Al Gore on Breaking the Law

September 24th, 2008

Posted by: Roger Pielke, Jr.

[UPDATE: The 9/25 NYT provides some additional context, see below.]

Al Gore explains who should start breaking the law and who he thinks is already breaking the law:

“If you’re a young person looking at the future of this planet and looking at what is being done right now, and not done, I believe we have reached the stage where it is time for civil disobedience to prevent the construction of new coal plants that do not have carbon capture and sequestration,” Gore told the Clinton Global Initiative gathering to loud applause.

“I believe for a carbon company to spend money convincing the stock-buying public that the risk from the global climate crisis is not that great represents a form of stock fraud because they are misrepresenting a material fact,” he said. “I hope these state attorney generals around the country will take some action on that.”

[UPDATE]The 9/25 NYT reports on the statement the following:

Mr. Gore said the civil disobedience should focus on “stopping the construction of new coal plants,” which he said would add tons of carbon dioxide to the atmosphere — despite “half a billion dollars’ worth of advertising by the coal and gas industry” claiming otherwise. He added, “Clean coal does not exist.”

The audience at the Sheraton New York Hotel and Towers, which was composed of hundreds of heads of state and chief executives, as well as representatives of philanthropic groups, reacted with scattered applause. There was a lot of shifting in seats.

Mr. Gore did not elaborate on his call for action. And almost as soon as the words “civil disobedience” were out of his mouth, Mr. Clinton, moderating a panel that Mr. Gore shared with the singer Bono, the president of Liberia, the chairman of Coca-Cola and Queen Rania of Jordan, turned to the queen to ask whether Middle Eastern countries might ever become “models of clean energy usage.” The discussion continued in a less-fiery vein from there.

4 Responses to “Al Gore on Breaking the Law”

  1. Sylvain Says:

    Well I guess that this was to be expected.

    I guess Steven Spielberg can start working on a sequel to the movie Minority report. A movie where people were convicted before the crime was actually happened.

    On a more serious note isn’t there laws against incitation to violence?

  2. 2
  3. stan Says:

    Algore calling out people for lying about global warming? Algore?!! The guy who produced “Inconvenient Truth”? The guy who has increased his net worth by over 100 million bucks pushing the lies he told in his movie is now concerned with securities fraud?

    Whoa. Chutzpah to the nth power.

    I think there may very well be some securities fraud litigation some day for false statements made in the course of raising capital to fund corporations. And Mr. Gore will likely find himself thoroughly enmeshed.

  4. 3
  5. Roger Pielke, Jr. Says:

    Joe Romm calls Gore out as hypocritical:

    “If Gore really believes that civil disobedience is an important strategy — then he needs to lead the effort and go chain himself to some fences and sit in front of some bulldozers with thousands of others. If he won’t, then this is all just talk. Gandhi and King certainly never sat around with a bunch of world leaders in a big, fancy hotel and urged others to do that which they were not prepared to do any time or anyplace, over and over again, until the cause was won.”

  6. 4
  7. Sylvain Says:

    Maybe Al Gore could organize a sit in his jet to complain about people who fly around the world for no reason.

    After all he his already doing the sitting in an airplane part.