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Williams K.,Pinsent Masons LLP
Society of Petroleum Engineers - SPE Offshore Europe Conference and Exhibition, OE 2015 | Year: 2015

We are all aware that the percentage of females working in the industry in the UK falls short. We know that this is a resource which is under-utilised. So what can be done to increase and retain the numbers, and how can the legal framework help? This paper firstly discusses some of the reasoning behind the low levels of representation of women in the UK oil and gas workforce. It goes on to discuss how under-representation can be tackled, from a legal perspective. The paper outlines the current legislative framework: in plain terms what is required by the law and what is prohibited. It goes on to focus in particular examples of recent legislative developments which are intended to act as a catalyst for more rapid social change, by contrast to established equality law which has achieved only a slow improvement in workplace diversity. The paper also considers some of the practical impact of these new laws, such as the challenges involved in enabling flexible working patterns whilst meeting operational and logistical demands. The paper identifies what could be gained by embracing the legal requirements which aim for a working environment where employees are better enabled to combine their careers with their personal and family lives, and where both parents can play an equal role in the early stages of their children's lives. These future workplaces are significantly more attractive to women. The paper concludes that oil and gas employers should take a proactive view on legal developments such as flexible working and shared parental leave. Employers need to be forward-thinking about how they facilitate these changes and position themselves to attract recruits from the female population and ensure that they retain talented female employees throughout the organisation. The industry should aspire towards creating a seismic shift in the level of female participation in its workforce. © Copyright 2015, Society of Petroleum Engineers.

Ford R.,Pinsent Masons LLP
Environmental Law and Management | Year: 2012

Local planning authorities receive no guaranteed funding and there is no DCC application fee to cover the categories of NSIPs. The problem for local authorities, sitting in the localism corner, is that these NSIP projects may well parachute into the local area, completely unannounced in local policy terms. The problem is the inability for local authorities to know in sufficient time about a NSIP so as to inform their spatial planning, and particularly to take account of the potential impacts from such NSIPs and the need to take account of proposed projects in their local infrastructure plan. Local authorities, parish councils and interested parties are also pointing out to Inspectors in the DCO process that section 104(2)b and 104(2)d of the Planning Act 2008 means that their views are important, but of course it is relatively difficult to say that any such representations would carry significant weight.

Fletcher L.,Pinsent Masons LLP
Environmental Law and Management | Year: 2013

The EU Renewable Energy Directive 2009 (2009/28/EU) established an EU common framework for the promotion of renewable energy, set a target of 20 per cent of the EU's overall energy consumption (electricity, heat and transport fuels) to come from renewable energy by 2020 and to reduce greenhouse gas emissions in the EU by 20 per cent by 2020, and is therefore known as the 20-20- 20 package. The directive also set within this legally binding. Under the scheme a tariff is paid (quarterly) per kWh of renewable heat generated and this support is then available for 20 years at that tariff rate, subject to annual adjustments in line with RPI, and subject further to the degression mechanism which has subsequently been introduced. Since then a flexible degression mechanism has been introduced, as from April 2013, in the same way as for the FiT scheme, to allow tariff reductions to respond to increased uptake of the subsidy support.

Conetta O.,Pinsent Masons LLP | Schafer B.,University of Edinburgh
Frontiers in Artificial Intelligence and Applications | Year: 2013

This paper shall present a new theory called Transaction Configuration that describes the main task common to contract lawyers in the performance of their work, and was developed in the course of a case study at a magic circle law firm in the City of London. It will be shown how Transaction Configuration provides a practical context for legal normative assessment, as applied with LKIF, and legal reasoning systems in commercial law firms. © 2013 The authors and IOS Press.

Thomas S.,Pinsent Masons LLP
Water and Wastewater International | Year: 2011

Sarah Thomas addressed the challenges faced by water or wastewater treatment build-operator-transfer contracts adapting Intentional Federation of Consulting Engineers' (FIDIC) Design, Build Operate form. FIDIC launched its Design, Build Operate form, which combined design & build and a 20 year 'Operation Period' within a single contract. The design build obligations replicated FIDIC's Yellow Book (Design and Build, which was improved to introduce flexibility into the time period for giving notice of claims. Another relevant point associated with a water treatment plant and long-term operation was innovation and the use of new technology or new materials.

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