Maples Teesdale is proud to be at the forefront and amongst the most innovative of law firms when it comes to advising clients about effective documentation of their ESG requirements.
We are currently advising businesses across all stages of sustainable development, from planning and construction, to letting and financing; and our goal is to ensure that our clients’ legal documents reflect their sustainability goals and appetites. We have a particular expertise in green leases.
We understand that each business has its own targets and levels of comfort around ESG, with approaches that vary from the very cautious, to institutionally acceptable, to extremely innovative, and everything in between.
Whatever the level of appetite, it is rare to find any responsible business that doesn’t have ESG on their agenda and aren’t already updating the green provisions in their legal documents or considering doing so in the near future.
What we can offer:
- Genuine interest in and passion about ESG
- We have negotiated hundreds of green leases
- We have reviewed a number of our clients’ precedent leases and suggested updates to them, both to cover currently acceptable green lease clauses and to future proof (as much as possible) for the further inevitable changes
- We draft lease clauses that reflect a client’s appetite and preparing heads of terms with enhanced ESG credentials, which ensure minimal negotiation times
- Tracking use of green lease clauses and reporting on adoption rates for client auditing purposes
- Advising clients on the implications of MEES for their portfolios and on adoption of green lease clauses on lease renewals;
- Acting on PV installation and installation of EV charging points
- Knowledge sharing, with regular webinars and training sessions for clients and contacts, and inviting various ESG professionals to share their experiences
- Thought leadership – we have excellent contacts within the ESG community and share knowledge with other law firms on legal panels
- Planning related matters including Environmental Impact Assessments, Statements of Community Involvement, Habitat Regulations assessments; carbon neutrality, sustainable locations, water efficiency, nitrate and phosphate impacts and biodiversity net gain; community engagement, provision of affordable housing / student accommodation, affordable workspace, training initiatives, diversity issues; demonstrating changing occupier travel habits, evidence of carbon neutrality, monitoring and reporting on energy efficiency.
- Advising on the impact of the UK Green Building Council’s “Net zero whole life carbon roadmap for the built environment”
- Discussing the creation and use of carbon calculators and how data from these will act as a benchmark for the whole industry
- Discussing the merits of using carbon benchmarks and KPIs and penalising or rewarding contractors for exceeding or coming in under agreed levels
- Understanding the use of innovative building materials like cross-laminated timbers, mindful of related insurance issues
- Considering the impact of community engagement to achieve successful developments
- Discussing the issues concerning the ongoing debate of refurbishment versus new build and how the fabric of the building will determine the strategies used when trying to achieve carbon neutrality
This is a fast-moving and evolving area of law and legal drafting, and it is definitely not a case of one shade of green suiting all. In considering our approach to green documents, we consider both a business’ approach to ESG and the nature of each of its individual assets.