09 March 2007

Al Gore Is A Hypocrite?

A number of people (alas, anonymous, sigh...) have stopped by the blog to call Al Gore a hypocrite because of the large amount of energy his "rich person" house consumes and therefore the CO2 it contributes to the overall global warming.

Allow me to allow Gregg Easterbrook of the Brooking Institution (no flunky for liberals I assure you) from
his column in the NY Times to fill you in on why it ain't so:

"TerraPass charges $1,247.50 for one year of carbon offsets for a home like Mr. Gore’s, the price including a refrigerator magnet proclaiming the home “carbon balanced.” Initially I found it hard to believe anyone could counteract Mr. Gore’s prodigious energy lust for just $1,247.50, since planting about 20,000 trees would be required to neutralize even half his house’s carbon footprint.

But it turns out that TerraPass does its good works in part by covering landfills to prevent methane from seeping out. Since methane is a far more potent greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide, covering landfills is a cost-effective way to wrestle with global warming. I may be annoyed by Mr. Gore’s hectoring, but I’m not going to accuse him of hypocrisy on this one. "

I just bought enough credits to offset most if not all of my CO2 footprint. I hope my anonymous complainers will visit TerraPass and see how cheap it is to get rid of at least some of our collective guilt and hypocrisy in the global warming crisis.


5 comments:

The Artist said...

Al Gore stated on Australian Television that his family is carbon neutral.

Kurt said...

I have heard this as well. Conservatives don't really care, though.

ltlf653 said...

Just wanted to point out that Al Gore will never go truly "carbon neutral" if he works through TerraPass. That company is unfortunately awfully good at selling offsets that aren't necessarily legitimate.

TerraPass obtains its offsets on the Chicago Climate Exchange, so there's no direct guarantee that the projects that the offset revenue (read: your money when you purchase offsets or Al Gore's money) funds are brand spanking new. No guarantee that the offset purchaser is the direct cause of a new, say, wind farm and therefore the direct cause of fossil fuel use being displaced.

Few retail offset providers actually guarantee this "additionality," or the fact that the offset purchaser is ensuring that a renewable energy project in need of capital is built--and without the offset revenue, wouldn't be. NativeEnergy does ensure this--that's where I purchase my offsets. I know I'm actually doing something and not just paying lip service!

Steve1960 said...

I don't care about the offsets-he is still using energy he is preaching others not to use.

Suppose a pro-life politician admitted that his wife one had an abortion, but they "offset" it by
paying for another couples adoption. The liberal media would be all over him.

In honor of Al, I am going to buy a Hummer

Asana Bear said...

Actually Steve,if you ever visit again, you analogy is quite off base. A better one is that Al and Tipper decide to have another child and pay you NOT to have one in order to be population neutral!