As Featured on Pymnts.com
Let me tell you a story about global warming and mobile pay — Apple Pay in particular — and what they have in common.
Let’s start with Al Gore. Al Gore’s interest in global warming started when he was an undergrad at Harvard University.
While there, he studied with a professor who was one of the first, in 1957, to measure carbon dioxide levels in the Earth’s atmosphere. That body of work suggested that global warming was the likely future result of the oceans’ inability to absorb excess levels of CO2 generated by the projected growing use of fossil fuels. Fossil fuels — such as coal, natural gas and oil — generate nearly 90 percent of all human-produced CO2.
That topic, and Gore’s interest in environmental issues more broadly, became the cornerstone of his career as a senator and his legislative agenda as President Clinton’s VP — with mixed success. The data backing up his claims was challenged and politicized by growing concerns over job losses at home and possible trade wars with developing nations that were among fossil fuel’s heaviest users.
Gore’s 2006 movie, An Inconvenient Truth, was his attempt to take his story to a different audience — the lay consumer. In it, he shares the data used to support the same environmental concerns and likely “planetary emergency” that he had begun raising 17 years earlier.
“I’ve been trying to tell this story for a long time,” Gore says at the beginning of the movie, “and I feel as if I’ve failed to get the message across.”
It’s a message he continues to share every opportunity he can — now with new data points to support his thesis. As our keynote speaker at our first Innovation Project 2013, Gore managed to traverse the connection between commerce and global warming. His exchange with Russell Simmons that year on the topic sort of brought down the house.
You had to be there.