However, rather than talking about the policies implemented in Monaco or the projects initiated or supported by my Foundation in regard to the climate, I will instead try to summarize the ways in which I believe the fight against climate change is intrinsically linked to the preservation of the Arctic region – the region at the heart of many climate change issues.
First and foremost, the Arctic, with its vast landscapes, is where one feels more than anywhere else the Earth’s beauty and force, as well as its fragility in the face of human actions.
It is also a universal region, whose future, each of us understands, is vital for the entire world; a region, therefore, that enables us to make the link between local problems and global issues.
It is also an area of economic tension, in particular since global warming has opened up new maritime routes, giving access to natural resources which up until now were out of reach, thus attracting a great deal of economic and not always well-intentioned interest.
It is also a region for scientific exploration, made up of ecosystems, often still obscure, of which we need to gain a better understanding.
And above all, it is inhabited land, whose people are only very rarely responsible for the ills befalling them and who live with the terrible uncertainty of a future over which they have little control.
Consequently, the Arctic is a microcosm of our world and the challenges it faces due to climate change.
In the Arctic, as elsewhere, we can only combat climate change by basing ourselves on specific scientific knowledge, which alone is capable of indicating the threats to us and the ways to prevent them.
We can only take action by involving humankind as a whole in an effort which concerns us all. We can only be effective by reconciling economic issues with environmental imperatives. And we can only find a sustainable solution with the populations concerned, by giving them the opportunity to take control of their own destiny, between respect for their ancestral traditions and ambitions for a better future.
There, as well as elsewhere, action against climate change means committing to a development paradigm which is able to reconcile the needs of nature with the aspirations of humankind.
That is the reason why for many years I have been committed to protecting this region. That is why my Foundation implements and supports many actions in the polar regions.
And that is why, for many years, I have enthusiastically supported UArctic, who is a key player in the conservation of the Arctic, and beyond that, of our climate and our planet.
To save the Earth, we need to save the Arctic.