In the documentary, Al Gore states the United States is one of two industrialized countries not to ratify the Kyoto Protocol, the other being Australia. On December 3, 2007 (inauguration day), more than a year after the documentary was released, the new Australian Prime Minister Kevin Rudd signed the Kyoto Protocol.
This is the first carbon-neutral documentary. NativeEnergy, which works with individuals and organizations to help them compensate for their contributions to global warming, calculated the "carbon footprint" from producing the film, including all travel, office, and accommodations related emissions. The company then offset emissions through renewable energy credits or "green tags from new renewable energy projects. Paramount Classics and Participant will split the cost of these tags; the funds will go towards helping build new Native American, Alaskan Native Village, and farmer-owned renewable energy projects, creating sustainable economies for communities in need and diversifying our energy supply. As Participant founder Jeff Skoll explains: "It would be ironic, not to mention wrong, if we added to the global warming that Al Gore warns about in his film. Plus, these renewable energy projects offer options that will decrease our demand for fossil fuels and otherwise would likely not happen without these kinds of investments." Participant, NativeEnergy and Warner Bros. partnered in a similar way on Stephen Gaghan's film, Syriana (2005), where 100% of the carbon dioxide emissions generated by the production were translated into investments into renewable energy. This follows on from the first "carbon neutral" film The Day After Tomorrow (2004), which director Roland Emmerich paid for out of his own pocket.
Contrary to popular belief, Al Gore did not win the Academy Award for Best Documentary, even though he accepted it at the ceremony and gave the victory speech. However, he was only the star of the project, and did not direct or produce the feature (the award officially went to Davis Guggenheim, the director).