Goods imported into the UK from countries with a lower or no carbon price will face a levy by 2027.

By Paul A. Davies, Michael D. Green, and James Bee

On 18 December 2023, the UK government announced a proposal for a new carbon border adjustment mechanism (UK CBAM). The announcement follows extensive consultation earlier this year on possible measures to mitigate carbon leakage risks and aims to support the UK’s decarbonisation efforts.

The UK has made a number of decarbonisation commitments including reaching net zero by 2050. These commitments to decarbonise can be undermined by “carbon leakage”, in which production of goods and associated emissions move from a jurisdiction with more ambitious climate policies (which add costs to carbon-intensive processes) to another jurisdiction with less ambitious policies, resulting in an overall negative impact on the carbon intensity of the processes/goods themselves. The UK CBAM (or other form of carbon tax) seeks to address this issue by aiming to put a fair price on the carbon emitted during the production of certain carbon-intensive goods entering the UK.

The framework claims to set the “gold standard” for companies to contribute to the net zero transition while emphasising ambition, action, and accountability.

By Paul A. DaviesMichael D. Green, and James Bee

The UK Transition Plan Taskforce (TPT) launched its transition plan disclosure framework (the Framework) at the London Stock Exchange on 9 October 2023. The Framework encourages businesses to create transition plans for a low greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions economy. It also seeks to help companies and financial institutions create consistent and comparable disclosures on their climate transition plans.

While initially voluntary, the Framework is expected to become mandatory for certain entities in the UK through incorporation into regulatory frameworks.

LIDW23 member-hosted event provided insights into current and future trends in the greenwashing space.

By Sophie J. Lamb KC and Aleksandra Dulska

Latham & Watkins recently hosted a panel discussion during London International Disputes Week on the topic of greenwashing and how English law continues to evolve and adapt in order to meet the needs of international businesses and other stakeholders engaging with this issue. The event provided a platform to explore:

(1) The key drivers of greenwashing complaints

(2) The challenges organisations face when trying to define and explain their sustainability plans (including against the backdrop of rapidly evolving reporting guidelines)

(3) The associated litigation trends as observed globally

The panel included the Honourable Mrs Justice Cockerill DBE (Commercial Court Judge, High Court), Sophie J. Lamb KC (Partner, Latham & Watkins), Adam Heppinstall KC (Barrister, Henderson Chambers), and Meghan Sheehan (Director and Head of ESG and Sustainability, Kekst CNC).

This blog post summarises the key themes of discussion that took place and provides interesting insights as to what may lie ahead.

The proposals form part of the Green Deal Industrial Plan and aim to scale up technology and materials for the energy transition.

By Paul A. Davies, Beatrice Lo, JP Sweny, Alexander Buckeridge-Hocking, Michael D. Green, and James Bee

On 16 March 2023, the European Commission (Commission) formally proposed two legislative initiatives and announced the development of a European Hydrogen Bank as part of its program to enhance the EU’s competitiveness in green technologies and support its transition towards net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.