We are committed to minimising the impact of our business on the environment through responsible management of our buildings, minimising waste and recycling wherever practical.
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We regularly monitor energy usage and encourage staff to reduce consumption, for example by turning equipment off overnight and at weekends. Where practical we have installed motion detector switching for lights, and where this is not the case, have management procedures in place to ensure that lights are not left on overnight.
Waste and recycling
We operate a sophisticated electronic document management system that reduces the need for paper copies and where print is necessary our printers are set to default to double-sided printing.
Paper used within our printers and copiers is all either recycled or from sustainable sources, and printer cartridges are returned to suppliers for refilling and recycling.
We have a number of initiatives underway to ensure that we recycle as much waste as possible, with the vast majority of office waste being recycled. (Confidential waste is shredded and then recycled)
Where it is safe to do so, we offer excess computer equipment and furniture to charities for their use and mobile phones are recycled using a specialist charity.
All suppliers to the firm are assessed in a range of areas to ensure that they meet the high standards we require of them. This includes requesting details of environmental policies within tenders and giving preference to the use of environmental products where practical, for example in cleaning contracts.
The firm enforces a travel policy aimed at best value and regard for the environment. The policy emphasises:
- the need to keep travel to an absolute minimum
- where possible the use of rail in preference to air travel
- the use of public transport where practical and safe
- the use of our in-house video and audio conferencing facilities in preference to travel.
Bird & Bird is proud to work with Earth Champions; a not for profit organisation which strives to inspire people, especially youth, and to involve world communities to create a positive climate of hope and increase the proportion of people, communities and businesses consciously working for the benefit of the environment.
Bird & Bird has been working with Earth Champions to establish a new company limited by guarantee and seek charitable status by lodging an application for registration with the Charity Commission. Some of our lawyers have also provided pro bono advice in relation to confidentiality agreements with third parties, protecting the Foundation’s intellectual property, and working with the Foundation in creating employment contracts.
Every four years, in the city hosting the summer Olympic Games, the Foundation runs a Quest to discover the people’s environmental solutions which helps to inspire community action, health and long-term happiness. Quests have been completed in Hong Kong, Switzerland and Australia, and the Foundation will be showcasing the outstanding Earth Champions for one day, the week prior to the start of the 2012 London Olympics.
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