Al Gore

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In 2008, Gore pooled his personal funds, donations and the Nobel Prize cash award to launch a new campaign. Though he's spent most of his career running for political office, this campaign has nothing to do with delegates or debates.

This $300 million advertising effort features unlikely pairs like the Rev. Al Sharpton, a leading liberal voice, and Pat Robertson, the conservative founder of the Christian Broadcasting Network. The commercials' messages are that if citizens join together, we can solve the climate crisis.

"It's bipartisan. Newt Gingrich and Nancy Pelosi have joined together—a lot of unlikely alliances," Gore says. "[We're] making the point that this is not a political or partisan issue. This is an ethical issue. It's a moral issue. We all want a good, bright future for our children, and that means that we have to take responsibility for making the changes that are necessary now."

Gore says it's time for people to put pressure on elected officials who have the power to pass eco-friendly legislation. "We, as citizens, have to take action. It's important to change the lightbulbs," he says. "It's even more important to change the laws."