We are proud to have participated as a firm in the most recent event organised by The Chancery Lane Project (TCLP), the Big Hack, which took place from September 2020 to January 2021.  During the event, lawyers from across the firm committed roughly 120 hours of pro bono time to support the generation of a suite of innovative contract clauses that will help to tackle the climate crisis and achieve net zero.

TCLP provides a collaborative forum for lawyers to devise practical legal solutions that will aid the transition to a net zero carbon economy and society.  The initiative has swept through the legal profession with impressive momentum since its formation in 2019, signaling a growing recognition of the important role of the law (and lawyers) in tackling climate issues.

The Big Hack was the third of TCLP’s ‘hackathon’ events, during which lawyers across the country (and the world) collaboratively generate climate-conscious legal drafting around particular themes.  The output will be published shortly in the fourth edition of the Climate Contract Playbook, a freely accessible online resource.

During the Big Hack, lawyers from the Real Estate Team participated in the peer review of draft clauses on the theme of ‘Rewilding and Ecological Restoration’.  Land use is a key area for emissions reductions and biodiversity enhancements, and the drafting generated provided innovative practical solutions through, for example, promoting carbon sinks and ecological restoration in lettings of agricultural and rural land. 

Beyond our involvement in Real Estate, our colleagues in the Construction Team hosted the virtual hackathon event for Infrastructure, and the Environment Team drew on their strong expertise to help with peer review.

As a firm, we are committed to both reducing our own carbon-reliance and helping the wider business community to transition.  Our partnership with TCLP follows our Net Zero Cross-Sector Initiative and our recent public commitment to being net zero by 2026, amongst our other commitments to environmental responsibility.

In the coming months, TCLP will be hosting a series of hackathon events that align with the COP26 focus areas, the first of which is a hackathon on the theme of ‘Land Use & Agriculture’.  We look forward to continuing our involvement, harnessing our creativity, legal expertise and commercial acumen to create legal solutions for a net zero society.

This article was written by Gabi Gershuny and Thomas Mark-Bell.