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      What is at Stake is Sustainable Development
      Speech by Elba Rosa Pérez Montoya, Minister of Science, Technology
      and Environment of Cuba, at the COP 27 Climate Change Conference

      Distinguished Ministers and Ministers,

      This COP has the particularity of being held in Africa -one of the richest continents in biodiversity-, and in a complex international context.

      The time to adopt the decisions and actions necessary to reverse climate change is running out. What we do has to be consistent with history and not forget that the roots of the problem are in the capitalist system, responsible for a predatory and consumerist development model.

      What is happening has an impact on global ethics and aesthetics, the quality of life of man, his environment and infrastructure deteriorates. In all parts of the world, as a result of extreme weather events, people die, cities and traditions are destroyed, historical memory is affected; the food and energy security of nations, which damages the psychology of people.

      Every year in my country, we experience the uncertainty of knowing if we will be hit by a hurricane, heavy rains or intense droughts.

      These vulnerabilities are aggravated by the cruel and unfair economic, commercial and financial blockade of the United States of America, which has already been rejected 30 times by the international community, and still remains immovable.

      However, Cuba continues to advance with the experience of 5 years of implementation and results of the State Plan to confront Climate Change: Life Task. One of them is the creation of the Climate Foundation called "IRIS, United for Climate", which we make available to channel national and regional efforts.

      Ministers and Ministers,

      What is at stake is sustainable development, the eradication of poverty and the subsistence of man. We owe future generations the commitment to act, to achieve Open Climate Governance and Ethics, based on solidarity and financial justice.

      Climate solidarity is to stop acting for individual economic interests, it is to think about those who lose living conditions, it is to change unsustainable patterns of consumption, it is to help the most vulnerable.

      Financial justice is having new and additional funds available to compensate losses and damages and implement the adaptation measures we need; simplify procedures and agree on a new financial goal.

      I conclude by recalling the speech of the historic leader of the Cuban Revolution, Fidel Castro Ruz, in Rio 92, which I quote for its validity:

      “An important biological species is at risk of disappearing….: man.

      .. We must better distribute the wealth and technologies available on the planet. Less luxuries and less waste so that there is less poverty and less hunger….

      …Stop selfishness, stop hegemonism, stop insensitivity, stop irresponsibility and deceit. Tomorrow it will be too late to do what we should have done a long time ago."

      End of quote.

      Thank you.

      Reprinted from Cuba MINREX, cubaminrex.cu

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