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North Texas institutions have recently signed on to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals, starting with Dallas County Community College system-wide adoption of goals. The University of Texas at Arlington is leading an inclusive regional effort to apply for UN designation as a regional center of excellence, which allows sharing of regional resources, collaborations, partnerships and pooling knowledge and resources toward achieving a more sustainable North Texas.

On January 1, 2016, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development officially came into force. It was officially adopted by world leaders at an historic UN Summit . Over the next 15 years, with these new goals, countries plan to mobilize to end all forms of poverty, fight inequalities and tackle climate change, while ensuring that no one is left behind. In North Texas, anchor institutions, led by our colleges, universities and municipalities, are individually and collectively adopting some or all of these goals as a necessity to sustain our existing quality of life.

Sustainable development is defined as development that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs. It calls for concerted efforts toward building an inclusive, sustainable and resilient future for people and planet.

For sustainable development to be achieved, three core elements must be brought together: economic growth, social inclusion and environmental protection. These elements are interconnected, and all are crucial for the well-being of individuals and societies.

Eradicating poverty in all its forms and dimensions is an indispensable requirement for sustainable development. To this end, there must be promotion of sustainable, inclusive and equitable economic growth, creating greater opportunities for all, reducing inequalities, raising basic standards of living, fostering equitable social development and inclusion, and promoting integrated and sustainable management of natural resources and ecosystems.

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