Good evening everyone! I’m Gill Simmons. Tonight we have the pleasure to introduce you to a very special guest in our environmental program ìThe Green Worldî. Mr. Al Gore, former vice president of the USA was awarded the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize for his struggle against climate change. In 2006, Mr Al Gore started his campaign to fight the effects of global warming. At its centre was his film,”An Inconvenient Truth,” which stars Al Gore himself and was greeted with surprisingly positive press. Since he lost the 2000′ elections, Al Gore has been travelling the globe with a computer presentation on global warming. It was at one of those presentations that Gore was convinced to star in a documentary based on his climate slideshow. Producer David Guggenstein directed it, and the movie
was ready in little over a year. Al Gore is here to speak with us about the problems of the world environment.
Gill Simmons: Good evening, Mr Gore! Tell us, please, why worry about the future of our world? Is there such a serious problem?
Gore: Yes, absolutely! The relationship between our civilization and the earth has been radically transformed. Global warming is the most serious manifestation of the problem. Scientific studies show us things are getting worse. And a lot of people have been absorbing this message, and they’re now saying, “Wait a minute, we really have to do something about this.”
Gill: Where did you get your initial interest in this issue?
Gore: When I was at college I had a professor who was the first person to measure CO2 in the earth’satmosphere. He saw that the excessive use of coal and oil was beginning to radically change the concentration of CO2 in the atmosphere.
Gill: That was long ago…
Gore: Yes, itís true. Since then, Iíve watched those numbers continue to go up band what my professor said almost 40 years ago has come true.
Gill: How was it you decided to make a movie about it?
Gore: You see, after I left the White House in January 2001, I started giving a slide show on global warming. On one occasion, my wife made me see that I could use computers to improve my presentation. Once I did that, it was much better and more compelling.
Gill: But that was only a computer presentation, not a film!
Gore: Well, yes but what happened was that, at one of the showings in Los Angeles several people from the entertainment industry came and asked me if I would consider making this into a movie. I was not sure about that, but they said the film would be mainly scientific and that it would be true to the integrity of the message; and they have actually done a fantastic job!
Gill: Did you have direct control over the movie? Or did you leave it in the hands of the creative team?
Gore: I want to be careful in answering this, because I donít want to step on the creative role that the moviemakers played: Itís their vision and itís their movie, particularly David Guggenstein’s. But at every step he consulted me. We had a mutual agreement on every aspect of that.
Gill: Now, let’s talk briefly about some proposed solutions. Nuclear power is now seen as a solution to climate change. What do you think?
Gore: I don’t think nuclear power will play a much larger role in the future than it does now. There are serious problems that go together with it…
Gill: Like what?
Gore: Long-term waste-storage and the vulnerability to a terrorist attack, as well as other considerations…
Gill: How about the other big, new source, ethanol?
Gore: I think it is going to be a big new source of energy, particularly for the transportation sector. You’re going to see a lot more flex-fuel vehicles. Youíre going to see new processes that use waste as the source of energy, so there’s no petroleum consumed there.
Gill: However, President Bush and others still suggest more research is needed.
Gore: Some people, including the President, donít seem to accept the truth. Itís inconvenient. This administration is quite responsive to the oil and coal industries. And they do not want anything done on global warming.
Gill: Why, Mr Gore?
Gore: Basically, because they used to believe that the issue was exaggerated. Secondly, they are financing disinformation on global warming, which is designed to confuse the American people. And the third reason is that some ideological conservatives think the government must not play a larger role in the situation.
Gill: Do you think they will change their mind?
Gore: I hope they will. Maybe after exhausting every other alternative, President Bush will finally do the right thing. If the scientists are right and we only have 10 years, we canít give up two and a half years out of 10 to wait for the President to accept reality.
Gill: But the government has not agreed to sign the Kyoto protocol yet…
Gore: There are 218 U.S. cities that have adopted Kyoto on their own. That will make the President see he must make a change.
Gill: Some people said this film was a strategy for your campaign for the next presidential elections. Now that we know you are not running for the presidential election, what do youhave to say to that?
Gore: Well it is a campaign, but itís not a political campaign. Itís a campaign to change the way our country thinks about global warming. There are many ways to serve my county, and Iím enjoying them.
Gill: Well, thank you very much, Mr Gore. This has been a very interesting conversation, and I hope your film helps people realize how serious the problem is.
Gore: I only want to help people see their involvement is crucial for our common future.
Gill: Iím sure you’ll achieve it, Mr Gore.
Gore: Thank you.
(Adapted from Newsweek©and Grist©)