The Role of the Individual

What role do you think individuals can play in reducing waste in the automotive industry? How much power and influence do individuals have in this context?

Overconsumption and oversize is for me the critical point. If each persons don’t act to reduce the size of the cars or request to change after 3 years, it cannot work.
Car makers are producing models based on the needs of the consummers, if the consummers change his demand (smaller car, long life car), they will adapt their offer.

I think the role of individual is determined by the society.
In this key, of course the power and influence are significant, but I don’t believe a shift toward circularity is possible starting from an individual level.

Role of the individual is somehow limited and one cannot do much. Nevertheless, collective decisions can make a much better impact. We can start choosing cars with higher durability and good fuel efficiency. Also, taking care of proper maintenance could extend car’s lifecycle. Another solution could be more of a collective change than individual - car sharing which reduces car usage and the pollution.

I think that in general, the individuals have much less power in terms of affecting issues of waste reduction and sustainability than large corporations and industries, and governments. When individuals do have power is when they inhabit some sort of collective role – the consumer or the voter, for example. Groups of consumers or groups of voters can have impact on profits, or on legislation, but then the power to act still falls on the institutions, commercial or not. And, of course, even as consumers or political voters, individuals don’t have free will in a vacuum, they are influenced by advertising and various ideological influences they are exposed to.

I think that, after the responsibility of the powerful (politics and industries), individuals play an essential role in shaping and influencing the automotive industry as they are the ones who execute and respond to trends and behaviours. I think that crucial words here are agency and consciousness: for example, individuals could be more considerate in their mobility behaviour (less car use and more car sharing if possible) but also in their choices of buying a car with components with relatively more extended life durability and less need of energy and resources to recycle.

Individuals still hold some power and influence through their purchasing decisions and advocacy efforts by demanding more sustainable practices from automakers. They can exert pressure on the industry to prioritize waste reduction and sustainability — but I think the scope of this influence is very limited when compared to say state regulation.

How can I do something for reducing the waste in the automotive industry ? I have no impact !
Indeed the individual has no DIRECT impact on this matter.
But can we doe something INDERCTLY ? Yes I do believe so !
First our own behaviour related to waste and avoidance of waste contributes. If every-one’s buying decision will be driven by production practice considerations the manufacturers will ensure they have the “most sustainable supply chain”.
So, no as an individual our action will have (almost) no impact on the industry’s behaviour, but a member of a big group our voice will be heard !

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I think that individuals, meant as consumers, have the power of awareness. If they are aware of the issues related to waste in automotive, and how they can be tackled, they can influence the industry in pursuing circularity by driving their product purchasing path considering also circularity aspects related to cars and their components. Furthermore, their own individual behaviours when related to EoL phases are crucial of circular economy implementation.

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Not much power, as informed choices for concumers are difficult to be done without the support of the industry

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A major impact, I believe. As, we know supply aligns with demand. Individuals play an important role as consummers : by selecting sustainable cars built with resilient and long-lasting materials. If we set high expectations and standards in terms of waste management for our car providers, we should be able to impulse important changes and adaptations. However, this implies being informed and maintaining a certain level of awarness.

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Hi everyone,
To gain a broader perspective, I recommend checking the responses from other participants. Once you’ve identified the answer that best suits resonates with you, you can quickly reply to the comment to finalize your selection.

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Yes, one practical example is that many individuals complain about the quicker wear and tear of electric car tyres from that of traditional internal combustion engine cars due to, for example, the fact that the batteries of electric cars are quite extra weights compared to the fuel tanks of petrol or diesel cars. So, it can be confusing for individuals to make “the best sustainable choices”.

I agree. It is difficult for us as individuals to improve the circular economy of the automotive industry. For example, users of electric cars are actually “test users of products”, which are used to gather understanding of, for example, the battery industry and its development. And now it has been understood that different power lines must be further developed in parallel. But together, and in cooperation, voices will certainly be heard.

I agree with the fact that governments and corporations still have a significant impact on waste reduction policies, as they usually get the last word to adopt regulations and impulse in-market changes. However, I do believe that it is limiting to claim that consumers don’t have free will. Everyone has different interests and thus, expresses different opinions ; but it is also what could hinder the transition to more sustainable habits.

Good maintenance can improve lifetime of vehicles and then waste, also repair with second life components
The choice of small and light vehicles can also limit the amount of waste per car

First of all, and most important, should be to choose the most convenient modes of transport depending on the situation. Prioritizing the public one. And secondly, the individuals should base their decision on purchasing a vehicle taking into consideration the environmental impact of it. Because the most important thing nowadays is to save the planet.