‘Mr Bean’ actor Rowan Atkinson faces flak over his article on EVs. What he said

Popular British actor Rowan Atkinson, also known as ‘Mr Bean’, is now being blamed for damaging the reputation of electric vehicles (EV) that are rapidly gaining popularity.

Atkinson was mentioned in the House of Lords during the environment and climate change panel meeting, Sky News reported.

Rowan Atkinson celebrates Mr Bean's 25th anniversary at Buckingham Palace in this file photo.
Rowan Atkinson celebrates Mr Bean’s 25th anniversary at Buckingham Palace in this file photo.

According to the report, a thinktank expressed its views on the obstacles faced by the British government to phase out petrol and diesel cars before 2035. Green Alliance alleged that a piece by Atkinson published in June last year was ‘was damaging’ to the cause.

Last year, British prime minister Rishi Sunak had announced that UK pushed back a ban on new petrol and diesel cars from 2030 to 2035. He added that cars would still be available to buy on the second hand market.

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The think tank in its letter, was quoted saying,””Unfortunately, fact checks never reach the same breadth of audience as the original false claim, emphasising the need to ensure high editorial standards around the net zero transition.”

‘EVs a bit soulless’, writes Mr Bean actor in article

Atkinson had headlined the article as,”I love electric vehicles – and was an early adopter. But increasingly I feel duped.”

According to the actor, the electric vehicles were “a bit soulless”. He also slammed the use of their lithium-ion batteries.

The Mr Bean actor suggested solutions like drivers keeping the same car for longer periods of time and added that the increased use of synthetic fuel would negate the need for EVs.

According to the report, Atkinson said he had advised his friends to remain patient on EVs unless they have an old diesel vehicle. The very next week, UK website Guardian had published a response from Carbon Brief journalist who had rejected Atkinson’s claims.

According to Simon Evans, Atkinson failed to recognise the global environment benefits from electric vehicles as compared to the combustion-engine vehicles.

The other challenges highlighted during the House of Lords panel meeting included the lack of sufficient charging points, higher EV prices and lack of clear messaging from the government.

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