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Australian Climate Madness

Friday, May 15, 2009

Climate change lawyers ready to pounce

Ashamed to say it, having trained as a lawyer as well as a scientist, but this is how the law works. There are armies of new "climate lawyers" waiting in the wings for the ETS to become law, so they can get to work charging huge sums for interpreting it and advising on it. Unfortunately, they are all a little bit nervous that their future cash cow may be delayed, as The New Lawyer reports:
CLIMATE change lawyers keen to get a new flow of work are waiting with fingers crossed for the Carbon Pollution Reduction Scheme (CPRS) to pass through Parliament.

While firms are getting some work from both existing and new clients around the possibility of an upcoming CPRS, the real goldmine will be if it is actually implemented.

“If it’s passed in parliament, that is when we know whether it will affect the work. If it is passed, companies will want to know what their obligations are and they will want to start preparing for it,” said Charmain Barton, environment and climate change partner at DLA Phillips Fox.

"Goldmine" - that says it all! Virtually all corporates of any size will, when the ETS become law, require advice on their obligations under it, which will no doubt be convoluted and labyrinthine. And where do these corporates get the money to pay the lawyers bills? By charging their customers more for their products and services, which, at the end of a very long line, means you and me paying more for our products and services.

Although there is another side to the story, especially in the current financial crisis:
Another mid-tier Sydney law firm recently made the decision to close to its new climate change practice after the sole partner failed to make the practice profitable.

Speaking anonymously to The New Lawyer, that firm’s chief executive said the firm had given the partner eight months to bring in new clients and find means to make the practice profitable.

Read it here.

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