ESG & Sustainability

Mindful of the significant and continuing importance of environmental, social and governance (ESG) issues and opportunities for clients, regulators and legislators, William Fry offers a dedicated, cross-disciplinary ESG & Sustainability Practice Group to support clients in operationalising their sustainability goals while navigating the myriad of published and planned global, international and local ESG rules, standards and expectations.

Leveraging our deep and extensive knowledge and expertise across key practice areas, our ESG & Sustainability Practice Group advises and supports clients and other stakeholders in managing and optimising the ever-shifting and evolving ESG legal and regulatory landscape, anticipating and responding to market demand for sustainable corporate practices and ESG opportunities while managing ESG risk within their businesses.

Areas of Expertise 

  • Sustainable Finance, ESG
    investing, green bonds,
    sustainability reporting, disclosures          
  • Sustainable Construction
    & Energy Efficient
  • Sustainable Corporate
  • Strategic Data & Risk
  • Environmental Impact
    Assessment Law
  • Employment Rights
    & Obligations
  • Renewable Energy
  • Dispute Resolution
    & Litigation
  • Supply Chain Management
    & Sustainable Procurement
  • Equality &
    Human Rights Law 
  •  Financial Regulation


Responsible Business is integral to our firm's operating model and ESG considerations are at the core of our approach. Read more here


Our experience includes advising:

  • on the establishment of the Financial Times Innovative Lawyers Europe Awards 2019-recognised alternative investment fund, investing in leading Asian companies actively tackling pollution and climate change;
  • Smurfit Kappa in connection with sustainability-linked revolving credit facilities provided by a syndicate of international lenders;
  • a wide range of market-leading international and domestic asset managers, AIFMs and UCITS management companies including Architas Multi-Managers, AXA Rosenberg, Barclays, Comgest Asset Management, Lazard Asset Management, Legal & General and Natixis Investment Managers on compliance with the requirements of the EU Sustainable Finance Action Plan, including all aspects of compliance with the Sustainable Finance Disclosures Regulation (SFDR);
  • Uniphar (a publicly listed company) on sustainability-linked revolving credit facilities provided by a syndicate of Irish banks;
  • British Airways on its EETC issuance and listing on the Irish Stock Exchange to finance new generation fuel efficient, low CO2 clean aircraft;
  • EirGrid (Ireland's Transmission System Operator) on the structuring, development and financing of the proposed 700MW HVDC Celtic Interconnector between Ireland and France; capital cost of circa €1bn; critical infrastructure for renewable generation;
  • European Investment Bank on its financing of the Oweninny Wind Farm in County Mayo;
  • a range of pension trustee clients, including the trustees of the Guinness Ireland Group Pension Scheme and Aviva's main Irish pension arrangements on SFDR-related matters;
  • a range of Irish unit-linked life insurance undertakings and Irish private equity/venture capital fund structures on various ESG-related matters; and
  • a broad range of international asset managers, including market-leading ETF ranges, on the development of ESG-focused/sustainable product offerings and managing all aspects of the Central Bank of Ireland approval process for these products.

Ireland's Offshore Electricity Grid: DECC Release Policy Statement on the Framework for the Offshore Grid

A key step has been taken towards Ireland's goal of delivering 5GW of offshore wind energy by the end of the decade. The Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications (DECC) has just published a Policy Statement on the Framework for Ireland’s Offshore Electricity Transmission System.

New EU Disclosure Rules Mandate Environmental Performance Reporting for Insurers, Banks and Listed Corporates from 1 Jan 2022

Read our FAQ on the new disclosure rules for reporting the environmental performance of activities and investments, as published for consultation by the EU Commission on 7 May 2021.

IORP II – A New Era Dawns for the Irish Pension Industry

The regulations transposing IORP II were published earlier this week. After a long wait, this signals perhaps the biggest change to the regulatory landscape for pensions in Ireland since the Pensions Act 1990. We highlight some key aspects.

EU Issues 'Gold Standard' for Environmentally Sustainable Activities

On 21 April 2021, the EU published the first of two planned sets of performance criteria for environmentally sustainable activities under the Taxonomy Regulation. The published criteria will allow businesses and investors to assess activities and determine whether they meet the EU standard for substantially contributing to the environmental objectives of climate change mitigation or adaptation.

Video: Ireland's Gender Pay Gap (and Reporting) - Top 10 Questions and Answers

Video: What is the Gender Pay Gap (GPG), why does it exist, when will mandatory GPG reporting come into law in Ireland, who will be affected and what does this mean for employers?

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Key Contacts

Lorena Dunne Partner

Bryan Bourke Partner

Fergus Devine Partner

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