Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Al Gore's Investment Biz Stands to Make Hundreds of Millions Through Energy Department Grants

I have a friend, a man that I care very much for, who always engages me in a spirited debate any time I mention that some scientists dispute the "consensus" on man-made global warming. Or "climate change." Or whatever we are calling it now, since there hasn't been any significant warming in a decade and "a natural swing in climate to the cool side has been holding greenhouse warming back," according to certain NASA climate experts.

Anyway, this great friend and I went to high school together in the 1990s and, as a general rule, disagree on nearly every political issue. Gosh, but I adore him, anyway. My friend, let's call him - oh, I don't know - "EatTheWeak."

One thing that EatTheWeak has said to me several times is that "it brings the environmental movement ZERO PLEASURE to have to bear such grim news." Essentially, that the anthropogenic global warming movement's mouthpieces, like Al Gore, have nothing to gain by inciting worldwide panic with their doomsday predictions and dire warnings.

We can cross Al Gore off the list of those not having anything to gain. According to the New York Times, the Energy Department has awarded smart grid grants totaling over $560 million to utilities that have contracts with Silver Spring, a company that Al Gore has financially backed. Silver Spring "produces hardware and software to make the electricity grid more efficient."

According to the NYT article, "few have put as much money behind their advocacy as Mr. Gore and are as well positioned to profit from this green transformation, if and when it comes."

Personally, I think "consensus" is a strong word - especially when there are many vocal opponents to the science, whose credentials are equal to or, in many cases, superior to those at the lectern (can anyone provide Al Gore's science CV, please?).

I'm not ready to commit to the consensus theory just yet. Still, I do things that are good for the planet, in the event that the size of my carbon footprint actually matters. I take public transit. I shop locally and buy local produce when I can. My appliances are all high-efficiency and low-water. My house is green-built. I'm a vegan, for Pete's sake!

Recently, I watched Not Evil, Just Wrong (yup, that's an affiliate link - you can help me feed my kids local organic produce, grown with community compost materials in low-irrigation containers through the winter by buying the DV). The movie spent as much time focusing on the human consequences as it did on offering opposing scientific data that debunk many of Gore's claims, like "Mann's hockey stick" was debunked.

One of the featured interviewees in the film, Patrick Moore (one of the founding members of Greenpeace), said of environmental zealots, "They care more about fish eggs than humans, and there’s something immoral about that," in regard to the misanthropic views of many.

For some, like the lower middle-class families that work in coal-based communities, or for the families of hundreds of Ugandan children dying each day from malaria after the banning of DDT... for those, certainly, there is no joy in the news the environmental movement brings.

What if, like Al they stood to gain hundreds of millions of dollars as a return on their investment in "green" businesses? Surely, there'd be a bit of joy to be found SOMEWHERE in those hundreds of millions of dollars... I mean, surely, just a teensy bit of joy?




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