Al Gore slams global warming doubters at Live Earth
AFP | July 8, 2007
Former US vice president Al Gore took a swipe at global warming doubters Saturday as he opened the Washington leg of the worldwide Live Earth concerts that he helped organize.
Washington was a last-minute addition to the global event months after organizers failed to find a space on the US capital's National Mall, a sprawling green space featuring monuments including the Congress building.
Other events had reportedly already booked spaces for the same day on the Mall, while a subsequent bid by some lawmakers to bring the show to the doorsteps of the US Capitol was blocked by some Republican lawmakers.
But the National Museum of the American Indian finally offered its venue on the Mall for the show, which featured the Native American band Blues Nation and an acoustic performance from country music stars Garth Brooks and Trisha Yearwood.
"Some who don't understand what is now at stake tried to stop this event on the Mall," the former Democratic presidential candidate said in a thinly veiled hit on members of President George W. Bush's Republican party.
"But here we are," he said as an image of a bright Earth shined behind him. "And it wasn't the cavalry who came to our rescue, it was the American Indian."
A few hundred spectators turned out for the concert, which began at 10:30 am (1430 GMT).
Gore, who has become a leading voice on global warming and won an Oscar for his documentary "An Inconvenient Truth," was to appear later at the New York leg of Live Earth.
Live Earth kicked off in Sydney with other shows also taking place during the day in Tokyo, Shanghai, Hamburg, London, Johannesburg and Rio de Janeiro, which are expected to attract an audience of two billion people.
Performers include Madonna, The Police, Keith Urban, the Red Hot Chili Peppers and Lenny Kravitz.
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