DECEMBER 9th, 2010: EVO MORALES | PLURINATIONAL GOVERNMENT OF BOLIVIA IN CANCUN
Evo Morales speech in COP16 Plenary, December 9 2010
For me Copenhagen was not a failure. It may have been for the powers of the world, but not for the peoples of the world who became conscious …. Hope for the peoples of the world is cooling the world, lowering the temperature.
Everyone one of us, governments, delegates, must put us in the position of people who are victims of climate change. And what is it like to be a victim of climate change? Let us think of a family who doesn’t have services like heating, who lacks water, because of climate change, global warming, without work, and in extreme poverty. A family like this dies daily in the world. Don’t know how to survive, because no water in their community, region, feels powerless to do anything. Think of this family, or those on islands, small states that will disappear. What will they do?
Yet at these levels, we have policies like US or EU that want to expel climate refugees, even though these refugees are often caused by climate change
Here to represent victims of climate change, natural disasters. So call on leaders to take responsibility, and make history, representing peoples and not winning at expense of peoples. We also must look at the cause of global warming which is capitalism. We took about effects and not causes of the multiple crises we face: climate crisis, food crisis, energy crisis. Climate crisis is one of the themes here, nature, environment, this is one of the crises of capitalism. If we discuss and address these crises, we are being responsible to our sons, grandsons, talking about future generations.
For that reason, we have a responsibility not just for now but for future generations. If we are responsible, we must change policies. Must change causes of global warming. Of course deal with effects. It is an obligation of large powers to pay the ecological debt. But more important is to change the causes of global warming.
We have discussed considerably internationally, regionally, meetings of social movements, it is an obligation how can we guarantee, develop, meeting second period of KP. Temperature now is 0.8 but must lower it to guarantee good temperature.
Have to think of family, can’t refresh themselves, because of rains don’t have shade of trees. We are talking about profound issues. If we from here, send to the Kyoto Protocol to the rubbish bin we are responsible for ecocide, genocide because sending humanity to death. If we are responsible as the elected governments of peoples, we must express their demands. We must adopt the decisions of peoples of the world. So can’t behind closed doors look at developing documents that don’t express thinking of peoples, that don’t comes from suffering of peoples. We have obligation to listen to peoples who tell us how to cool the earth.
We know there is a big debate in the US how to end extreme poverty. The best way to reduce poverty is cooling the earth. For this reason, take this opportunity of this world conference about global warming. Concrete proposal to reduce to 1 degree centigrade is the most important. According to the proposals from some powers, talk about 2 degrees and think even of arriving at 4 degrees. Imagine what our planet would look like with an increase in temperature of 2 degrees or 4 degrees given at 0.8 degrees we have serious problems in the world. One study released here by scientists estimates that 300,000 already die each year for climate change, could arrive at 1 million per year because of climate change. ……..
Second proposal that nature is our home, land is our life. I am convinced that human being can’t live without planet, but yes planet can exist without human beings. We are not in the epoch of struggle of classes any more; we are debating how to live in harmony with the Mother Earth. Mother Earth has its rights. In past decades, UN approved human rights, then civil rights, economic, political rights, finally a few years ago indigenous rights. This new century is time to debate and discuss rights of Mother Earth. These include the rights to regenerate biocapacity, to have life clean without contamination, right to equilibrium and if governments don’t guarantee this, we are all responsible for ecocide. We know that some measures and laws are very important to obey. Laws must be complied with, which is why with much wisdom, peoples have proposed creating International Climate Justice Tribunal. We all know how important it is to create one to ensure compliance with KP. If government don’t defend mother earth rights, we can make sure they do. (Applause)
We came to Cancun to save nature, forests, planet earth, not here to convert nature into commodity, not come here to revitalise capitalism with carbon markets. Forests are sacred for indigenous peoples, can’t have new policies which merely survival of capitalism. If don’t tackle cause of climate crisis which is capitalism there will be lots of meetings but never will tackle the problem.
If governments don’t do it, will be people who force governments to do it. The social forces are matrix force that changes policies, ends empires, brings down large powers. If social forces advance, then progressive governments allied with social movements can guarantee life of future generations.
Presidents, I came to share some thinking of peoples and my same suffering. I am convinced that if Presidents take on their responsibility, not to certain powers, TNCS, companies, but instead to peoples, social movements we can advance. In this millennium we have an enormous responsibility to defend life. Thanks for my participation and hope for full participation of all the peoples of the world. Thank you.