Location: Europe

Leading law firm Linklaters offset unavoidable carbon emissions between 2017 and 2021, helping to boost staff loyalty and engagement by supporting high quality climate and development projects with ClimateCare.

About the client

Linklaters is a global law firm with a purpose of bringing legal certainty to a changing world. As a leading adviser on ESG-related matters, the firm aims to ‘practise what we preach’ and so leadership in human rights, social engagement and carbon reduction are key. Since 2015, it has used the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) as a framework for its sustainability efforts and encourages its over 6,000 people to understand how they can play their part.

After a decade of resource and energy efficiency initiatives - particularly in its London HQ - and successfully reducing associated Scope 1, 2 and 3 emissions associated with business travel, water, paper and waste, Linklaters began carbon offsetting 2017. This was a move supported by its people consulted in the UK and was, at the time, the logical next step for the firm’s climate strategy and seen as a further commitment to positive action.

What we did

ClimateCare helped Linklaters to meet its carbon offsetting objectives by putting together a portfolio of the highest-quality climate and development projects. This resulted in a multi-year commitment to support the Gola Rainforest Conservation Project in Sierra Leone.

The Gola Rainforest Protection Project – a partnership between government officials, conservation groups and local communities – helps to protect and sustainably conserve 140,000 hectares of threatened forest in southeastern Sierra Leone. Protecting the ‘Green Diamond’ – so called because of its wealth of biodiversity – is vital in a country with just 4% of its original forest remaining. Linklaters’ support is helping to prevent deforestation, avoid carbon emissions, preserve wildlife habitats, and improve local livelihoods through sustainable agriculture projects.

ClimateCare has worked with Linklaters Environment Team to promote the project internally through a global internal communications campaign, including office events and online talks. The initiative strongly resonates with people, as biodiversity is a challenging area for law firms to support directly – making support for the Gola Rainforest Protection Project a perfect response.

Providing support to a successful local economy that respects the rainforest is the surest way of protecting Gola for generations to come. The opportunity to go above and beyond a simple carbon offset was compelling and has enabled us to address a number of firmwide priorities through a single, impressive, and relevant program.
Matt Sparkes, Head of Sustainability, Linklaters

What positive outcomes did we deliver?

Linklaters’ support of the Gola Rainforest project has so far prevented over 50,000 tonnes CO2e being emitted while supporting multiple SDGs, particularly those relating to climate action and protecting life on land. In addition, the firm’s progressive approach is undoubtedly helping to attract and retain both clients and people.

In 2020 and 2021 Linklaters’ reviewed the firm's baseline and material emission categories and as a result expanded its Scope 3 categories and emissions, adopted stretching new carbon reduction targets to 2030, and had these approved by the Science Based Targets initiative. In light of this, Linklaters is now reviewing net zero and decarbonisation best practice and the firm’s associated carbon offsetting strategy.

Delivering towards the Global Goals

Sustainable Development Goals

Supporting our projects delivers on multiple UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). You can read more on the Goals below.

Learn more about the global goals