Former vice president Al Gore presented lawmakers yesterday with a new inconvenient truth: Action on global warming cannot wait until the economy recovers.
In three hours of testimony that at times looked like a sequel to the Oscar-winning documentary based on his book “An Inconvenient Truth,” Gore pressed Congress to pass President Obama’s economic stimulus plan as a first step to bringing greenhouse gases under control.
He also pushed for decisive action on a bill this year to limit emissions of heat-trapping gases, saying the legislation is needed for the United States to take a leading role in negotiations on a new international climate treaty.
To underscore his point, Gore flipped through more than four dozen slides showing melting ice caps, Western wildfires, deforestation, and oxygen-depleted seas.
Six months ago, Gore called for the country to produce all of its electricity from carbon-free sources within the next 10 years. Since then, the recession has deepened and the government – which is fighting wars in Iraq and Afghanistan – has spent hundreds of billions of dollars to save financial institutions and keep automakers from bankruptcy.
Gore told the Senate Foreign Relations Committee recession and wars should not delay climate change legislation.