MADISON, Wis. -
Former U.S. Vice President Al
Gore on Saturday criticized President Bush for refusing to
accept a federal agency report that blames humans for global
The recently released Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)
report appeared to back the view of many scientists who believe
global warming is caused mainly by emissions from automobiles,
power plants, and oil refineries.
Bush appeared to dismiss the report, calling it a product
of bureaucracy, and said he would continue to press for
voluntary efforts and financial incentives for U.S. companies
to reduce emissions.
Gore, the 2000 Democratic presidential nominee and a
champion of environmental protection as vice president, said
the president had succumbed to powerful interests that run the
Republican Party and rejected the report rather than accept it
and do something about global warming.
"That's not a moral choice," Gore said. "I don't want to
hear from this bunch: 'We didn't know'."
Gore has questioned Bush's policies on the economy,
environment and values in previous appearances since emerging
from a year of political seclusion in February. He has not said
whether he will make another run at the White House in 2004.
The Bush administration has put "lobbyists for the
polluters in charge of policies" and put "the hungriest fox
they could find" to guard government henhouses, Gore said.
The Bush administration had repeatedly emphasized that
there was not enough scientific evidence to link global warming
to industrial emissions and has refused to sign the Kyoto
Treaty, which seeks to reduce worldwide atmospheric emissions.
The State Department has submitted the report by the EPA,
whose top officials are appointed by the president, to the
Republicans want to turn their back on the environment
rather than embrace new technologies that can clean up the
environment and create jobs, Gore said.
"It is our moral responsibility and it's our economic
opportunity,' Gore said.
© Reuters Limited 2002