Global warming hysteria has been very good to Al Gore. He’s made a fortune on his book, his movie, and associated enterprises. How does he spend that fortune? Most recently by buying a 100-foot houseboat; how else?
People don’t usually think of 100-foot houseboats with gigantic, fuel-burning engines as a low-footprint form of entertainment. But Gore, characteristically, claims that he owns a green 100-foot houseboat, the “Toyota Prius of houseboats,” as the yacht’s builder puts it. Gore christened his boat Bio-Solar 1–“BS 1″ for short–because it runs on bio-diesel fuel and, one of these days, Gore is planning on adding solar panels. I’m not sure just what the solar panels will do, but they definitely won’t be powering the craft’s gigantic engine or engines.
Gore assures us that his 100-foot houseboat is so “green” that it “will create 40-50% less carbon emission and use half the fuel of other similar houseboats.” Let’s take that claim at face value. I haven’t been able to find data on carbon emissions by “similar houseboats”–there aren’t many 100-foot houseboats around–but I located this information about a much smaller (60 foot) houseboat:
Generally speaking, they burn just on 10 gals an hour at full cruising speed. (10 mph) This includes the Westebeak generator’s 1.5 gal an hour to look after electricity. Whilst anchored, depending on how cold the air conditioning is and other power outlets running, the generator will burn just over 1 gal an hour 24/7.
If we assume that a boat spends six hours cruising (60 gallons) and 18 hours at anchor (18 gallons), that boat–one-half the size of Gore’s–will consume 78 gallons of fuel for every 24 hours of use. Let’s take Gore at his word and assume that his much larger boat will emit just half as much carbon into the atmosphere as this benchmark. That would be 39 gallons per 24 hours. If you get 25 miles per gallon in your car, you would have to drive 975 miles–farther than from Chicago to New York–to emit an equal amount of carbon. And that doesn’t count the jetski on the back of Gore’s elephantine boat, which, you can be sure, takes real gasoline:
Personally, I don’t care whether Al Gore spends his entire day pursuing gasoline sports–four-wheeling, flying private airplanes, cruising in an over-sized yacht. He’s rich, and he’s entitled. But Gore got rich by telling the rest of us that the planet faces a crisis, that civilization is threatened, and that it is urgently necessary for all of us to stop emitting carbon at the earliest possible moment. Meanwhile, Gore himself goes out of his way–after all, most of us get by without cruising on 100-foot boats–to emit extraordinary amounts of carbon.
It is reasonable to conclude that Gore does not really believe that the planet is undergoing some kind of crisis, and does not really believe that a high priority should be placed on reducing carbon emissions. He is in it, in other words, for the money.
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