Al Gore and Alain Hubert discuss “An Inconvenient Truth”

On October 8 Al Gore, the man who now describes himself, tongue-in-cheek, as someone who "used to be the next president of the United States", visited Brussels to premiere his box-office hit documentary, An Inconvenient Truth. Alain Hubert, head of the International Polar Foundation met with Gore at the media conference prior to the film's screening to discuss the importance of communicating to as broad an audience as possible the scientific basis of our understanding of climate change. Much of this basis derives, of course, from research conducted at the poles.

Gore is looking for partners in his global quest to set in motion, through effective communication, a political response to the "moral issue" he identifies in his film: the need for humanity to look at reducing its greenhouse gas emissions in order to avoid doing major damage to the planet's climate systems. Hubert and Gore had a positive initial exchange which they will explore further when Hubert visits the US towards the end of the year.

Stavros Dimas, European Commissioner for the Environment, introduced Al Gore, noting that Gore had a major force in part of bringing the issue of climate change to the top of political agendas. Gore responded to Dimas's call for the US to do more to address climate change with an apology for the "moral lapses" of the current US administration, but he highlighted the extent of action by many US states and cities. His film highlights that over 200 US cities have committed to take action to reduce greenhouse gas emissions levels below those that the Kyoto Protocol would have required them to do. He also told the packed Bozar concert hall (where the film premiere took place) that California Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger had promised "to sell my Hummer" after viewing An Inconvenient Truth.

Certainly, the film lived up to its promise in setting out clearly and very entertainingly the complex, and yet compelling, case for why the planet's climate is under serious threat from human actions. The International Polar Foundation looks forward to working together with Mr Gore to advance the cause of getting this message across as often and to as many people as needed to accelerate positive socio-economic change in the interests of truly sustainable development.