The Legal 500 Green Guide: Latin America

Welcome to the inaugural Latin America Green Guide.

Compared to Europe, North America and East Asia, Latin America has lagged behind in awareness and adoption of ESG practices. The region remains marked by social inequality, environmental degradation and political corruption, and would highly benefit from decarbonisation to address the growing threat of climate disasters.

However, over the past couple of years, ESG issues have moved into focus as the region has seen a recent explosion of ESG debt issuance. Latin America’s corporates have embraced sustainable debt financing and there has been a notable shift in Latin American companies taking a more ESG-driven approach.

Government regulators are also increasingly driving ESG efforts across Latin America. Amidst the Covid-19 pandemic, Latin American governments have been using ESG as an instrument to address social and environmental matters, and consequences of the pandemic. Various countries have been promoting and starting to implement ESG policies to attract investors and drive investment to the region. Mexico, Chile and Colombia, for example, have made recent regulatory advancements in the ESG arena.

In Brazil, the largest country in the region and therefore a key player, president Jair Bolsonaro campaigned to take the country out of the Paris Agreement, and his engagement with the issue of climate change has been widely seen to be limiting at best and detrimental at worst – with deforestation being a major concern. This stands in stark contrast to the private sector where large Brazilian companies appear to be on board with a more sustainable approach to business, not least due to commercial and reputational concerns.

As some jurisdictions are further along than others, a country that stands out above the rest is longstanding environmental leader Costa Rica, often hailed as Latin America’s climate champion. With its National Decarbonisation Plan which aims to achieve carbon neutrality by 2050, the country has set itself a goal more ambitious than its Paris Agreement targets, and has simultaneously paved the way for other countries, particularly in Central America, to adjust their commitments.

ESG concerns are doubtlessly continuing to climb up the corporate agenda in Latin America, and law firms will consequently play an increasingly important role in assisting companies with sustainability goals and business transformation. We hope you find this initial guide to some of the key firms engaging with sustainability within the context of the Latin American market useful, and look forward to continually evolving our coverage as the market develops.

Anna Baubock, Editor
green.guide@legal500.com

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Angulo Martínez & Abogados logo

Angulo Martínez & Abogados

Colombia-based law firm Angulo Martínez assists clients across the spectrum of sustainability with a strong focus on renewable energy and efficiency projects.

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Bruchou & Funes de Rioja logo

Bruchou & Funes de Rioja

Leading Argentinian law firm Bruchou & Funes de Rioja launched its climate action and sustainable business platform in 2021.

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DLA Piper Chile logo

DLA Piper Chile

DLA Piper Chile is looking to integrate ESG across its legal offering and monitors the state of ESG across the region via its LatAm ESG taskforce, which is co-led by ESG project group leader Marco Salgado in Santiago.

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DLA Piper Martinez Beltrán logo

DLA Piper Martínez Beltrán

Bogotá-based DLA Piper Martínez Beltrán is looking to integrate ESG across its legal offering and monitors the state of ESG across the region via its LatAm ESG taskforce, which is co-led by ESG project group leader José Miguel Mendoza.

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Galicia Abogados S.C. logo

Galicia Abogados S.C.

Leading Mexican transactional law firm Galicia Abogados S.C. became a member of the UN Global Compact in 2021.

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Mijares, Angoitia, Cortés y Fuentes S.C. logo

Mijares, Angoitia, Cortés y Fuentes S.C.

Full-service Mexican firm Mijares, Angoitia, Cortés y Fuentes S.C. have strategically partnered with an external ESG and IT consulting firm to develop an innovative ESG compliance technological platform.

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Pinheiro Neto Advogados

Brazilian full-service firm Pinheiro Neto Advogados has integrated its ESG services across its practice groups in an inter-disciplinary approach.

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Arias

Central American full-service firm Arias' commitment to increasing its focus on sustainability and integrating ESG into its service offering.

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BLP

Regional, full-service firm BLP is the only law firm in Central America to obtain both the Carbon Neutral certification from the Institute of Technical Standards of Costa Rica

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Brigard Urrutia

Brigard Urrutia was the first Colombian firm to join the Law Firm Sustainability Network in 2021.

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Cuatrecasas

Full-service and international law firm Cuatrecasas, which is seeking to become carbon neutral by 2030

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Ferrere

UN Global Compact (UNGC) signatory Ferrere has a strong presence in Bolivia, Paraguay and Uruguay, where it provides strategies for clients at every point of their ESG journey.

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Ghan Abogados

Colombian tax boutique Ghan Abogados has gained a reputation for its advice on tax structuring of renewable energy projects in the country and region.

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Guerrero Olivos

Chilean full-service law firm Guerrero Olivos is at the forefront of the growing green hydrogen sector in Chile.

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Gómez-Pinzón Abogados (GPA)

Colombian full-service firm Gómez-Pinzón Abogados (GPA) played a key role advising WWF and the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation on the Herencia Colombia programme.

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Santroni Parsons

Santo Domingo-based boutique Santroni Parsons has over two decades' experience advising clients on environmental law issues.

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TACTIC Estudio Legal

TACTIC Estudio Legal supports the Costa Rican government’s National Decarbonization Plan across all practice areas.

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Vouga Abogados

Paraguayan full-service firm Vouga Abogados has a longstanding environmental law team which has worked on some of the most complex green projects in the country.

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