Unlikely eco-warrior: Schwarzenegger

California governor's green goals

“Environmentalists were no fun. They were like prohibitionists at a frat party.”

Believe it or not, those are the words of Arnold Schwarzenegger after his embrace of environmentalism. Speaking at a conference in Washington, D.C. last April, the California governor called on leaders to stress the positives of climate control, rather than delivering shrill warnings of the coming apocalypse.

But Arnold’s environmental platform isn’t limited to name-calling. The governor has signed groundbreaking legislation to reduce California’s emissions by 25% by 2020, and by 80% by 2050, as well as initiatives to encourage solar power.

A longtime Republican and the first U.S. civilian to own a Humvee, Schwarzenegger has endured fierce criticism from environmentalists over his carbon-bloated lifestyle and opposition to the Clean Alternative Energy Act in 2006. Yet he has also reached out to leaders both foreign and domestic on climate issues, including meeting with Al Gore to express his admiration for the former veep’s “An Inconvenient Truth” docu.

Schwarzenegger’s personal stash of behemoth vehicles now run on biodiesel and hydrogen, and he held rallies earlier this year to promote alternative fuels.

Though he couldn’t quite refrain from baiting environmentalists entirely, telling Newsweek afterward: “Biofuel is not like some wimpy feminine car, like a hybrid.”

Green living – it’s not just for girly men anymore.

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