Al Gore Hosts 24-Hour Climate Change Global Broadcast

11-13-15 Al Gore
Former Vice President Al Gore, who is also the founder and chairman of the Climate Reality Project, hosts a 24-hour global broadcast on climate change ahead the COP21 in Paris. Here, Gore is shown speaking at the What's Next? A Climate for Action event in the mountain resort of Davos, Switzerland, on January 21. Ruben Sprich/Reuters

"Tell your leader that this time, the world is watching," the voice of Morgan Freeman urges in the first minutes of The 24 Hours of Reality and Live Earth: The World Is Watching.

The 24-hour global broadcast, put on by the Climate Reality Project and Live Earth, began Friday at noon ET and will stretch into Saturday. Just a couple weeks ahead of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change's "COP21" conference in Paris, the broadcast makes its base in the same city and is meant to inform and motivate people around the world to speak up and take action to combat climate change.

The fifth annual event is "about making sure the people of the world are informed and engaged so that they can make their voices heard in their capitals and at the negotiating table in Paris," Al Gore, former vice president of the U.S. and founder and chairman of the Climate Reality Project, is quoted as saying in a press release. "The U.N. climate talks can be a breakthrough moment to change the dangerous course we've set for our planet. We want the world's leaders to know the world is watching, and it's time for them to act."

"We've come a long way in five years," Gore said from Paris on Friday, after the animated spot voiced by Freeman ended. He stood on a stage in a sort of clear plastic dome with the Eiffel Tower visible in the background. "People, businesses and leaders everywhere today are realizing that strong action is essential to solve this crisis," he added. "What we need now is for people all over the world to speak out, to encourage and motivate their leaders to get active in this shift.… That's what the next 24 hours are all about. Because, truly, today the world is watching."

Several actors and musicians signed on to be part of the 24-hour lineup, including Duran Duran performing live from Paris, Elton John, Florence + the Machine, Mumford & Sons, Neil Young, Jon Bon Jovi, Walk the Moon, Morgan Freeman, Ryan Reynolds, Calum Worthy and Ian Somerhalder.

The event is broken up into eight, with three-hour segments coming live from Cape Town, South Africa; Rio De Janeiro; Miami; Calgary, Alberta; Sydney; Manila, Phippines; Beijing; and New Delhi. It will include presentations and interviews with climate experts and activists, and appearances by world leaders like French President François Hollande and Mexico's former President Felipe Calderon; Premier of Quebec Philippe Couillard; Brian Deese, senior adviser to President Barack Obama; former U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan; and Gina McCarthy of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

"The climate crisis is grave, so we are harnessing the best content and the latest in mobile, social media and online distribution to make sure we can connect with people everywhere," Live Earth founder Kevin Wall is quoted as saying.

Organizers are encouraging viewers to use the hashtag #WhyImWatching to spread the word.

Watch the broadcast, which continues until noon ET on Saturday, here.