workloads.   

EY sustainability services for law departments span three key areas :

  • Environmental sustainability

    Advising clients on regulations, such as the EU Green Deal, and actions to address climate change and environmental degradation, including:

    • Renewable energy, Green Power Purchase Agreements and clean technology
    • Heat transition and combined heat and power generation (CHP) projects
    • Circular economy frameworks including requirements for products and packaging, eco-design and environmental fees
    • Decarbonization and energy transition strategies
    • Carbon pricing regimes, emissions trading, carbon credits, carbon offset assets, carbon border adjustments and carbon capture utilization or storage projects
    • Guidance on generation projects, including new construction, modernization and improvements on existing power plants and facilities
    • Incorporation of environmental policies in financing strategies, investment decisions and purchase agreements
    • Review of the available sources of financing for the sustainable investments, to include an indication of the evaluation criteria, the time horizon, the level of support and a description of the application process
    • Regulatory tracking and compliance

    EY Law teams also support the EU Green Deal Center of Excellence (COE), a multidisciplinary and cross-border team of seasoned sustainability, climate change, energy, environmental and green finance legal professionals whose mission is to provide assistance around the EU Green Deal and its building blocks, including Fit for 55, sustainable finance, supply chain due diligence and circular economy frameworks. The COE provides a single, centralized source for strategic legal and regulatory advice to help clients around the globe navigate continually evolving policies and regulations and make connections across EU Green Deal initiatives.

  • Workforce sustainability and compliance

    Helping clients maintain legal and regulatory compliance and design initiatives to address employee safety, wellbeing, diversity, equity and inclusion to improve employee engagement, productivity and retention.

    Services pertain to issues involving:

    • Employment law tracking and compliance
    • Pay equity
    • Codes of conduct
    • Whistle-blower frameworks
    • Child labor and human rights policies
    • Diversity initiatives
    • Return to office policies
  • ESG due diligence

    Providing due diligence support to identify human rights and other environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues in transactions, the supply chain, high-risk projects and the entire value chain, including downstream and internal operations. Services are provided in connection with:

    • Legal and compliance diligence
    • Vendor diligence
    • Transaction diligence
    • Supplier questionnaire review
    • Identification and remediation of contract processes, legal content and counterparty contracts
  • Sustainable finance law and regulation

    Providing legal advice that helps clients take environmental, social and governance (ESG) considerations into account when making lending and investment decisions including: corporate clients assessing relevant criteria to qualify for ESG-related lending, investments or incentives, financial institutions defining ESG-related lending practices and financial market participants issuing and advising on ESG-related instruments or products. 

    • Supervisory requirements, disclosure and reporting obligations
    • Calculation of green asset and investment ratios
    • Market communication on ESG products
    • Qualification of green loans, green bonds, social bonds, sustainable derivatives, structured products and sustainability funds
    • Low-carbon benchmarks
Sustainable finance law and regulation

Providing legal advice that helps clients take environmental, social and governance (ESG) considerations into account when making lending and investment decisions including: corporate clients assessing relevant criteria to qualify for ESG-related lending, investments or incentives, financial institutions defining ESG-related lending practices and financial market participants issuing and advising on ESG-related instruments or products.

  • Supervisory requirements, disclosure and reporting obligations
  • Calculation of green asset and investment ratios
  • Market communication on ESG products
  • Qualification of green loans, green bonds, social bonds, sustainable derivatives, structured products and sustainability funds
  • Low-carbon benchmarks

EY Law teams are also connected to professionals and services across the global EY network that are deployed by businesses to help with various aspects of sustainability, including strategy development, tax guidance, supply chain planning, culture and social impact diagnostics, green infrastructure projects and reporting.

EY member firms do not practice law where not permitted by local law and regulations.

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