b'GOVERNANCE| LEGAL SECTOR| 2021SUSTAINABILITY INSIGHTSUSTAINABLE PROCUREMENTIntroductionThe production of all goods and services uses both human and natural resources. A significant portion of any organisations sustainability impact is hidden in those goods and services that are used to produce the inputs to its business operations. The sustainability aspects of a law firms inputs are sometimes very visible and relatively simple to record, for example electricity or paper use but in other cases, these impacts are much less transparent, for example illegal or unfair labour practices or the impacts of raw materials extraction.Understanding the social and environmental impacts of the associated goods and services that law firms use to provide their own services helps to determine their true impacts. It also allows sourcing and purchasing considerations to be made that improve these impacts and signal to suppliers the need to drive changes in their own businesses.At WorkA sustainable supply chain management program involves setting standards to improve the sustainability impacts related to the products we use. Procurement Managers then actively seek information from new and existing suppliers to assess to what extent these standards are being met. Improving the impacts from procurement requires the identification of better alternatives such as choosing renewable electricity or selecting organic fair-trade coffee, paper produced without using materials from native forests and cleaning products which are not tested on animals.At Law FirmsSTANDARDS AND CERTIFICATIONS In Australia information to address the impacts of our different procurement options is available through a series of standards and certifications in some product categories. Generally, these certifications are established and administered by self-governing industry groups or NGOs with representatives from a range of stakeholder groups. Many of these started as environmental certifications but have expanded to include other social and governance issues that also address the sustainability impacts of their products. This role is increasingly being assisted by the emergence and improvement of the range of certifications and products. There are hundreds of Eco style certifications in Australia most of which are listed HERE. Examples that are relevant to law firms include:Forest Products certifications (paper)Renewable energy certification (electricity)Carbon offsets certifications (greenhouse mitigation)Food and drink certifications (catering and client floor services)Cleaning and building maintained products Energy efficiency certifications (fleet, ICT equipment office fitouts). FORMAL PROGRAM STANDARDS APPLY TOYes 61% No 38% Not Reported 3% New & existing suppliers 89%New suppliers only 11%78'