Former Vice President Al Gore and his entourage arrived at Constitutional Hall in
Washington D.C. July 17 for his speech on global warming in a caravan consisting of
two Lincoln Town Cars and a Chevrolet Suburban not the most fuel efficient
vehicles Detroit ever made.
"The driver of the Town Car that eventually whisked
away Gore's wife and daughter left the engine idling and the AC cranking for 20
minutes before they finally left," noted Mark Block of Americans for Prosperity.
Al Gore wants you to do as he says, not as he does. The Tennessee Center for Policy
Research reported last month that Mr. Gore used as much electricity last year at his
mansion in Nashville one of four homes he owns as 19 average American homes
do. Mr. Gore frequently travels between his homes and to speaking engagements by
private jet which, on a per passenger basis, emits four times the greenhouse
gases of a commercial jet.
In his speech at Constitution Hall, Mr. Gore called for a crash program to convert
the entire U.S. electric grid to carbon-free sources of energy within ten years.
That's "ridiculous," said Sen. George Voinovich (R-OH).
To get an idea of how ridiculous, consider this data from the Energy Information
Administration. In 2006 (the last year for which complete data is available), 49
percent of our electricity was generated by coal-fired plants; 20 percent from
natural gas, and 1.5 percent from oil. That is, more than 70 percent of all the
electricity we have now is generated by the fossil fuels Mr. Gore wants to get rid
Of the remainder, two thirds is generated by nuclear plants (19 percent overall),
but Mr. Gore doesn't want to increase our reliance on nuclear power. He wants to
rely on "renewables" which currently account for just shy of ten percent of electric
power generation. But more than 70 percent of that is hydroelectric power, and
there are only so many places where we can build dams. The "green" sources Mr. Gore
prefers solar, wind, geothermal combined produced only 2.3 percent of our
electricity. Mr. Gore didn't mention that he's invested heavily in companies which
produce "green" energy. Neither did the journalists who covered his speech.
The power grid already is strained by the unwillingness of Democrats to construct
electric power plants of any kind. On the day of Mr. Gore's speech, CNN reported
electric power costs in Maryland and the District of Columbia have risen 46 percent
in the last two years. Experts fear there could be widespread brownouts within
three years as the demand for electricity exceeds the ability to supply it. And
this is without the additional demands that would be imposed on the grid by all
electric or plug-in hybrid-electric cars, which in the intermediate term offer the
only way (other than a hair curling depression) to reduce significantly our use of
As Mr. Gore was urging his audience at Constitution Hall to forego the electricity
he uses so lavishly, the Physics & Society Forum, an arm of the American Physical
Society, an organization which represents nearly 50,000 physicists, published a
paper by a prestigious scientist that attacked Al Gore's thesis that man is
responsible for global warming.
Lord Moncton of Brenchley, who was the science adviser to British Prime Minister
Margaret Thatcher, said the computer models the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on
Climate Change "grossly overstated" the sensitivity of climate to increases in
Mars, Jupiter and Pluto warmed at the same rate as earth, Lord Moncton noted. Since
they are not known to have factories or SUVs, he concluded the most recent warming
was caused by the sun, not Man.
Lord Moncton's paper details numerous exaggerations and extensive errors by the
IPCC, said Larry Gould, professor of physics at the University of Hartford.
APS Forum Editor Jeffrey Marque said he was opening up his pages to global warming
skeptics because of "the considerable presence within the scientific community" of
people who don't accept the global warming thesis. Previously, leaders of APS had
said the evidence was "incontrovertible."
Another scientist who's changed his mind is David Evans, who constructed climate
models for the Australian Greenhouse Office.
"When I started that job in 1999, the evidence that carbon emissions caused global
warming seemed pretty good," Mr. Evans said. But "by 2007 the evidence was pretty
conclusive that carbon played only a minor role."