Al Gore: Solving ‘Climate Crisis’ Will ‘Save the Future of Civilization’

By Penny Starr | May 5, 2016 | 4:43pm EDT

Al Gore.  

( Starr.)

( – Former Vice President Al Gore said on Thursday that solving what he called the “climate crisis” would not only help the U.S. and global economy but could save civilization itself.

Speaking at the Climate Action 2016 summit in Washington, D.C., Gore said the “Number One threat to the global economy is the climate crisis,” which also threatens the U.S. economy, and that turning that around requires investment in the right kind of infrastructure here and abroad.

In the United States, Gore called for “physical stimulus in a coordinated way aimed at infrastructure that the country needs, which means de-carbonization, renewable energy, batteries, energy storage, sustainable forestry, sustainable agriculture.”

“This is the opportunity to save the economy and a side benefit would be to save the future of civilization,” Gore said.

Judith Rodin, president of the Rockefeller Foundation, also spoke at the event and called climate change an “urgent issue.”

She said leaders should look to communities that are tackling climate change, such as New Orleans, which is losing “a football field” of land on an hourly basis.

“So often we find the best solutions, the truly breakthrough – kind of groundbreaking innovations – are already at work in some communities somewhere in the world,” Rodin said.

“For example, the city of New Orleans is working to restore their bayous, their wetlands triangle, which are very vulnerable by rebuilding critical areas of the coast that are subject to coastal erosion and reducing economic activity, as well as the well-being of their population,” Rodin said.

“This is an urgent issue,” she said. “Think about this.”

Judith Rodin, president of the

Rockefeller Foundation. 

( Starr)

“Louisiana is losing a football field of land every hour,” Rodin said.

The two-day summit, which ends Friday, May 6, is being staged to press for global compliance with the climate change agreement signed by 174 countries and the European Union in December in Paris.

Three members of the Obama Cabinet are scheduled to speak on Friday, including Shaun Donovan, director of the Office of Management and Budget, Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy, and Tom Vilsack, Agriculture secretary.

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