Al Gore Wins Nobel Peace Prize with U.N. Panel on Climate Change

Congratulations Al Gore! It’s official:

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Former Vice President Al Gore and the U.N.’s Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change won the 2007 Nobel Peace Prize Friday for their efforts to spread awareness of man-made climate change and lay the foundations for counteracting it.

I am deeply honored to receive the Nobel Peace Prize,” Gore said. “We face a true planetary emergency. The climate crisis is not a political issue, it is a moral and spiritual challenge to all of humanity.”

AP News reports, “Gore said he would donate his share of the $1.5 million that accompanies the prize to the Alliance for Climate Protection, a bipartisan nonprofit organization devoted to conveying the urgency of solving the climate crisis.”

In its citation, the committed lauded Gore’s “strong commitment, reflected in political activity, lectures, films and books, has strengthened the struggle against climate change. He is probably the single individual who has done most to create greater worldwide understanding of the measures that need to be adopted.”

As I suspected, at least two Gore advisers, “speaking on condition of anonymity” have said that winning “the award will not make it more likely” that Gore will jump into the ’08 presidential race. 

If anything, the Peace Prize makes the rough-and-tumble of a presidential race less appealing to Gore, they said, because now he has a huge, international platform to fight global warming and may not want to do anything to diminish it.

I’ve said here many times in the past, when discussing the likelihood of Gore running in ’08 that he’s in his element at this point in his life, why give that up to run for the presidency? A Hunter College, N.Y., political scientist Kenneth Sherrill said “Gore probably enjoys being a public person more than an elected official.”

He seems happier and liberated in the years since his loss in 2000. Perhaps winning the Nobel and being viewed as a prophet in his own time will be sufficient,” says Sherrill.

Mike Allen of Politico notes that Gore’s win will likely increase “pressure from his supporters for him to enter the Democratic race for the White House.” 

Gore’s supporters in my opinion, stepping out on a limb will do better to support him by as Gore himself said today, by using the peace prize as an “opportunity to lift global consciousness to a higher level.”

As the N.Y. Times notes today:

The prize is a vindication for Mr. Gore, whose frightening, cautionary film about the consequences of climate change, “An Inconvenient Truth,” won the 2007 Academy Award for best documentary, even as conservatives in the United States denounced it as alarmist and exaggerated.

In the blogosphere:

The Nobel Peace Prize 2007 Press Release is as follows:

The Nobel Peace Prize for 2007

The Norwegian Nobel Committee has decided that the Nobel Peace Prize for 2007 is to be shared, in two equal parts, between the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) and Albert Arnold (Al) Gore Jr. for their efforts to build up and disseminate greater knowledge about man-made climate change, and to lay the foundations for the measures that are needed to counteract such change.

Indications of changes in the earth’s future climate must be treated with the utmost seriousness, and with the precautionary principle uppermost in our minds. Extensive climate changes may alter and threaten the living conditions of much of mankind. They may induce large-scale migration and lead to greater competition for the earth’s resources. Such changes will place particularly heavy burdens on the world’s most vulnerable countries. There may be increased danger of violent conflicts and wars, within and between states.

Through the scientific reports it has issued over the past two decades, the IPCC has created an ever-broader informed consensus about the connection between human activities and global warming. Thousands of scientists and officials from over one hundred countries have collaborated to achieve greater certainty as to the scale of the warming. Whereas in the 1980s global warming seemed to be merely an interesting hypothesis, the 1990s produced firmer evidence in its support. In the last few years, the connections have become even clearer and the consequences still more apparent.

Al Gore has for a long time been one of the world’s leading environmentalist politicians. He became aware at an early stage of the climatic challenges the world is facing. His strong commitment, reflected in political activity, lectures, films and books, has strengthened the struggle against climate change. He is probably the single individual who has done most to create greater worldwide understanding of the measures that need to be adopted.

By awarding the Nobel Peace Prize for 2007 to the IPCC and Al Gore, the Norwegian Nobel Committee is seeking to contribute to a sharper focus on the processes and decisions that appear to be necessary to protect the world’s future climate, and thereby to reduce the threat to the security of mankind. Action is necessary now, before climate change moves beyond man’s control.

Oslo, 12 October 2007

*MSNBC graphic

* [Post updated from initial posting at 4:37 am pst]

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2 Responses to Al Gore Wins Nobel Peace Prize with U.N. Panel on Climate Change

  1. alrudder says:

    I think the main implication of Gore’s new buzz is to diminish Obama. Gore was an accomplished insider, who became an idealistic outsider. I doubt Gore will get in, hypothetically if he did, he couldn’t do Iowa, he’d have to go to NH first.

    The Chicago Tribune has a story today about Obama going into a “new phase” being more aggressive with HRC. He should have done that six months ago.

    I’ve always agreed with what is now conventional wisdom that he cannot comeback by being the nice, affirmational guy he made himself to be.

    BTW, how do I set up hyperlinks here?

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