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July 17, 2008

Al Gore's Challenge

Posted: 01:01 PM ET

Is Gore’s challenge inconvenient?

The former Vice President threw down the gauntlet today, challenging the United States to produce 100% of its electricity with renewables such as solar or wind power, within 10 years.

He likened the speech to President John F. Kennedy’s moon challenge in May of 1961.

We landed on the moon in less than a decade, but is Gore’s goal too audacious?

Is Gore relevant? Is anyone listening to him? Should we listen to him?

– Alex Walker, CNN Science & Technology

Filed under: climate change • environment


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Michael   July 17th, 2008 1:04 pm ET

Not too late for Gore '08.


Jim   July 17th, 2008 1:10 pm ET

Are you kidding me? While I am all for renewable energy sources, there is no way the infrastructure of this country can change that dramatically that fast. I agree that new oil drilling is not the answer, but this kind of change has to be done slowly or you will do more harm to your economy than good. I think the concept is great, but we need to be realistic about timetables and costs.

And how will you overcome the stasis in Congress on this issue? The oil companies still own a large number of Senators and Congressmen/Women on Capitol Hill. They will NEVER permit such a change. It would require major change in our politcal arena to achieve this. The Congress can't even over-ride the veto of a lame-duck (not to mention lame brain) President. How will they ever pass this kind of law?

So, let's look at the reality. It's necessary, actually mandated by the state of our planet. that we make changes. But, we need to start small and think big. That's the only way this will work. So, set a realistic timetable, and then move forward. And reward those people who reach certain targets ahead of schedule. Encourage power companies to hit accelerated goals, but make sure they understand that as long as they meet the end goal they won't be punished. And if they do miss the hard target date, they WILL be punished. And get rid of ALL lobyists in Congress. As long as they run the country, nothing will get done that doesn't make someone rich. Someone other than the middle class.

Jim


davek   July 17th, 2008 1:13 pm ET

Sounds wonderful. Congress will get back to you in about 8 years with a resolution to proceed with research.


Pat   July 17th, 2008 1:18 pm ET

I happen to agree with Al Gore and therefore feel he is very relevant. We are in a real tough situation - not only in the US but the whole world. It seems that people have become extremely selfish and do not care about future generations.

Mr. Gore is the only one who has been working on this problem most of his life. People can make fun of him as much as they want but it does not change the dire situation that we are in.

I also feel the overpopulation of the planet should be brought up. It does not take a genius to see that this is the major problem. It is like the elephant in the room that no one talks about.


Kevin Chisholm   July 17th, 2008 1:19 pm ET

Big challenge; eliminate income tax to impose a carbon tax (with special support for most needy only) makes sense. That alone can get us a long ways in the right direction.


John A   July 17th, 2008 1:21 pm ET

Wonder why gore is partnered wit GE could it be money not saving the world Nah! Gore is PHONY


Terry I in NY   July 17th, 2008 1:23 pm ET

Until Gore puts far more emphasis on nuclear power, his credibility is questionable. The US should start building about 100 new nuclear power plants asap. Nuclear is safe, clean and containable, and puts out zero carbon. Convert all cars to electric and we would greatly reduce CO2 getting into our atmosphere. Biofuels are not the answer. They will continue to release carbon. Wind and solar are supplemental technologies, not the end all.


Juan M   July 17th, 2008 1:32 pm ET

Al Gore needs to worry more about his own huge "carbon footprint" before he starts telling everyone else what to do.


Liberator   July 17th, 2008 1:34 pm ET

Gore had a fateful crossroads: be President or be a Great Man; I wish he would fulfill the former..


cgardner   July 17th, 2008 1:34 pm ET

Al Gore speaks the plain truth. He addresses the issue in straight terms and he is absolutely on when he says the economic, environmental and national security crises are all related.
He likens his speech to Kennedy's challenge to land on the moon.You can also liken it to the challenge of winning World War II. This new effort will require every bit of sacrifice and resolve as winning that war did. Those who can not see that now will see it eventually if they live for the next 20 years.


David Jantz   July 17th, 2008 1:35 pm ET

This is THE most important speech in my 62 years on this planet. Acceptance of this challenge can once again guide the US towards preeminence in science and technology; help us rebuild our once great country around the needs of future, not the failed policies of yesterday which lead only to decay and extinction. We can show the world real leadership if we wake up now. If not, others will do it and they will in turn become the world leaders of the tomorrow, while the US gradually declines, forced to purchase every new and necessary technology from those new world industrial powers, losing bit-by-bit all of our wealth, lifestyle, health and international prestige in the process. Ultimately, these great changes aren't optional, what is optional is who chooses to lead and profit from that leadership and those destined to follow, relegated to the dustbin of the history.


Rose Melendez   July 17th, 2008 1:36 pm ET

Vice President Gore is correct....living with alternative energy is possible, responsible, clean and efficient. I have been living off-grid for over 10 years......my home operates on solar energy only . There are many people that live as I do. We live comfortably with all the amminities that any urban dweller has. Wind, Solar, Hydro and Thermo are all clean, renewable sources of energy that we must utilize now. Our future, the future of generations and the wellbeing of our planet, depends on us taking action, changing our energy needs and utilizing these clean resources, now.


Micahel   July 17th, 2008 1:37 pm ET

Hey, Obama
Gore provided the detailied enery policy now stay true to your word and bring the CHANGE. If not Gore is right America will no longer have the standing we have enjoyed in the world. If it was easy it would have been done before, we accomplish the hard task.


Lee J Alter   July 17th, 2008 1:37 pm ET

I agree that we cannot drill our way out of the crisis. I also agree that using up foodstuffs and arable land and potable water is not the answer. Using all of the available innovative technologies can solve the problem AND mitigate global warming at the same time. Wind, solar, hydro, geothermal, and tidal can be harnessed to generate electricity. Coal fired generating plants are still the most economic way to produce electricity BUT FOR putting out massive amounts of greenhouse gasses. Nuclear power plants are “non-polluting” EXCEPT FOR the devastating environmental issues at the mining milling, and disposal stages of the cycle.
The above can provide the electric power we need but does not address the liquid transportation fuels that are needed.
There has been little mainstream media coverage — and no political comment — of the R&D being done on the use of algae cultivation to produce chemical feedstock that can be processed into biofuels, including diesel, ethanol , jetfuel, hydogen, and others with a production volume substantially more efficient than using “traditional” sources.
There are a number of university and small start-up programs that are developing techniques for using the CO2 and other “wastes” from flue gasses and sewage treatrments and elsewhere along with non-potable water and sunlight under controlled condiions that are proposed to produce all the liquid fuels required while using productively the main cause of global warming.
It seems to me that all it takes is the National Will to invest in the commercialization of this new technology.


John   July 17th, 2008 1:38 pm ET

The answers to the last three questions are:

No, unfortunately yes, and no.


Cloe   July 17th, 2008 1:38 pm ET

This is rehashed from the 1970's. If nothing was done about it then,
why on earth makes us think anything will be done now? I fear that
we are a nation of sheep.


sanjk   July 17th, 2008 1:40 pm ET

The environmentalists care more about seals than humans.

http://stockparadise.blogspot.com/2008/07/faith-in-free-market.html

This article sums up the conservative opinion on this subject.


George   July 17th, 2008 1:40 pm ET

I think it is a great idea... regardless of what it does to the economy.. too many people worried about themselves and not the reality of what Carbon based fuels are doing to this world and this country as a whole. We should have been doing this for the last 10 years instead of starting now but once again the lack of insight by previous regimes has hurt this country in one way or another... or politics itself being bought out by big oil.


henryb   July 17th, 2008 1:40 pm ET

You wrote:
"Is Gore relevant? Is anyone listening to him? Should we listen to him? "

Well gee, let's see – you have a front page story about him and you just blogged about him, he won the Nobel Peace Prize, an Emmy, an Oscar and a Grammy within the past year and "An Inconvenient Truth" is constantly playing on cable.

So, um, gosh I guess the answer is ,er – yes? What kind of neo con BS spin was that anyway? Is Gore relevant? Why does CNN despise Gore so much but are so utterly giddy with man crushes around the reprehensible John McCain?


Frank Camiola   July 17th, 2008 1:44 pm ET

Too bad this guy isn't running for president. He is the only politician that speaks the truth and from the heart. I hope we wake up and smell the coffee. It's a shame that during one of the most important speeches of the last 5 years or so, Gore gets "interrupted" by Grandpa Simpson telling the people of Missouri how well the war in Iraq is going. Pathetic. God help us if he is elected.


teen in nh   July 17th, 2008 1:44 pm ET

well jim, look at all our other solutions we said were too fast, so we slowed them down and after it was finished people thought it cost me to wait it out than to to in a number of years. we should challenge ourselves. but i still know that we will still use propane and other gases in 10 years. if we help our economy by USING natural devices like solar energy roofs or something and make it cheap and easy to produce. it will greatly help the economy and will help Gores challenge. BUT ITS IMPOSSIBLE IN 10 years.


Steve   July 17th, 2008 1:44 pm ET

Absolutely, we should be listening! The technology is here today to become energy independent and with proper funding, it could happen in a decade. Solar and wind energy, Hydrogen and natural gas fueled cars (see Honda's web page for more) are proven technologies. I'm tired of seeing no action on this crisis from our elected leaders and feel it's time for a good old fashion 60's movement to get us moving in the right direction. Over half of the oil consumed in the US is from foreign sources, many of whom are less than friendly to us. Can you imagine what would happen if all of a sudden foreign oil imports stopped. Frightening. To those of us living in large cities, are you fed up with seeing and breathing that ugly brown haze hovering over us? I once saw a Native American quote which states "We did not inherit the earth from our parents and grandparents; we are borrowing it from our children and grandchildren".


Daniel Heasley   July 17th, 2008 1:45 pm ET

Sort of a Manhatten project on new energy, eh? Sounds like a great idea. Get rid of the lobbyists? Another great idea, and necessary for the implimentation of the first. Can either be done? Maybe with a revolution. Did you know Henry Ford built and ran a car out of Hemp? Check it out, its on You tube. There have been solutions around for a long time, but always money and those greedy people with all the power get in the way.


John Faux   July 17th, 2008 1:46 pm ET

It is a great challenge and the Country – big people and little people should do everything we can to make sure that this happens. It can happen. If we want it bad enough.


Larry Boyd   July 17th, 2008 1:47 pm ET

The effect of Jim's knee-jerk "neo-realism" in response to Al Gore's challenge is to sever the nerve chord of effort and absolutely guarantee that it won't be done in 10 years – if ever.

Larry


Rich   July 17th, 2008 1:47 pm ET

He's a flaming idiot!


Katie   July 17th, 2008 1:49 pm ET

Absolutely...we have been able to make so many technological advances in my lifetime...why would this be any different? Let's get our best minds to work and we will be well on our way.

There is no doubt there is lots of money to be made...when did we become so afraid of new technologies?


Zhaoyang Liu   July 17th, 2008 1:50 pm ET

First of all, coward Al Gore should take the challenge of Lord Monckton

http://www.heartland.org/Article.cfm?artId=20873


RWP   July 17th, 2008 1:51 pm ET

Jim, I am not kidding you. The change can and will come in the next ten years. and it's going to be easier than anyone thinks. Why? Because the development and installation will come from outside the government. How? By forgetting about the grid and through the integrated use of available technology, distributing the energy generation to the users on a scalable baisis. Remember the old saying "Think globally, act locally". this will work with energy generation as well.

Skeptical? I was too, but it will work and it doesn't require any change in laws.

So, realism? Al Gore finally got iit right. Human caused global warming is a debatable issue. Increased reliance on the burning of fossil fuels while supply diminishes is not. It is necessary to develop renewable sources of energy, yet a much more cost effective and adoptable methodolgy is to develop scalable solutions which can be installed on a local level. The profit potential and debveloping technology will make this mandate a reality, not some artificial governmental dictate.


Larry Boyd   July 17th, 2008 1:52 pm ET

The effect of assuming that something is impossible in this case is to guarantee that Gore's challenge won't be met in 10 years – if ever.

Larry


Andy   July 17th, 2008 1:52 pm ET

While the current political system doesn't make Gore's challenge feasible, it is the kind of radical commitment that will someday be needed to make this country and this world free of it's addiction to oil. The solutions to our energy demands are not more drilling, ethanol, natural gas, or any other carbon-based (and food-reducing) option. We need to create wind farms, solar farms, and even more hydroelectric plants (yes, I know the environmental impact of dams and reservoirs) . We need to tax pickups, SUVs and other gas-guzzling vehicles upon purchase for their emissions impact. We need to think boldly, creatively, and dynamically to create a suite of energy sources that can heat our homes, power our cars and planes, and provide us electricity. It comes down to everyone doing their part – the homeowner with solar roofs, the corporation with green power, the politicians with freedom from lobbyists and the courage to act. At least Gore has the courage to challenge us.


kelly   July 17th, 2008 1:55 pm ET

To prove Lee's point, I haven't seen anything in mainstream media about the use of algae cultivation for the ultimate production of biofuels. Why not? Site moderators should pass this up the line. More info please. Members of Congress will move on the issue when it becomes profitable to do so.


john doe   July 17th, 2008 1:56 pm ET

Jim wrote: "Are you kidding me? While I am all for renewable energy sources, there is no way the infrastructure of this country can change that dramatically that fast."

umm....yes it can......we built our gas line infrastructure in less than a decade......our railroad infrastructure took even less time.....and these were made before the use of internal combustion engines for transportation became prominent.

and as far as the economic impact...... If America becomes the leading producer or renewable energy.....we will take away the trillions in oil revenue that OPEC gets......become independent in our energy needs.....and create tens of thousands of jobs to create this new "green infrastructure".......sure we will have to suck up the initial cost of going green but the long term affects will pay off. Our generation is being continually burdened by the status quo mindset of the baby boomers who dont care about the long run because lets face it.....they wont be around so why make the sacrafice.


Max from NY   July 17th, 2008 1:59 pm ET

Gore is absolutely right.
People want to start drilling for more oil. WHY? People just in case you dont know this is our SECOND oil crisis. We had one in the 70's. There will undoubtedly be another one again if we "stay the course" :) .
But if we get something that can never run out (at least not for an estimated billions of years): wind&solar, our generation as well as those in the future will have sustainable energy.
Making our future generations deal with the effects of global warming and the daunting task of getting off oil once its nearly run out, falls under the same category as our forefather complained about:: NO TAXATION WITHOUT REPRESENTATION.

What drives me crazy is people (like Glenn Beck) who call anyone Un-American who says there is anything wrong with this country. Yet they doubt are ability to get off oil and just say 'eh, lets drill some more, I don't care about anything except my wallet!'

By the way Gore won in 2000!

Love,

A concerned environmentalist


Seth Consoliver   July 17th, 2008 1:59 pm ET

Al Gore, if you really think your plan in conceivable, then your'e full of more bull than I ever previously imagined. For the idiots who haven't heard (especially the watchers of the extremely liberal CNN, CBS, or NBC news channels) Al Gore's claims of Global Warming have been discredited as extremely exaggerated by almost every Scientist in the world.
We do need to get rid of our dependence on oil, but doing it in 10 years is a completely childish fantasy. What I want to know is why Gore doesn't support feasible plans such as nuclear energy usage. As for his plan to increase production and use of ethanol: Ethanol costs exponentially more to produce than any form of energy we currently use, and its now been proven that in the end ETHANOL RELEASES TWICE AS MUCH CARBON as standard gasoline.

If Gore knew what it's like to not live in a 20+ room mansion, and if he wasn't so rich to be able to afford numerous gas-guzzling SUV's and other expensive toys, maybe he would be able to think about financially capable energy plans.


Mark   July 17th, 2008 1:59 pm ET

Let's start off with fact #1 – The electricty use in the United States is not based on foreign oil. Most electricity in the United States is derived from coal. So linking oil companies to this particular facet of this debate is baseless. In order to move this debate forward, Al Gore needs to explain why he does not embrace nuclear power as a clean alternative. Solar and Wind will only get us so far. We need a plan to eliminate coal power plants and the restrictions placed on power companies in the 90s only encourages use of old, out-dated coal plants. Congress needs to get on board with a real energy policy, not a policy based on election campaigns.


wanderingtree   July 17th, 2008 1:59 pm ET

Great point, Larry. Gore laid out the issue of our energy crisis, and put out the feasible alternatives: geothermal, wind, and solar energy. The majority of the science community is on board with this, and it opens up the country to the spirit of innovation and change that makes it great. What boggles my mind is that off-shore drilling is even being considered given these better options. I'm from Florida, and maybe it's about time we make the Sunshine State the Solar Energy State, instead of looking off our shores and killing off the rest of the Everglades.


Leland   July 17th, 2008 2:01 pm ET

Sigh – Al Gore was long on rhetoric and short on any specifics. There is no real plan here – just a challenge. The thought you could base your energy system on wind, solar, and geothermal without a technological breakthrough in energy storage is ludicrous (I'm unaware of any 'breakthrough' in the works). And if you can't store energy then basing your energy system on things that go away randomly (wind) or periodically (sun) seems kind of foolish.

If he'd come out and said nuclear is needed as the base and then have 20, 30, 40% on true renewables – oh – and all in 10 years. Maybe, just maybe you could do it. Frankly I'm disappointed by this – he's just into giving self serving speeches and not real solutions.

Leland


david m   July 17th, 2008 2:01 pm ET

How about a new idea - have the military construct hundreds of nuclear power plants on US military bases and operate these as a force against the external enemy: foreign energy sources. The power generated would need to be sufficient to cover all the US needs for the next 50 years as alternative sources are explored. It is the suggestion that the military budget used to defend the US abroad needs also to defend the US here in the States.

Simply put, the military will operate these facilities at a profit and that profit needs to be used to offset construction cost and be directly invested in the exploration of alternative energy sources. By pricing the energy at a level higher than the ‘lowest-cost’ alternative, PUCs and commercial utility plant will have access to a price-stable source of electricity to power homes and the new generation of hydrogen and Electric hybrid vehicles.

If we were to require that 49 states use at the minimum 2 military bases to deliver the first 98 plants – assuming that Nevada can be optionally excluded as they house the waste containment center for the US. And, in fact, the waste containment center should become a military run facility as well to protect the national interest against any threats.

I’d like to see the federal government use some of the military budget allocation to fund this project as it directly increases the US security profile, decreases the reliance on foreign oil, and stabilizes the price of electricity for the US consumer.


RWP   July 17th, 2008 2:01 pm ET

Andy, We have been taxing the gas guzzling vehicles at the time of purchase for years. Look where it has gotten us - lobbyists working to relax the requirements until we find ourselves in a country full of gaz guzzling large vehicles with only one occupant.


L. Bien-Aime, CT   July 17th, 2008 2:03 pm ET

Al Gore,

Thanks for your service to the US and the world as a soldier against Global Warming! Your nobel prize for this cause is a testament of your devotion.

Our planet is truly in peril, but many take it for granted. Within this decade alone, we had more natural desasters than going back thousands of years ago, combined. (Katrina, Tsunami, China's earthquakes, California's fire, Greenland's melting, volcanos erupting, and the list goes on.)

WE can start making a difference, if WE try.


William   July 17th, 2008 2:04 pm ET

GO AL!

I will do my part.


Ben   July 17th, 2008 2:04 pm ET

Everyone should disregard jim's comments...I highly doubt that he has put the time, effort, OR research into these issues as Al Gore has. Regardless of who gets rich, who gets angry, or who is in office, these are changes that need to be made. It seems like those citizens with a mindset comparable to that of Jim's are the ones thwarting the progress we're making toward a green america, and ultimately a green world.

Perhaps you should read the actual speech and not merely a paragraph long blog post before you pass closed-minded judgment on Gore's proposal! Thanks!

-An informed Opinion


Erin   July 17th, 2008 2:06 pm ET

Someone has to say it, and he's right. It is necessary. As a country we've been holding on to carbon based fuels for far too long, in my opinion because it's easier to sit our butts that do something about it. Not to mention that it would initially cost companies money that they don't want to invest.

We have been in desperate need of a wake up call, and now are sitting in the middle of it.

And for those of you nay-sayers– the technology is ALREADY there. To say that it is impossible to achieve the transition in ten years is ridiculous.


Dwight   July 17th, 2008 2:11 pm ET

Al Gore and Boone Pickens – guys that get it

Bush, Cheney, et al. – dinosaurs

The USA needs to lead the world in the shift in new energy models and public awareness. Not just to 'do the right thing' but to develop the technical leadership that will again propel us to strong business positions in the shift as the rest f the world comes about.

Wind and solar are technologies that are easily recognized as power generators – with issues. But there are many other possible areas of effort that may yield as important solutions as those. BUT – we need a major direction change to take on this challenge.

While similar to the race to the moon that Pres. Kennedy challenged the technologiests of the 60's – this challenge really needs to be much more pervasive – not just the technologists – but ALL Americans. Can such a challenge strike at the American psyche? Of course it can – but it won't from such a nonvisionary as the current President. He was quoted as saying that he need not make a plea for Americans to do their part in the current situation as he felt they understood that they needed to drive less. What a hoot.

The challenge for America – and Americans – is to step up and do our part in conserving and enabling the new solutions. For those leasing cars – switch to improved efficient models – and are you looking/demanding such models from American suppliers? Have you looked at adding insulation or improving the cooling/heating systems in your houses? Are there efficient solar systems available to do your own electricty farming?

For American companies – develop solutions that make sense to be used. How many of the wind turbines being put up were manufactured in the US? How many batteries needed in hybrids were manufactured in the US? How many solar panels being put up were manufactured in the US and did their solar cells come from US?

Is government a helper or a hindurance? Is it helping to support improvements in the infrastructure (e.g. electric grids) or service locations (siting of wind systems)? Does it protect legacy systems or does it permit net billing inititatives? At best – they can help enable the new paths. At worst – they can be roadblocks to our future. Demand accountability of the politicians and get rid of those who won't help us move forward.

And the technologists – oh so much they can do. So many areas to examine. There are many possible areas of improvement – it's not just making better solar panels. We should examine various bio systems (e.g. bacterium, algae, seeweed) that may be able to consume carbon dioxide and through photosynthesis – produce components that may be usable as a fuel. That would be a two-fer – help reduce the carbon footprint of other activities and come up with a new fuel potential. And with all that coal – can there be better things we can do with it than burn it? Could it be used as a base for alternative fuels (need to remove sulphur and other contaminants – but it might be useful as an intermediate system).

So how does the USA change gears – need to set the challenge and provide leadership and vision.

Won;t happen under today's administration – but we need to make it happen.


Mark   July 17th, 2008 2:13 pm ET

Erin – no, the technology is NOT here yet. Yes, we can harness the wind and solar energy. Sure, we can power a house or even a neighborhood. But what we cannot yet due is build an energy *storage* infrastructure to allow the country to continue in the event of a downtime in energy production, being that solar, wind, and geothermal energy are not 100% consistant and never will be. The energy storage answer needs to be developed and scaled up and that is part of this solution which needs to be worked on.


Joe K   July 17th, 2008 2:13 pm ET

One easy way to help reduce electricity usage is to add a small national tax (e.g. 50 cents / bulb) to purchase incandescent light bulbs. As a 60 Watt incandescent light bulb is only about 2.5% efficient, significant electricity can be saved by using higher efficiency lights like compact fluorescents.


keith   July 17th, 2008 2:15 pm ET

Energy policy will change when martial law is declared, and changes mandated, or the world runs out of oil. Business has no incentive to do so. We can make the needed changes now but only as a public works project costing about $1.5 trillion. We would require a war time economy or a depression type economy with rationing. In 10 years, we could move to short term dependence on coal burned in "clean" coal fired plants and a conversion to hydrogen power/electric mobile transport. Infrastructure changes could be implemented to produce all energy needs of the nation by renewable sources in another 10 years. All of this with existing technology. Removing pollutants from coal smoke is "easy" when enough energy is used~about 10 percent of output. We only need build more plants and use our 250 year supply of coal. Continuing to allow greed weasels to manage our national energy policy is a prescription for misery and destruction of our economy.


Vic   July 17th, 2008 2:20 pm ET

The prospect of someone or some industry getting rich from a revolutionary change in energy sources is about the only hope we have that progress may actually happen.

We're so busy attacking people and political parties, we keep ourselves from realizing we can no longer afford to live like this.
....unless you're looking forward to paying $10 for a gallon of gas


apaxton   July 17th, 2008 2:20 pm ET

It’s definitely a time for change in America. The people of this country need to stand up and place a call to action. We can’t stand idly by and wait for our own government to make the right decisions. It’s a government for the people by the people, too bad that sentiment has been lost. If you’re a Gore advocate or not, the message is invaluable – We need to change or risk losing or status in an ever changing world. Your voice is key.


Selesia   July 17th, 2008 2:21 pm ET

We should do something. Our dependence on oil has created a HEAP of problems for us. So let's start - We can't determine how long something is going to take until we get into the details of it.

That being said - A GOAL with a target date is GOOD. Now all we need is some ACTION!


Andrew   July 17th, 2008 2:21 pm ET

i wish he'd run with bill clinton as vp.. i'd take that over any candidate we have today


Carl in MI   July 17th, 2008 2:25 pm ET

Gore gets it... Bush, Cheney and the rest of the Republicans don't. When things start getting REAL bad due to global warming, I'd like to see them publically apologize for their stupidity and ignorance... and them give them all 30 lashes like they did in the old days to stoopid people.


Janet   July 17th, 2008 2:25 pm ET

Where has Gore been the last few months? Running up his electric bill!!!!!!!!!!!!! He is just trying to "cash in" (again-like he did before-"Incovenient Truth"). There have been others before him to be touting this strategy for the last few months, ie T-Boone Pickens, President Bush–where have all the news media been on this? Al Gore just needs to GO AWAY! I cannot stand to even hear his name!


Michael   July 17th, 2008 2:27 pm ET

We are a nation of whiners,
10 , 20 30 years
does not really matter if we dont start somewhere
So lets argue and whine while nothing gets done


Mayor Robert wall   July 17th, 2008 2:32 pm ET

If drilling on the coast and up North would help why didn"t the Rep. do it when they were in control. Why have the CAFE STANDARDS not changed? Gore You Are The Man.


David   July 17th, 2008 2:33 pm ET

He's no JFK!


Matt   July 17th, 2008 2:34 pm ET

Nuclear power is a developed technology and 100% carbon netral. It would be the shortest term solution.

Don't ever be fooled into thinking this country will be 100% independent from oil. I wouldn't want to be defended by a military that has some crapy solar panel operated fighter jets or wave generated air craft carriers. Do you think Isreal would buy those from us?

We should continue to reduce our own oil consumption but still drill for oil on our own soil/cost. Maybe we can be a greater exporter one day. We'd be stupid not to capitalize on increasing world demand.


Alfonso Estrada   July 17th, 2008 2:37 pm ET

Why is so dificult to understand what´s he is talking about? Shouldn´t we were worried about climate changes and enviromental deterioration?
If we (all of us) do not participate at this very moment, we won´t have to be sorry or crying in the near future. As yourselves a question: is it just becuase he´s a politician or I really do not care about nobodyelse in the world but myself?
Stop polution, stop the damage to ourselves.


Ted from Tennessee   July 17th, 2008 2:40 pm ET

Gore is right on target. You will notice, however, that his message is not the same as that of either political party–not even the democrats. For one thing, he emphasises "carbon-free" sources of fuel, not just "renewable."

This is important, because the most popular of the so-called "renewable" energy sources includes biofuels, which have been a major blunder on our part. Biofuels are supposedly "renewable," but they are certainly not "carbon-free." People tend to support their use by subtracting the carbon that the plants take in while growing from the carbon that is emitted from burning them. This is a fallacy. In nearly every case, the land that grew the corn or sugar cane had previously been used to grow something, whether corn or eating, another crop, or the rain forests of Brazil.

Beyond that, using land that would have contributed to food production, whether corn for human consumption, feed corn for livestock, or sugar cane, worsens the global food crisis. This leads to food inflation here, and starvation around the world.

So, Gore is right on target, and the examples he mentioned are the ones that should be pursued. Let's not get side-tracked with the dead-end distraction of ethanol.


David   July 17th, 2008 2:41 pm ET

Did you know that most power companies produce extra power to make sure that theres power if the wind stop. So we are producing just as much coal power and carbon as if there wasn't any wind power. Boy this makes a lot of sense!!! Little know fact! So have we reduced our carbon footprint at all.


ben   July 17th, 2008 2:43 pm ET

nuclear waste is most definitely not clean, 300 million tons of nuc waste are produced from our reactors/per year as it is. And now Mc cain is advocating Yucca Mountain for a World Wide Nuclear Waste Storage site.

Although there have been recent advances in the recycling and reclaiming of waste(using plasma torches) Nuclear Waste IS NOT GOOD


Matt Callaway in Omaha, NE   July 17th, 2008 2:44 pm ET

The gasoline powered automobile and the infrastructure to support it propped up and exploded over the course of a decade. Solar and wind power could be more spread out, thereby REDUCING demand on the existing grid. It is true that the disparate mini-grids must be linked and a nation-wide strategy adopted. But this too is possible. Think of how the government directed the development of railroads. This too was accomplished amazingly quickly considering the technology and knowledge of the land at that time.

If conservatives are not afraid of losing jobs to foreign countries they certainly shouldn't be worried about losing jobs to ourselves.


Dave LaPere   July 17th, 2008 2:45 pm ET

I was very interested in hearing what Al Gore had to say this morning regarding our national problems, and was prepared to listen to what I had hoped his entire speech, but was really upset when CNN broke away to John McCain giving us his same old same old.
Al Gore has in my opiion, a FAR better grasp on our situation and the solutions to them then John McCain wanting to build 45 Nuclear Power Plants and drill off our shores for more oil.
More attention NEEDS to be given to getting away from oil and fossil fuels. More news reports covering how you can convert your home to solar/wind and or a combination of solar during the day and only drawing electricity from your local power company at night using INVERTER technology, that does not require expensive storage batteries, and what Federal and States are giving tax breaks/rebates for installing such equipment . So what is the very least you could buy a system for your home.
People like myself, a homeowner are hungry for information on how to Install Solar, the cost, what's available now and where and who from?


Jim   July 17th, 2008 2:51 pm ET

Gore has a good heart. Unfortunately, capitalism does not respond to politician's calls, it responds to supply and demand. If oil goes down to $50/barrel, Gore's call will be forgotten; or Gore will change his own call to "Drill drill drill...".


Daniel Wood   July 17th, 2008 2:56 pm ET

Go Gore!

Thank God someone of his stature is saying this – and it IS technically and economically feasible – we just have to create a protected market for alternatives.

To do that, Congress should pass a bill that caps petroleum imports – if current imports are 12.3 million barrels / day – that's the cap. Then, every six months, the cap drops by 500,000 to 1 million barrels, depending on how aggressive we want to be.

That puts control of the oil supply in our hands, not the commodities market.

Better, to fill in the energy gap, investment dollars will pour into the US from all over the world to get a piece of the cornered US energy market and alternatives will go up like gangbusters.

Apart from protecting petroleum profiteers or misplaced free trade dogmatism, I can think of no reason to oppose this, with all the alternatives available that can't compete with petroleum on sole account of its economy of scale, this is probably the only way short of inefficient government mandates that pick and choose winners and losers. We'd never finish that fight – this lets the market.

I'm fasting 28 days and writing elected officials to promote this and I'll support Gore anyway I can.

http://www.usafuture.org


Ted from Tennessee   July 17th, 2008 2:56 pm ET

David made an interesting point (above) about the unpredicatable output of wind over time. This line of reasoning, however, fails to take into account the fact that any excess power produced can be stored for later use. A solar plant in Austrailia, for example, stores some of the energy produced during the day as heat, sored underground, for producing electricity at night. Wind power, of course, would use a different mechanism, perhaps hydrogen, but the result would be the same. As alternative fuels become a larger part of the equation, ways will be found to handle the production-level challenges.


Fred   July 17th, 2008 3:02 pm ET

Gore is right again.

Oh how better off this country would be if he had won the Presidency in 2000.

But as has been done before, we will continue on with the status quo knowing we will all be dead when that inevitable date comes when global warming has gone past the point of no return and the supply of oil has diminished far beyond the demand for it and then the world (our grandchildren) will pay the piper for having no alternative energy sources because we didn't sacrifice today.

If this generation of Americans and our politicians were running this world in the 1930's and 1040's, we'd all be serving under a Hitler regime. We might as well be, because only the wealthy caucasians and our politicians are living the dream life with pensions, health care and overpaying jobs with golden parachutes.


Michael Rogers   July 17th, 2008 3:04 pm ET

All these energy generating ideas are good but I wonder how long the technology will take to catch up to reality? We need to go ahead and drill and devleope nuclear as well as coal resources. Don't bash Bush. He didn't cause this problem. We all did through our lack of foresight. It will not take 10 years to get more oil in production. It may take longer to bring on line new technology. What will we do in the meantime? This didn't happen overnight. Save the planet and sacrifice our way of life. I don't think so.


Randy   July 17th, 2008 3:04 pm ET

Nero sang the "Sack of Ilium" in stage costume while the city burned.

Bush did nothing while America fell.


max easterly/ canton, tx   July 17th, 2008 3:06 pm ET

lets see, gore is reportedly now worth in excess of 100,000,000 on his global warming investments//gore's personal carbon footprint is larger than 56,000 average homes. the real theat to the planet is the pile of fools that believe this crap. by the way Mars and venus have also warmed at the same amount as the earth. Wonder if you idiots ever heard of the sun


David   July 17th, 2008 3:06 pm ET

Ted,
This power is not stored, just not used, kind of crazy!! This is a commen practise in Europe.


Casey in Missouri   July 17th, 2008 3:08 pm ET

Wind isn't the only answer, but I believe in what T.Boone Pickens is saying. Solar gets cheaper daily. We KNOW we need to make the change yesterday. No one is saying never use oil or coal again, but let's not divert attention from the real issues by arguing over drilling or scraping the earth to get oil sand with all its dirty refinement...

That said, what Gore says is what many have been saying all along – if you want to be picky, it's what the Carter administration tried to do so many years ago and it was and is the Republicans and their oil-buddies (the Saudis) who derailed that then and now. Just imagine where we'd be today if we stayed on track to develop alternative energy...

So let the McCain crowd compare Obama to Carter. I'd rather have 4 more years of Carter than 4 more years of BUSH.


Alfonso Estrada   July 17th, 2008 3:15 pm ET

One more question to those that talk about nuclear power: where are they going to trow the nuclear waste? and if you do some elementary math: how much waste would it be if they build 100 nuclear plants if they are having problems with a few? Are you sugest to export the waste to poor countries?


Larian LeQuella   July 17th, 2008 3:17 pm ET

Aw, my oil addiction joke got redacted! :(

I am all for alternative energy and being green. Not because I think we have that big of an impact on the Earth, but because I think it is the right thing to do.


inventr   July 17th, 2008 3:19 pm ET

I cant understand why people act like sheep and following a man blindly! where effects may be OK but cause is not.


Mick   July 17th, 2008 3:21 pm ET

Hm.... Sounds like scare tactics. Wasn't Bush accused of that as well?
Let the people decide.


Kerry   July 17th, 2008 3:23 pm ET

Gore is right, of course. We all know that if we could wave a magic wand and make it happen it would be great.

The problem is that we've heard it all before. I remember Nader coming to my college in 1978 and giving the same speech. Boy, we all marched out of the assembly hall into the night air determined to figure out how to make cars run on solor by 1980.

And, of course, why do some people extol Gore and blame "past administrations" for failing to see this earlier. Gore was in one of those past admins for 8 years. If it was so easy to do why didn't he get it done when his party had control over congress and he was in the White House in '92 and '93?

Hate to rain on the parade, but there are too many interests involved in this to allow government to do the job in a democracy. Sure, everyone knows about the oil interests... but there also are the Anti-nuclear environmentalists, the Anti-hydro environmentalists, the Anti-wind don't block my back yard viewers, the Solor will never work because it always rains here naysayers, the Don't starve the world by using bio gloomsters, etc.

Much as I would love to see us all get along and fix this, the free market got us into this and the free market will be the only thing to get us out. Just the fact that demand in India, China, and the rest of the world has a lot more to do with this whole issue than anyone wants to admit shows us that our government can't do it. Only the evil called "Multi National Big Business" will do it and it will do it when it makes money from it. (Which normally works out pretty well)


joby   July 17th, 2008 3:26 pm ET

This issue is just another in our long history of government short-sightedness. Why do our planet's health and money have to be at odds with each other? In the past couple decades a large percentage of our manufacturing has been lost to cheaper labor sources overseas. Now that wages, especially in China, are raising the next competitive advantage will be energy costs. If we would take the inititive and develop cheap renewable energy a lot of the lost jobs would find their way back. Also, thousands of new jobs would be created during the transition. Progress has always been the fastest road to wealth: railroads, oil comapnies, computers, etc. Instead of trying to protect their current income streams oil companies should be dumping their record profits into developing new ones. The free market system will take care of this eventually but a little push from the government could speed things along and make life easier on everyone.


Ham   July 17th, 2008 3:30 pm ET

Maybe we should start with something easier... like ridding the world of nuclear weapons...

On a serious note... I agree with being greener... but Oil will continue to be extremely important for decades... that being said... we should work toward all avenues of energy and swing away from oil over time. Many countries will simply go the cheapest route... which means having oil will continue to be a priority... not forever... but not tomorrow either.


Scott, Durham, NC   July 17th, 2008 3:31 pm ET

The evidence debunking the scam of AGW becomes stronger and stronger day-by-day. The green post-modernist media and the climate change alarmists can’t fool all of the people all of the time no matter how shrilly and repetitively they shriek. 31,000 scientists and engineers including 9,000 PhDs are calling BS on the IPCC and AGW are sending AGW “Climate Change” straight to the rubbish bin of history. This is modern climatology’s Piltdown man.

“I think environmentalists will have a lot of trouble proving their case with proof in light of mounting evidence against all the “evidence” that AGW alarmists rely on.”

CO2: The Greatest Scientific Scandal of Our Time:

http://tinyurl.com/2rpxz4

Global Warming: Forecasts by Scientists versus Scientific Forecasts:

http://tinyurl.com/6jd95u

Falsification of the Atmospheric CO2 Greenhouse Effects Within the Frame of Physics:
a) http://tinyurl.com/yr3mtk

b) http://tinyurl.com/5ve6su

“Global Warming: Pure Fiction”
c) http://tinyurl.com/69kvc4

List of global warming activists, now skeptics
Growing number of major scientific figures convert to skeptics after reviewing new research:

http://tinyurl.com/2vas6a

The current list of 31,072 petition signers includes 9,021 PhD; 6,961 MS; 2,240 MD and DVM; and 12,850 BS or equivalent academic degrees.

http://tinyurl.com/4qk5xt


Everette Carnes   July 17th, 2008 3:31 pm ET

I don't know if we can do all that in ten years. One thing I know. If we don't try we won't do ever!


Scott, Durham, NC   July 17th, 2008 3:33 pm ET

“Global Warming” is truly a misnomer. It should be called “Global Fleecing” because that’s precisely what it is.

Global Warming is a trend no doubt, a simple natural cycle of nature. But Anthropogenic Global Warming (aka the Al Gore hypothesis) is discredited science at best, intentional fraud at worst, and is being soundly refuted. See:

U.S. Senate Report:
Over 400 Prominent Scientists Disputed Man-Made Global Warming Claims in 2007

Senate Report Debunks “Consensus”
Report Released on December 20, 2007
U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee

http://tinyurl.com/24ym5b

Intro:
“Over 400 prominent scientists from more than two dozen countries recently voiced significant objections to major aspects of the so-called “consensus” on man-made global warming. These scientists, many of whom are current and former participants in the UN IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change), criticized the climate claims made by the UN IPCC and former Vice President Al Gore.”

2007 was the watershed year in which scientists, even those from the IPCC committees, completely discredited the IPCC review process, exposed its purely political motivations and machinations, and drove the final nails into the coffin of the Al Gore / Hansen AGW climate change monster. Especially enlightening was the complete discrediting of Mann/Bradley/Hughe “Hockey Stick” graph, a centerpiece of Al Gore’s campaign, which has been so thoroughly discredited as inaccurate that even the IPCC had to throw it out long before the current AR4 report. Not only was the Hockey Stick incorrect, but closer inspection of the data showed that the purported correlation between CO2 emissions and temperature rise were incorrectly reported; CO2 emissions actually lagged temperature rises by 800 years as the effect, not the cause – although Gore et al. would have you believe the reverse to be true since in only that way does it support his thesis.

Climate change fearmongering is now being driven less by science and more by BIG Business which forsees huge “Green Field” markets in peddling “Green” wares to populations preconditioned to respond to the various “global warming” and climate doomsday hysterias. Typically, these are the unscientific masses who don’t understand the science, who don’t subscribe to Nature or AAAS Science, and who take everything they see or hear on the TV as the gospel truth. AGW and Climate Change are all about PROFITS, not saving the World from a fate which will not occur anyway.

As for motive: Not only does Al Gore have an ego the size of Air Force One which needs to stay in the limelight since it’s not in the Oval Office, but Al and his cronies stand to profit immensely from his climate change monster. Once government mandates are in place, cash will really begin to flow – directly into bank accounts of “Green” corporations directly from yours – and not just from book sales and DVDs, but as hidden costs on everything you purchase. That’s why Gore is now rolling out PSAs to scare you into influencing Congress, and also why he has been asked to join one of the largest venture capital firms in the nation out on Sand Hill working on – wait for it – carbon credit trading.

There are so many other more immediate issues facing the world than “Global Warming.” Try cancer, cardiovascular disease, starvation, depletion of pelagic fisheries, water reclamation, ensuring adequate future supplies of food and energy, and curtailing whale hunting. But these issues don’t make headlines and don’t allow politicians to mandate the massive global redistribution of wealth possible with AGW. Think about it. When was the last time a blockbuster movie was made about the collapse of the wild Slimehead (aka the Orange Roughy) fishery?

Folks, AGW is pure POLITICAL science, NOT hard science. Don’t fall for the hysteria. Don’t drink the green post-modern kool-aid.


Bruce   July 17th, 2008 3:37 pm ET

I say lets add one more to the plan “Hydrogen” instead of Natural gas! Hydrogen can easy be produced though Solar, Wind or catalyst methods like generating Hydrogen from aluminum alloy (alloy of aluminum and gallium). All of these methods can be and need to be done today!

Let’s say hello to the new Hydrogen economy now.

Please see link.

http://www.physorg.com/news98556080.html


Everette Carnes   July 17th, 2008 3:44 pm ET

And it we don't do it within ten years it may not make a difference whether we ever do it.


Hudson   July 17th, 2008 3:45 pm ET

I was going to post a comment here, but it looks like 'David Jantz' (up near the top of this thread) said it all.

And I agree that Gore should be running too!!


Jay Carlson   July 17th, 2008 3:46 pm ET

I agree with Gore. The necessity is there. It requires very strong political leadership. I do not think we have a choice to do otherwise. We all know this is a necessary step for energy, security and environment. This is crucial for the future of the US economy and status as a world power. What happened to our conventional manufacturing industry? I think it has been siphoned out past the point of no return with respect to competitive advantage. The energy industry and technology still hold much promise, and this is an area where strategic emphasis has be placed. We need to do much more on renewable energy than what the French did to the nuclear power industry in the 70s to become an unchallenged leader in the field now.


cws   July 17th, 2008 3:46 pm ET

The only way we can defeat Islamic radicalism is to cut off their income by developing alternative energy sources. That reason alone should drive us as a nation to unite and develop a "we can do it" attitude. I'm just grateful that Pickens and Gore are articulating a vision that seems to be so far ahead of our current president and both presidential canidates.


Gaia   July 17th, 2008 3:48 pm ET

Gore has it correct but needs support! Also we must stress, lest others forget, the residuals of nuclear waste disposal that have not been solved. Clean renewal carbon free energy with no radioactive wastes is the aim. Remember future generations will hold us responsible!!!


Mike   July 17th, 2008 3:52 pm ET

VP Gore should talk to T Boone Pickens.
see :http://www.pickensplan.com/


JimV   July 17th, 2008 4:01 pm ET

What happened to the comments from this morning? They seem to be gone.


Harry   July 17th, 2008 4:10 pm ET

Gore is a genius, and for our children, this absolutely should be pursued.


john   July 17th, 2008 4:15 pm ET

the transportation can work like the business man from Israel is planning.
You do not have plug in station instead the stations just have batteries ready to go and
you just swap the charged battery and leave the empty one


dennis   July 17th, 2008 4:15 pm ET

TO MEET ALL OF OUR FUTURE ENERGY NEEDS WE WILL NEED TO USE ALL FORMS OF ENERGY GENERATION TO CONTAIN ENERGY COSTS. IT IS NOT REALISTIC TO THINK THAT SOLAR, WIND AND CONSERVATION CAN MEET OUR ENERGY NEEDS; THE MATH DOES JUST NOT ADD UP TO WHAT OUR CITIES AND INDUSTRIES NEED TO MAINTAIN, LET ALONE, IMPROVE OUR STANDARD OF LIVING.


D Smith   July 17th, 2008 4:16 pm ET

No, don't believe him. We'll just keep using non-renewable resources until they're gone. Civilization will collapse and the end of humanity will be certain.

Really? Why wouldn't anyone believe him? If we wait 20 more years before we start, we won't even be able to afford the energy to convert to renewables.


Scott, Durham, NC   July 17th, 2008 4:17 pm ET

"Let’s say hello to the new Hydrogen economy now."

Hold on there a minute Ace....

Hydrogen is one of the costliest and dirtiest elements to produce. The simple concept of "let's split molecules by electrolysis" and power it with solar simply sounds good on paper, but it quickly doesn't add up. When you sit down and figure out the energy produced per kilowatt of energy expended and look at the cost of production, you end up with a negative return. Simply saying "let's use Aluminum with Gallium as a catalyst" sounds nice, but you have to produce the aluminum which is one of the highest energy demanding processes in modern metallurgy. So where do you get the power to produce Aluminum from? Coal-fired plants ? Yes, but extremely dirty. Nuclear – yes, but decades off. Solar? Not on your life. Hydrogen is a pipe dream right now. Conversion efficiencies are atrocious.

That's why natural gas is used.


Larian LeQuella   July 17th, 2008 4:24 pm ET

@JimV, apparently someone found them offensive or inappropriate, and they got "redacted" or moderated out. And I thought my oil addiction joke was pretty funny. ;)


Allen Greenman   July 17th, 2008 4:27 pm ET

Not only is Al Gore relevant but he may hold the motivational force, the wisdom and the key to providing a just, equitable and sustainable future for the American people. I love roaring around in a Range Rover and Porsche but the old adage "just because we can doesn't mean we should" more aptly applies now than ever before. I think throwing down the gauntlet to completely be off carbon based energy production/emission within 10 years just simply due to the nature of Washington and Big Oil interests is a bit short-sighted however I think that every American needs to do their bit in reducing their waste. We have gone unchecked for many, many years in waste production. Everything from using 4 paper-towels in your kitchen to clean up something one, or a half could have to heavy-footing an SUV about town. Waste is the real key to our problem and an over-abundance of the attitude of "Hey, I'm an American and I have the right to do as I please." When we can reel ourselves in and change the way we live, policy and the energy trade will change with us because they're based on our spending and consumption.


Don K   July 17th, 2008 4:27 pm ET

I'm find myself in agreement with almost all of the impressive insights offered in the comments above, but I want to re-emphasize two points: we CAN do this, and we MUST do this now! CAN and MUST. Going to the moon and gearing-up for WW2 are two excellent examples of what Americans can do in the face of necessity: an optimistic, creative people working together in a concerted fashion with a single-minded focus on an important and lofty goal. However, I do believe that to accomplish this we very much need strong leadership to inspire, motivate, and bring us to consensus as well as to organize the workforce for the tasks ahead. We need a leader to help us understand and have the courage to accept the sacrifice that will be required. I believe Barack Obama has shown throughout his career the kind of leadership we need now to tackle the huge and complex problems that face us in the years ahead.


Kirk   July 17th, 2008 4:33 pm ET

God Bless Gore. Imagine what the world be like if he were elected (as he clearly and fairly won)...I wonder if you can.


Chris 2   July 17th, 2008 4:35 pm ET

Once upon a time, the United States had presidents who cared about things like this - leaders who knew a little about science and technology. In fact this was true of about half of all the presidents before Reagan, and it used to be true of a reasonable fraction of the American people.

... Today, though, we are firmly in the touchy-feely era when it's fashionable to despise math and to despise science. Most Americans today grew up being taught by Barney the Dinosaur to feel, not to think.

IMHO, this is a pretty good reason to favor the oldest presidential candidate we can find, this year - but that isn't the point I'm trying to make.


cj   July 17th, 2008 4:37 pm ET

Ok. Let's get Mr. Gore and T.Boone Pickens together. Enough talking let's put words into action. They have the right idea.


Jay Carlson   July 17th, 2008 4:42 pm ET

Hygrogen for cars: viable ONLY IF the energy splitting the water moledules comes from renewable sources. What is mcu more exciting is hydrogen as an energy source – via COLD FUSION!!! If successful, we will have virtually limitless clean energy.

Scientists operating Korea's next-generation nuclear fusion reactor recently reported their first generation of plasma, saying it marked progress in futuristic experiments to create limitless energy for human use.

The device, called KSTAR, an abbreviation for Korea Superconducting Tokamak Advanced Reactor, generated plasma inside its inner chamber for the first time on June 13. The reactor is the second of its kind in the world to generate plasma using superconducting material. China was the first with its EAST reactor in 2006, according to Kwon Myeon, a director at the National Fusion Research Institute.


Ken in Dallas   July 17th, 2008 4:43 pm ET

Gore needs to borrow an old Schwarzenegger line to express his point in terms that get the average person's attention:

"Come with me if you want to live."

The idea that the fossil fuels era is ending is just too big for most people to wrap their minds around. The consequences are too big, so it's easiest to imagine it's just not so, or that it doesn't affect actual reality.

If you want to lead people through a major life-changing experience, you must first persuade them that you're offering them their best option. You have to get their attention, and you have to convince them their other options are scarier than yours.

Change is scary; the status quo is, therefore, a sacred cow. Then there are the people who ruthlessly defend the status quo because, for them, it still pays big.

The status quo is a guarantee of failure, deprivation, and the end of civilization as we have known it. Again expropriating a movie line:

"Help me Obi-wan, you're my only hope."


Scott, Durham, NC   July 17th, 2008 4:46 pm ET

No, the real solution to the problem is allowing gte free market to set prices of resources. When the market establishes prices for oil and other forms of energy at a level where people are not able to afford to use as much as they were accustomed, demand will fall and prices will recede to the point where it again becomes affordable for most people. In other words, if I want to drive my Porsche around and I can afford to fill up the gas tank, then there is no reason why I shouldn't. If I want to use 10 paper towels cleaning up my kitchen, then as long as I can afford to do so it is my decision.

Be glad "big oil" is out there. They have invested billions to allow you to enjoy the lifestyle you currently do and they should make a profit doing so. If you don't like the fact that they are in business to make money, then quit buying and using their products..

It's not "I'm and American and I have a right to do as I please," Instead it's "I'm an educated American and through my own sweat and hard work I make plenty of money, thus I can afford to buy the resources and products to do as I please."

Al Gore is a demagogue.


Kate   July 17th, 2008 4:50 pm ET

I LOVE AL GORE!!!! He is amazing and hes the only person that is actually trying to SAVE us. Not only our country but our WORLD! We should listen to him 100%!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!


Larry   July 17th, 2008 4:50 pm ET

Gee, you'd think environmental issues of this sort were a new thing or something! Seems to me I remember people virtually screaming as far back as the sixties that we are ruining our planet and need to change the way we look at how we are treating our environment. Do you suppose perhaps greed and the incorrect notion that 'going green' would somehow be bad for business might have something to do with this?! Where the heck has America's willingness to lead the way in matters of new discoveries and ingenuity gone? Why can't we get our act together right now to fight global warming? Why can't we find a way to make going green profitable and reasonable?! Action is required immediately or we will pay the consequences, like it or not and believe it or not! Being dependent on foreign oil is a security risk of the highest magnitude and yet our oil buddy president keeps racing down the same old tired road asking us to ruin even more of our natural gifts for the sake of profit because he knows better than anyone that dredging up more oil is no answer to the long term problem and would do very little to assist us even in the short term. We, and now more and more of the rest of the industrialized world, simply go through the stuff too fast causing catostrophic harm to the ozone along the way. Typical money hungry greed could be this country's downfall on many levels but especially concerning the very lands we occupy and the increasingly polluted air we breath. Go ahead and deny it for the sake of money and personal comfort...acting blind to the reality of it all won't make the problem go away even if it does get you re-elected by likewise misguided constituents! It would have been much less painful to begin conserving oil and exploring alternatives forty years ago but it's too late for that now. We simply cannot afford to stay stuck in the political quagmire of bussiness versus environment any longer. Soon we won't have either!!! Go, Al, Go!!!


Scott, Durham, NC   July 17th, 2008 4:50 pm ET

Oh, AMEN! If Tokamak was up and running, the Middle East would go back to being a simple sand pit with no relevance to anyone and we would experience the greatest period of economic expansion know to mankind! However, Tokamak continues to burn up their magnets and hasn't had an instance of sustained fusion yet. Hopefully someone can get it running, but don't hold your breath.


Mike Montgomery   July 17th, 2008 4:57 pm ET

Hey Daniel – I'd like to encourage you to fast for 100 days instead of just 28 days. That would be making more of a statement. Why do tree huggers think anybody cares if they fast, picket or have candle light vigils?


robert   July 17th, 2008 5:03 pm ET

Is he relevant?-of course he is. since "an inconvenient truth" energy conservation and renable energy have become accepted as necessary. Even the Bush administration now agrees global warming is real. But the best proof of his relevance is that you reported on this speach and mine is the 106th coment. Is a goal of 100% of our energy being from renewable sources in 10 years possible?-We reached the moon in 10 years because we had total commitment from the government. What if 6 years ago we spent 1 trillion dollars on these forms of energy instead of on the oil of Iraq? We would have met this goal already. All it is is a decision. If we make it our government will follow.


jeff   July 17th, 2008 5:06 pm ET

I love these comments where name calling is a right of passage. To call our President names is so foolish and yet he and our servicemen are protecting your right to do so. As far as the oil, I have not seen a plane yet fly on solar panels. I would be a little worried when a storm dame up and I was in the air.

I totally agree that we should use the free or the more popular "green" word resources such as the wind and solar. But are we trying to rid the world of their resources of oil so we have all that is left is within our borders. What the heck is wrong with getting what is under our ground. Because we might hurt an insect or rare fowl. Let us use our resources responsibly and use our sense to care for the environment as well. The great thing about Americans, if we put our mind to it we can get it done.

As far as the politicians, I know it is clicheish, but if you don't like who is there and not doing what should be done, vote them out. From top to bottom.


Thuff7   July 17th, 2008 5:08 pm ET

Anyone wonder why Gore didn't do any of this when he was in office? It's easy to criticize from the sidelines. He had the best opportunity of the 20th century to raise fuel standards, tax energy and invest a record surplus into alternative energy. Of course he blew it, didn't do a damn thing and now he gets a Nobel prize by taking credit for all the work of thousands of scientists.


jeff   July 17th, 2008 5:16 pm ET

kirk – I can imagine a totally different America if Gore had been elected with 9/11 and his response. That is scary to me. By the way does he have that bomb or nuclear shelter in that mansion of his? All the energy he burns just to keep a place like that. Is all that room in a house really that necessary for someone who seems to be the self proclaimed speaker for the environment. He seems to be reaping great benefits from passion of global warmth.

I am all for work hard for what you have, but he wants to conserve he is no example. Put his lifestyle where his mouth is. Talk is cheap, unless you are Al Gore who charges a bundle.


Brian   July 17th, 2008 5:25 pm ET

When I hear that Gore has reduced his electrical usage to below $2500 a month, I will start to listen to him again.


Mike   July 17th, 2008 5:28 pm ET

Gore's statements are misleading in the extreme. The energy used in the form of electricity is small compared to that used in the transportation sector and the last time I looked there weren't too many electric cars on the road. Very little of our electricity is generated from fossil fuels from offshore. Switching from fossil fuels to renewables for electricity will not make us less dependent on foreign sources of transportation fuels. Gore needs to tell the whole truth, not just part of it. If we want to switch to renewables or more practically, non-fossil fuel sources of energy to meet our entire needs we have to increase generating capacity by 10x! To try to get that many projects worth $100s of billions through the endless public hearings and lawsuits, NIMBY attitudes, and just plain obstructionism, plus doing all the construction within 10 years is impossible. Getting to the moon in the 1960's was trivial in comparison.


Are Andresen, VA   July 17th, 2008 5:31 pm ET

Gore needs to get real and realize that everything can be solved with three little words: nu-ke-lear.


Ronald Eckhardt   July 17th, 2008 5:36 pm ET

Mr. Gore has good intensions and would have a good President. However, since losing the 2000 Presidential contest he has now become not only out of touch but just plain delusional.

Get a grip Al, you are not the Messiah, the 2000 elections are history.
Get over it!


Max Pargament   July 17th, 2008 5:36 pm ET

Everyone needs to stop saying that we didn't see this coming and we dont have the technology.

In the early 20th century Tesla wrote "the use of fossil fuels is barbaric". He proposed ideas about geothermal, and even assumed we would create something to harness the Sun's energy.
Also alt. energy has been around for a while.

At the turn of the 20th century 1/3 of the cars on the road were electric. Be it there werent a lot of cars, we've had the technology for 100 years. Also GM made a modern electric car to meet the needs of the modern citizen in 1996. I suggest you watch "who killed the electric car" if you don't believe me.

Lastly, in a documentary called "too hot not to handle" experts say that a 50x50mile solar panel array in one of the deserts out in Cali would completely solve our oil dependence. Although I think the solution lies in a combination of alt. energy sources, its just an example that we can do this. We have the technology.

Also I hope everyone does their part to reduce their emissions. Even if you can't afford solar panels or what not, doesn't mean you can't emit less CO2. The dept of energy has tips on its website.
Everyone needs to stop doing NOTHING and start doing SOMETHING...ANYTHING!

Sorry but I choose to believe Gore+climatologists+IPCC over big oil anyday. I dont buy their talk that they are seriously investing in alt. energy like on all their commercials.

Remember people you are entitled to your own opinions, just not your own facts. And there are very few if any FACTS to draw to support expanded drilling.

Signed,

a concerned environmentalist


Observer   July 17th, 2008 5:45 pm ET

To everyone who had ANYTHING negative to say about Gore's challenge to the United States:

Congradulations. It's people like you who are forging ahead with the destruction of the planet.

For those who say society cannot handle such a change:

Congradulations. It's people like you who are preventing it. You're reading CNN right? Change is happening all around.

NOTHING but GOOD can come from even a halfhearted ATTEMPT to meet his proposed goals. Personal attacks are not relevant. Saving the planet is.


David   July 17th, 2008 5:51 pm ET

The man's getting rich off this fairy tail. Enough said...


Scott, Durham, NC   July 17th, 2008 5:51 pm ET

Gore+climatologists+IPCC = 52 Scientists + 1 Ex Vice President

Global Warming Petition Project debunking "Anthropogenic Glolbal Warming" : 31,072 Scientist and Engineers Including
9,021 PhD;
6,61 MS; 2,240 MD and DVM;
and 12,850 BS or equivalent academic degrees.

See: http://tinyurl.com/4qk5xt

Yeah, there's no debate, alright.


Mike   July 17th, 2008 5:52 pm ET

Its a nice dream to think like that but it won't happen like that. Not nearly that fast. I would like to put in there are days the wind doesn't blow and sun doesn't shine. What will we use then? Candles? If you can shut down 2 of every 4 fire driven turbines you have done a great deal indeed. Just like with corn grain fuel, did you see the floods off the Mississippi? How much fuel got drowned?


S Callahan   July 17th, 2008 5:57 pm ET

Though I don't particulary have much respect for Al Gore"s sell your soul type of politics or listen much to him..I have to give him some credit for his reading the CNN blogs, listening to us, and jumping on borad..so for that he can parrott my thoughts freely in his national talks....

Jim is right about infrastructure..it'll take time, money, planning, and change of attitude...but my feelings are it has to start somewhere...some community has to have to the guts to start the process...I'd love for it to be mine...or yours...

I disagree that lifetime power reigns with the Oil Companys...they only hold that power because it's alllowed. The stagnation in Congress and the Senate is a result of voter apathy...but this past year has awaken the voice of the joe citizen....apathy is wanning...and a new found voice is emerging....What is unique is the change of demading issues ...to be focused instead of swaying through local or national smear and gossip...and people have begun to 'think' about where they stand on issues not just parrott another.

People are mad.....mad they have themselves in this posiitoin of dependency..and with that anger new ideas emerge...hence....lets get the windmills rolling..lets get the solar panels on top of homes as part of the requirements for building new housing or updating old...all revolves around your votes (who is in office).....

Assuming the new thinkers don't revert back into apathy..I think these changes are viable and possible in a graduated process....National news blased that just in the last month alone...less gas was purchsed ...the oil companys know it. and will feel the pinch eventually..

The power for change lies in the motivation of the person wanting the change......I know from previous blogs that there are many many that want that change, and want the process tos start now.


Craig Nazor   July 17th, 2008 5:59 pm ET

Al Gore is absolutely right. He is a man of great courage and intelligence who, if allowed to assume the office of president that he won in 2000, would have put the US in an infinitely better position than the increasingly desparate situation we are now in.

The problem with nuclear energy is that in order to get one ounce of refined and concentrated uranium, it takes hundreds of tons of uranium ore. We must be certain that the energy we get out of the refined uranium offsets the TOTAL energy (and other environmental problems, including disposal) that is caused by the mining and purification processes. The financial realities must work, also. Otherwise, we are left with the same situation where we are using more than we are leaving, and we are borrowing from (or trashing) the earth's, and our children's, future. This is what is rapidly happening with biofuels (more accurately refered to as agrofuels).

We need to get this right and get this right NOW. We will not get another chance. Science must prevail over emotion and greed. There is, in reality little, choice. Our options are growing fewer and solutions becoming more expensive as time rapidly runs out. By the time this finally gets America's undivided attention, it may be too late.


Chad   July 17th, 2008 6:03 pm ET

I agree with Gore. Big, radical and honestly difficult change is needed. We are all going to have to chip in, through both higher energy prices and taxes, but WE CAN DO THIS and WE MUST DO THIS. Build it big, go for broke, and break the back of OPEC for one and forever.

I disagree on only one point: We should drill, but under two conditions.

1: The oil is ours. We must not sell the oil rights cheap. It shouldn't cost more than $20/barrel to drill it at fair profit, and the rest of the money, totaling hundreds of billions, belong to the American people, not fat-cat oil men.

2: Every drop of that money should be spent on public transportation, renewable energy R&D, tax credits to deploy renewables, and research related to climate change, so that we won't need oil ever again.


spifflove   July 17th, 2008 6:07 pm ET

Equals Scott paying $10 for gas and welcoming millions of displaced climate refuges into his neighborhood. Do us a favor Scott just move to Tsunami land and don't bring it here to us.

July 17th, 2008 5:51 pm ET

Gore+climatologists+IPCC = 52 Scientists + 1 Ex Vice President

Global Warming Petition Project debunking “Anthropogenic Glolbal Warming” : 31,072 Scientist and Engineers Including
9,021 PhD;
6,61 MS; 2,240 MD and DVM;
and 12,850 BS or equivalent academic degrees.

See: http://tinyurl.com/4qk5xt


marco   July 17th, 2008 6:09 pm ET

Ya, lets give the project to the feds: Gore as CEO with FEMA running the ops. That'll teach those oil company capitalist pigs.
Big Al can take his royalties from inventing the internet and invest in the govfund.com. He and Bill saw it all coming but alas no-one believed them cause they just did'nt have the pulpit!
What phoney-baloney! They want YOU to give it up while THEY have it all.


Erik Thompson   July 17th, 2008 6:10 pm ET

It's easier to achieve Al Gores goal than you might think.

Ask yourself this: where were you 10 years ago? Did you have a cellphone? What was the operating system on your computer? Did you even HAVE a computer? Did you have anti-lock brakes or airbags or traction control or even all-wheel drive? How about cable television or even satellite TV? And did you ever think that some day not having a GPS or Satellite Radio would make you oh-so-1990?

We adapt, and we enjoy doing it. And you know what? A hydrogen car with a home energy station powering both it and my house would be a very, very cool toy.

WAY better than the game systems are kids use that, by the way, weren't around 10 years ago.


Jay   July 17th, 2008 6:12 pm ET

david m ....great idea...seriously


Ted from Tennessee   July 17th, 2008 6:21 pm ET

In resonse to Mike's comments about electricity not being the solution to our oil problems:

Even though you are right that electricity is CURRENTLY not a large part of our transportation fuel segment, it is not true that it cannot be in the future. ALL of the "carbon-free" forms of energy are best adapted toward the production of electric power: wind, solar, geothermal, and nuclear. That fact alone means that getting off of fossel fuels will require some kind of conversion from electrical power, whether it be by electric vehicles, hydrogen, or some other means.

Secondly, the goal is not simply the elimination of FOREIGN oil. Rather, it is the eventual elimination of all or most fossel fuels. Eventually, we will need to share that technology with other countries, especially China and India, if we want to solve the global problem.

The ultimate solution, of course, is nuclear FUSION. It has no radioactive wastes, and can generate all the power the world needs with very little fuel. However, we are many years away from that solution, and cannot wait until it is perfected to solve our fossel fuel crisis. While we are waiting for hydrogen or Helium-3 to save the world, we have no choice but to develop other "carbon-free" resources.


Angelo   July 17th, 2008 6:24 pm ET

I live in Arizona where the sun shines so much that we get sick of seeing it. We should be tripping over solar panels in this state but they are hardly ever seen. I would love to put a system on my roof and watch the meter run backwards but just don't have the cash to have it installed. Personally I'm not a fan or Al Gore in the least but I agree with him on this challenge. There's no reason, no reason at all that we can't move to a renewable energy generation policy in the next ten years. The technologies are available and are improving all the time. As a Conservative Republican I never thought I'd agree with the tree huggers in California but I think the entire country needs to take after their examples as far as emissions and alternative energy policies.


Patricia M   July 17th, 2008 6:44 pm ET

does Al Gore ever discuss baseload power demands when he talks about "renewable" energy sources? Does he even understand the concept? If he does, then he is being truly politically disingenuous, if he doesn't then he should shut up until he understands more about America's baseload power demand and how he proposes that solar and wind will meet it- unless of course he is proposing a major drop in lifestyle-and a complete paving over of the sunny states (think desert- do they really need that desert in Nevada? AZ? what good is death valley CA anyway?? so what about kangroo rats... ) It sounds good, but it is not grounded in science. But Al Gore has never been accused of sound science... why should he change now?


Patricia M   July 17th, 2008 6:51 pm ET

the nuclear waste issue is a political issue and not a scientific issue. the science is straightforward... the US is already storing high level waste in deep repositories... for the Dept of Defense and not for the commercial plants. WIPP has been operating safely for 10 years. High level waste shipments have been transiting this country for 10 years. the difference between the two is that Pete Domenici is the Senator for NM and Harry Reid is the Senator for NV. One believes in science and one believes in running his mouth... and never offering a solution to anything, except how to make money for Harry Reid.

And it is WAY too late for Gore in 08. Gore lost the election in 2000 because he couldn't deliver his home state of TN and BIll CLinton couldn't deliver his home state for the democrats. and if the democrats are not careful they will lose again in 2008. get off the pie in the sky stuff Al, and propose something that actually works.


Mike   July 17th, 2008 6:53 pm ET

To respond to Ted, I completely agree with you. Fossil fuel will run out sometime in the next century and we need replacement energy sources. The point is that eliminating fossil fuels in 10 years is hopelessly naive. That doesn't mean we shouldn't start right away. But Gore is also behind the times as well as being naive. Because of the high cost of natural gas and the inefficiency of the older natural gas fired peaker plants here in California, plans for solar thermal projects are blooming like California poppies. The cost of installed solar thermal is approaching 10 cents/kWh. But before you all yell "hurrah" bear in mind that the scale of projects needed are huge and environmentalists already are mounting anti-solar thermal protests that will snarl the regulatory process for years.

I think removing our dependence on foreign oil is precisely the right target. That would reduce the carbon footprint of the US by ~50% and would encourage the development of technologies we need.


Scott, Orlando, FL   July 17th, 2008 6:55 pm ET

Gore is a great man saying great things. He doesn't tell anyone to do anything but urges based on the facts he's assembled throughout his life. Someone has to say these things! This planet is only so big and there are too many people for the current ways of using energy to sustain our environment. Do we put the brakes on now or wait until we hit the wall?


George Dixon   July 17th, 2008 6:58 pm ET

Sounds great – but anyone not including nuclear as (a large) part of the solution isn't really serious about the issue at all.

We need to do EVERYTHING, research, build nuclear like crazy, develop wind-solar-geothermal-tidal energy sources, conserve AND drill anywhere we can safely & responsibly do so

EVERYTHING is necessary because EVERYTHING is at risk. Gore got that second part right.

I applaud his speaking out on the topic BUT let's get real and bring all partners and solutions to the table... not just the "politically correct" ones.


Jeff Goebel   July 17th, 2008 6:59 pm ET

Al Gore's recommendations are indeed impossible, and as with John F. Kennedy's vision of putting a man on the moon within 10 years, we can do it, given the political and social will.

Converting from carbon based energy to other energy forms is critical for our well being as a country and a global society. I don't really believe we have any choice, given the rate of climate change. Who asks what the alternative is to NOT doing what Gore has challenged? We also need to develop the means to accelerate the ability of plants to return atmospheric carbon to our soils.

We have tremendous opportunities, and challenges. We, as a nation, are capable, as we once proved with going to the moon. I am willing to step forward.


J Prose   July 17th, 2008 7:09 pm ET

Gore is a joke and hypocrite of the highest order. He claims that he's been preaching this message for decades, yet when he was the VP (with almost nothing to do and nearly unlimted resources at his fingertips) we heard absolutely nothing about it. Only since it has become politically popular and financially lucrative did he start beating that drum.

His mansion in TN uses over 200 times the amount of energy that the average American home uses. So considering just his home, he has a bigger carbon footprint than most of us would ever have. It's a classic case of "Do as I say, not as I do." That tells me that he doesn't really believe what he says, yet anyone who hears it and doesn't instantly believe everything he says is an idiot.

He is a bigger fear monger about global warming (unproven) than any conservative is about terrorism (proven to the tune of hundreds of thousands of deaths worldwide).

Gore has much to gain politically and financially from whipping the country into a panic about global warming.

I've never seen anyone less deserving of an Oscar or the Nobel Peace Prize. That he received both for purely political reasons is absolutely outrageous.


Patricia M   July 17th, 2008 7:16 pm ET

Big oil and big industry are accused of being the cause... things would advance if it weren't for big oil... etc. It costs big oil alot- billions to explore, drill for, transport, refine oil, etc. It costs alot in routine capital outlay for maintenance. If such "breakthrough" technologies were feasible, then they likely wouldn't require billions of dollars in oil exploration, working in foreign and often hostile countries, working under difficult conditions (off shore, artic, rainforest)- they would require capital investment and likely an adequate return on the dollar. If big oil and big energy could get rid of their oil/coal/nuke plants and supply reliable power (key word- reliable) to meet the energy demands of the US (that would be all of us on our PCs, watching TV, cranking the AC..) then they would. Do you really think that big energy companies really want the hassle of nuclear power if they could replace that power RELIABLY and somewhat economcially? Has anyone considered that there is only so much intensity per squarefoot of solar energy? (a good thing for us.. otherwise SPF 100 wouldn't be working...) and that solar panels contain highly toxic materials? and that (at least last time I looked) solar panels don't grow in the desert.. and that solar panels have finite lifetimes and have to be disposed of as haz mat? and that the desert ecosystem deserves our protection too... renewables are an important part of the mix, but they aren;t the only answer... and Al Gore is doing a huge deservice to the public by promising that the government can solve this problem.. and if they could and if energy was that important to Mr. Gore, why didn't he do more when he was VP? Clinton/GOre had no energy policy..no call to the American people to conserve, cut back.. no, they were thriving on the growth in the American economy- which was brought on not by conserving but by spending every last penny possible.. and by the tech revolution of Y2k. Under Clinton/Gore- energy hogs like internet server farms came of age and consumed almost a quarter of the energy in places like Silicon Valley.. Energy is so much more complex that the lip service that Al Gore and his ilk give it... and whenpeople like Al run his mouth so irresponsibly, he will not help with the problem.


Mike   July 17th, 2008 7:23 pm ET

Leland is correct. You cannot rely on solar and wind exclusively because of their intermittent nature. In some locations you can do pump storage but not everywhere. Some places like the NE are simply lousy for wind or solar. Battery storage is too expensive and hydrogen storage is expensive because it's not thermodynamically efficient (but definitely cool for being self-contained). So we will always have some form of continous power plant whether it be coal or gas fired, fission or fusion. Reality bites, Al.


larrs   July 17th, 2008 7:32 pm ET

Gore makes me laugh...


Dave   July 17th, 2008 7:52 pm ET

Laugh, hell! Gore make me puk..,, uh, vomit.


BWC   July 17th, 2008 7:58 pm ET

While I do not believe the planet is in peril, conversation of our finite natural resources should be pursued with vigor. Show me the data going back at least several centuries supporting the argument that drastic climate change did not occur until after the Industrial Revolution, then I might by the climate change argument.

That said, wind power is not a viable solution because all of the bird lovers will protest and fly into court as fast as they can due to all of the birds that wind farms kill annually. Solar is good, but if the idea has not caught on over the past 30 years there is probably a logical reason. The NIMBY argument would also be raised anywhere a large-scale wind farm or solar farm would be planned, not to mention any new nuclear power plants.

In short, utilizing renewable sources for electricity is a definite plus all the way around but is not the only solution. It will also do little, if anything, to reduce our dependency on fossil fuels.


Treehugger in CA   July 17th, 2008 8:05 pm ET

Go ahead and live in denial. It’s becoming the American way! The ozone punched a hole in its self, car exhaust is a good thing and makes our planet more inhabitable, we need to stay dependent on foreign oil because it’s good for the economy and not a security risk, if we drill more in the US we’ll solve all of our problems and have a Merry Christmas, global warming would happen anyway so why even investigate the possibility that we have any effect on it at all, there is an endless supply of oil if we just find it and dig it up, solar and wind power is too hippie like to even consider (not macho enough like huge trucks and hummers), America has the right to do whatever the heck it pleases just as long as there’s money to be made because, hey, we’re America!, Bush is really concerned about the environment and doesn’t care how it might effect the oil business if we find alternative and cheaper renewable energy, this is all a brand new phenomenon and has not been discussed since the 1960’s, etc., etc.
Dream on people! Maybe you’ll wake up in The Magic Kingdom of 1947!


Keith   July 17th, 2008 8:22 pm ET

There is a device called a hydroelectric storage facility than can generate terrawatts of electricity from intermittent sources such as wind, solar and tidal. The intermittent sources pump water from the basin to the top of the storage facility. A height of more than 1000 feet. The storage facility would be built in the mountains with the basin up to 100 miles away. We have lots of places for such devices. The generators sit at the base of the tunnel network that honeycombs the bottom of the storage facility. Water in the storage facility would vary in height of about 100 to 500 feet, depending on the size of the facility, as water flows in and out of the facility. To say solar, wind and tidal generators can't be made continuous is ridiculous. It simply requires engineering on a grand scale. Any Georgia Tech engineer can crank out this solution.


Keith   July 17th, 2008 8:41 pm ET

Thus sayith Al Gore who did not greenify his home until the press noticed.


Chad   July 17th, 2008 8:42 pm ET

I love all the misinformation Patricia M lays out:

Renewables can't provide "baseload"? Really? Concentrated solar power is BETTER than baseload – it matches almost perfectly with demand with a few hours storage due to thermal lag in the heating fluid or molten salt! A single wind farm, of course, is intermitent...but not ten thousand of them. Solar photovoltaics peak a little early in the day but still more closely match demand than baseload. Geothermal power IS baseload.

Oh, and photovoltaics "contain" toxic materials? Well, some do, such as the CdTe variety. But note that wonderful word "contain", which stands in stark contrast to coal plants, which spew the same elements into the atmosphere at much higher rates than would be expected to ever escape from solar panels. Studies have confirmed the obvious: solar panels do not release much of these materials and can be recycled, and the total environmental amounts of these materials would be reduced significantly using CdTe solar. So yes, it would be a bad idea to grind up your solar panel and snort the dust, but who would ever do that? We already have recycling set up for electronic goods, and the "toxic" elements are tied up in the solid state and encased in several layers, so even if someone did throw one in the trash, nothing would happen.


Jim   July 17th, 2008 8:46 pm ET

Gore states "I don't remember a time in our country when so many things seemed to be going so wrong simultaneously...".

I concur and I can't remember a time in our country when when God is being rejected on such a large scale.

Coincidence?


Glenn   July 17th, 2008 8:50 pm ET

Al Gore! (Looong sigh.) Here is the bottom line: There is something inherently inside Americans that make us reluctant to accept criticism, even if that criticism is constructive. And we are reluctant to accept it from someone who actually lives by the standards he is preaching to us. BUT if that criticism comes from someone who feels he is so far above the common "peasants" that he shouldn't be held to the same standards he is demanding of us, then our reluctance to accept criticism turns into rage. I am an American citizen. I recycle, even though it costs me to do it and it's "inconvenient." I pay my fair share of taxes. When and where I can, I do my part. But not because of Al Gore. If anything, his bellyaching, preaching, and talking down to me nauseates me so much that I am tended by nature to be driven the other way. My grandmother always said "Reform the world if you like, but start in your own back yard." Maybe Al Gore should for once in his life just shut up and LISTEN to others instead of assuming he always has the stage. He is the most nauseating elitist on this planet he is trying so hard to save - by flying in private jets and riding in limos all over it.


Kim   July 17th, 2008 9:12 pm ET

To answer Alex Walker's question... Yes! We should listen to Al Gore. He's telling us the truth, and what he says makes perfect sense. I believe he was correct when he said (at the end of "An Inconvenient Truth") that we already have the technology to solve this. He's right. There is a lot we can do. There is a lot that energy companies can do. We can, and we must. Al Gore is very relevant; I am listening to him. A lot of people are listening to him. A lot more people should listen to him.


Eric   July 17th, 2008 9:23 pm ET

Gore could really help things along by cutting back on his own energy use and carbon footprint.


Kim   July 17th, 2008 9:32 pm ET

In reading these interesting responses to the "Al Gore's Challenge" blog, I have two questions for both the global warming non-believers and the pro-nuclear people:

1) Why is the North Pole melting?

2) Why does no one ever mention nuclear waste anymore? Or Chernobyl? (Okay, 3 questions.)

This situation is an emergency. We can, and we MUST come up with a good solution. And YES we should listen to Al Gore.


S Callahan   July 17th, 2008 9:36 pm ET

Thanks Keith...where there's a will there a way!


SUSAN LABARBERA   July 17th, 2008 9:36 pm ET

We must have leaders to challenge the nation, set important goals and lead our way out of our problems. Renewable energy is so important that our very survival depends upon it. How can we not follow his lead. It might be possible but only if we all try will we know.


Leslie   July 17th, 2008 9:39 pm ET

Absolutely we should listen to him. Of course it can't ALL be done in ten years. It will take decades to wean us from oil. But - if this nation's leadership could get the intestinal fortitude to actually lead and inspire, we could make huge gains toward energy independence. Look at what the market is TRYING to do - green this, solar that - without any governmental or leadership incentive. Add government incentive and inspiring leadership plus national pride, and watch out.


Steve in MD   July 17th, 2008 9:42 pm ET

We can do it but it will cost us. It will cost us much more if we don't do it. I have reduced my Kwh from almost 2000 per month to about 400 per month (how many actually know how many khw they use per month?). I put in foam insulation, replaced all the light bulbs, use a whole house fan to cool the house instead of A/C, have window liners to block the heat coming in during the summer, and recently installed solar panels. Sure I spent money and reduced my energy use drastically. But is everyone would do a little, we could conserve enough to make it to the next energy.

An article in Scientific American a few months back discussed how with spending only $400 billion (we spent a lot more on Iraq), we could build a solar farm in the Southwest which would eventually supply most of our energy needs. We should start building the infrastructure now so that when the infrastructure is done, we can install the most current solar panels. They continue to get better but apparently we are reaching the theoretical best panels. And yes, they do deteriorate with time but are expected after 20 years to supply 85% of the original energy and to stay like that for a long time.


Rob   July 17th, 2008 9:45 pm ET

There are two solutions to saving the planet. Either do exactly what Al Gore is asking us to do, or do the exact opposite but quick. The sooner we destroy the planet and all forms of life, the sooner it will be able to recover with different life forms. The question boils down to, do we want to save the human race or do we want to save the planet for future life.


Chi Town Bob   July 17th, 2008 9:46 pm ET

I went to graduate school in physics some years ago. I have extensively studied energy issues. Gore is correct about the technological feasibility of this. He is also right about attacking the electrical sector first. Consider the following:

In just two years GM will have in production a plug in hybrid that will have an equivalent fuel cost of $1.00 per gallon. It is no lie. Do an internet search on cost of million BTU for oil, coal and all other sources. Oil is currently over priced. Solar is cost competitive with oil today. Who would want an internal combustion engine in their car when a silent electric motor can take it's place for less money?

I live in Chicago. Believe it or not, on my .20 acre tract of land I could supply all of my electrical needs, including my plug in hybrid with just solor panels on the roof.. This assums a grid tied system with all excess electicity producing hydrogen for cloudy days. The technology is here today. I takes several weeks to research this. But if you spend the time you will come to the same conclusion. The technology is here today, it works and it is cost effective.

P.S. All you fools who doubt this are missing out on the opportunity of your life. This will be big.

P.S. 2. Al is wrong about one thing. We desparetely need to take care of the wealth disparity issue in this country and the only way to do that is to increase the income taxes on the wealthy, increase the inheritance tax and to tie the minimum wage to inflation.


Patricia M   July 17th, 2008 9:49 pm ET

Chad-
you need an understanding of baseload power demand.. apparently you and Al have the same understanding of the topic...

and disposal isn't that easy of an issue. and by the way, when Europe was having that very hot summer a few years ago, they didn't have much wind – when it is really hot, wind often doesn't blow... and "green" countries like Denmark had to import dirty coal power from Russia so that they could meet their BASELOAD power demand.
so be careful when you talk about misinformation... make sure you know what you are talking about. cheers.


Myron Lieberman, Miami Beach, USA   July 17th, 2008 10:01 pm ET

He was giving us some slack. Do it in less than ten tears, but the oil evil people will not let it happen. They are the force behind the distraction of "WAR."


Dan   July 17th, 2008 10:04 pm ET

The cost of replacing all power plants in this country over the next 10 years with ones that produce 75-100% fewer emissions is $18 billion. The war in Iraq costs $17 billion/month.

Boy, am I glad this country's got its priorities straight.


Scott, Durham, NC   July 17th, 2008 10:24 pm ET

Al Gore is a blowhard and a demagogue. He is someone who is only interested in getting your money. If you truly believe that Gore et al. is interested in "saving" the planet, then you haven't had enough science or engineering courses in college. Gore is a VENTURE CAPITALIST out on Sand HIll Road in San Jose. He is tasked with developing cap-and-trade companies who will profit handsomely off of "Global Warming" and "Climate Change" scaremongering. He has an agenda to put money in the pockets of his investors, nothing else!

Don't drink the green post-modernist kool-aid.


Shane C   July 17th, 2008 10:24 pm ET

Enough about Gore what about You. What could YOU do to meet such a challenge? Do you Dog Gore and his challenge because it threatens your convient energy guzzling lifestyle?
Do what you can were you can. Maybe we can blunt the impact caused by the inevitable shift from an oil economy. I will start myself by not using plastic shopping bags and turning off the thermastat.


Scott, Durham, NC   July 17th, 2008 10:32 pm ET

spifflove July 17th, 2008 6:07 pm ET

"Equals Scott paying $10 for gas and welcoming millions of displaced climate refuges into his neighborhood. Do us a favor Scott just move to Tsunami land and don’t bring it here to us."

Fine with me. I'll still be driving the SUV at $10 / Gal. No problem since on a daily basis, that is more than made up for in what I bill per hour.

As for "Millions of displaced climate refugees" that is a complete fiction and work of delusion. As much as you would like to believe, New York isn't going to flood, the rest of world isn't going to suffer drastic sea level rises, and all the stuff you've seen from Hollywood will still be fiction that it always has been. There won't be any "climate refugees," at least not until the sun turns into a red giant. But that's a few years down the road, say, 500 million.


Ned   July 17th, 2008 10:38 pm ET

How many of the solar powered/wind powered mechanisms will we have to construct just to cover the energy that Al Gore's (the hypocrite) home will need?

Al, downsize the house and run the air conditioner at 78 degrees like you tell other people to do!


Doug Hrvoic   July 17th, 2008 10:48 pm ET

Al Gore badly needs a crash course in Thermodynamics 101. A tip for you Al: you can't create energy just by wishing it.


Chad   July 17th, 2008 11:03 pm ET

Patricia, you have it 100% backwards – Denmark's demand on a hot summer day is its PEAK demand, not its baseload demand. Baseload power is what you run all the time, rain or shine, and has a more or less constant output. Geothermal works this way. Wind is somewhat problematic in this respect but could supply more than 30% of the total without significant problems, according to several studies. And solar – well, it is BETTER than baseload. It is obviously intermitent, but fortunately peaks right when you need it and turns off right when you don't. You couldn't ask for anything more.

Even without storage (which we can do), there is no technical hurdle to overcoming the intermitency of renewables.


Jack Krewson   July 17th, 2008 11:48 pm ET

I listened to Gore and I believed him to be correct in everything he said.
Solar power is an absolute of the future, expensive now but this will not be so in the future. Wind power, geothermal, and other renewable sources of power, along with solar, will be common in the future. With the cost of electricity, heating oil, gas, as well as gasoline rising like a homesick angel one does not have to install a complete system to make a profit, a solar water heater on the roof of a house is a good start, and does not require high teck material or installation techniques.

Now a question. What happened to screw up Gore's efforts? Why was there a computer foul up at that particular time in the evening? With the political atmosphere taking shape in the U.S. I just wondered.

JK


David   July 17th, 2008 11:54 pm ET

Gore's message is urgent and relevant. It is also about the real world and the real consequences of our blissful and neglectful actions. It is not a realistic objective: Politicians are too entangled by the strings being pulled by corporations to show true initiative and courage to do the right thing. His message is about the world we live in, a world where misery, poverty, and death result from fighting over natural resources, natural resources that are often rarer and rarer each year. That is why he won the Nobel Prize, because the rest of the world recognizes such a fact: that natural resources are at the crux of every war, and therefore, that the environment deserves center stage if we want to promote and attain an enduring peace. I'm no tree-hugger. There are times when fighting is necessary. But when we choose to ignore this truth, we end up fighting wars that are unnecessary. I would admire Gore more if he had had the courage to fight the Supreme Court's concession to Bush in 2000. To me that made him irrelevant in the political arena of the United States. But he still has a very important role to play in promoting a cause that will define the current century more than any other... hopefully for good.


Tim in Ohio   July 18th, 2008 12:01 am ET

Gore is right about one thing, we need carbon-free energy now. But guess what, we already have it! The future will be nuclear power, despite all this chatter about wind, solar, geothermal, etc. It is inevitable, and it is the correct choice. We have enough Uranium-238 in the world to last us for essentially forever, and thus, via breeders, we can have an unlimited , pollution-free, carbon-free energy supply for tens of thousands of years. The U.S. will probably not be the leaders in this area, but will have to adapt to it eventually, bringing in expertise from abroad since we have unfortunately let this industry die out.

I have heard people mention the waste problem. Well, the government created this waste problem with it's own regulations and rules. Other countries, like France, re-cycle their spent fuel, just like the U.S. should be doing, but isn't. Thus, the "waste" people talk about from our nuclear plants still has 99% usable energy. But since we don't re-cycle the fuel, we in essence just throw it away (dumb idea, and dangerous). If we did recycle, we would have 1% of the waste we currently have and it would be low-level waste, harmless in about 200 years (compared to 25,000 years with today's waste). If this was the case, the waste from all the nuclear plants in the US could be kept in the basement of a small building.

People also like to mention the safety issues. The main issue people bring up is a meltdown, aka Chernoble and Three Mile Island. This can occur when a reactor's cooling systems malfunction and overheats, damaging the reactor. Chernoble's design was a joke. Three Mile Island highlights the issues we still have with current light water reactor designs. However, we have different designs now for reactors that are passively safe and won't melt down. In April of 1986, one month before Chernoble, scientists at the Argonne National Laboratory turned off the primary cooling systems of the EBR II experimental reactor. This is essentially what happened (by accident) at Three Mile Island. The EBR II reactor heated up to a specifically designed level, and then the reaction simply stopped. No meltdown, no damage, no leaks, nothing. It was started back up again with no issues. Meltdown? What meltdown? There was further work being performed on this as part of the advanced IFR project until 1994, when Bill Clinton suddenly ended the program. Thanks a lot Bill.

What we need is a renewed nuclear energy industry, with continued R&D and engineering advances to continuously improve the safety and cost of these nuclear plants. Over time, this energy will be very inexpensive, and we can all live a modern lifestyle with plenty of energy for our children, . With abundant, clean nuclear energy, we can easily all charge our electric cars, or create as much hydrogen as we need, or even convert seawater to fresh water in areas that need it. Our industries will be run off this same clean resource. No limits.

We don't have to choose a future of living in the dark and the cold, waiting for the wind to blow. What a ridiculous thought for a modern society.


mentat   July 18th, 2008 12:33 am ET

The whole aim of practical politics is to keep the populace alarmed (and hence clamorous to be led to safety) by menacing it with an endless series of hobgoblins, all of them imaginary. (H.L. Mencken)


K   July 18th, 2008 12:50 am ET

I have never like Gore, but on this I agree with him. Don't underestimate the ingenuity of the American entrepeneurs and inventors. Every invention in the last century that refaced society came from America. Didn't private American technology put a vehicle into space ...twice to win the X prize? A new car (the Aptera) that gets 230 MPG is being readied for production in California is also vying for the X prize. Big oil will only shelve the technology like the hundreds of fuel efficient fuel systems they bullied off the market. Congress is bought and paid for and comfy cozy in big oils back pocket. We don't need big oil, and we don't need congress and we don't need the experts to study this into oblivion. All we need is for everyone to shut up, get out of the way, and just let them DO IT. I would love to see big oil go banrupt


ben   July 18th, 2008 12:54 am ET

remember necessity is the mother of invention!!! if we demand it , it will happen. industry will survive and suceed. there is yet to be a need that has no solution or that industry has made zero progress on. this issue is the same, we already have many many solutions .there is no one thing that will fix our energy/ climate issues. it will take tweaking all aspects of our lives. change everything but not all changes need to be major. with the might of a multi trillion dollar economy, if we mandate it they (industry/ governments/ public) will get behind it!


John   July 18th, 2008 1:10 am ET

Oil companies will try to do anything they can to stop it from happening. But we need to follow the advice given by Al Gore. And you people who complain about Al Gore not following his own advice need to realize that just because he doesn't follow his own advice doesn't mean it's not good advice.


john   July 18th, 2008 1:10 am ET

Our economy is already in shambles and it is due, in a large part, to our dependence on oil ... not just foreign sources of oil. We have known that oil would not last forever and we have known that our ability to find and access oil would gradually decrease over the course of this century for well over 40 years, yet we have done nothing to sate our need for oil. It is too late to debate this topic any further and action needs to be taken now and it won't be successful in a piecemeal fashion.

Americans and the world are ready for a big change. America should take the reins and do what America has done so well in the past ... lead, innovate and create.


Jason Howard   July 18th, 2008 1:47 am ET

Terrorism is a black-op fest facade, the environment, resource shortages, China/Russia/India are the real issues. Arrest George Bush, Dick Cheney, Paul Wolfowitz and those other retarded unelected officials over at the Pentagon, arm/drug dealers shouldn't be running America. Don't you know you've been dupped yet ? Listen to Al Gore he has the right ideas for the future, personally i think it's too late for America. China, India and Russia aren't going to allow this clique of mentally handicapped whimps to intimidate them like in the past, you'll see. Usāmah bin Muhammad bin `Awad bin Lādin did not knock down building 7 World Trade center or any other ones for that matter, Bush and the forementioned Pentagon cronies did and pulled off the biggest scam in world history. They stole America out from under you with pure back-ops just like the Kennedy thing(Patsy, Oswald). If the "Bomber" gets in there it'll be business as usual folks. Do you want a guy that dropped bombs on Vietnamese people in their own country for no reason and thought it was justified to be your leader ? Obama would be worse, he knows absolutely nothing about Pakistan or Afganistan. If he honestly doesn't know who pulled 911, he just isn't in the loop. America, your enemy is your President and the power elite that put him in the White House. If you don't deal with these ferocius worldwide hated war criminals America wont last much longer as a world leading power. Listen to your real president, he's no angel either but he's the best chance you've got.

Jason Howard, LA, California


Harry Crack   July 18th, 2008 1:49 am ET

Al Gore is an inconvenient nitwit.


Andre   July 18th, 2008 1:53 am ET

Gore is extremely relevant, we are not listening well enough to him, and yes we should listen very well to him!
And yes we can!
We can achieve the goal he sets within 10 years, which is 100% of our electricity demands generated from renewables, such as solar, wind, etc.


Andre   July 18th, 2008 1:55 am ET

Gore is extremely relevant, we are not listening well enough to him, and yes we should listen very well to him!
And yes we can!
We can achieve the goal he sets within 10 years, which is 100% of our electricity demands generated from renewables, such as solar, wind, etc.

And tes we shall listen!


Andre   July 18th, 2008 2:03 am ET

See what Dwight sais here-above: Dwight is 100% right !!


Breen Eitel   July 18th, 2008 2:13 am ET

If Al Gore can be nominated as vice president for Barack Obama, then this speech will have huge relevence in the grand scheme of history, and who better to create a solution?


Pat   July 18th, 2008 2:45 am ET

Hey, Algore. Did you hear about the group of environmentalists in Kansas that oppose wind farms that are already in place because it spoils their landscape? And did you fail to mention your liberals pals on Cape Cod who oppose offshore wind farms?

Flying to the moon was easy. You obviously don't knw a damn thing about energy technologies. I can't beileve all these people are commenting about how great Algore is – just a bunch of pie in the sky people that thought the aliens in the "Independence Day" movie were going to be our friends.


Franko   July 18th, 2008 3:50 am ET

Very good speech !
A Death Cult for the US economy.

Coal is there, very cheap. Liquefy, Electrify.
Make energy, plant food, people food, love, more people.
Avoid Nirvana, shoot yourself in the foot, blow your brains out ?

Al Gore has it too good !


J   July 18th, 2008 5:21 am ET

Windmills have been around for centuries and are a proven source of energy. All you need to produce electricity is a magnet, a copper coil and rotation. The wind is free. DUH! Good Idea Pickens! I am on board!

Hydrogen fuel cells have been around since the 1800s DUH every major car manufacturer has a hydrogen fuel cell model and Honda has started leasing them. GO HONDA!!!! Buy their stock... they are going to surpass Toyota soon. Hydrogen can not only fuel cars but our houses as well. And you don't need any fossil fuels to make hydrogen thats what solar and wind are for. Hydrogen gas is produced when you use certain batteries and solar or wind can recharge these batteries. It is simple, cost effective and we will be the envy of the world if we do this . Not only will we no longer be dependent on foreign oil and financing terrorism( Osama Bin Laden owns lots of oil stocks) or nuclear power. Nuclear power, what a bad idea!

Al Gore is correct even if he is a hypocrite. He has been gradually following his own advice and turning his home into a self sustaining palace.

The evidence is very clear that the earth is warming due to man burning fossil fuels. Several scientific papers have been published looking at the isotopes of carbon. When fossil fuels are burned they leave a different ratio of carbon 13 and 12 than the naturally occurring carbon generated by our breath and decay. Scientists have measured this and found clear evidence that a large amount of carbon in the air now is from burning fossil fuels. Of course you can see any number of signs in the world around you. Unprecedented wild fires in california, canada and around the world. The ice caps melting and Greenland running into the sea, no longer ice.

This isn't about tree hugging or saving seals its about saving yourselves and hell, me saving myself.

I looked at the raw global temperatures ( not the statistically manipulated ones called temperature anomalies that the public is fed so they don't panic) and we SHOULD PANIC!!! Since 1850 the global average temperature has gone from 20F to about 65F! That is unaltered data and a jump of 45F in 150years. Interestingly, after the Civil War, WWI and WWII the temperature plummeted only to return quickly to its ever increasing warming trend. Either the wars or volcanic eruptions reversed the warming briefly.

I extrapolated this data to see where we would reach an average global temperature of say 120F. It could occur as early as 8 years from now or as late as about 2050. It depends on which side of the range you calculate from. Global average temperature means that the temperature swings will be greater and greater as the warming accelerates. We will see temps peaking at more than 150 F at times. Recently in the southern california deserts there was a spike of 133F, an unprecedented high for that region . This will happen more frequently over the next few years. GLOBAL WARMING IS REAL AND IT WILL BAKE US ALL UNLESS WE DO SOMETHING DRASTIC FAST!!!! 10 years may be too late but it is worth a shot.

I am a computer user and car driver(I drive a prius though it still doesn't get good enough mileage, I take the bus now.). So I am as much a hypocrite as anyone. Nonetheless we need to take action immediately. This is like steering an aircraft carrier: you have to anticipate the turns and plan fairly far ahead, but when the turns occur they happen more rapidly than you expect.

No one listened to Noah! No one listened to Albert Einstein about the bomb. People silenced Galileo and Copernicus and countless others for telling the truth. Al Gore is telling the truth. It isn't inconvenient it is inevitable unless we hurry up and start changing what we do NOW!!!!!

It is time to support what is the smart and obvious as well right thing to do! Support AL GORE and go green as fast as you can before you melt.

Thanks for reading the whole rant.


J   July 18th, 2008 5:40 am ET

Hey Scott,
You must be drinking alot of martinis to believe the crap you are spewing. When you are frying in the bright yellow( not the orange giant you are wishing for) sun how much you bill per hour , you blow hard, demagogue, arrogant, idiot, think of this....
if it weren't for your selfish self centered bullying stupidity maybe you wouldn't have had to fry.

The evidence is so clear and certain only a fool, such as yourself, would deny it. Keep driving your SUV ... and soon enough the earth will be your hell, if it isn't already.

While I am angry at your self centered arrogance I also feel sorry for you. I was once an idiot like you. Well... can't save everyone.

Good luck Scott... enjoy the heat....


J   July 18th, 2008 6:08 am ET

Hey Scott,
I wish that the site you tried to get people to believe was a real site and not an obviously phony site... probably created by you and some other oil company PR guys who like to sit around and scheme. There is no way Edward Teller signed that petition... he died in 2003! He was a great physicist. So that website is clearly trying to pull an Enron ....lie to your people.
Lets pretend that global warming isn't actually occurring in front of your eyes...( I wish it weren't...I' d buy an SUV) isn't generating clean energy that is cheaper than oil and screws OPEC and others crazies a better idea than going down the same aisle over and over again:?
You must be working for an oil company or the Bush government...Bush, how did he ever get into Yale? I doubt you went to Yale... probably not...

Ok good luck with your propaganda.... it is just propaganda... are you a communist? heheh well you aren't honest in my opinion or maybe you just don't know. I doubt you have a PhD.


J   July 18th, 2008 6:27 am ET

Scott, if anyone is a demagogue it is you. You are so clearly trying to intimidate people into believing your false rhetoric it is painfully obvious. The only group out to fleece the masses are the oil companies and Enron as well as the Bush OIL government. You use your so called education as a right to intimidate those who aren't as educated, like some sort of right from God. You have no right and you are clearly not on the common mans side. You could careless how the common man feels or what he thinks or even if he dies. I can't believe that you have no difficulty with how completely immoral you are. You probably short stocks and beat your kid brothers up. Again I feel sorry for you since you're clearly pathological and your self centered point of view leaves you stranded without any way to relieve yourself of the burdens of your arrogance.

Can't you smell how polluted the world is? Isn't it obvious that we need to stop this? It builds up in the atmosphere and comes down as acid rain killing trees in the mountains. It affects you and your children too. Why do you want to perpetuate this sort of destruction? Just cause you think you have a right? U don't !!! No one does. WE have the right to a healthy clean and prosperous life... despite you and your minority rich, thoug I doubt you are rich. There are many more of us than you. Be mindful of that.


Tom   July 18th, 2008 6:47 am ET

We're aware! We're also going broke! And while we're losing our pants we still find time to care more about the environment than Gore does (with his "carbon footprint" 20x higher than the average American). Gore....talk to China before you point your finger at the United States. You all would be surprised just how little the Chinese know or care about their own environment, and they are now surpassing us in energy consumption. You think 1970's USA was bad, look at 2K China!


Mark Nunamaker   July 18th, 2008 7:02 am ET

I think this is great! I have been waiting for his opinion to ideas such as this, If you're you are for or against, you should take an objective look at this website...http://www.pickensplan.com.


DR   July 18th, 2008 7:04 am ET

Let's not focus on whether or not we can meet his time table. Let's just focus on the goal...getting away from oil, esp. foreign oil. Al Gore's challenge would have the added bonus of making the U.S. an exporter of renewable energy technology instead of an importer. Let's be the global leader!!!


John, Virginia   July 18th, 2008 7:39 am ET

Al wants us all to sacrifice while he grows rich. Environmentalism is great for us, but he'll take a pass.


Ken   July 18th, 2008 8:04 am ET

Al Gore is such a fool. The basic problem with renewables like Solar or Wind is they are not 24 x 7 power sources. The Earth's rotation means you have long periods of time every day with no sunlight. And changing weather patterns means you do have periods with little to no wind. To meet energy demands at 1 AM in the morning, you need to have far more wind generators built than you might expect so wind blowing somewhere can power your needs. And you need a distribution system to move that power where it's needed (so you need an even more massive power grid .. think locally won't cut it when there is no wind power in the AM hours). Energy storage techs might fill some of the gap, but they are inefficent at this time, expensive, and can use up more of a carbon foot print than a natural gas station.

Also, how and the heck will you build all this? California for example has a peak power demand each summer of around 50,000 MW. The best Wind Generators put out a peak of around 1.5 MW per 230 foot tower (and average even less). They also cost around $5 Million to construct, not including what is needed to hook them up to distribution. Factor this all together and replacing the power capacity in California alone would be somewhere between $250 – $500 Billion in costs (depending on transmission costs and how many extra are built to ensure 24 x 7 power supplies). Plus where is all the land going to come from for 50, 60, 70,000 of these monster 230 foot towers.

Al Gore is clearly insane.


Brad D.   July 18th, 2008 8:10 am ET

Al Gore is relevant because even if he is wrong about global warming, what is wrong with freeing ourselves of energy dependence and in the process improving the climate we all live in? It's common sense. The problem lies in the fact that in this country sense is not very common anymore it has to be taught. However, few people in this country are given the information they need to realize the possibility of these changes because news organizations such as yours are controlled by our government which in turn is controlled by oil company lobyists.


RJ   July 18th, 2008 8:20 am ET

Al Gore is desperately trying to be relevant. Anyone who has been paying attention to the science debunking what he is talking about (in other words us "deniers") are not listening, we are laughing


Mike Smitreski   July 18th, 2008 8:24 am ET

We can do this if we really want to...But first the Oil Barons need to be taken to the gallows for their crime of greed against humanity.


Zach   July 18th, 2008 8:32 am ET

Those who get behind stuff like this are closed minded sheep. His statements hold no credibility for the following two reasons. First, he is a HUGE hypocrite. Second, until he endorses nuclear energy any thinking person knows the largest economy in the world CANNOT be supplied solely on "harnessing solar and wind power."

Oh, Gore – that ozone layer 20 years ago you said would be gone in 10...yeah it is still around. The North East is still there – guess your predictions were wrong. And your global warming predictions were wrong – yeah I caught it when you changed the name to CLIMATE CHANGE...since the world has actually cooled in the last five years now with the new name any change can be used to justify your agenda. HAHA.

First Global Cooling then The Ozone then Global Warming AND NOW Cliamte Change. Gore is always behind this stuff for two reasons: Money and Power. And because the world is full of sheep – he has both.


Scott T   July 18th, 2008 8:47 am ET

Al Gore is a pompous idiot who has no understanding of the environment or science. None of his doomsday predictions have come to pass, and in fact, the world has been experiencing cooler than normal temperatures in many locations (reference today's news report about the British Open being affected by much cooler July temps). So many of the stats and claims in his crockumentary have been proven wrong that it, and he, are truly irrelevant. It is also apparent that he has no understanding of economics or energy in regards to his push for America to make such a drastic change in energy production in such a short period of time.

Mr. Gore – shut up and go build some houses for the homeless. We're not interested in any more of your babbling.


Paul   July 18th, 2008 8:49 am ET

"The US should start building about 100 new nuclear power plants asap. Nuclear is safe, clean and containable, and puts out zero carbon"

The problem is that Nuclear plants cost a lot.

The rising cost of coal and oil has intersected with the reducing costs of wind and solar.

For the most part, Nuclear costs have not changed – perhaps the French can show us how? (eekkk ! )


Scott, Durham, NC   July 18th, 2008 8:51 am ET

I think "j" has a distinct chip on his shoulder, or at the least he's been drinking from the pot of green kool-aid that has fermented a bit too long....

The fact of the matter still remains that come tomorrow, AGW will still be debunked "science," Al Gore will still be a demagogue, and "j" will still be a ranting mad frustrated crackpot without a clue as to what he's ranting about.


Tom   July 18th, 2008 8:53 am ET

If Al Gore would start walking the walk instead of just blowing hot air then maybe he would be a bit more relevant. In fact, all his bloviating probably is the root CAUSE of global warming.

He tells us we need to cripple our economies and make huge sacrifices while he tools around in SUV's and private jets, eating the very finest most expensive food, and in being an all around hypocrit in general.


Rob   July 18th, 2008 8:53 am ET

It's about time that someone steps up and says that we can and should strive for this type of effort to happen in a short time. Why is it that politicians are always targeting a partial solution by 2050? Most of our leaders won't be around anymore by then and so it will simply be someone else's problem as far as they're concerned.

Someone else commented that our infrastructure, the fact that our leaders are owned by Big Oil, etc. will prevent this. While this is not inaccurate, the only way we'll ever get anywhere with this is to put in the effort. While we all sit around and watch and listen to our esteemed president as he hems, haws and makes excuses as to why it's more important to drill more oil and come up with other fuels that we can burn, nothing happens. So, it is time for someone to do something!

We can't fix the problem over night. No one, Al Gore included, is saying that we can flip some magic switch and all of the problems will go away. We're stuck with oil and coal and all this other crap for years to come. But we can start lessening our dependence on it as soon as today by making smart and practical choices rather than selfish and convenient ones. Let's stop subsidizing the oil companies. Let's fine companies who are not cleaning up their energy production facilities (none of this stupid Cap and Trade garbage... actual, honest to goodness fines that we do not allow them to pass on to consumers in the form of surcharges). Let's create jobs in manufacturing of solar panels and wind turbines. Let's create jobs in research labs to find newer, better, more efficient and less polluting ways to manufacture solar panels and batteries and all the related things.

Sadly, Al Gore tends to draw out a lot of people who love to hate him. Even people who don't necessarily disagree with his climate ideas hate him as a person. Those who disagree with his climate ideas are even louder. But this isn't about Al Gore. This is about smart energy. It's about the future environment. It's about national security. We've done big, impossible things in short amounts of time before. We can do this, too. It just takes someone in a position of leadership to pony together enough courage to stand up and say "Enough!" and do something about it.

I, for one, hope that someone heeds the call and does so. The solar panels on my home's roof are great and my home is nearly a zero carbon footprint building now, but it will take more than that to accomplish what needs to happen in the larger community. Instead of fighting about it, we should at least start to try to do something. Anything.


Enmanuel   July 18th, 2008 8:58 am ET

I agree with Al Gore 100%, see the biggest problem in this global warning and energy crisis is that everyone is looking for an easy quick fix. That will never happen, people need to wake up and smell the coffee, unless we set a timeframe things will NEVER HAPPEN. We will keep rejecting every idea beause it wont fix everything immediately or its too expensive.


Skye Ranger   July 18th, 2008 9:04 am ET

Burning fuels for energy is old time technology. Public transportation is the present and the future. In USA we are behind on both of these. We have had decades to do better, and we have not. Gore's Challenge voices what we all know to be true. We must all work on this, tirelessly.


DEB   July 18th, 2008 9:06 am ET

This was exactly the same proposal Mike Huckabee made during the Republican primaries and the media scoffed at thim, saying it was "unrealistic."


ED RHODES   July 18th, 2008 9:07 am ET

Hello, Al Gore is a politician, not a scientist.


cw   July 18th, 2008 9:10 am ET

I wish he would just go away. Yes, I would like to see us move to renewable sources of energy. But I am getting bored of listening to his blathering.


6ftrabbit   July 18th, 2008 9:14 am ET

Gore is an idiot. His "Save the Planet " Crusade, depends on the willing cooperation of the global general public. If the public doesn't cooperate (and several billion people and many countries won't ), what's he gonna do? Put a gun to everyone's head? Bite me Al. We've got guns to.


Rob Vierstra   July 18th, 2008 9:17 am ET

CNN: the question:"is Al Gore relevant" is entirely irrelevant! Please embrace the message and put it in capitals "BREAKING NEWS" -THE GOOD KIND!- on the TOP page of your website, instead of tucking it away somewhere down.
Implied is: don't shoot the messenger, thereby playing down the groundbreaking challenge he lays down for all to contemplate.
Let's also remember that Mr. Kennedy was assassinated...
Mr. Gore's message is clear, undisputably thoughtful, and his challenge is up there as for the inspiration of a true leader. I'm astounded that CNN is not picking up on this great kind of "BREAKING NEWS" –isn't that what you advertize repeatedly? I would think that Miles O'Brien and his team could be spending 24 hours a day, over the nex ten years, on this global challenge alone, especially from their perspective –report on scientific fact without downplaying what is essential truth, let alone sensationalizing it!
After all, let's be reall, CNN is blessed with having their medial facility, and may I suggest to use it wisely! Thank you for your consideration of first paying deference to your audience -as CNN -"THE MOSTED TRUSTED" in news should be doing- rather than to your advertizers.


Lewis G. Larsen   July 18th, 2008 9:20 am ET

Al Gore's speech was an excellent clarion call to arms on the need to take bold action on an array of problems surrounding energy, climate change, and ecologically sustainable global economic growth. That having been said, I think that it was a tactical mistake for him to omit mentioning any form of carbon-free nuclear power as an integral component of a whole portfolio of energy technologies that must be utilized to help solve these problems. In particular, there is a new type of nuclear energy technology that truly has the promise of being clean, green, and potentially low-cost. Unlike fission and fusion, which are based on what physicists call the "strong interaction," this new, little-mentioned technology is based on the "weak interaction." It is called Low Energy Nuclear Reactions or LENRs. It has radical advantages (no dangerous radiation and no radioactive waste) over nuclear fission and "hot" fusion technologies. However, this is a very disruptive technology in that it potentially threatens many vested interest groups in multiple industries all over the world, such as battery and fuel cell manufacturers in the near-term and in the long term, the oil industry. Just hit the Google and Yahoo search engines if you wish to learn more - Lewis Larsen, Lattice Energy LLC.


JimV   July 18th, 2008 9:23 am ET

Someday, people will look back at he time when we burned fossil fuels for energy and think how primative that was. I hope that day is sooner rather than later.
Everyday, the Earth is bombarded with enough sunshine to meet the world's energy needs several times over. It's available in the form of solar, wind and hydro energy. But today, we explore, drill, transport, refine, transport again and then burn in a complicated, inefficient and polluting engine. We can do better than that.


DJ   July 18th, 2008 9:40 am ET

The Reverend Gore is irrelevant. Everyone agrees that alternatives to oil are inevitable. So in the meantime can we all move in with Al? Will he drive us to work in his SUV? The Great Goracle, like most liberals, do not understand that free market forces will drive the change to alternatives. The government needs to get out of the way.


Michael M   July 18th, 2008 9:46 am ET

I don't think the answer is to wait for reform from Congress. It has to be more grassroots. How many who have posted comments ride a bike to work, use mass-transit or carpool? This can't be the government taking action, it has to start with each of us making a decision to change our dependence on carbon-based fuel.

Feel free to wait for change, or start now by making a change.


RWB   July 18th, 2008 9:54 am ET

Forget about the messenger and think about the message. This is America's second oil crisis, the first being in 1974. President Carter gave a speech in 1977 addressing the very same things that Al Gore is now proposing. Our country has done nothing of significance to address our reliance on foreign oil for over 30 years. As the saying goes "the best time to plant a tree is 10 years ago; the next best time is today". This country MUST do something today. If we wait for a third crisis, then it will be too late. The time to act is now and we must do it within 10 years. Gore is just the messenger, but his message should prompt us to act. His speech yesterday showed great determination and leadership to resolve this problem.


morepower   July 18th, 2008 10:08 am ET

Can we please start with making all these mega stores like Wal-mart,Lows,K-mart,Meijers,Target and Kroger. Put solar farms on top of there buildings. And wind turbine at the top of there parking lot light poles. These places wast to much space. The state could start by putting them on top of school. look here for more. http://www.solarschools.com

One of the after market transmission maker's need to make a kit to replace a normal transmission with an "electric hybrid transmission". That is a 1-2 speed transmission. With a built in electric motor.

That way you just replace your old transmission. Hook up the needed electronics to keep old engine from running till you hit 35-40 mph. And your set. Now all you have to do is go out and buy a few deep cycle batters. And as long as the kit is "BYOB" kit. (Buy your own batters) They could keep it to a resionable price.


Brian   July 18th, 2008 10:17 am ET

Don't listen to Al Gore, CNN, the pundits or for that matter anyone else, and please don't listen to talk show hosts claiming to be news men & women. Read the science for yourself and make your own determination if the situation is as grave as it is portrayed. Check out the IPCC reports at http://www.ipcc.ch/ These were developed by the worlds top experts. Your kids, neighbors, friends and loved ones deserve the short time it takes to learn the science.


Tim   July 18th, 2008 10:35 am ET

Zeno's Paradox oil Version

In order to be completely independant from oil we must first reduce our dependency by half. However, to reduce our dependency by half we must first reduce it by one quarter. As there are an infinite number of these half steps we must take to get to the goal, we can never reach the goal. So why even start? Also, to start there are a number of tasks we need to do; to complete any one of them we need to complete half of it; since there are an infinite number of these half measures, we can never actually get started. So we can neither start nor finish. Therefore, doing nothing is the best we can possibly do and that should make us happy, right?


Jason   July 18th, 2008 10:46 am ET

To compare Gore’s challenge to that of John F. Kennedy’s moon landing pledge proves that Gore suffers from illusions of grandeur. Instead of making America more prosperous, Gore wants to bankrupt the American people to fill the pockets of his environmental cronies with money.

Gore’s Alliance for Climate Protection estimates that “the cost of transforming the nation to so-called clean electricity sources at $1.5 trillion to $3 trillion over 30 years in public and private money.”

Gore then explains that:

“This is an investment that will pay itself back many times over.”

“Investment” is the Orwellian name Big Government politicians use for tax. His so-called investment is effectively a tax hike that will cost Americans more than $3 trillion!

The worst part is that Gore challenges the American people to meet his climate goals in 10 years. However, we are not allowed to build more nuclear power or drill for domestic oil!!

It is impossible to accomplish what he has proposed without denying most Americans automobiles and reliable electricity. If Al Gore and his alarmists really cared about the American people and wanted to lower our gas prices, they would not handicap our ability to produce domestic sources of energy.


Tony   July 18th, 2008 10:50 am ET

Al Gore… I mean what can I say the man is a hypocrite, but his ideas are a step in the right direction. That fact that he does not practices what he preaches doesn’t discredit the fact that the United States needs to reduce its dependency on non-renewable resources. Not just oil but all non-renewable resources. It is easy to see that if change is going to happen, now is the time. First step would be to produce clean and renewable energy. Yes, Al Gore’s ideas on relying on sun and wind will not produce enough energy for the U.S. but it is a start and if that is combined with nuclear energy. That will reduce our carbon footprint and dependency on non-renewable resources significantly. Cars are an issue but coal plants are worse in my opinion. Cars are evolving by themselves and in a few years seeing many turning electric or hydrogen. It obvious the demand is there and car companies are not going to lose the chance to make a killing on them. Think the first car company to produce a true and reliable, non-gasoline car, on a high production scale will rake the money in. It is not like we don’t have the technology people make electric cars in their garage. I think people need to take away from this article is the fact that maybe his idea is not possible, but it gets people thinking and points us in the right direction. Finding new oil will take time and just be stupid to invest in for the fact that it just continues the path for failure. The ability for this country not to use non-renewable resources is there and we can do it. We just need to put forth the effort and accept change is needed.


Jim   July 18th, 2008 10:57 am ET

"is Gore’s goal too audacious?" you ask. Well, yeah... the 10 year part is anyway. It is much easier to built a small spacecraft and execute a moon mission; the main hurdle there was scientific understanding. What we are up against here is not only a technical challenge, but the phenomonal logsitics of massive construction and materials across the nation. Harnessing wind and solar for the nation would require that the most 'resource rich' areas (upper midwest for wind, south for solar) be connected to the rest of the country with transmission lines that can carry the power. But high voltage AC lines (which we currently have) can't do it eficiently over that great distance. Therefore, the transmission infrastructure needs to be converted to high voltage DC. So not only do we have to build and install the power generation system, we have re-string much of the wiring and replace most of the substations. 10 years is unrealistic from an engineering perspective. But we SHOULD start the groundwork anyway, and do the best we can.

PLUS... solar and wind are intermittent power sources. If they are the primary source of power, then we need temporary storage or buffers t hold power when it is being generated but not needed, and which can then release this stored power on-demand during peak times. No such strategy exists for this yet. But again, we need to start on that.

10 years? No way.


Ted from Tennessee   July 18th, 2008 10:58 am ET

I congratulate Michael M for pointing out that we should be living in accordance with our beliefs. However, it does not seem likely that enough of us will do that to solve the problem without strong leadership from government. I propose that those of us who already believe take Michael M's advice, while still supporting greater collective action, like that proposed by Gore.

DJ's emphasis on the "free market" forces has a kernel of truth: ultimately, market forces are one of the most powerful motivators for private action. However, even Ronald Reagan recognized that government action was necessary in his time to change the way government affected those market forces. In his day, he believed that meant changing the way government worked to "get the government out of the way."

However, we are here talking about a different goal, with a different solution. The challenge today is to change the way government works to bring market forces to bear on the greatest challenges our nation has ever faced. One day, the problems will be so great that market forces will respond without any help from government. The problem is, by then it will be too late. We must find ways to change the market forces before the problem is insurmountable.


Jim   July 18th, 2008 11:43 am ET

People like "DJ" crack me up with crap like "The Reverend Gore is irrelevant. Everyone agrees that alternatives to oil are inevitable. " Uhhh, actually DJ, until about a year ago most right wingers still mocked alternatives to oil. But thanks for finally jumping on the bandwagon... even if you don't remember doing it.


Chris   July 18th, 2008 11:50 am ET

I agree with Lee J Alter. Algae based bio fuels have the highest probability of becoming the energy source to replace oil with the minimum impact on the economic infrastructure and carbon footprint. Since algae fuel is hydrocarbon based, producing it is essentially just growing new oil. In the growth process the algae consumes CO2 and sunlight. It appears that, depending on the strain and processing, you can do anything with algae byproducts that you can do with oil. This includes making gasoline, plastics, diesel fuel, jet fuel, etc. When the algae fuel is burned it just returns the CO2 back to the atmosphere to be reused. Also, if you build a bioreator system close to a fossil fuel power plant it will clean up the CO2 in the stack gas and give off oxygen. This could be scaled up within the time frame Al Gore is talking about.

A lot is underway in this field. It is interesting that this energy source has not been mentioned in any of the high profile talks, but there are several oil companies and some nations that have joint development agreements with algae companies.

I've enclosed some generic web sites that deal with some of the aspects of algae energy.

http://www.nationalalgaeassociation.com/

http://www.algaepetro.com/

http://www.biodieselmagazine.com/article.jsp?article_id=2381&q=&page=all


Susan , Atlanta, GA   July 18th, 2008 12:49 pm ET

The dependency on 'fossil fuel' has for many years been known as a limited resource. There is only a limited amount of 'fossil fuel' . Whether you believe the various studies or not the one fact of OIL is it is not something one can manufacture to meet the needs to the Global Economy. – Many debunk the speech Al Gore gave – saying global warming is a untrue, yet as of Mar 2008 Think Tank scientists have in Washington DC have specialist presented papers confirming global warming as well as the projected consequences. Why do you not see them in the news? Well if you did, you would PANIC –
The dependency on fossil fuels is going to cripple great multi corporations as well as create further unstableness in the Global Market and further destabilize many countries. Al Gore made a Challenge – it is one that takes the entrepreneur SPIRIT that was once a core value in the US...yet it is one that requires CHANGE – Imagination – Courage – Conviction – Responsibility – and Resourcefulness.
Al Gore merely provided a Challenge – to a Goal – and calls to action – to THINK and organize in ways to meet the GOAL of ending our dependency on a source of energy which is limited and seek solutions to renewable energy. Those that question the validity of the research on global warming they need some serious education because the impact is already here ! Those that support drilling off shore are those who would gain the most in economical in the short run, forgoing the consequences of the long term affects upon the Global Communities. Accept the Challenge whether you like or do not like Al Gore, and attach the attitude of it is time to change NOW! Lets solve the problem instead of backlashing and blaming....our lives require we change and that means movement forward to solutions that will make a difference by giving challenging to reach new heights.
Fossil fuels are a finite resource ! Let's all work to achieve independence from fossil Fuels.


Derek Simpson   July 18th, 2008 12:51 pm ET

I don't doubt Gore thinks what he is doing is nobel....But, he is a fenatical zelot. Follow the money..... He coninues to line his pockets as he spews fear into unsuspecting people.

The story of gobal warming used to be called Chicken Little, or Crying Wolf, when I was a child. Same story...different scenario.

By the way...I am a scientist, Al Gore is not.


Bruce   July 18th, 2008 1:07 pm ET

“Global Warming” and rising global atmospheric carbon levels are real!

It never ceases to amaze me how unintelligent some people can be by ignoring the facts and overwhelming evidence that global carbon levels are at near record braking levels read from accent ice cores. The ever increasing number global erratic weather occurrences over past 30+ years clearly show a direct correlation between global temperate rise and Earth's atmospheric carbon levels.

I fully agree with Pres Elect Al Gore and vast majority Earth's Climatologists.
I don’t buy the FUD of Oil lobby funded payola-scientists and “December 20, 2007 U.S. Senate Environment and Public Works Committee (Minority) report” politicians.
I don’t feel like funding Al Qaeda and flooding the Earth or worse.
So “Let’s say hello to the new Hydrogen economy now”

http://www.hydrogennow.org/Facts/HydroEcon.htm

http://www.hydrogennow.org/links.html

http://www.hydrogennow.org/Opinion/WhyWeNeedSolarHydrogenNow.htm

Remember ignorance is temporary but unintelligent is forever.


ashley z   July 18th, 2008 1:12 pm ET

We can absolutely meet the Gore Challenge.

I just came back from a visit to China, a country that is working hard (in some ways) to overcome its massive environmental & energy issues. We can learn from the steps they are taking, imo, and apply them with even more success. China is:

1) #1 in replanting forests – they began this in 1995 as a response to desertification, erosion, and dust pollution.
2) #1 in windmills – which they started about 2001 in response to their oil/coal crisis
3) #1 solar water heaters – which they started about 2001 in response to their oil/coal crisis
4) #1 in producing electric vehicles – which they started about 1995 in response to their oil/coal crisis and pollution problems; China is now producing 25 million electric bikes a year and is using license fee hikes to encourage its population to switch from gas bikes to e-bikes.
5) China will also become the largest producer of hybrid vehicles within 5 years. Vehicle pollution in China is much less than in comparable Western cities because they have newer cars that meet Euro 3, 4 and soon 5 standards, and fewer cars per person.
6) #1 in use of LNG/CNG in public transportation buses and taxis -which they started about 1995 in response to their pollution/oil/coal crisis
7) #1 in solar cell production by the end of 2008 -which they started about 2001 in response to their oil/coal crisis; this sector will soon produce the largest solar cell maker in the world – Suntech (STP) with cells of ~20% efficiencies, at grid parity within 2 years and faster when the new surge in coal/oil trickles through utility pricing
8) China is rapidly replacing its many old inefficient polluting 1970's coal plants with new scrubbed plants – yes they build 2 new coal plants a week, but they are also decommissioning three times that number of dirty plants each week.
9) #1 in hydro power – and putting in more
10) not #1 in Ethanol, which is entirely un-green and distorts food prices.

The USA has more skilled workers than China, and plenty of drive. It is paralyzed by media dis-information in the grip of big industry/finance. Gore's challenge is far from too audacious- it is exactly the kind of challenge we need right now.


Chuck   July 18th, 2008 1:43 pm ET

When Al Gore actually PRACTICES what he preaches, he can tell the rest of us what to do. His energy consuption at ONE of his four mansions would power my home for 25 years. One flight in his private plane consumes more fuel than my evil, kid carrying SUV does in a year. Despite being against carbon based energy, he still owns massive amounts of oil company stock.

Obviously, he doesn't really believe the fear mongering talk he spews.

If he ever does, maybe he can look at a certain house in Crawford, Texas and get some ideas on saving energy.


Dave   July 18th, 2008 2:15 pm ET

It's one thing to say we need to switch energy sources for the reason that cheap oil may be, emphasis on "may be," running out in the near future.

It is entirely another thing to say we need to switch energy sources because Al Gore believes in Anthropogenic Global Warming (which is false) and that CO2 somehow affects our planet. Since 2007 no one takes the IPCC reports seriously anymore since the reports are chock full of intentionally misleading information (e.g., no more "hockey stick").


vmorr   July 18th, 2008 2:49 pm ET

As a Canadian watching Al Gore's speech, I felt a sense of admiration and hope listening to an American politician- the first time I have felt this in a long, long time.

Al Gore is right. We live in perilous times, and if America and the world are to survive, this effort is what is required.

Shame on the misleading comments of Lou Dobbs about Gore's
speech.


J   July 18th, 2008 3:29 pm ET

How many children have died of increased incidences of leukemia near oil refineries? What happens if you leave a car on in a closed garage? Why is China now so polluted? Why are Detroit and Los Angeles so polluted and have elevated incidences of cancer?

The cause of all these problems is the refining and burning of fossil fuels. While these reasons alone are sufficient to warrant the discontinued use of fossil fuels the added greenhouse emergency nails the coffin shut on this argument.

Scott, I don't know how you can sleep at night, though I am sure are sleeping with the oil and coal companies. You are probably a lobbyist who is highly paid to distort the truth.

How can you look your children in the eye? You clearly don't get out much because if you did you would see with your own eyes the increasing problems associated with and caused by burning fossil fuels. We can easily solve these problems and even a morally bankrupt person like you could make loads of cash off it.

The oil and coal companies have know for decades that their business causes tangible harm to consumers much like smoking cigarettes does. We should be mounting a campaign to sue them for the medical and environmental not to mention economic harm they have caused our country and the world for their ruthless acts.

Oil barons have a long history of murder, deceit and terrorism. Every school kid who has studied American history knows this. They continue this legacy aided by well paid legal counsel who have no morals.

Scott is the ranting crackpot here. He is peddling an obviously false
website in an attempt to intimidate the general public into buying the oil, coal and nuclear power companies position.

Show me any science that backs up your claims... real science not the make believe stuff you are trying to pass off on the those who can't read or understand a scientific journal. Do you have a subscription to CELL or NEJM, Scott? Are you an engineer, chemist, physicist or biologist?Nope ... you are probably a paid mouthpiece.

All the scientists I know, (do you actually know any scientists, Scott?) agree with Al Gore. There are many NASA scientist (who were told to keep their mouths shut by the Bush oil administration) who have clear evidence which verify the greenhouse effect is increasing due to man.

The evidence is vast, clear and compelling that global warming is occurring and is caused by burning fossil fuels. But if you aren't convinced that burning fossil fuels is harmful then try breathing from an exhaust pipe for a few minutes and see what happens. DUH....


Ken in Dallas   July 18th, 2008 4:47 pm ET

We live in ways never even imagined a century ago, and we take it all for granted; we squander resources like Coneheads, and we claim a God-given right to do so; weve gone two generations living on the infrastructure our grandparents invested in, an we expect it all to last forever; we feel entitled to status and a way of life we never earned. After all this, Al Gores ridiculous?

The one constant in history is that everything changes. The petroleum economy has had its day, and now its ending; the oil to continue our profligate lifestyles indefinitely simply does not exist, even if we could so continue without causing environmental catastrophe.

When I was a kid, nobody had ever been to the moon, and a lot of people said the attempt was ridiculous, impossible, and useless, but we tried anyway, and now theres anthropogenic trash on the lunar surface. If we dont face the change thats upon us, if we dont adapt to it, if we dont overcome its challenges, then garbage on the lunar surface may become humanitys most enduring legacy.

The ways of our fathers served us in their time, but nobody ever planned for this status quo to last forever. Now, weve turned the fossilized remains of our own ancestors into smoke and other poisonous substances, and theres absolutely no reason to believe we can go on this way for even another generation. If we dont take up this challenge, civilization will collapse when the oil runs out, and then well really go back to Stone-age living.

The Middle-Eastern locals know a lot more than we do about how much oil they have, and theyre aggressively getting into the renewable energy business; if their actions mean anything, they mean that the worlds running out of oil much faster than we would like to believe, and out biggest oil suppliers are making the transition to renewables. What sort of position are we going to be in if they have renewable energy supplies when the oil runs out, and we dont?

Don't think of this as an abstract goal; think of it as a life-or-death struggle. We have to move beyond petroleum if we want human civilization to survive. We can be defeatist and claim there's nothing left after the oil's gone, or we can get to work and make the transition; what we can't do is keep civilization running on oil indefinitely.

Just to be very, very clear: OIL is OVER.


Mike   July 18th, 2008 5:10 pm ET

Enough name-calling already. That is neither polite nor productive. We need to be clear about one unassailable fact. The selection of energy sources and a course of action is about cost and cost alone. If you think that oil should be taxed so that external , i.e. environmental costs are included and you think that might work then go ahead and let your representatives know. I have my doubts that government will use the tax dollars wisely, but that's a different issue. Look what $100/bbl oil has done though, it has made solar thermal projects in CA look attractive and wind farms in TX spring up.


Don Schneider   July 18th, 2008 5:13 pm ET

Energy independence in 10 years? Absolutely. But he does not go far enough. A new Company has just been launched (June 22, 2008) that will be building homes that not only provide 100% of the electricity for the home, but also enough to power a electric hybrid 30 to 50 miles or more each day – free. The homes also will be growing 100% of the vegetables and fruits on the roof and is fully self-sustaining. They will be built with common materials and manpower and look like ordinary homes – only classier. It's worth a look. See http://www.greenfiresuperhomes.com


Bruce   July 18th, 2008 5:20 pm ET

The vast majority of you are way out of touch. As a professional energy process developer and researcher (bio-fuels, wind, nuclear, petrochem, I've spent years on most of them), wind and solar can NEVER provide even a majority of the energy we need and use, and especially within the next 10 years. Al is becoming exposed on the AGW thing, so he has to find another cause. If you have the ability to understand math and statistics, and physics. please look at the data. If you can't, you are entitled to an opinion, but please express that it is an opinion based on feelings, hopes, fears, or whatever drives you.

There are exactly 2 non-carbon-based, renewables that have any hope of being implemented on a grander scale within the next 2 decades, regardless of new discoveries or new technologies, regardless of whether you throw all of your income (not mine) at the problem or not, and they are not in vogue with environmentalists, and both have major political roadblocks (not technical ones): hydroelectric and breeder-reactor nuclear technology.

Now throw stones!!


Megan   July 18th, 2008 5:39 pm ET

Adolf Hitler, a starving Austrian soldier, rose to power and converted Germany from its worst economic depression to a major world power capable of taking on an alliance of nations in only 13 years. Roosevelt commanded an infrastructural change to build roads, bridges, and dams that revitalized our workforce, our economy, and the morale of the nation in less than 2 decades. Clinton brought us out of a recession and into surplus by embracing the technological age in only 8. After 40 years of struggle, George H. W. Bush negotiated an end to the Cold War in less than 4 years.

George W. Bush, in less than 8 years, has managed to wrack up $7 TRILLION in debt (and rising) – and that money includes coordinating over 250,000 troops, equipment, supplies, etc, and it includes rebuilding infrastructures in two countries – bridges, roads, etc.

CLEARLY the United States is capable of a) coming up with money, b) coming up with workers, c) executing a plan in less time than it would take to do R&D on drilling. When America wants to do something, we do it.

There is NO reason this goal is unacheivable. It is just as achievable as every other plan out there, including the truncated timeline as compared to every other plan, except this plan actually makes sense because it will directly benefit everyone in all ways we are hurting – hurting for jobs, for gas, and for environmental action.

And for the record, I love Al Gore.

And for that person who said Al Gore was a jerk b/c he wastes resources, FYI – the person who writes the book on tree planting is killing trees via the book – but because of him, more trees are planted. Therefore, it's worthwhile. Likewise, the man burning carbon fuels to make it to his Nobel prize ceremony in order to let the world know we all need to take action is creating action - big action, from many countries, and cities, despite the U.S.'s failure to take the lead globally - so doesn't that counterbalance his plane ride? If you are serious, you must believe we should never recycle b/c we exhale carbon dioxide, and since that means we pollute the air, we should not try to reduce the amount of useable material in landfills.

Have a great weekend, all.


roger j moore   July 18th, 2008 5:47 pm ET

the polar bears are endangered. the north pole will be without ice during summer and all we can say is drill more oil. Can people really be that stupid.


Rob   July 18th, 2008 5:56 pm ET

Jason, you forget how much the war in Iraq has cost the American taxpayer...I'd rather see my money go into R&D for alternative energy than fighting an ill-conceived and poorly planned war. One point five trillion seems like a drop in the bucket!


Franko   July 18th, 2008 10:08 pm ET

Al Gore needs to focus on the cause of Ice Ages,
How to prevent glaciers, crops failing, people starving.

Russians could prevent it, if they still owned Alaska


BR   July 20th, 2008 7:55 am ET

Seth, can you point out *one* reputable scientist who claims Global warming is not caused by humans. Your claim that "most" scientists say so is not merely absurd, it shows rather serious illiteracy on your part.
As does your perception that Gore supports alcohol as fuel. What part of "carbon free" in his challenge didn't you understand? Or do you believe alcohol is carbon free?


Skip   July 20th, 2008 10:05 am ET

I love that Al Gore is trying to make us more environmentally consious. It's too bad that he wasn't doing this during his 8 years of the Vice Presidency. Instead his wife was busy in congress harrassing the record industry and censoring music. (So much more important than the environment)

At least he is doing something good now.


Dave   July 20th, 2008 11:10 am ET

Environment Effects of Increased Atmospheric Carbon Dioxide.

http://tinyurl.com/5oambc


Mark Martinek   July 20th, 2008 3:04 pm ET

I think All's Gore comment regarding renewable energies are achieveable and that USA could be completely independent of foreign oil import in the next ten years. The future of energy in USA and world lies in the electricity. In the future there will be more and more competition for oil. China. India and Russia will have much more cars and the price of oil will keep rising,although during recession it might go the price of oil somewhat down.
The USA has vast land resources, where the wind and solar energy might be utilized. One of such land resource is unutilized land in the highway system. The USA has thousands and thousands miles of highways. Along these higways could be built wind turbines and solar pannels. The beuty of this approach is that the generated electricity could be be collected and tranported through a cable along the highway and imediately utilized for cars and tracks in charging station similar to the current gas stations.
In California they have so called hydrogen highway. Why they couldn't be electricity higways in the rest of USA? An additional benefit would be that the infrastracture such as bridges etc. could be fixed during the construction of wind turbines and solar pannels. States such as Michigan and Ohio could have manufacturing facilities for the wind turbines and solar pannels and replace manufacturing jobs which they lost in the past and recently.


Franko   July 21st, 2008 1:34 am ET

Al Gore has the money, large number of supporters, ideas. Gore for it !

Build a 6 megawatt wind turbine, Solar Panels, Solar Stirling.

Don't be like the Pope, trying to increase the fold. Lead by example !


Bill   July 21st, 2008 5:12 am ET

As to the "no way the infrastructure of this country can change that dramatically that fast" argument":
Using Methanol as an energy carrier, we could retain the existing infrastructure, use it "conventionally" in combustion engines as well as use it in fuel cells (even hybrids running on the same fuel).
The production can theoretically be done CO2 neutral with the use of atmospheric CO2 and using solar/wind energy to produce the H2 from water for catalytic hydrogenation. Viable methods to use the atmospheric CO2 need development, but that should be easier than putting a man on the moon...
It's not the long term solution, but a dable intermediate step. And it's only a quickshot thought, just think what we could do if we attribute our collective innovation to this...


Franko   July 21st, 2008 1:34 pm ET

Yes, that is the beauty of Zubrin Methanol plan.
All new cars Methanol enabled for extra $10.

Methanol the every waste.Is the new battle cry.
Maybe even eliminate the garbage man.

But Gore needs to build monuments to himself,
With his own money.


Mark Martinek   July 21st, 2008 2:23 pm ET

Regarding Bill's idea to to capture CO2 from air, is OK, but the CO2 in air is diluted. Wouldn't be better to capture CO2 from "coal" Power Plants? However even with this aproach, there would be quite waist in energy to use electricity from wind turbines to use it for manufacturing of Hydrogen . Why not use the electricity to power directly electrical cars or hybrids?


Steve   July 21st, 2008 3:05 pm ET

Gore refuses to embrace the only renewable green technology that has ever been proven: nuclear fission. Fifty years of impeccable safety, far safer than every other energy production and generation means, is not enough for Gore's transparent political agenda.

Sure, Gore allows current nuclear facilities to continue to operate in his manifesto. He knows that as America's energy needs increase, and the nuclear facilities age without allowing replacement, green renewable nuclear energy will fade from existence.

America generates just 21% of its total electrical output by nuclear fission. In lowly France, it is a progressive 78%. And France reprocesses and recycles its nuclear "waste", so there is virtually no need for any long-term storage. Outrageously, the Carter administration outlawed nuclear reprocessing/recycling in 1979. It is still illegal today.

Don't be fooled by Gore's politics. Call your congressman. Demand off-shore drilling now. Demand nuclear power now. Demand nuclear fuel reprocessing and recycling now. Demand energy independence. Now!


Ken in Dallas   July 21st, 2008 3:32 pm ET

Ok, Bruce, here are your stones.

Breeder reactors, transmutation, and other transuranic-recycling technologies were banned in the US for the very simple reason that those technologies have an annoying tendency to produce weapons-grade fissile materials. That's a proliferation issue, and the concerns over it aren't going to go away, even if they mean economic collapse. The powers-that-be are just way too scared of generating gobs of potential weapons material to even consider allowing it to occur.

Hydroelectric is fundamentally a power-storage technology. somebody with a sufficient power and a pair of vertically-separated reservoirs could make hydro into a very effective large-scale power storage mechanism, but the naturally-available supply of hydroelectric power is quite limited, and we're already exploiting the bulk of it. Since increasing the available supply of hydroelectric power requires gaining control over the distribution of rainfall, scaling hydro up to meet demand is not really all that viable.

I hope you can expand on that "exactly 2" notion you have, because one of the two just won't work, and the other's politically infeasible to a profound degree.

The argument you don't make regarding the non-viability of wind and solar sources might have been interesting, but you didn't make it, nor did you cite the literature on which you base your opinion.

Incidentally, I assume that you're not the same Bruce who was previously commenting in support of Gore and pushing hydrogen earlier in the discussion. Hydrogen, like hydroelectricity, is fundamentally a power storage potential, but significantly less efficient at storing power than hydroelectric solutions.

Extending the topic just a little, maybe we should consider that CO2 isn't the only greenhouse gas we emit in large quantities, nor is it the the most potent. Methane, for instance, is a greenhouse hazard at much lower concentrations than CO2. Maybe we should discuss retro-fitting municipal sewage treatment plants to capture and conserve the methane gas they produce during their operations, which could serve both to reduce atmospheric methane emissions and to provide a supplement to our supply of natural gas.


Erik   July 21st, 2008 8:38 pm ET

There is no doubt that the sun is the life source of the universe. Harnessing this power is finally coming to fruition however the average homeowner/consumer really does not possess the knowledge to make this happen. I would like to see more educational shows and documentaries about households who have successfully implemented solutions to decrease their carbon footprint and their dependence on fossil fuels. Check out this unique ebay attempt at educating the public on how solar can be used.

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&item=200240692777


Ed   July 22nd, 2008 1:34 pm ET

The key to the Hydrogen Economy is presented below.
Water is broken into Hydrogen and Oxygen when it comes into contact with an alloy of Aluminum and Gallium. Thus Hydrogen can be made on demand by pumping water into a reaction chamber containing the alloy. An automobile can use a tank of water rather than a tank of gasoline. Here is the equation: 2Al + 3H2O –> 3H2 + Al2O3 + heat.
For more information, go to http://www.hydrogentoday.us/
mirror site: http://hydrogen.ecn.purdue.edu/

From the Purdue site, download these two files:
Presentation slides: http://hydrogen.ecn.purdue.edu/2007.05.01-Woodall.pdf
Presentation audio: http://hydrogen.ecn.purdue.edu/2007.05.01-Woodall.mp4


TFTHUMBS   July 22nd, 2008 3:05 pm ET

I can only offer this to everyone out there. If you all believe that this cannot be done then it will never happen. In the 200+ years that we have been a independent country think of what we have done and accomplished done and invented.
Tell me what other country has put a man on the moon, and that was when I was 12 years old. NOONE NO OTHER COUNTRY!
The problem is we keep giving things away, our jobs, technogoly, businesses, all for countries to use to eventually strangle us to dependency on them for energy.
A sad damm country we are!


Mark   July 22nd, 2008 3:33 pm ET

Ed and how do you regenerate Al2O3 back to Al?


Franko   July 22nd, 2008 3:49 pm ET

"Just to be very, very clear: OIL is OVER."
Goole "Turning Coal Into Oil"

If USA has not the skills, not enough second World War German immigrant chemical engineers – ship the coal to China, and have China liquefy for US.

Back to smoggy commuting, the carefree American way
What a scare ! not having to enjoy, creeping, endlessly in traffic


Samuel   July 23rd, 2008 11:10 am ET

Sorry, anyone who goes around likening their own hot air to famous speeches is all about tooting their own horn. Al has been doing this since way back before he invented the internet, which BTW, is one of the larger causes of increased US power consumption. Thanks again for the internet, Al!


Don   July 23rd, 2008 11:49 am ET

I'm going to do my part. I'm going to Pennsylvania, to an Amish Buggy dealership and order a brand, spankin' new, shiny, black buggy; and, a 2-year old Morgan to pull it. I will go to bed at sundown and rise at first light...every day. I will do all this so that "big Al" can have my share of energy to power his home in Kentucky. I will sacrifice all I can to make my life as miserable as possible...so "big Al" and his adoring environmentalist friends will feel good...really good !


Franko   July 23rd, 2008 2:43 pm ET

Another false prophet, sold his soul to GreenieBub, the Devil of Death ?
Out to smack down the Green Pope, and his Green Guardian Angels ?

No Way, US not Zombies, still value forefathers traditions and valuues
"Penny saved is penny earned."


Little Lance   July 23rd, 2008 6:44 pm ET

The truth is nothing can be accomplished if we don't try. What if we only succeed by 50%, at least we will have tried and 50% is better than nothing. Yes, we went to the moon in less than a decade and Yes, the country has been brought to ruin in less than a decade, so why can we not regain our former glory in less than a decade. Are we truly a nation of whinners and nah-sayers or are we willing to roll up our sleeves and get something done? To heck with what the rest of the world does, let us be the ones that sets the pace. The world has always, until the last seven plus years, looked up to America as the beacon of light in the fog. Are we as a nation going to turn out the light or are we going to show the way. Yes, maybe the goal is not possible, but what if it is? I have been taught two things in life; 1. Can't can't do anything and 2. Aim High. 'Nuff said the rest is up to you.


Franko   July 23rd, 2008 9:37 pm ET

"The truth is nothing can be accomplished if we don’t try"

Perception may be a false reality, inciting to Mob Action.
Misappropiating the earned dollars of others, to build an inefficiency ?

People are price sensitive,
Even Al Goracle wants you to pay for his dreams.


Lance Niederhaus   July 24th, 2008 1:03 am ET

Regardless of whether carbon emissions are the cause of climate change, everyone agrees that our national security and economy is at risk as long as we are dependent upon oil imports. I think it is also safe to say that everyone agrees that emissions from vehicles and coal fired electrical plants make our air and countryside dirty and stinky-something I could live without. It is my understanding that research has shown that the total known untapped oil reserves within the US and its coastal areas are grossly insufficient to supply even our current demand.
With all of that said, additional investments in proven and nonpolluting alternative energies must be helpful for energy independence, national security, economic growth and technological leadership.
I believe that the united states generally has become complacent. This includes government and the public, in my opinion. I would gladly pay additional income tax if those monies were applied to real solutions to solve these issues and return the united states to the proud, responsible and compassionate leader it once was.


s callahan   July 24th, 2008 3:32 am ET

Franko, you say so much with so little words. i appreciate your comments! :-)


Franko   July 24th, 2008 12:02 pm ET

" united states to the proud, responsible and compassionate leader"
Newer was, nor will be. Nations have interests, not morals.
Good summary of US, as perceived by others, is the Bill Maher Kasparov interview. US uses democracy, human rights, when suits international policy. Dictators when cost effective.. Goes to war to make money.

Search for United Fruit. Similar attitude, a continued policy of exploytation ?
Ugly American, a historical, perception only, lot of recent makeup, but;
Cheering children, in South America, as the Devil Osama,
flattened the Twin Symbols.

That being said, We need the oil, Soudy Arabia is a dictatorship, has oil, Two ducks are lined up. US troops are conveniently nearby. Forget Burma, no oil, the Nobel prize winner there, is not a compassionate, prophet of Utopia, Saint Al Gore.


Cantaford   July 25th, 2008 2:13 am ET

I admire Mr Al Gores ideas. However, when he can reduce his energy consumption equal to mine and everyone else's I'll believe him.

He is currently using 3.5 to 4 times more enegy the we are. That is based on square footage of his home.

He will have to unscrew a few more light bulbs.

And his utility company is cheaper per kw than mine.


LLMTruth   July 25th, 2008 6:17 am ET

The GOP Consternation

John McCain, what in the world can one do with a guy like this. He constanly misstates facts. Yet he rambles on day after day as though his multiple gaffes and mis ques are of no effect. From the former Czech Republic to accusing Barak Obama of wanting to lose a war for political gain, a very offensive accusation, to accrediting the ease of conflict in Iraq solely on the surge, forgetting or deliberately omitting the Sunni decision in expelling the insurgents from their territories and the laying down of their militia’s arms months prior to the surge.

Then blaming Obama for the high gas prices as though the American public is stupid and will follow suit with that preposterous train of thought. He must think we are a bunch of imbeciles and idiots. That statement really insults all of our intelligence. We all know why gasoline is so high, and its not because of the lack of drilling within the United States or Obama. Oil speculators for the most part are responsible for the rising costs of oil. Besides, any benefit from drilling domestically won’t manifest itself until at least a decade from now. By the way, McCain was once against drilling and now for it. He also voted nay for keeping that oil for American citizens and instead wanted it for sale outside the of the United States. Yet, here he is acting as though he always had the American people’s best interest at heart. A very deceptive position. And the odd thing about it is that a lot of misguided people will believe him. Out of curiosity, I just wonder how many people actually believe that nonsense.

He and his campaign accuse Barak Obama of flip flopping on issues when in fact McCain has flipped flopped on countless issues during each of his presidential bids, including this one. A number that easily reaches past fifty and getting closer to one hundred. If I were more guilty than the next fellow of something, I would certainly be the last person to bring that something up. In one of his town hall meetings he claimed he had no problem with gay marriages, then only eleven minutes later stated he did not feel that those marriages should be allowed. He at one time didn’t want corporate taxes then turned around and said he did. The list of his flip flops is endless yet he accuses Obama of flip flopping. John ‘the expedient’ McCain is the reigning king of flip flops, without a doubt.

Does he think we are stupid? Does he not know that there is a multitude of sources that can be checked to determine who exactly is the flip flopper, and on what subjects the flip flops occurred? Does he hope we don’t have the internet or blogs or access to all of his past statements on the multitudinous subjects he’s flipped flopped on? Or does this guy just says forget it, I’ll say it anyway, torpedoes be damned full steam ahead? To hell with the facts, if it sounds good then say it. Is he counting on the majority of us being so bigoted that we’ll vote for him no matter what comes out of his mouth?

Then his co-chair of his economic polices, Senator Gramm, calls us a nation of whiners. He seems to surround himself with other out of touch people who for all appearances seem to have a great apathy for the suffering of the American public. Corporate interests are apparently rule supreme. By the way, this same Gramm character is responsible for the deregulation of financial institutions and well as the deregulation of the oil speculators, thus higher gasoline prices. Duh!

There are so many problems with John McCain that it is impossible to list every single thing in this comment. All I can say is check it out for yourselves and see if I’m not telling you the truth about this candidate. It seems that he will say and do anything to get elected whether it is true or not. The title John ‘the expedient’ McCain fits him well. His willingness to use whatever tool at his disposal to attack Obama. For example; McCain used Obama’s recent trip to the holocaust memorial in Israel as an occasion to expound his political views. There’s absolutely no boundaries. It just goes to show how low and desperate this guy is. This is a definitive statement as to his lack of character and morals. Nothing is off-limits for him, absolutely nothing. And then to make disparaging remarks about Obama’s visit to Berlin. To be honest after years of feeling Europeans hated Americans it was refreshing to see all the American flags waving in the crowd. This whole week McCain appears to have a serious envy problem to the highest degree. I can’t recall one disparaging remark made by Obama when McCain went to Canada and made speeches and went to South America recently. It shows a vast difference of character.

So with that said we come to the consternation of the Republican party, with their choice of a presidential candidate. They are stuck with him for better or worse and each day that passes it looks like worse. Now, with all these things wrong with this guy, if he gets elected in my opinion it will be for one reason and one reason only, and that is we are still the prejudiced, bigoted nation we have always been. And apparently it will remain that way until Jesus comes, much to our discredit. Just a nation of a bunch of irrational, tried and true racists.

I can just imagine the RNC wishing that they had another more viable candidate instead of this bumbling, stumbling, confused man who is constantly in need of coaching while even speaking. I wouldn’t be surprise if at their convention they decided to supplant McCain with someone more formidable. Someone who can remember from one day to the next what the hell comes out of his mouth.

Come November, we have a chance to do something astounding and magnificent and elect a black man as president of a country that fought so hard to keep the institution of slavery alive. So hard a fight in fact that 600,000+ people lost their lives because of it.

Humm, which choice will you make???


Franko   July 26th, 2008 2:24 am ET

Cosmetic difference, which talking head you select.
Catherine Austin Fitts is a good read. International or Isolationist version please ?

Weight loss, financial, for all. Holding together the Global Empire.


Franko   July 26th, 2008 2:58 pm ET

Good choice. Exemplfiies financial tradeoffs, for most of US.
Pay new, fuel efficient, car loan interest, or more at the pump.
We need a financial risk manager for this (looking for work, ex Wall Street ?)

Set new standards, not the HorsePower of old, but RabbitPower !
Invite a local onroute, science club to measure the power output of a Rabbit, running in a giant squirrel cage attached to a ceiling fan ,converted to a generator.


justine   August 28th, 2008 3:17 pm ET

I think a good way to start would be to give an incentive to malls in this country to place solar panels on their FLAT roofs. How many thousand acres of solar panels would that be? They may not get off of the grid entirely but it would have to be an enormous reduction of their footprint. Other countries seem to be able to come up with alternatives what is our problem??? Perhaps a government that is owned by special interests and feels the need to protect them and not the people they took an oath to represent. We can also work with wind it doesn't have to be an all or nothing solution. As far as I know we are all staying on this planet, no one I know has figured out a way to get off or has found another planet to relocate to, so we had better get moving.


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