Alston & Bird’s Commitment to Sustainability
Sustainability is an integral part of Alston & Bird’s culture and a core element of its corporate responsibility programs. While sustainability involves improving efficiencies and reducing our environmental footprint, it also encompasses more broadly our firm's relationship with its people and communities, and our collective role in maintaining the long-term viability of both.
Alston & Bird’s firm-wide Sustainability Committee provides leadership, structure and accountability to our environmental initiatives. The committee oversees firm policies and practices designed to reduce our footprint on the environment, it promotes initiatives that have a positive impact on our local and global communities, and it provides a platform for communication between attorneys and staff regarding these critical issues.
The Firm has taken a leadership role in the legal industry by helping found the Law Firm Sustainability Network, sharing its vision with other green law firms to improve the entire industry’s sustainable practices. We not only talk the talk, we walk the walk. From comprehensive recycling programs to composting services, to waste reduction and reuse initiatives, we do all that we can to reduce, recycle and reuse. We purchase a full 50% of the entire firm’s electricity from wind farms, reducing greenhouse gas emissions and encouraging the further development of the renewable energy sector. We reside in LEED-certified buildings, like the Gold Certified Bank of America Plaza in Los Angeles, and our recently-renovated home office in Atlanta achieved Gold LEED certification, the third-largest law firm space in the world to achieve this recognition.
Alston & Bird has made significant investments in its green credentials, but is always looking for new ways to improve. We are inspired by the achievements of our clients, many of whom have garnered recognition for their impressive improvements in energy efficiency, waste reduction and carbon footprint reduction. We believe that sustainable practices are necessary to a better future and are proud to be at the forefront of the green movement in the legal industry.
Alston & Bird is one of the founding firms of the Law Firm Sustainability Network (LFSN). Founded in August 2011, 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. As a founding firm, Alston & Bird serves on the Leadership Council of the organization, and partner Peter Masaitis is in his third year as president.
Alston & Bird has joined the Environmental Protection Agency’s Green Power Partnership through our purchase of Renewable Energy Credits. The EPA’s Green Power Partnership is a program that encourages organizations to use green power as a way to reduce the environmental impacts associated with conventional electricity use.
Alston & Bird became a member of the EPA’s Green Power Leadership Club in 2014 by purchasing 50% of its electrical power, firm-wide, from wind farms. In 2015, Alston & Bird again purchased Renewable Energy Credits offsetting 50% of its electricity consumption, qualifying it to join an elite group of Green Power Partners who are demonstrating exemplary environmental leadership. Alston & Bird is committed to sustainability in all of its forms and appreciates the EPA’s recognition of its efforts.
Alston & Bird’s Atlanta office is the recipient of Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED) Gold certification for environmental sustainability. LEED certification is awarded by the U.S. Green Building Council (USGBC) and is the group’s leading rating system for the world's greenest buildings that incorporate environmentally friendly and energy efficient practices. The firm’s LEED Gold certification was based on a number of green design and construction features that positively impact the office itself and the broader community. These features include: enhanced HVAC controllability to reduce energy consumption and increase personal comfort; occupancy sensors for lighting efficiency and the low-mercury nature of the systems; furniture that meets USGBC's standards for sustainable content; recycled content throughout the construction of the space; and the use of low VOC materials such as paints, coatings, furniture and seating, among many other features.
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Environmental issues increasingly affect business and industry in new and dramatic ways, presenting enormous challenges and opportunities to our clients. Alston & Bird's Energy, Environmental & Land Development practices present a world-class cross functional team consisting of more than 100 attorney and non-attorney specialists with market-leading expertise on the issues that have become among the most important in the world. (click here for more)
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