Baker & McKenzie becomes first law firm to join carbon price coalition

Multinational law firm Baker & McKenzie has become the first legal industry representatives to join the World Bank's Carbon Pricing Leadership Coalition (CPLC) in a commitment to help clients "respond innovatively to the risks - and opportunities" of an economically regulated low carbon future.

Baker & McKenzie, which employs more than 12,000 people worldwide, will co-operate with other CPLC members – which includes 90 businesses and strategic partners and 20 governments – as the Coalition looks to share best practices and advance the transition to a global carbon price.

Head of Baker & McKenzie’s global environmental markets and climate change practice, Martijn Wilder, said: “We have a long-standing commitment to helping companies respond innovatively to the risks – and opportunities – of climate change law and regulation anywhere around the globe. We regularly attend the COP and MOP [meeting of the Conference of the Parties] meetings and closely follow the development of negotiating issues arising out of those meetings. 

“Many of our lawyers have participated in the negotiations as members of country delegations, and we are actively involved in working with industry groups and non-governmental organisations seeking to achieve global outcomes on climate change.”

“Joining the CPLC sets us among many of our key clients – who are often under far greater pressure on environmental issues than us and increasingly expect best practice from their advisors. Membership of the Coalition demonstrates how seriously we take our commitment both as good corporate citizens and also as trusted advisors who clients can have confidence are of a similar mindset working towards the same long term climate change ambitions.”

Calls for a globally implemented carbon price have been increasing over the past few years through the rise of national mechanisms – particularly within G20 nations. The EU’s Emissions Trading System (ETS) remains the single largest international carbon pricing instrument, covering 45% of the continent’s emissions. China is reportedly planning to implement its own large-scale ETS solution.

Earlier this month, a report produced by disclosure organisation CDP revealed that businesses are outpacing Governments in carbon pricing commitments.  At least 150 global companies are now implementing “shadow price” into their business with the expectation of an external carbon pricing model in the near future, the report revealed.

Alex Baldwin

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