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Al Gore has made the claim multiple times:

https://www.snopes.com/fact-check/ice-caps-melt-gore-2014/

e.g. in 2007:

Their latest modelling studies indicate northern polar waters could be ice-free in summers within just 5-6 years. Professor Wieslaw Maslowski told an American Geophysical Union meeting that previous projections had underestimated the processes now driving ice loss.




Could, not would. Like smoking can kill you, not smoking will kill you. It is a common and fundamental English language pattern, clearly indicating doubt and should never be misinterpreted as certainty.


Fair enough, but could is enough to play on people's fears. Immigrant X could be a terrorist. Food additive Y could cause cancer. You can't then claim you didn't say "would".

Note that things like tobacco cancer warnings use use can/could not will/would, and the intent of the message is still clear.

"SURGEON GENERAL WARNING: Cigar Smoking Can Cause Lung Cancer And Heart Disease."

"WARNING: This product can cause mouth cancer."




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