Al Gore deserves an Oscar for hypocrisy to go along with the two Academy Awards his movie won last night, contends a think tank from his home state Tennessee.
The former vice president’s mansion in the posh Belle Meade area of Nashville consumes more electricity every month than the average American household uses in an entire year, says the
Tennessee Center for Policy Research, citing data from the Nashville Electric Service.
Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth, a 95-minute film warning of a coming cataclysm due to man-made “global warming,” won the award for best documentary feature and best song.
“My fellow Americans, people all over the world, we need to solve the climate crisis,” Gore said after taking the stage. “It’s not a political issue, it’s a moral issue. We have everything we need to get started, with the possible exception of the will to act. That’s a renewable resource. Let’s renew it.”
Standing with Gore on the stage last night, actor Leonardo DiCaprio said, to applause, “The American film industry has always taken its obligations to society very seriously and it’s now stepping up once again. Tonight, we’re proud to announce that for the first time in the history of the Oscars, this show has officially gone green.
Gore then followed with, “Which means that environmentally intelligent practices have been integrated fully into every aspect of the planning and production of these Academy Awards. And you know what: It is not as hard as you might think. We have a long way to go. But all of us can do something in our own lives to make a difference.”
But according to the Tennessee think tank, while the average American household consumed 10,656 kilowatt-hours last year, Gore devoured nearly 221,000 – more than 20 times the national average.
Tennessee Center for Policy Research President Drew Johnson said that “as the spokesman of choice for the global warming movement, Al Gore has to be willing to walk to walk, not just talk the talk, when it comes to home energy use.”
Last August alone, according to Johnson’ group, Gore burned through 22,619 kilowatt-hours of electricity, more than twice the amount in one month that an average American family uses in an entire year.
Gore’s average monthly electric bill, the think tank says, is $1,359.
Since the release of Gore’s film, the former vice president and presidential candidate’s energy consumption has increased from an average of 16,200 kilowatt-hours per month in 2005, to 18,400 per month in 2006.
The Tennessee group also points out natural gas bills for Gore’s mansion and guest house averaged $1,080 per month last year.
Gore paid a total of nearly $30,000 in combined electricity and natural gas bills for his Nashville estate in 2006.
Responding to critics, Gore has described the lifestyle he and his wife Tipper live as “carbon neutral,” meaning he tries to offset any energy usage, including plane flights and car trips, by “purchasing verifiable reductions in CO2 elsewhere.”