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Al Gore’s 100% Renewable Goal Distant, Even In Northwest

Former vice president Al Gore Thursday challenged the nation to generate every kilowatt of electricity from renewable sources within ten years.

Correspondent Tom Banse reports the Northwest has a big head start toward that goal if you count hydropower generation.

Speaking in the other Washington, the Nobel Prize winner said the 100-percent renewable electricity goal would be “another giant leap for mankind” akin to President Kennedy’s challenge to put a man on the moon inside of ten years.

Al Gore touted the potential of wind power, solar, and geothermal to cut global warming pollution. 

A Q&A passed out with the speech said he counts existing nuclear and hydropower as renewable.  By that measure, the Northwest is over two thirds of the way toward Gore’s goal.

Wind power is the fastest growing renewable energy source in the Northwest.  But here’s your reality check.  Wind farms serve less than five percent of the region’s electricity demand even after adding in projects under construction. 

The vast majority (83%) of new electricity generation in the region is slated to come from natural gas according to charts from the NW Power and Conservation Council.


Al Gore speech