Al Gore, who barely lost (or won) the US Presidential election in November 2000, and vowed never to return to US political life, appears to have come out a winner for not doing so. The former Vice President for 8 years under the Clinton Administration decided to devote his time afterwards to teaching as well as making the world aware of the dangers of global warming, a warning that has been noted several times on Green Prophet, including a more recent article tying global warming and climate change with what is happening in the Middle East.
Gore’s efforts to make the inhabitants of our planet more aware of what fossil fuels and other man-made polluters are causing must have rubbed off on some people, as it has resulted in Gore being honored and awarded a number of acclaims and prizes, including an Academy Award in February, 2007, from the Hollywood film industry for his documentary film: An Inconvenient Truth, that paints a sobering a graphic picture of what is happening to this planet thanks to its human inhabitants.
This honor was followed a few months later with Gore and the UN sponsored Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change , jointly winning the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize. Gore was also honored in Israel less than a year later, in July 2008, with an award from the Dan David Foundation for alerting the world to the dangers of overuse of fossil fuels.
So as it has worked out, it appears that the best thing that has happened to the former Vice President was actually losing the Presidency; for had he become the 43rd US President, it’s most likely that Gore would not have become so involved with his environmental crusades as he simply would have been too busy dealing with the aftermath of the “9-11 terror attacks” which would have taken place during his “watch”.
Since the filming and release of his documentary movie, and being awarded the Nobel Prize, a lot of money has come Al Gore’s way, with a great deal of it going to a foundation he set up, known as the Alliance for Climate Protection , founded in 2006, and today has more than 5 million members worldwide. The New York Times says that his green stocks are up and Gore’s made a killing from clean tech investments.
Beyond investment interests, his foundation works with a number of affiliate organizations to find solutions to the problems of climate change and global warming in ways that “diversifies and strengthens the global network of concerned individuals who want to take action now on climate issues”.
Just who is against Mr. Gore and what he is trying to do to save the planet? A lot of business interests and organizations, for one, who are connected to the fossil fuel industries (oil companies in particular), and who have hired a large group to research scientists to try to disprove Gore’s theories that it is petroleum, coal, and other fossil fuels (including natural gas, by the way) that many say are greatly responsible for the present state of the world’s environment.
For Gore’s part, these allegations of his profiteering from his environmental crusades haven’t affected him that much, since he considers the matter of global warming “not as a political issue but as a moral, ethical, and spiritual one”.
Gore himself is a religious man, belonging to the Southern Baptist Church. He was presented with the Baptist of the Year Award in January 2008, for his efforts on behalf of the environment.
Mr. Gore may never have gotten to occupy the Oval Office (except during a skit he was involved in for an episode of Saturday Night Live); but it now appears that he wound up being a bigger winner by losing the Presidency. And taking everything that has happened to him into account since the events of November/December 2000, he has come out much better than that “other guy” who did sit there for 8 years, critics et al.
What do you think? Should Gore profit from the environment?
Article by Maurice Picow appearing courtesy of Green Prophet
[photo credit: via Baptist Press]