I have spent a tremendous time working on this issue of climate change here and in the US over the last 15 years. Personally I am starting to think that somehow exponential technological change has hooked up with the brain stem, the reptile mind of humans and drawn into that emerging connected system human society at a level that is essentially invisible to individuals.
Therefore, although we all seem to be free, we are being marched to our own death. We are aware of this truth at a certain level, but because we have bought into this mechanized consumer society at a level below consciousness, we cannot shake it off through policy or through politics. The only hope would be to modify habits, but there is not much time left for that.
The reason we cannot step back is that the technology is helping to shut down our own self-preservation instincts and our ability to engage in long-term planning. How? It is sort of like rubbing the belly of an alligator. It is the weakness of humans. Certain patterns just draw us in.
The Asia Institute has emphasized from its foundation, the most important issue is the combination of exponential evolution of technology, the change in the climate and the change in international relations (how humans around the world interact with each other). As opposed to other think tanks who feed you lies and distractions.