April draws to a close, and with it, our coverage of green topics for lawyers.

Mind you, I’m sure we’ll cover more on the topic in the coming year. But as we approach May 1, the Arizona Attorney Magazine digital edition rolls over to a shiny new issue we call “June.” (Yes, the May issue will still be there, but right now there’s no hunting-for-it to deal with.)

So enjoy some sustainable reading here. Thanks again to lawyer Jennifer Mott for her amazing writing accomplishment.

And in case you don’t receive the print issue in your mailbox, I share below my column from the May issue. As you’ll see, we at the magazine are examining our own carbon footprint. Are you? Is your law firm or employer?

Have a great weekend. Here’s my column:

Recycling Ideas

A time of economic troubles may seem an odd occasion to visit a topic like green law offices.

After all, lawyers everywhere are scrambling for the best ways to survive and thrive in a global downturn. Trees and how to save them may not be top of mind.

But as our coverage this month by lawyer Jennifer Mott explains, the green law office is not so much about trees as it is about growth—of your practice and efficiency. (OK, it’s also a bit about the trees.)

(Click on the magazine page to make it larger.)

Today, there are some glimmers in the economic news that indicate a meager recovery may be in the offing. As that develops, lawyers will seek savings and smart practices wherever they can. And what we’ve dubbed “Earthwise Lawyering” may be a place to start.

On the ever-rising seas, we are all in the same boat, and I have to confess that we too have a ways to go. The State Bar of Arizona has made environmental inroads with methods as simple as window films to increase efficiency. But at Arizona Attorney, we still abide by the truism, “It takes a forest to raise a magazine.”

Jennifer’s coverage has been a spur to rethink our own paper use.

Years ago, we examined the option of fully or partially recycled paper. But the cost was substantially higher, and fellow magazine-folk said the quality was spotty. Neither was the result we wanted in our member magazine.

In 2012, though, cost is down and quality is up. Therefore, we will explore with our printer the use of various eco-friendly papers. Perhaps we might even achieve Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certification (more information is at http://www.fsc.org/).

Would you welcome such an outcome in your magazine? And have you made your own legal–environmental strides? Tell us your story at arizona.attorney@azbar.org.


You may remain unmoved by the (melting) iceberg that is sustainable law practice. But here is a green story we all can support.

For more than a decade, I’ve had the pleasure of reading the work of law students, courtesy of an annual competition at the University of Arizona Law School. And let me tell you—these greenhorns can turn a phrase.

The Richard Grand Legal Writing Competition is named for (and funded by) a UA Law alum whom I’ve written about before. This year, the winners in his competition (in prize order) are: Jared Jorde (2L), Matthew Chandler (2L), Joseph Austin (1L) and Benjamin Harville (3L) (tie), and Annie Ross (1L). (More detail on the competition is here: http://wp.me/pEOwt-1zm)

The other competition judges were Justice Robert M. Brutinel, Arizona Supreme Court; Commissioner Wendy Morton, Maricopa County Superior Court; and attorneys Troy Larkin, U.S. Customs and Border Protection, and Jeremy A. Lite, Quarles and Brady LLP.

Thank you to the Law School for including me in this tradition once again. And congratulations to the winners.