At a time when it is more important than ever to be environmentally conscious, WilmerHale has made a commitment to reducing its carbon footprint and leading the way among large law firms in implementing office-wide changes that support environmental sustainability.
WilmerHale’s Green Committee, comprised of attorneys and staff throughout our offices, has worked to help make the firm more eco-friendly. From the development of the "Practicing Green" brand, to our various recycling programs, our message and commitment to reducing the firm's carbon footprint is clear.
We recognize that succeeding in this effort is mostly accomplished by many smaller steps, rather than a few big ones, so the firm has implemented several initiatives to help reach our goal. We have trash recycling programs at all offices, have changed the default of our copy machines to print and copy double-sided and have switched to only using recycled copy paper. The firm has also eliminated the use of plastic water bottles, instead introducing water pitchers and filtered water systems. As a result, we have significantly reduced the number of cases of bottled water we order. In our Boston office alone, the number of cases we ordered from 2007 to 2008 dropped from 771 to 14.
In our European offices, light sensors and pre-programmed on/off switches have been added, making it easier for staff to turn off the lights at the end of the workday, and our Brussels office is negotiating a two-year contract of green electricity, to be powered by solar units, windmills and waterfalls.
We have also focused our green efforts on materials geared to an external audience. A majority of our marketing materials are printed on paper that contains between 30 and 100 percent post-consumer waste recycled content, and we print only with soy or vegetable-based inks, which are easier to remove from paper during the recycling process than traditional petroleum-based inks. The firm has also produced on-campus interview postcards, which have replaced folders, brochures and other printed materials given to prospective law school candidates each fall.
Our commitment to sustainability also extends to the commutes of our attorneys and staff. We’ve added bike racks outside of our Washington DC office to encourage employees to use eco-friendly methods of getting to and from work, and in our New York office, when car service is necessary, attorneys and staff have the option of choosing a company that only uses hybrid cars. Our London office has also gotten in on the action, where attorneys and staff have access to a fleet of taxis that has taken steps to drastically reduce their carbon dioxide emissions.
WilmerHale has made a serious commitment to reducing our carbon footprint, changing the way we do business in order to make a noticeable impact on the environment. More than ever, we are committed to expanding that awareness and support for a better environment.