Nov. 3, 2009 -- Al Gore has been advocating for climate change for 30 years, and the former vice president said he is more than willing to put his "money where his mouth is" and invest in green companies.
In an interview on "Good Morning America" this morning, the climate change guru commented on a quote from a story in Tuesday's New York Times that referred to Gore as the first "carbon billionaire" and said he profited from policies he supported.
Gore said the comment was from a "denier" and "certainly not true.
"I am proud to put my money where my mouth is for the past 30 years," Gore told Diane Sawyer. "And though that is not the majority of my business activities, I absolutely believe in investing in accordance with my beliefs and my values."
Climate Change Conference
The former vice president said the upcoming United Nations Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen will mark one step toward accomplishing that goal and provides an opportunity to "create millions of new jobs here at home and reduce our dangerous dependence on foreign oil by relying on energy that is here in the United States, renewable energy that creates jobs that can't be outsourced."
President Obama has not yet committed to attending the conference, which takes place Dec. 7 to Dec. 18, but Gore said he feels "certain" the president will be there.
"I hope that he does go. And this conference is very crucial. First, because the scientists have been saying for quite some time we still have time to avoid the worst of the consequences of this cataclysm that is now unfolding," Gore said. "But we don't have a lot of time, and this is the best opportunity."
Climate Change Conference
"President Obama has already committed an enormous amount in his green stimulus. His EPA has issued regulations requiring a reduction of CO2," Gore said.
Gore said he believes there is an "excellent chance" the Senate would pass legislation before the conference that would "strengthen" the president's hand.
"This roller coaster is heading toward a crash, and we are in the front car. We need to protect our national security, create more jobs here at home and solve the climate crisis and do right by our kids," Gore told Sawyer.
China's Role in Climate Change
"Well, actually in the last three years, China has done a U-turn. They are still opening a lot of coal plants, but they will be the No. 1 solar power and wind power in the world by next year," Gore said, adding that the country plants 2½ more trees than the world combined.
Glenn Beck's Challenge
"I am siding with PETA on this one, once again asking Al Gore, 'If you really want to save the planet, put down the cheeseburgers and pick up your veggie burger. Time for maybe soy milk and Tofurky,'" Beck said, referring to the methane cows emit.
Gore agreed that the gas from cows is a problem and a "legitimate issue," but he would not commit to Tofurky.
"Like a lot of people, I eat a lot less meat than I used to," Gore said. "I'm not a vegetarian [and] don't plan to become one."
A Return to Politics?
"I'm a recovering politician," the former presidential candidate said. "I'm on about step nine now."
Gore would not comment on today's elections or whether he believes they are a referendum on the Obama presidency.
"I'm one who strongly believes that the voters ought to decide this, and they are voting today," Gore said. "I prefer to let them make the decision, and we can talk about it tomorrow whatever happens."