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Just a couple of days ago, climbers, backed by United Nations Environment Program (UNEP), returned from the Himalayas, where they gathered first-hand accounts from monks, local people and other travelers on the state of the environment of the world's most famous mountain range. They have recorded in words, in photographs, and on film, the dramatic impacts that global warming is having on glaciers, causing them to rapidly thaw, and build up melt waters in mountain lakes. As a result, these lakes could soon burst, sending millions of tons of water and rubble swirling down the valleys threatening life and limb. // The expedition has also looked at the impacts of tourism on the mountains, concluding that much of what is happening is environmentally damaging, and a burden on the people, wildlife and landscapes of these once pristine wilderness areas. //Every year World Environment Day is an occasion to pause and reflect on the state of the environment. This year especially, faced with the findings of our climbers, in the International Year of the Mountains, I urge you to "Give Earth a Chance". I ask you to look at our daily impact on the planet and its peoples, and to take action to improve our environmental behavior. //Although mountains have been revered since time began, such beliefs are no longer enough to preserve fragile mountain ecosystems, for the well-being of all. We face an immense challenge, the challenge of ensuring their stability and preservation for the generations to come. //Mountains are our water-towers. Mountains are a major source of energy. Mountains feed those living on them. Mountain ecosystems are linked to life in the lowlands, to freshwater and to the seas. Mountains are islands of rich biological and cultural diversity, home to unique plants, animals, languages and traditions. //Sustainable development is a must. We need to combine the environmental dimension with social activity and economic development. This must be our common target, especially in mountain regions. Without sustainable development we cannot solve the problems. It is not enough to simply say we have a conservation plan for nature, and natural resources. // We must give people a chance to live and survive in these regions, therefore we need jobs; we need a perspective for young people to remain there and not go to the big cities. Mountains are virtual treasure chests of untapped economic potential—vital to sustainable development. This was recognized by the Earth Summit in Rio. //Mountains attract tourists, but tourism has to be well managed to minimize impact on sensitive mountain environments. Respect should be the byword of the tourists, and tour operators, that bring people into contact with local people and landscapes, //The respect includes paying local people a decent wage, sourcing local food and materials where possible, and observing local customs, beliefs and traditions. Tourists are guests in other peoples' ecosystems and should behave as such. Mountains as a resource HAVE to be valued, and some of that value has to benefit mountain dwellers. Earnings from tourism should be shared equitably between all stakeholders. //Especially this year, the International Year of Ecotourism, every effort should be made to promote Ecotourism in mountains. For some communities and regions, sustainable tourism can be a first step towards sustainable development. Let us hope that all societies will come to revere mountains, and thus be motivated to invest in them, preserve this unique asset, and in turn reap benefit from it. //On this World Environment Day let us all begin to act for the conservation not only of the mountains, but the sea, the land, water and the air too. Let us act to give the Earth a chance. An unpolluted pristine environment is vital to our survival, a precious resource, which will only endu


Thank you, sir. Thank you, Mr. President. It is quite an honor to be introduced by your dad. This has got to be a historic moment: father and son, two Presidents, opening up an embassy. I suspect it's the first, although I must confess I haven't done a lot of research into the itinerary of the Adams boys. //My dad was a fabulous President. And I tell people one reason why was not only did he know what he was doing, he was a fabulous father. Mr. Ambassador, honored guests, Laura and I, and my brother and my sister, are proud to be here with our dad as we open and dedicate this new embassy. No doubt this is an impressive complex. To me it speaks of the importance of our relations with China. It reflects the solid foundation underpinning our relations. It is a commitment to strengthen that foundation for years to come. //I thank all those who designed and built the embassy, and all those who work here to advance the interests and values of our great nation. Dad and I are honored that Counselor Dai has joined us; and Minister Xie; Ambassador Zhou—who, by the way, opened a new Chinese embassy in Washington, D. C. , designed by I. M. Pei a couple weeks ago. We appreciate our friend Anne Johnson being here, he is the Director of the Art in Embassies Program. Dr. Kissinger, thanks for coming. //It takes a special band to open the embassy—out of West Texas—Odessa, Texas, for that matter, the Gatlin boys are with us today. I thank the Red Poppies, thank you for your talent. And finally, I want to pay tribute to Sandy Randt, who has done a fabulous job as our Ambassador to China. Sandy, thank you and We're proud to be here with those citizens of ours who work at the embassies, and we say thanks to the Chinese nationals who make our embassy go, as well. //I'm honored to represent the United States at the Opening Ceremonies of the Olympic Games here in Beijing. And I'm looking forward to cheering our athletes on. Mr. Ambassador, I'm not making any predictions about medal counts, but I can tell you the U.S. athletes are ready to come and compete, in the spirit of friendship. You know, during my last visit here I had the opportunity to break in the mountain biking course. I was so proud of my efforts, I told Laura I was thinking about entering the competition myself. She reminded me they don't give any medals for last place. //Tonight the Olympic torch will light the home of an ancient civilization with a grand history. Thousands of years ago, the Chinese people developed a common language and unified a great nation. China became the center for art and literature, commerce and philosophy. China advanced the frontiers of knowledge in medicine, astronomy, navigation, engineering, and many other fields. And the Chinese are even said to have invented the parachute—something for which the 41st President is very grateful. //We share a long history. The first American ship arrived in China just after the year we won our independence. World War Ⅱ, Americans and Chinese fought side by side to liberate this land from Imperial Japan. We all remember very clearly, Dr. K, when President Nixon came to Beijing to begin a new era of dialogue between our nations. You might remember that yourself. //Today the United States and China have built a strong relationship, rooted in common interests. China has opened its economy and begun to unleash the entrepreneurial spirit of its people. America will continue to support China on the path toward a free economy. We're also cooperating to fight pandemic diseases and respond to natural disasters. And through the Six-Party Talks, we're working together to ensure that the Korean Peninsula is free of nuclear weapons. //The relationship between our nations is constructive and cooperative and candid. We'll continue to be candid about our mutual global responsibilities. We


Gypsies are often treated with disapproval, lack of trust, and lack of understanding because their way of life is so different from the way most other British people live.