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Al Gore Launches 24 Hours of Climate Crisis Talks Around the World
Former Vice President Al Gore kicked off 24 hours of climate talks in the U.S. and 77 other countries around the world Wednesday night.
The event, 24 Hours of Reality: Truth In Action, sponsored by The Climate Reality Project, kicked off at 6 p.m. Eastern Standard Time Wednesday and continues until 6 p.m. Thursday. Anyone who wants to find a climate presentation near them will find all the talks listed by registering for the event for free.
Presenters trained by The Climate Reality Project, which Al Gore founded, have organized presentations in more than 1,700 locations, including all 50 states and Puerto Rico, as well as sites such as Antarctica and Australia's Great Barrier Reef, as the AP reported.
Gore gave the opening climate talk Wednesday night at Vanderbilt University in his hometown of Nashville, where an audience of over 1,000 gave him a standing ovation and offered their loudest applause for Gore's suggestion that Trump could be voted out of office next year, as the AP reported.
A life-long Democrat, Gore sees the climate crisis as an issue of global urgency that transcends politics.
"I have optimism and hope, but in all candor, we've got to recognize that this is the most serious challenge that human civilization has ever faced," Gore said on Late Night with Seth Meyers.
In his speech Wednesday night, he even praised Vanderbilt's College Republicans for calling on the Republican National Committee to change its stance on climate policies, according to the AP.
The presentations are an update to the Academy Award-winning documentary "An Inconvenient Truth," highlighting how the climate crisis has accelerated over the last 13 years and what solutions are available from a policy level to a grassroots level that will help humans thwart the mounting threats from the climate crisis, as Gore explained on Late Night with Seth Meyers.
"It's a mass global event to raise awareness and to motivate people," Gore said to Meyers.
Gore says that The Climate Reality Project has trained more than 20,000 climate activists, some of whom will be fellow presenters for the talks, as the AP reported.
"This year, 24 Hours of Reality is stepping off the screen and directly into town squares, living rooms, schools, places of worship, community centers and other venues around the globe as trained Climate Reality Leaders give presentations about local climate solutions in direct interactions with their communities," said The Climate Reality Project in a press release.
Agostino Schito, an information technology program manager in Maryland, is one of those presenters. He will give a presentation from 1 to 2 p.m. Thursday in a Baltimore suburb.
"I'm not a scientist and I'm not a journalist, but I asked myself how I could engage with people who are on the fence or who don't know enough about the subject or what they can do," he said to The Baltimore Sun. "This starts the conversation."
Schito immigrated from Italy in the early 1990s and attended Gore's free leadership corps training in Minnesota in August.
"It was a very intense two days," he said to The Baltimore Sun. "Al Gore is inspirational, engaging and compelling, and I left feeling excited and ready to take action."
In Gore's speech at Vanderbilt, he expressed sympathy for migrants at the U.S. southern border, saying they are climate refugees who are hungry and looking to feed their family. He also chided Brazilian president Jair Bolsonaro, saying he gave "the green light to burn down more of the Amazon," as the AP reported.
He also said there needs to be drastic changes in Washington for policies to shift.
"We need to really clean house. Change is not happening fast enough unless we change policy," he said, according to the AP. Later he added, "To change our policies, we're going to have to change our policy makers.""They put a coal lobbyist in charge of the EPA, for God's sake. The fact that there is not widespread outrage about that is a symptom of our weakened democracy," Gore said last night, as the AP reported.
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