Sustainability Plan

Strategic Objectives 2021

Dallas College’s Office of Social Responsibility and Inclusion (SRI) has three areas: 1) Diversity, Equity and Inclusion; 2) Supplier Diversity, and 3) Sustainability.

Our goal is to reach carbon neutrality by 2050 at the latest and much earlier if possible. To carry out this audacious goal, we must educate many internal stakeholders and get their approval and buy-in before we ask the ultimate decision-makers (our Chancellor and the Dallas College Board of Trustees) to make this an official goal of the college.

Our plan is based on the excellent work of many other organizations that have been working to establish a roadmap for how people and organizations can achieve the three major goals of sustainability: an equitable society; a healthy environment; and a thriving economy. The following are examples of pre-existing tools that we are using:

  • United Nations 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
  • SDG Action Manager
  • Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) Sustainability Tracking Assessment and Rating System (STARS)
  • Tree Campus USA

Following is a high-level overview of Dallas College’s past, present and future sustainability planning activities.

  • Conducted the first college-wide Greenhouse Gas Inventory in 2021.
  • EDF Climate Corps Fellows completed a “Dallas County Community College District Energy Audit” in 2014 and a “Streamlining Sustainability Reporting at DCCCD” in 2019. Most of the recommendations from both reports have been implemented. In the summer of 2021, an EDF Climate Corp Fellow developed recommendations for how to implement Scope 3 emissions reporting at Dallas College. The report was completed on August 6. We are beginning to implement those recommendations.
  • Conducted the first college-wide Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) Sustainability Tracking, Assessment and Rating System self-report in Fall 2021. After AASHE's review is complete, we will develop detailed goals and strategies for each area, then collaborate with the proper stakeholders and departments to prioritize the sustainability projects in their workplans for upcoming years. The Office of Social Responsibility and Inclusion’s annual sustainability workplans also will be based on the results the AASHE STARs report.
  • Launched six “Sustainable Solutions” graphics to easily illustrate to our internal and external constituents how real-life Dallas College programs are sustainable (Sustainable U public education events and resources; DART Go-Passes; 100% renewable energy; recycling program; electricity savings; food pantries).

We are:

  • Hiring an external consultant to help us develop a Resilience and Climate Action Plan; the consultant will work with college leadership to decide what we address in the plan and what date we choose as our carbon neutrality (or carbon negative) goal. Dallas College’s plan will support the City of Dallas Comprehensive Environmental and Climate Action Plan (CECAP).
  • Hiring an external consultant to help us conduct a diversity study.
  • Taking part in the Energy Star for Higher Education Benchmarking Initiative (HEBI).
  • Developing and recommending a Social Responsibility and Inclusion policy to the Dallas College Board of Trustees that includes these three areas: Diversity, Equity and Inclusion; Supplier Diversity; and Sustainability Outreach and Initiatives.
  • Supporting the United Nations 17 Sustainable Development Goals; we are using the SDG Action Manager to track our progress and will report our progress through the United Nations Academic Impact program.

We are recommending:

  • That our Chancellor sign Second Nature’s Presidents’ Climate Leadership Commitment as Dallas College. (Before Dallas County Community College District transitioned to Dallas College, six of our independently accredited colleges had signed the commitment.)