After 19 of the 20 nations recommitted to combating climate change at the G20 summit in Germany, Al Gore was in high spirits as he arrived in Australia.
But the former US vice-president and climate change crusader admitted to concern over the US losing its role as world leader on international issues, including the North Korean missile crisis.
“It’s a period for the United States where we have to work around President Trump,” Mr Gore said. “And on some issues, such as those in foreign policy, that’s not easy to do.”
In Australia to launch the documentary An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power and meet political and business leaders, Mr Gore lauded the 19 world leaders who agreed the Paris accord on cutting emissions was irreversible.
“When President Trump made his announcement that he wanted to withdraw the US from Paris, I worried that other countries would follow his lead,” he said. "But, quite to the contrary, the rest of the world has redoubled its commitment.
"And in the US, state governments and city governments and businesses have said ‘we going to meet the goals anyway’.
“The latest trend in the numbers shows that the US is likely to meet or exceed the commitments made by former President Obama regardless of what Trump does.”
Eleven years after An Inconvenient Truth highlighted the global warming crisis, the new documentary focuses on Mr Gore’s continued efforts to promote climate action then negotiate behind the scenes at the Paris summit in 2015.
He was glowing about the level of bi-partisan support for climate policy in Australia, despite a decade of argument.
“I’m grateful that your federal government, even though there’s friction and controversy, has stood by the Paris agreement,” he said. “The premiers of your state governments and the mayors of your cities and your business leaders for the most part are moving in an impressive way.”
While insisting the climate change battle would be won, Mr Gore said the question was whether it would be in time.
“The Great Barrier Reef is at dire risk,” he said. "The droughts come all too frequently, especially affecting farmers.
"The bushfires are growing into these mega fires that the firefighters here in Australia have talked to me about. And sea level rise, you have homes in Sydney that have been damaged already by the combination of sea level rise and storm surge.
“The cyclones are not more numerous, but they’re more powerful when they do hit.”
Mr Gore described entrepreneur Elon Musk’s plan to build the world’s largest lithium ion battery in South Australia as incredibly significant.
“I hope that it produces a sense of pride in South Australia to be the world’s leader,” he said. "It will be the first one of many.
"People were sceptical when Elon Musk announced he was going to build electric cars as well. And now the market cap of Tesla is right at the level of General Motors and Ford in just a few short years.
“The cost declines for battery storage are really quite dramatic so this is just the beginning.”
Mr Gore rejected former prime minister Tony Abbott’s view that Australia should be creating new and more efficient coal-fired power stations.
“All around the world, the coal industry is in a terminal decline,” he said. "China and India have been closing hundreds of coal-fired power plants.
“The demand for coal is declining rapidly. Globally, the market capitalisation of the coal industry has been plummeting because nobody wants the dirty air, much less the global warming pollution.”
Mr Gore said the future for jobs was in renewable energy.
“In the US, there are already twice as many jobs in solar as in coal,” he said. “Solar jobs are growing 17 times faster than other jobs in the economy. The single fastest-growing occupation is wind turbine technician.”