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Al Gore’s “An Inconvenient Truth” may have inspired many to participate in yesterday’s “Earth Hour” by switching off their lights from 8:30 p.m. to 9 p.m., but maybe the former vice president didn’t get the memo.
Drew Johnson, the president of the Tennessee Center for Policy Research, decided to drive by Gore’s mansion in Nashville at 8:48 p.m. and records that floodlights were on illuminating the driveway leading up to the main quarter.
“I pulled up to Al’s house, located in the posh Belle Meade section of Nashville, at 8:48 p.m. – right in the middle of Earth Hour,” he wrote on his blog. “I found that the main spotlights that usually illuminate his 9,000 square foot mansion were dark, but several of the lights inside the house were on.”
He added: “The kicker, though, were the dozen or so floodlights grandly highlighting several trees and illuminating the driveway entrance of Gore’s mansion. I [kid] you not, my friends, the savior of the environment couldn’t be bothered to turn off the gaudy lights that show off his goofy trees.”
Earth Hour was deemed a huge success by its organizers, the World Wildlife Fund. The group estimated that 1 billion worldwide took part.
From an Antarctic research base and the Great Pyramids of Egypt, from the Colosseum in Rome to the Empire State building in New York, illuminated patches of the globe went dark last night to highlight what the group believes is a man-made threat of climate change. Time zone by time zone, nearly 4,000 cities and towns in 88 countries dimmed nonessential lights from 8:30 p.m. to 9:30 p.m., according to organizers.
WWF called the event, which began in Australia in 2007 and grew last year to 400 cities worldwide, “the world’s first-ever global vote about the future of our planet.”
The United Nations’ top climate official, Yvo de Boer, called the event a clear sign that the world wants negotiators seeking a climate change agreement to set an ambitious course to fight global warming.
The event was initiated with hopes of impacting talks in Bonn this week to craft a deal to control emissions of the heat-trapping gases supposedly responsible for “global warming.” The talks are due to culminate in Copenhagen this December.
“Earth Hour was probably the largest public demonstration on climate change ever,” de Boer told delegates from 175 nations. “Its aim was to tell every government representative to seal a deal in Copenhagen. The world’s concerned citizens have given the negotiations an additional and very clear mandate.”