In a recent interview, former Vice President Al Gore sounded the alarm of an impending “planetary emergency” if the Keystone Pipeline gets approved or if plans for Northwest coal export terminals proceed.
“We have a planetary emergency,” said Mr. Gore. “I know it drives some people nuts when I say that, but dammit, that’s what we face.”
It seems there’s big money to be made in the “planetary emergency” business: since leaving the White House in 2001, Mr. Gore’s assets have gone from less than $2 million to an estimated $100 million.
Much of that money was made through green energy deals subsidized by taxpayers. Fourteen of Mr. Gore’s green tech companies bagged over “$2.5 billion in loans, grants and tax breaks, part of President Obama’s historic push to seed a U.S. renewable-energy industry with public money.”
Still, Mr. Gore says he doesn’t personally profit from his work on behalf of Mother Earth:
I have given, and do give, every year, 100 percent of my salary and 100 percent of distributions from Kleiner Perkins [a venture capital investment firm] to the Climate Reality Project. There is absolutely no income of any sort from Kleiner Perkins that I do not give completely and totally to the Climate Reality Project.
In a 2009 congressional hearing, Mr. Gore appeared offended when questioned about the massive money he’s made in the green energy business.
“I believe that the transition to a green economy is good for our economy and good for all of us, and I have invested in it,” he said. “If you believe that the reason I have been working on this issue for 30 years is because of greed, you don’t know me.”
Today, Mr. Gore makes up to $175,000 a speech for delivering his “planetary emergency” talk.