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The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Mass Media

The Talloires Declaration: UMB Committed for Life

In October of 1990 in Talloires, France, 31 university leaders and international environmental experts from 15 nations authored an agreement calling for colleges and universities worldwide to take action toward environmentally sustainable practices, and to commit to a comprehensive framework for an environmentally sustainable future. The Talloires Declaration, a ten-point plan inaugurated at the “Role of Universities in Environmental Management and Sustainable Development Conference” at Tufts University’s European Center, was drafted to recognize the role of institutions of higher learning “in creating an equitable and sustainable future for all humankind in harmony with nature,” and to actively engage “in the education, research, policy formation, and information exchange necessary to make these goals possible.”

The declaration focuses on the prospects of a sustainable future, recognizing universities’ unquestionable roles as catalysts for future social and environmental change: “Universities educate most of the people who develop and manage society’s institutions, for this reason, universities bear a profound responsibility to increase the awareness, knowledge, technology, and tools to create an environmentally sustainable future”(Report and Declaration of the Presidents Conference, 1990).

Since Talloires’ inception, 250 more signatories have been added, representing 40 countries and five continents, not the least of which is UMass Boston, representing the only school in the UMass system to make the commitment.

The University Leaders for a Sustainable Future (ULSF), an organization comprised of both signatories and non-signatories committed to the goals of Talloires, point out that while the declaration provides inspiration and motivation for entire campus communities to pursue environmentally sustainable initiatives, it also “constitutes a commitment to which universities can be held accountable over time.” The Declaration of the Presidents Report insists true success requires a collaborative effort between students, faculty, and administration: “By practicing what it preaches, the university can both engage students in understanding the institutional metabolism of materials and activities, and have them actively participate to minimalize pollution and waste”(Report,1990).

Sources: http://iisd.ca/educate/declarat/talloire.htm