Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG)

Comprehensive representation on ESG issues and practices.

Meet the team

Environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues are growing priorities for companies, their boards, investors and shareholders. Companies are being held accountable by investors, business partners, consumers and other stakeholders to ensure that their activities foster sustainable operations for the benefit of investors, employees and the communities in which their businesses reside. In addition, national and international legal and regulatory developments, as well as evolving standards, have placed new pressures on businesses to collect, analyze and disclose a continuously evolving and expanding set of data on the sustainability and climate change resilience of their operations and supply chains.

Locke Lord's multidisciplinary ESG team works directly with clients to address a broad range of ESG issues. We also work with our clients to evaluate facility operations to achieve compliance with ESG milestones under the myriad ESG reporting structures. Drawing from our extensive legal and industry experience, our lawyers provide tailor-made solutions and approaches customized to each client’s unique needs.

Our cross-disciplinary ESG service offerings include:

  • Corporate Sustainability Evaluation, ESG Program Development and Strategic Alignment of Operations

    • Counseling regarding reporting framework applicability and analysis
    • ESG/sustainability policy and program development
    • Baselining and development of key performance indicators (KPI)
    • Risk evaluation and gap analyses
    • Coordination with C-suite personnel and ESG consulting teams to evaluate and establish ESG priorities
    • Evaluation of competitive standing to better position businesses for stakeholder inquiries and investor evaluation
    • Guidance in anticipating or responding to investor pressures targeting traditional corporate governance structures
  • Disclosure Responsibilities and Strategy

    • Coordination of ESG reporting with securities disclosures
    • Evaluation and development of climate-related disclosures consistent with SEC guidelines and reporting regimes
    • Development of internal reporting frameworks and touchstones for programmatic success
    • Review of investor materials, ESG reports, and web-based materials and presentations for consistency with investor expectations and SEC guidelines
  • Alignment of Facility-Specific Operations With ESG Strategies

    • Development of greenhouse gas (GHG) and other air emissions baselines to mitigate disclosure risks and afford more accurate measurement/evaluation of ESG goal attainment
    • Development of risk mitigation strategy to address gaps related to environmental benchmarking
    • Implementation and development of approaches for waste and emissions minimization; water utilization; and energy efficiency programs
    • Health, safety, and environmental evaluation and metrics development, crisis management, site clean-up and emergency response planning
  • Risk Management

    • Evaluation of risk management structures and development of state-of-the-art comprehensive risk management and compliance processes
    • Counseling regarding corporate and board-level fiduciary responsibilities
    • Internal investigations associated with accuracy of disclosures, board of director responsibilities and corporate governance
    • Stakeholder communication strategies
  • Transactional Implications
    • Evaluation of ESG alignment with attributes of acquisition targets
    • Diligence to understand ESG value and ESG risk assessment
    • Contract drafting and negotiation to address ESG risk allocation
    • Evaluate tax implications related to ESG impacts, including credits and incentives

Our ESG Experience

ESG Environmental
  • Agency negotiation
  • Air emissions compliance and authorization
  • Audit and immunity strategies
  • Climate change and carbon emissions
  • Community outreach
  • Compliance counseling and permitting
  • Contaminated sites, remediation & brownfield work
  • Emergency response & crisis management
  • Endangered species and wildlife conservation
  • Energy transition
  • Energy/water usage and minimization
  • Enforcement defense
  • Environmental baselining
  • Solid and hazardous waste minimization and compliance
  • Stakeholder analyses
  • Waste water and storm water compliance
ESG Social
  • Business ethics and transparency
  • Community relations
  • Diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI)
  • Employee benefits
  • Employee relations
  • Employment investigations
  • Employment/management training
  • Equal employment opportunity (EEO)
  • Human rights
  • Labor and employment counseling and litigation defense
  • Labor management relations
  • OSHA and workplace safety
  • Pandemic preparedness and response
  • Pay equity audits
  • Privacy and cybersecurity
ESG Governance
  • Anti-money laundering
  • Board of director obligations
  • Board structures and anti-takeover defenses
  • Business ethics and transparency
  • Corporate governance and counseling
  • Director and officer counseling and litigation defense
  • Disclosures and reporting
  • Executive compensation
  • Investor relations
  • Public company counseling
  • Risk mitigation
  • Securities litigation
  • Stakeholder activism
  • White collar defense and internal investigations


Meet the team