ABC News Online, Posted Fri Jul 18, 2008 2:47pm AEST
Updated Fri Jul 18, 2008 4:04pm AEST
Nobel laureate and former United States vice president Al Gore has urged Americans to make a total shift from fossil fuels to renewable energy within 10 years.
Mr Gore says his goal, while similar to some of the toughest goals undertaken by man, is achievable and affordable.
But the 10-year plan has been questioned by critics.
It is an ambitious target, but one that he claims will help solve global warming and at the same time renew America's economy by ending its dependence on foreign fuel.
In a speech delivered in Washington on solutions to the climate crisis, Mr Gore said that America could switch all of its electricity production to wind, solar and other carbon-free sources within 10 years.
He likened the challenge to landing a man on the moon or establishing the nation's highway system.
To secure this green revolution Mr Gore says the single most important policy change could be to tax what we burn, not what we earn.
Mr Gore says government promises are too long-term and action must be taken now on climate change.
"A political promise to do something 40 years from now is universally ignored because as everyone knows it's totally meaningless,'' he said.
"Ten years is about the maximum time that we as a nation can hold a steady aim and hit our target."