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Al Gore Group Urges Obama To Create US Power Grid

Date: 07-Nov-08
Country: US
Author: Deborah Zabarenko, Environment Correspondent

On Thursday, the group Gore founded rolled out a new media campaign to push for immediate investments in three energy areas it maintains would help meet Gore's previously announced challenge to produce 100 percent clean electricity in the United States in a decade.

Pegged to Obama's election victory on Tuesday, the Gore group's ads on television, in newspapers and online, pose the question, "Now what?"

"Our nation just made history," one video says. "We have an historic opportunity to boost our economy and repower America with 100 percent clean electricity within 10 years. It will create new American jobs, end our addiction to dirty coal and foreign oil and solve the climate crisis."

More information on the campaign is available online at http://repoweramerica.org.

Gore -- former vice president, Nobel Peace laureate and star of the Oscar-winning documentary "An Inconvenient Truth" -- has said repeatedly he wants to play no official government role in the fight against climate change.

But with environmental activists talking about a possible "climate czar" in President-elect Barack Obama's White House, Gore's name inevitably gets mentioned.

IMMEDIATE ENERGY INVESTMENTS

The plan advocates immediate investment in energy efficiency, renewable power generation -- including public investment in wind, solar and geothermal technology -- and the creation of a unified national smart grid.

"Modernize transmission infrastructure so that clean electricity generated anywhere in America can power homes and businesses across the nation," the alliance said in a statement.

The alliance favours "national electricity 'interstates' that move power quickly and cheaply to where it needs to be (and) local smart grids that buy and sell power from households and support clean plug-in cars."

Gore and his group are in line with most US environmental groups, which see the next administration as a chance to act to stem global warming, after what many see as the Bush administration's stalling on this issue.

R.K. Pachauri, head of the UN Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, who shared the Nobel Peace Prize with Gore in 2007, sounded a similar note in a statement issued after the vote.

"The US now has a unique opportunity to assume leadership in meeting the threat of climate change, and it would help greatly if the new president were to announce a coherent and forward looking policy soon after he takes office," Pachauri said on his blog at http://blog.rkpachauri.org/.

(For more Reuters information on the environment, see http://blogs.reuters.com/environment/ )

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