UOG guides Guam toward action on the UN’s sustainability goals
The University of Guam’s Center for Island Sustainability brought 84 local leaders together on Jan. 30 to kick off the Guam Green Growth (G3) Working Group, a group inspired by CIS and launched by the governor of Guam that will be creating a 10-year action plan for Guam to become more sustainable. CIS Director Austin Shelton is co-chairing the working group, and 15 faculty and administrators from UOG are participating as members as well as one UOG student.
Based on their areas of expertise and influence, the leaders were divided into eight teams that will focus on creating local objectives aligned with the United Nation’s 17 Sustainable Development Goals – a universal call to action to protect the planet and improve lives of people everywhere by 2030.
“Sustainable development is not only about the environment – it’s about economic welfare, social empowerment, cultural creativity, and ecological health. This is what the 17 SDGs address,” Shelton told the participants.
The goals range from reducing plastics in the oceans, preserving and restoring trees and forests, and reducing carbon dioxide emissions to providing quality education for all, reducing inequalities, and growing jobs and the economy.
UOG President Thomas W. Krise said the University of Guam has a role in addressing each of these, and he said the Micronesian region has thousands of years of indigenous knowledge on sustainable living that it can use to contribute to global solutions.
“We need to be a model, we need to be a laboratory for helping to solve these kinds of issues,” Krise said.
The G3 Working Group is expected to finalize and sign off on its G3 Action Strategy Framework on the last day of the 11th UOG Conference on Island Sustainability, which will take place March 31 to April 3 at the Hyatt Regency Guam.
Guam Gov. Lourdes A. Leon Guerrero and Lt. Gov. Joshua F. Tenorio partnered with the University of Guam and the UOG Center for Island Sustainability to establish the group to meet the Local2030 Islands Network's goal to advance locally driven models that target global challenges.