2023 Annual Report: Lawyers for a Sustainable Economy – Environmental and Natural Resources Law & Policy Program

Lawyers for a Sustainable Economy Celebrates 5th Anniversary and $26 Million in Pro Bono Work; Launches New Experiential Education Program to Support Early-Stage Startups

This year marks the fifth anniversary of the Lawyers for a Sustainable Economy (LSE) initiative, and we are excited to continue to expand our work and impact. We now have 20 firms in the initiative that collectively provided over $26 million in pro bono on sustainability matters in 2023.

One of our recent successes is the launch of Startup Law: Sustainability, an experiential education class at Stanford Law School supporting the Stanford founder community. Students in this class help to provide pro bono legal assistance and support to early-stage nonprofit and for-profit startups addressing climate, sustainability, and social impact challenges. This has been a great complementary addition to LSE, as more complex matters are often forwarded to the LSE network.

Together, LSE and Startup Law: Sustainability vetted over 80 applicants and were able to provide pro bono legal help to nearly 50 sustainability-focused startups and nonprofits. The firms in the LSE initiative worked on many interesting matters this year, including helping entities focused on sustainable aquaculture and agriculture, coral reef restoration, renewable energy production, green financing, and carbon capture technologies.

In addition to our ongoing work with startups and nonprofits, we also worked closely with attorneys in the initiative to offer webinars and direct pro bono services to startups and Tribal entities on how to take advantage of Inflation Reduction Act (IRA) incentives and accelerate renewable energy implementation.

We are proud of our achievements so far but know there is still much work to be done. We look forward to continuing our efforts towards creating a more sustainable future through legal advocacy.

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