Rowan Atkinson, an actor known mainly for the role of Mr. Bean, was accused of spreading views harmful to the perception of electric cars. This was one of the topics of Tuesday’s meeting of the British House of Lords. The actor was accused of writing “one of the most harmful” articles for the cause, which was supposed to slow down the sales of electric cars.
After Tuesday’s meeting of the environmental committee and climate change The British House of Lords sparked a discussion about last year’s article by Rowan Atkinson for “The Guardian”, devoted to electric vehicles. During the meeting, the implementation of the government’s plan to ban the sale of new combustion vehicles from 2035 was discussed. Its implementation was to result in an increase in the number of electric cars sold. However, this did not happen. According to the participants of the meeting, the actor who played the role of Mr. Bean is responsible for this.
The following people spoke at the meeting, among others: representatives of the Green Alliance think tank. In their opinion, the popular British comedian is responsible for “destroying” the reputation of electric cars and slowing down their sales. They described the actor’s comment for the Guardian as “one of the most harmful.” As they added, the information contained therein was “widely denied.” “Unfortunately, fact-checking never reaches as wide an audience as the original false claim,” they said, blaming Atkinson for spreading untruths. What was in his text?
Rowan Atkinson accused of “destroying” the reputation of electric cars
Atkinson titled his article: “I love electric cars and was an early adopter, but increasingly I feel cheated.” In the introduction, the author noted that although he considers electric cars to be “wonderful machines”, after delving into the information about them, he is not sure whether “they are the panacea for environmental problems that they are believed to be.” He then moved on to criticize the lithium-ion batteries used in this type of vehicles. He suggested that until alternatives are developed, a better solution may be to increase the use of synthetic fuels and extend the time owners use their vehicles.
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“I increasingly feel that our electric car honeymoon is coming to an end, and that’s not a bad thing: we recognize that a wider range of options need to be explored if we are to properly address the very serious environmental problems that car use causes,” he said. . Concluding the text, he said that although he was convinced that “one day electric drive will bring real benefits for the environment, that day has not come yet.” The actor, as he describes himself, has a university degree in electrical and electronic engineering. Privately, he is a “car enthusiast”.
Discussion of Atkinson’s text
The publication of Atkinson’s article caused considerable controversy among Guardian readers. A week later, the website published a text by Simon Evans, deputy editor-in-chief of Carbon Brief, a website devoted to environmental issues, in which the actor was accused of “repeating a series of repeatedly debunked theses.” “Atkinson’s biggest mistake is that he fails to recognize that electric vehicles, compared to combustion cars, already offer significant global environmental benefits,” Evans concludes, after describing
The Telegraph, Sky News, The Guardian
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