We’re wandering into the weeds, and the widening discussion will never come to a consensus.
The great thing about this group of people is the wide variety of views and approaches, all here are contributing good to the cause and planet, if its strictly self interest, tinkering, or other motivation.
Individualism vs group effort. Individuals can only achieve limited results. I can never build a highway bridge, but I can in short order and to highest standards with many others through my taxes and competent leadership. Were it not for this system our world would be a shambles.
It’s interesting that in the 1970’s and 80’s energy efficiency became a focus. Vehicles became much more efficient even after the energy crisis ended, as if the ethos of waste had been collectively broken. It took a long time to fully return. But I don’t think the smaller vehicles of that age marked a time of suffering, just collective responsibility. In fact they were just picking the low hanging fruit and could have gone farther.
Gentle hints and individual persuasion will have limited effect. Just as the credit counselor or accountant may warn about coming financial disaster, many people choose to ignore warnings, then fall in real trouble. Personal or national politics aside, there may be real impacting consequences if change is not enacted soon enough.
It is going to be an impossible environment for significant change in North America while political and corporate interests are fighting for the status quo. It is quite possible that will change if there are many more 4 ft rain events, too many too frequent one in a thousand year floods and droughts, forest die offs, and as the cost of coastal property loss as sea level rise accelerates finally becoming unsustainable to insurance companies and the economy.
As individuals all we can do is tinker and hopefully come up with roll out solutions for some of these things, and hope for the best.
But I would say the true solutions can’t be organized or scaled from the individual. Just issues of individual ability and payback get in the way. Cost is skewed in our social constructs, individuals are left to make resource decisions not on true or full cost so that what makes sense individually may be very bad for the group.
My 2 cents.