Address by Ambassador Leslie Bassett during the official US Independence Day celebration. (July 1, 2016)

Tonight we celebrate the independence of the United States, also commemorating the 100 years of the United States National Parks Service, and recognizing the importance of Mother Earth to all of us worldwide.

At a time when climate challenges are more important than ever, we are proud to recognize that Paraguay and the United States, along with many countries, endorsed the Paris Climate Change Agreement last December and signed it in New York The last month of April.

As a community of nations we are seeking to strengthen the democratic institutions that protect the planet; We are working to promote sustainable and inclusive economic development; And we are partnering to address transboundary threats that jeopardize the peace and security that we owe ourselves and the Earth.

And of course, Paraguay and the United States, through programs of reforestation, sustainable production, education and exchanges, we are working together on multiple fronts to preserve the natural resources of our planet.

“With the proper approval of the Paraguayan Congress, we hope to continue working with Paraguay to obtain authorization for the arrival of the US Corps of Engineers. So that they can help manage and preserve the potential of Paraguay River, one of its most valuable natural resources in Paraguay. ”

Over the last 100 years the United States has protected nearly 20 percent of its territory by creating national parks, and tonight we invite you to camp at some of the most famous parks.

You can visit the Florida Everglades National Park in summer, then move on to the Great Smokey Mountains National Park to see the fall foliage, before arriving at Yosemite National Park in the cold winter.

Do not miss the cherry blossoms at the National Mall in Washington – it also counts as a national park! Finally, we invite you to experience the Grand Canyon and Mount Rushmore, two of our most iconic destinations.

No camping experience is complete without hiking, fishing, or roasting marshmallows at the campfire. Please do not miss these and many other fun activities available tonight.

Let me conclude by thanking all of you for the work you do every day to help keep the US-Paraguay alliance firm and healthy. As a sign of our deep esteem, we will plant a tree in honor of all the guests present here tonight, so that our friendship helps to highlight the precious natural beauty of Paraguay.

Please enjoy, and thank you all!