January 20: At a ceremony at the Capitol Building in Washington, D.C., Al Gore is officially sworn in by Chief Justice William Rehnquist as the 43rd President of the United States. In his inaugural speech, Gore promises to improve the American economy, promote better relations with Russia, and help other nations combat terrorism and drugs.
February 1: Gore proposes the Self Efficiency Act, which provides federal funding towards research into renewable energy sources, such as solar, wind, geothermal, and hydrogen power. The proposed bill is criticized by members of the Republican Party.
February 9: The submarine USS Greeneville accidentally strikes and sinks the Japanese fishing vessel Ehime-Maru near Hawaii.