Rowan Atkinson

Activists Accuse Rowan Atkinson of Fuelling the Climate “Crisis” After Criticising EVs

16 February 2024

2.6 MINS

Rowan Atkinson is being accused of hurting EV sales after saying electric vehicles are all show, no substance.

Leftwing activist group Green Alliance UK made the claims during a House of Lords Climate and Environment Committee inquiry.

They allege that Atkinson’s 2 June 2023 op-ed published by The Guardian was responsible for slumping sales of expensive fashion accessories.

In point five of their submission to the inquiry – registered in the footnotes as ELV0099 – Green Alliance said,

“The level of debate has been extremely poor when discussing [net zero] EV transition.

“One of the most damaging articles was a comment piece written by Rowan Atkinson in The Guardian which [they alleged] had been roundly debunked.”

GA then complained that the 8 June 2023 Guardian rebuttal, written by deputy editor of Carbon Brief, Simon Evans – a biochemist – wasn’t forced on the public enough.

“Unfortunately,” flapped GA, “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.”

As if to reinforce Green Alliance’s accusations, the House of Lords strongly implied that Atkinson – who holds a Masters in Engineering – was misleading consumers.

Mentioned 11 times, the committee calls on the British government to “robustly counter misinformation” in the media. (p. 5)

The equivalent of calling for a ministry of EV propaganda, the committee wants the British government to stop talking about the cost of EVs, and talk up the ‘benefits’ in order to build consumer confidence. (p. 15)

Firsthand Experience

Contrary to the accusations, Atkinson’s Guardian piece was a testimonial.

“Electric vehicles may be a bit soulless,” he began.

“They’re wonderful mechanisms,” he added, “but I’m increasingly feeling a little duped.

“When you start to drill into the facts, electric motoring doesn’t seem to be quite the environmental panacea it is claimed to be.

“The problem lies with the lithium-ion batteries fitted currently to nearly all-electric vehicles: they’re absurdly heavy, huge amounts of energy are required to make them, and they are estimated to last only upwards of 10 years,” he added.

A veteran hybrid driver and EV owner for nine years, Atkinson declared EVs to be a “perverse choice of hardware” in the quest to stop the climate from changing.

What the leftist cacophony condemning him failed to mention was that Atkinson ended his article by saying,

“Hold fire for now.

“Electric propulsion will be of real, global environmental benefit one day, but that day has yet to dawn.”

Atkinson’s arguments for alternatives, such as the further development of hydrogen and synthetic fuels, were also omitted.

His article didn’t rule EVs out – which is probably why The Guardian green-lit publishing the piece in the first place.

Had Rowan Atkinson been guilty of working to undermine EV sales, his words would never have made it past the climate catastrophism narrative police at Guardian Op-Ed HQ.

Atkinson was useful in helping The Guardian’s “climate crisis” propagandists platform their “science is settled” anti-science.

Ring of Truth

Overall, it’s Green Alliance 0, Atkinson 1.

Despite being slimed as a climate-denying conspiracy theorist, Atkinson seems to have been vindicated by the general gist of the House of Lords report.

That report admits EVs’ limitations are problematic.

These limitations include the “need for rapid recharge capabilities, lower energy prices to recharge EVs, public perception vs. propaganda, debatable battery life, cost of parts, and cost of individual repairs.”

Additionally, sections 7 and 8 of Green Alliance’s submission admitted that price points are a big turn-off for consumers.

“EVs are currently more expensive in terms of upfront costs than petrol and diesel vehicles.”

To overcome this limitation, GA argued for higher taxation to incentivise EV purchasing.

Arguing for higher taxation on non-EVs, they said taxes should be used to disincentivise petrol power.

This revenue, they said, could be used to subsidise EVs, as well as charging stations, both public and domestic.

In sum, it’s not the consumers or car critics hindering sales; it’s the cars, and fearmongering climate catastrophisers.

Even without pointing all of this out, the House of Lords report itself is called EV Strategy: Rapid Recharge Needed.

Enough said, really.


Originally published at Caldron Pool.

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  1. Jim Twelves 16 February 2024 at 8:45 am - Reply

    Rod, fascinating, above all, balanced. I am thrilled that Rowan got his piece accepted by the Guardian the first place, that says so much. Then to highlight the battery’s weight and the car’s lack of versatility, one of the huge appeals of of everyone’s wheels.

    • Rod 19 February 2024 at 10:33 am - Reply

      I think that’s good reason for why EV’s are being held up with scrutiny by consumers. Take in the lack of infrastructure, logistical issues of buildings that have no garages to charge them, unreliable “renewable” energy,” etc, and the features and benefits are mostly mythical. Those buying them for the environment are mostly buying them because its trendy to own – what the Top Gear guys said was just an iPod with wheels.

      Sure, some aren’t. They genuinely think they’re helping wage war on “increasing sea levels,” all while burning their air-con at 18 degrees C 24/7, then stepping outside in an Australian summer and screaming “global boiling.”

      This said, I’m all for creation care. I’m not for throwing effort, time, money and resources, after alarmism.

  2. Ian Moncrieff 16 February 2024 at 4:12 pm - Reply

    Well said!

  3. Michael Cowley 16 February 2024 at 5:06 pm - Reply

    No doubt there are politicians who are now EV shareholders 🤮

    • Rod 19 February 2024 at 10:33 am - Reply

      EV’s are the new “no jab, no job’?

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