What is Al Gore's climate reality project?

By Roddy Scheer
Al Gore, former vice president, launched the Climate Reality Project.
Al Gore, former vice president, launched the Climate Reality Project.
--Image: Climate Reality Project
Dear EarthTalk: What exactly is Al Gore’s Climate Reality Project and how does it work to train activists?   

  -- Kelly G., Washington, D.C.
    The Climate Reality Project is a nonprofit launched in 2011 by Nobel laureate and former Vice President Al Gore following the release of his influential book and documentary film, An Inconvenient Truth. The organization serves as the nerve center of Gore’s advocacy and education efforts on the need to ratchet down greenhouse gas emissions to stave off the cataclysmic effects of global warming.
     The primary focus now is in training volunteer advocates—so-called “Climate Reality Leaders”—to go into their communities and educate policymakers and members of the public about the need to mitigate climate change while countering so-called “climate denial” efforts funded by oil companies and perpetuated by right-wing think tanks. So far, some 10,000 individuals from 135 countries have participated in the organization's training events.
    The primary tool these Climate Reality Leaders use to spread the word is a regularly updated slide show, created by Gore in 2011, that lays out the facts behind climate change. It details example after example of human-induced global warming wreaking havoc by lashing low-lying areas with massive storms, killing thousands with blistering heat waves and turning human populations already marginalized by war and famine into climate refugees searching for safer places to live.
    Meanwhile, the organization's free “Reality Drop” news aggregator tool collects online news stories about climate change that activists can share on social media channels to dispel myths about global warming and set the record straight for millions of friends, fans and followers.
    Most recently, the Climate Reality Project has supported the creation and distribution of the follow-up to an Inconvenient Truth, a new documentary entitled An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power. The film, released worldwide in July 2017, follows Gore around the world, documenting how global warming is already ravaging the planet. The organization is working to get the film in front of millions of viewers, as it did with the original film, in hopes of inspiring a new generation of citizen activists.
    And come December, the organization will host its seventh annual “24 Hours of Reality,” a free, live-streamed multimedia event that showcases programs to fight climate change in each of the world’s top 24 greenhouse gas emitting countries. It aims to show viewers things they can do even if their country’s leaders aren’t as invested in positive change as they could be.
   “When you talk, your friends and family listen,” the organization reports. “That’s why it’s so important that every climate activist use their voice to spread the truth about the climate crisis.” Even those who haven’t attended a Climate Reality Project event can download the free “I Am Still In” action kit, which teaches people how to build support for clean energy and other climate solutions at the community level.
    “There are many ways to use your voice, and whether you write a letter to the editor of your local paper or call your representative or talk to your neighbors, you can make a difference in sharing the truth and shaping public opinion right when your planet needs you,” the organization concludes.


     Climate Reality Project

     Reality Drop

     24 Hours of Reality


     How to fight anti-environmental policies

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