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Al Gore: world's first carbon billionaire?

Former Vice President Al Gore has a new book out. Called "Our Choice," it argues that the technologies exist to clean up the climate if the political will can be mustered.

But conservative critics such as U.S. Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.) are making the case that Gore, who has long had a passion on environmental issues, stands to profit personally from the energy and climate bills he is lobbying Congress to enact.


Today's New York Times takes a look at the issue, noting that Bill Clinton's vice president makes a lot of money from supporting green companies.The Democrat who lost the 2000 election to George W. Bush by a few hundred hanging chad ballots in Florida has apparently become the world's first carbon billionaire.

The founder of Generation Investment Management, Gore earns a partner’s salary Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers, one of Silicon Valley's top venture capitalists. According to the Times, last year Kleiner Perkins loaned a California company, Silver Spring Networks, $75 million to produce hardware and software to improve electricity grid efficiency. Last week the deal paid off big time when the Energy Department announced $560 million in smart grid grants to Silver Spring utility clients.

The upshot: Gore and his partners could recover their investment many times over in coming years.

For his part, Gore says that he is just putting his money where his mouth is.

“Do you think there is something wrong with being active in business in this country?” he told the Times. “I am proud of it. I am proud of it.”

-- Johanna Neuman

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Comments () | Archives (11)

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Al Gore should be in prison, he is no different then Charles Ponzi. He's becoming filthy rich by promoting the lie of "Global Warming" and creating this fraudulent carbon credit market.

Boy you can't win being green.
Nobody chastises the industrial polluters when they make obscene profits while destroying our future (ie: big oil, coal, etc).
After conservative gasbags (politicians, economists) spent DECADES arguing that going green would be unprofitable and destroy America, now they're on the attack when it proves to BE profitable.
Gore deserves every cent he's made.

Gore is such a shameless boob.

Dear Jake:

Industrialists do not act as semi-messianic figures or claim holier than thou attitudes about why they are in business. They are in business to make money, and do not pretend to have other purposes. Al Gore pretends to be a messianic figure in order to make money.

It is not making money I object to, but the pretense.

I applaud US Rep. Blackburn, Al Gore and the Global Warming Hoax pouts
a strangle hold on the US economy!!!!!

Hey Al Gore, man are you a little too sensitive? She was only asking you a simple question!

This is all very sad. I feel sorry for Al Gore, he is clearly stealing from the poor and giving to himself. Why does he live in mansions and refuse to give up eating meat? But then goes around talking about how we need to tax people for eating meat or using too much energy???
Just like water, sunlight, and oxygen; carbon dioxide is needed to do anything productive on this planet. So am I going to one day be taxed for exercising, since I am emitting more CO2 then if I were sitting on the couch watching TV?
The Copenhagen Treaty is not about "going green" or environmentalism. It is about slavery and population reduction!!
Al Gore has sold out America and in return been given a small slice of the profits. The billions he is going to make are only a fraction of what the Rockefellers and the Rothschilds are going to make off of this.
This is Our Choice to bow down and pay into Al Gore's religion, or Our Choice to stand up to Global Tyranny!!!

Yeah, so ? What is wrong with making money by investing in new ventures? actually it is pretty risky. shouldn't one be rewarded for taking risks?

Rothschilds.

Another attempt by the same "Swift Boat" types that want to discredit the issue. WE WON"T ADDRESS those who are PROFITTING BILLIONS by keeping the status quo.
This is NOT only about climate change or global warming people.
Even if AL GORE is wrong about it, it is an ENERGY USE ISSUE.
If you don't believe me read T. Boone Pickens, who is a Repubican billionaire oilman, book on our dangerous energy mix.
We are IMPORTING 65-70% of our OIL (a prime contibutor to climate change) and have a DEPLETION RATE OF 4% PER YEAR OF OUR DOMESTIC FIELDS! Soon we will be importing 90%!!
Please shale, oil sands, drill, drill, drill policies will be a drop in the bucket compared to the growth expected.
Quess we will do it when we are forced to when gas hits $5.00 a gallon again.
I've been around a long time and we wasted over 30 years doing nothing--- our grandchilden will curse us for it--
but, heh, what did they evr do for US (ME, ME, ME).
Let us continue to spend billions in the wars in the Middle East for our oil.

If Gore was a conservative, the conservative peanut gallery would be congratulating him on his savvy business acumen.

Yet,there's no conservative whining about the greatest transfer of wealth in the history of the world ie; dollars for foreign oil. That's business, right?

Considering his contribution to his country, this is small compensation.


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About the Columnist
A veteran foreign and national correspondent, Andrew Malcolm has served on the L.A. Times Editorial Board and was a Pulitzer finalist in 2004. He is the author of 10 nonfiction books and father of four. Read more.
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