File picture: Evan Agostini / Invision / AP.

LONDON - He probably wouldn’t be welcome at an Extinction Rebellion protest – but Jeremy Clarkson now admits he is convinced that climate change is real after all.

The former Top Gear host, who recently branded activist Greta Thunberg a "spoilt brat", has been a longstanding critic of so-called "eco-mentalists".

However, he has described experiencing an epiphany while filming his new show The Grand Tour in south-east Asia.

Clarkson, 59, had intended to take a jet boat from Siem Reap in Cambodia to Vung Tau in Vietnam with co-stars Richard Hammond and James May. The trio were forced to wade through the Tonle Sap lake – part of the Mekong River system – because it had dried up to the depth of a puddle.

"The irony is not lost on me," Clarkson told The Sunday Times. "A man who hosted a car programme for 30 years, limited to seven miles an hour by global warming. it’s the first time we’ve ever admitted to there being global warming.

"We were completely screwed... it was alarming, genuinely alarming."

Clarkson has often joked about climate change, once even telling a live audience to buy more V8s to get rid of the cold weather in Britain.

Recently he told The Sun that he felt the need to offset some of the waffle spoken by celebrities about the environment.

“So the more they speak about global warming, the more wholly unnecessary patio heaters I buy,” he said.

“I have loads and loads of patio heaters - I don’t like to walk around outside without having some form of artificial warmth.”

Daily Mail & IOL