Former VP made a fortune after losing to George W when he set up a green investment firm now worth $36BN that pays him $2m a month… as he warns about ‘rain bombs’ and ‘boiling oceans’

Warning the world that it is on the brink of disaster has been lucrative for Al Gore
Warning the world that it is on the brink of disaster has been lucrative for Al Gore
  • Al Gore has made hundreds of millions through his climate awareness
  • The former VP is at the forefront of green technology investment 
  • Gore’s company Generation Investment Management pays him $2m per month
  • The company has billions in investments worldwide
  • Gore’s wealth of around $300m is supplemented with speaking fees, shares and real estate 

Warning the world that it is on the brink of disaster has been lucrative for Al Gore.

His wild prediction at Davos that Earth faces ‘rain bombs’ and ‘boiling oceans’ is just his latest in decades of climate alarmism. 

At the same time, the former VP has been at the forefront of green technology investment that has seen his wealth balloon to an estimated $330 million.

Four years after losing to George W Bush in 2000, Gore set up Generation Investment Management with former Goldman Sachs Managing Director and close friend David W. Blood. 

The mission statement of the investment firm, where Gore collects $2 million in a monthly salary, is to back companies that are making strides towards going green. The firm is worth around $36 billion. 

He proudly said of his role at the fund, when it launched, was that of a figurehead saying: ‘I’m not a stock picker.’ 

Between 2008 and 2011, the firm generated roughly $218 million in profits to be split among its 26 partners. As a founder, Gore likely had a large stake in the profits. 

The firm owns millions of shares in companies such as Amazon, Microsoft, Google’s parent Alphabet, finance giant Charles Schwab and tractor king John Deere. 

The group has also invested in lesser known companies such as Motivate, the company behind New York’s Citi Bike, and Taiwanese electric-scooter make Gogoro. 

Gore told Wired in 2017 that among the first companies that Generation invested in was BP. Although he said that the fund pulled back prior to the Deepwater Horizon disaster in the Gulf of Mexico in 2013.    

In 2004, when the firm launched, Gore was lecturing about the perils of climate change, including once at the premiere of the heavily criticized climate disaster movie, The Day After Tomorrow. 

Those lectures would lead to him being given a starring role in the 2006 Oscar-winning documentary, An Inconvenient Truth. 

The film has generated controversy over the years, with outrage that it was shown to school students in the US and UK. 

Gore’s Democratic Party ties were also criticized for politicizing climate issues. 

All the while, the Tennessee-native was making millions while lecturing the world on how humanity was losing the war against climate change.

He told the World Economic Forum in 2020: ‘This is Thermopylae. This is Agincourt. This is Dunkirk. This is the Battle of the Bulge. This is 9/11. We have to rise to the occasion.’ 

In November 2021 at the UN Summit on Climate Change, he compared the world’s complacency on climate change to the way it failed to take seriously the threat of fascism during the 1930s.

Invoking Winston Churchill’s famous warning that ‘the era of procrastination (…) is coming to its close,’ Gore told the U.N. climate summit in Glasgow that the impacts of global warming would soon spur momentum for action.

‘We are now experiencing the consequences of the climate crisis in every part of our world,’ he said , echoing Churchill. ‘The scientists warned us that these consequences were coming.’

The energy used at Gore's home in Nashville was more than 20 times the national average
The energy used at Gore’s home in Nashville was more than 20 times the national average
Gore bought his home in Montecido, California, in 2009, along a coastline that he believes his eroding due to climate change
Gore bought his home in Montecido, California, in 2009, along a coastline that he believes his eroding due to climate change

Gore’s family has owned farming land in his native Tennessee for generations, while his mansion in Nashville is valued at $7.5 million, his waterfront villa in Montecito, where he counts Oprah as a neighbor, is worth $13 million, his Virginia home is worth around $3 million as is his apartment in the St. Regis building in San Francisco. 

On top of his Green Investment Management money, Gore has around $80 million worth of stock in heavy hitters such as Apple and Google, he also draws a a salary from Apple as a compensation committee member.

Gore also nets at least $200,000 per public speaking engagement. Gore’s advice on ‘going green’ is also sought by the biggest businesses in the world for undisclosed sums. 

It wasn’t always like this for Gore.  

At the time that he ran for the presidency, after serving as Bill Clinton’s loyal sub-ordinate for eight years, his net worth was a paltry $1.7 million, mainly through his family’s land holdings in Tennessee.

'He's been wrong about everything. Every prediction wrong. He's a shill and doesn't offer anything worthy of consideration regarding our climate,' said one person who does not believe Gore's claims
‘He’s been wrong about everything. Every prediction wrong. He’s a shill and doesn’t offer anything worthy of consideration regarding our climate,’ said one person who does not believe Gore’s claims

In the aftermath of his run for the presidency, Gore received $15 million in taxpayer money for ‘nomination expenses,’ ABC News reported at the time. 

The vice president’s pension is based on how many years the person served in public office. After leaving the office of vice president in 2016, President Joe Biden began receiving $1 million per year for his 43 years of public service. 

In total, Gore served for 24 years between the House of Representatives, the Senate and as Vice President. 

A 2000 feature by CNN on his wealth stated that ‘Gore doesn’t own a single stock.’ While Gore’s health advisor Richard Boxer told the network that Gore was ‘not at all interested in business.’ 

His most lucrative venture at the time of his presidential campaign was his 1992 book Earth in the Balance with landed him $1.1 million in royalties. 

The CNN feature also notes that despite his advocating for the internet and technology, Gore was not an early investor in Silicon Valley. The piece said that most of his wealth had come from his father’s business ties. Gore’s father died in 1999. 

After leaving politics, Gore founded the Current TV network in 2004, nine years later, he netted $70 million from the sale of the channel to Al Jazeera. While working as Current CEO, Gore was paid $1.2 million per year. 

Just two weeks after the Current TV sale, Gore decided to exercise a percentage of his stock options in Apple. 

Around the same period, Gore was demanding nearly $200,000 for private speaking engagements. His rider stayed on brand with the Inconvenient Truth star demanding a hybrid sedan as transportation and not an SUV. 

This contributed to giving Gore a comparable wealth portfolio to 2012 Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, who became much maligned by the mainstream media over his personal worth of over $200 million. 

Gore has been a member of Apple’s board since 2003, and over that time, he has amassed more than 100,000 in shares and restricted stock in the company. In 2021, he was paid over $350,000 for his role on the company’s compensation committee. 

Earlier this week, CNBC reported that Gore and the two other members of the committee had voted to cut CEO Tim Cook’s pay by 40 percent from around $98 million to $49 million.  

During his tenure, the company’s stock price has increased by a staggering 5,900 percent – meaning he would earn tens of millions of dollars in an instant if he decided to exercise his options.

In 2013, his holdings with Apple were estimated at $45.6 million. The same year, Gore inherited an undisclosed number of shares of Occidental Petroleum Corp., which are valued at between $500,000 and $1 million.

During his time as a senator, Occidental Petroleum, a fossil fuels company, was one of his biggest donors. The company had long standing ties with Gore’s father, Al Gore Sr., also a former senator. 

Gore Sr. retired from the Senate in 1970 and was given a $500,000 per year job as chairman of Occident Petroleum’s coal arm, Island Coal Creek. 

The Center of Public Integrity said in a 2000 study that Gore was receiving $20,000 per year from Occidental as a rental payment that the company had on land owned by the Gore family.  

In July 1992, prior to the Clinton-Gore election, the New York Times wrote: ‘Part of the criticism directed at Mr. Gore during his first race for Congress in 1976 concerned his father’s involvement with energy interests.’ 

In 2009, Gore splashed out on a $9 million villa in Montecito, California, right on the seafront. A year later he announced his amicable divorce from his wife of 40 years, Tipper. 

The separation is considered an example of a ‘gray divorce,’ a split that is not acrimonious just the product of two people growing apart. There is no indication that the divorce hit Gore’s wallet too hard.  

Gore has also served in various roles – most often an adviser or partner – to several companies including Google and Silicon Valley venture capital firm Kleiner Perkins Caufield & Byers. Neither of the companies have disclosed how much they have paid Gore for his service.

At the time he signed on an advisor at Google in 2001, Gore was given stock options that were worth more than $30 million. At the time, Gore sported an ill-advised beard. 

He told Fast Company in 2007 that on his first day at the tech giant that as a practical joke: ‘Larry [Page] and Sergey [Brin] and the entire executive team had false beards on.’ 

The magazine’s Ellen McGirt later wrote that Gore’s wealth made it unlikely that he would ever run for the presidency again.  

The former senator has multimillion dollar homes in Nashville, Virginia and a condo in San Francisco, where the Generation Investment Management is based. 

CBS reported in 2007 that the energy consumption at Gore’s Nashville home was 20 times the national average.  

While in October 2021, Gore and Blood launched Just Climate that plans to invest in solutions that will help to limit global temperature rises to 1.5 degrees Celsius.

Just Climate has been founded to do the hard yards of addressing the most difficult to decarbonize segments of the global economy that investors have ignored until now, Blood said.

In March 2017, Barron’s ran a feature titled: ‘Al Gore is winning at Investing.’ 

However the same year, Warren Buffett’s top lieutenant Charlie Munger told a meeting that he felt as though Gore was ‘not very smart’ but that he had developed a simple investing strategy that was working for him.  

His business gains were such that when Gore won the Nobel Peace Prize in 2007, along with its $1.9 million prize money, he put all of his winnings into the Alliance for Climate Protection, an organization he founded.   

The editor-in-chief of GreenTechMedia Stephen Lacey described Gore in an appearance The Energy Gang podcast in 2017: ‘He is a flawed character. We’re in an era of backlash against elites, so Gore, a guy who bought a 6,500-square-foot seafront home in California for $8.8 million, and who hangs around with other celebrities who talk big on climate but who live lavish lifestyles, is the perfect target at this point in time.’

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