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Climate Resilience

ESG for Financial Services

Financial services initiatives on ESG and sustainability matters are steadily developing, with a large body of rules and regulations coming into force that will have direct and comprehensive impacts on financial services institutions and the products they serve.

Our leading attorneys work with key industry bodies in the ESG space to ensure we stay at the forefront of regulatory developments and understand the impacts such regulation is likely to have on the sector.

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ESG is an opportunity

For financial institutions, a focus on ESG and sustainability matters provides a new lens through which to make sound decisions and investments.

Financial institutions are now able to:

  • Understand the regulatory frameworks to which they must comply
  • Understand investment risk in light of ESG and sustainability considerations like climate change and human capital governance
  • Create ESG solutions that meet their investor clients’ objectives
  • Form greener ventures or partnerships
  • Prioritize diversity, equity and inclusion
  • Build portfolios that minimize exposure to climate risk and maximize exposure to companies focused on sustainable initiatives

Scope

We assist with initial scoping exercises to determine which products will be affected by the various forthcoming regimes (or which regimes are relevant). We can assist you with an obligation tracker, which may be used to identify and document implementation steps and may subsequently be used as an audit trail.

Interpret and implement

Interpreting new laws is a key skill set. Combined with our broad view of the market, we help you to understand your obligations and prepare commercially-acceptable outputs.

Disclose

We have hundreds of hours of experience working on ESG product disclosures and are well placed to help you prepare product descriptions that will satisfy the regulator but still resonate with investors. We are well versed in plain language drafting and serve as counsel to the IA Investor Communications working group.

Train

We offer a series of training sessions that cover both ‘what is out there’ discussions and ‘deep dives’ into specific regimes.

These can be structured as discrete, discursive workshops or used as part of your internal education and awareness campaign. In light of COVID-19, this can be virtual.

Monitor

Our RegNet team has been monitoring ESG developments closely throughout Europe and beyond and is working with various stakeholders to develop helpful tools and trackers for clients. We also maintain a database of essential reading, including mandatory local laws, policy frameworks and guidance, for these jurisdictions.

Learn more about how we can help

Our global team is comprised of lawyers who understand not only the regulatory position in each jurisdiction in which you operate, but also that of the investors and funders. Our approach is holistic, aligned and aimed at helping ESG compliance create value across your entire organization.

Environmental 

From rising sea and land temperatures to shrinking ice sheets, the threat of climate change is very real. As we move towards a low carbon economy, organizations and governments are increasingly required to articulate their climate commitments, and how and when they’ll be met.

We support corporate, financial and government clients in areas of regulatory and environmental law, sustainable finance and bonds, carbon credits, allowances and off-sets, supply chain management, and managing the risks of regulatory enforcement and climate disputes. We’ll also help you fold sustainability into your business’ strategy and navigate clean energy transitions.

Learn more about environmental

Social 

Cases of dangerous or hazardous working conditions and discriminatory practices fill the news, adversely affecting brands. But there are also stories of companies setting bold diversity and inclusion standards, making investments in employee education and future-proofing their supply chains. Whether you are facing regulatory compliance or striving to improve the way your business supports its people, we can help.

We provide practical, legal and strategic advice on human rights policy commitments; health and safety practices; diversity, equity and inclusion practices; due diligence strategy, risk assessments and reporting obligations; and supply chain risk.

Learn more about social

Governance 

Robust governance initiatives and mechanisms are expected by interest holders, shareholders and regulators, but also have the potential to improve culture, increase morale, and even foster customer loyalty. However, raising the visibility of these practices can bring more scrutiny.

We advise clients on board diversity leadership structures and oversight of risk management; and support governance structures by reviewing bylaws, governance and stewardship guidelines, committee charters, codes of ethics and other materials designed to comply with legal and regulatory requirements and establish best practices across the globe.

Learn more about governance

Contact our team

Eversheds Sutherland is present where your employees are—across the globe. Please do not hesitate to contact our legal team if you need more information or require advice.