Environmental, Social, and Governance (“ESG”)

Overview

More than ever, the COVID-19 crisis has focused investors, the board of directors, and management on the importance of Environmental, Social, and Governance (“ESG”) issues. These issues impact investor decisions as well as the way boards oversee risk management.

A company’s sustainability and long-term value are often evaluated by how well the company manages its ESG risks and opportunities. COVID-19 has been a catalyst for companies’ sustainability policies that enable them to continue to generate revenue in the pandemic and provide effective human capital management. Moreover, the Social component of ESG has become extremely important, including a company’s ability to attract and retain employees, a company’s support for diversity and inclusion initiatives, as well as a positive consumer experience in the midst of the pandemic.

Our clients operate in the environment where investors, customers, and rating agencies are increasingly focused on a company’s ability to mitigate ESG risks and act on ESG opportunities.

As ESG issues and strategies continue to shape boardroom agendas, shareholder priorities, and employee values, Blank Rome’s cross-disciplinary team of attorneys works with the board of directors and management to align our services around every aspect of ESG.

How We Can Help

  • ESG strategy, design, and implementation
  • Board ESG agenda
  • ESG reports
  • ESG due diligence
  • ESG disclosures in SEC filings
  • Sustainable and impact investing
  • Investment management and ESG strategies
  • Creation and operation of ESG funds and special purpose acquisition companies (“SPACs”)
  • Virtual Power Purchase Agreements (“PPAs”)
  • Compliance with climate change-related protocols
  • Insurance coverage related to climate events
  • Due diligence for brownfields and advice on land use restrictions
  • Environmental liability and due diligence in mergers and acquisitions
  • International trade, sanctions, and Foreign Corrupt Practices Act (“FCPA”) compliance counseling
  • Data privacy and stewardship
  • Investor engagement
  • ESG considerations for specific industries, including:
    • Oil and gas
    • Renewable energy
    • Financial services
    • Life sciences
  • Human capital considerations, including:
    • Human capital management disclosures in SEC filings
    • Diversity, equity, and inclusion, including employment law updates and mandatory training programs
    • Reporting and procedures related to #MeToo
    • Adapting workforce policies and programs
    • Legal and regulatory oversight to recruit and retain the best talent
    • Protection of corporate assets and trade secrets
    • Remote workforce data vulnerabilities
    • Evolving role of artificial intelligence
    • Gig-economy workforce management 

What Sets Us Apart

Our attorneys:

  • bring unique perspectives with experience representing both company and investor clients on ESG issues.
  • stand out as thought leaders, organizing, sponsoring, hosting, and presenting webinars and events on various ESG topics, and we are regularly quoted in media publications on emerging ESG issues.
  • build cross-disciplinary client service teams tailored for each client’s specific needs and goals.
  • combine the depth and experience of a large firm practice with a commitment to close personal attention to the client and the matters involved.
  • view ourselves as a business partner and trusted counselor to our clients and understand our clients’ businesses, their needs, and their priorities, so that we may provide creative and practical advice.
  • invest in long-term relationships and create client service teams to ensure effective and efficient delivery of legal services.
  • place an emphasis on preventive measures to preempt problems before they arise and help our clients prepare for changes in regulations.
  • provide value-added services to our clients, including in-house training programs, CLE programs, and newsletters.

Team

Sophia Lee

Sophia Lee

Partner and Chief Diversity and Inclusion Officer Emeritus

News & Views

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