Energy & Environment

Gore: Trump prompting ‘biggest upsurge’ of climate activism ever

Larry French/Getty Images for SiriusXM

Former Vice President Al Gore is finding one bright spot in President Trump’s decision to withdraw from the Paris climate agreement: an explosion of pro-climate activism. 

Citing Newton’s Third Law — every action has an equal and opposite reaction — Gore said he is emboldened by the defense he’s seen of the climate ever since Trump’s controversial decision to pull the U.S. out of the accord. 
“What we are seeing in the United States of America today is the biggest upsurge of activism in favor of the climate that we have ever experienced. And it’s in reaction to what President Trump has said,” Gore said during a taping of a SiriusXM/Variety Magazine town hall interview. 
“And we are seeing the same thing around the world — the other countries have doubled down on their commitment,” Gore continued.
{mosads}Trump’s decision makes America one of just a handful of nations not participating in the international agreement to curb pollution. 
Trump’s decision to withdraw has been met with criticism from environmental groups and protests. Most notably, the People’s Climate March this spring in Washington drew thousands who marched to ask the administration to stay in the international agreement. 
The administration announced its intention to withdraw one month after that rally, a decision that sparked another protest outside the White House. 
Gore has been upping his media appearances ahead of the premiere of his new movie, “An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power,” which discusses climate change. 
The politician-turned-climate change activist struck a hopeful tone about the bigger picture, noting that “we still have the ability to avoid the most catastrophic consequences we could never adapt to.” 
“Because people are now awakening to it and we now have the solutions available to us, the only remaining element needed is political will. But political will is a renewable resource and its my hope the movie will contribute to renewing that political will,” he said. 
“The decades just ahead will be a test of the courage and character of human kind,” Gore said.
Gore also repeated his recent disappointment in Trump. The pair met during Trump’s transition period at a meeting Gore described as “cordial” — and one that gave him hope.
“He listened and participated and I came away with the impression there was a good chance he would come to his senses, but, yes, I was wrong about that,” Gore said.
He added that he had spoken with Trump on other occasions but not since the Paris decision. 
While he repeatedly declined to shed light on their private conversations, Gore pointed to Trump’s public comments instead. 
“If you look just at his public pronouncements, it would give you great concern,” he said. 
The interview will debut Friday on SiriusXM’s POTUS channel.  
Tags Al Gore Al Gore Climate change skepticism and denial Donald Trump United States withdrawal from the Paris Agreement
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