Al Gore, the former vice president of the United States and presidential candidate, was in Costa Rica Wednesday promoting his vision of carbon offsets to a mostly enthusiastic crowd at the Hotel Marriott in Belén.
Gore won the Nobel Prize in 2007 for his presentation “An Inconvenient Truth,” in which he warned of the effects of climate change.
Acting President Alfio Piva was quick to outline for him the sustainable efforts being made by Costa Rica, including the action this month to create a reserve around Parque Nacional Isla del Coco. President Laura Chinchilla was returning from a meeting with heads of state in Guatemala City.
Gore has made substantial investments in so-called green energy companies and has been called by critics the first carbon billionaire. Gore is an easy target. A Tennessee policy group revealed in 2007 that his mansion there has a monthly electric bill of $1,359.
Gore is calling for a freeze on U.S. carbon dioxide emissions and a system of carbon credits that would monetize the emissions, as well as a tax.
Piva also noted that Costa Rica generates about 90 percent of its electrical power from hydro, wind and geothermic sources. Piva also noted that coffee producers in San María de Dota are producing what they call carbon neutral coffee.