DeCotiis, FitzPatrick, Cole & Wisler was recently recognized by the American Bar Association (ABA) and the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) as a Law Office Climate Challenge Partner for adopting policies and practices that meet environmental and conservation standards.
The firm was designated a Law Office Climate Challenge Partner for its implementation of “Best Practices for Office Paper Management." According to the ABA, a firm is eligible for this title when it meets two of the following three criteria.
· Assure that at least approximately 90 percent of all types of copier, printer, letterhead, and bond paper, as well as business and manila envelopes purchased have at least 30% post-consumer recycled content. A law office can implement this practice by adopting a policy that 100% of its future purchases of copier/printer paper have at least 30% post-consumer recycled content.
· Recycle at least approximately 90 percent of discarded mixed office paper (defined as all types of white copier and printer paper, bond and letterhead paper, note paper, colored paper, and envelopes). A law office can implement this practice by establishing an office-wide policy of recycling these materials and assuring that all office personnel have ready access to recycling bins.
· Institute a policy of double-sided printing and copying for drafts and internal documents. A law office can implement this practice by setting copiers and printers on double-sided as the default mode and by making reasonable acquisitions of software and attachments as needed to enable double-sided as the default mode.
The firm is also a participant in the EPA’s Waste Wise Program and a member of the New Jersey WasteWise Business Network.
“This is a special honor for our firm,” said Managing Partner Michael R. DeCotiis. “The practices we have implemented indicate our commitment to environmental values. By reducing energy consumption and paper waste, we aim to be a part of the solution of resource sustainability.”
“The effect of climate change demonstrates how aggregate consumption can affect the world that we live in. At DeCotiis, FitzPatrick, Cole & Wisler, we strive to be more conscious about how we use our resources. In the future, we hope to encourage the further use of environmentally-friendly alternatives in the workplace and the community,” Mr. DeCotiis added.
Drawing on its extensive experience in environmental, real estate, finance, tax and governmental/regulatory affairs law, the firm’s Green practice group works with real estate developers, investment funds, governing bodies, corporations and entrepreneurs throughout New Jersey and the region in the areas of renewable energy, sustainable development, project finance, environmental permitting, land use, green investment and clean technology
DeCotiis has also structured and created the first renewable energy program for local governments in New Jersey. The program is being implemented in New Jersey counties, and will allow local governments to finance renewable energy projects at a lower operating cost, resulting in direct and certain budgetary savings, while achieving the environmental benefits of employing green technology. It is currently being expanded to the private sector.