Climate clause

Employer-Employee Environmental Obligations

Eric's Clause

Eric's Clause repurposes employee leave periods as opportunities to volunteer with environmental organisations by integrating climate-conscious employer-employee obligations into employment contracts.

This is a climate clause

This clause brings climate considerations to your drafting. It is not yet net zero aligned. To align this clause with net zero, use our toolkit or join one of our events.

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Why use this?

This drafting enables employees on garden leave or sabbaticals to use the time to volunteer at an environmental organisation, subsidising the workforce for tackling climate change issues. Companies can incentivise their employees and contribute towards the transition to net zero through employee time that might otherwise not be so well used.

The clause

Senior Employment Contract

1. Interpretation

The definitions and rules of interpretation in this clause apply in this agreement.

Appointment means your employment by us on the terms of [this agreement/ the employment contract between you and us dated [●]].

Environmental Voluntary Work means voluntary work [with an environmental organisation*] that helps tackle the climate crisis, including by promoting: 

(a) biodiversity;

(b) adaptation to climate change;

(c) resilience to climate change;

(d) a circular economy; [and/or]

(e) a just transition to a low carbon economy[; and/or

(f) insert another climate positive outcome of the voluntary work]. 

* [Drafting note: The clause might not need to restrict environmental voluntary work to work done for environmental organisations only. If the employee does voluntary work that has a positive impact on tackling the climate crisis, the employer may be happy for the employee to do that work for an organisation other than an environmental organisation.]

Garden Leave means any period during which we have exercised our rights under clause [2] (Garden Leave).

[Drafting note: Capitalised terms relate to either a defined term in this clause or a defined term in the main agreement that this clause is designed to be inserted into.]

2. Garden Leave

2.1 Following service of notice to terminate the Appointment by either party, or if you purport to terminate the Appointment in breach of contract, we may by written notice place you on Garden Leave for the whole or part of the remainder of the Appointment. 

2.2 [Any period of Garden Leave shall not normally exceed [●].] 

2.3 With our prior approval, you may volunteer [with an environmental organisation] during any period of the Garden Leave to do Environmental Voluntary Work.

3. Sabbatical leave policy 

3.1 Paid climate sabbaticals 

3.1.1 Sabbaticals are generally unpaid except for sabbaticals during which you volunteer [with an environmental organisation] to do Environmental Voluntary Work. 

3.1.2 The [environmental organisation you volunteer with and the] Environmental Voluntary Work you do [with them] needs to be approved by us before you start volunteering [with them].  

3.1.3 Climate sabbaticals may last for up to one month and will be paid at the reduced rate of [50% of annual salary], subject to the usual deductions for tax and national insurance.

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