But why are there individual people (in general again) so hard against it as if they literally enjoy the consequences of polluting as much as possible.
You are now talking about two different things. Smog and CO2 are completely different. Smog is a poison. CO2 is essential for life. Smog poses an immediate threat. Congress passed the 1970 clean air act almost unanimously with the overwhelming support of both Republicans and Democrats. And since its passing the EPA has been imposing ever more strict emission standards. The clean air act was hugely successful. But smog still exists in major cities because the population density has increased so much.
Smog really is more of a state problem then it is a federal one. While it is true that all major cities have smog making it appear to be a federal problem, it is not true that all states have smog.
Houston has a population of over 2 million. Los Angeles has almost 4 million. I have lived in various parts of the country including California and South Dakota. You do not really understand the differences until you have lived there. The entire state of South Dakota has a population of 850,000 and its not a tiny little state like Delaware. It's a 7 hour drive at interstate speed between the two main population centers of Sioux Falls (164,000) and Rapid City (70,000). The capital of South Dakota, Pierre, only has 14,000 people. In California cities with populations under 200,000 are considered small towns.
There are a lot of sparsely populated states like South Dakota. This is often hard to explain to people living in cities, in California or on the eastern seaboard, but your problems are not their problems. They have an entirely different set of problems.
This is why states need to act, not the federal government. Our federal government has proposed banning wood burning stoves. That might make sense in Washington D.C. and it will help control smog in our major cities but does it really make sense to to ban a wood burning stove in the remote parts of Alaska? If you don't burn wood you will freeze to death in the winter.
California has passed their own emission laws. Those laws make perfect sense for California but are completely unneeded in South Dakota or other sparsely populated states. If smog is so bad in Houston then perhaps Texas should pass its own emission laws. Maybe they could create CARB approved mods for vehicles to make sure modifications don't increase emissions. Just leave the rest of us out of it.
That was smog. Smog is a local problem. CO2 is more of a global problem. It is a colorless, odorless gas that exists naturally in our atmosphere. CO2 is essential for life. Plant life depends on it. Plants draw in CO2 and release oxygen. We breath in oxygen and exhale CO2. Some plants, like corn, really like CO2. They thrive on it. The more the better. If not for the greenhouse affect man-made CO2 would be not be a danger to anyone.
Man-made CO2 comes from burning fossil fuels. The CO2 from fossil fuels was removed from our atmosphere millions of years ago. Releasing it adds to the natural CO2 that is a part of today's live cycle. But we cannot exist without fossil fuels. Our population is too big. Beside fossil fuels allow the masses to live at a level of comfort that only kings had a few hundred of years ago. We rely on fossil fuels for transportation, to heat and cool our homes, to preserve our food (refrigerators and freezers),to power our appliances, etc. Without modern farming, which depends on fossil fuels, we could not feed our population.
To solve our ecological problems, many believe we need to go to a utopian type existence, to a simpler, more local, less resource driven life. They envision small self-sustaining communities (Houston is not one of them.) with subsistence farming and solar panels on our homes. The only problem with their vision is about 95% of us must die and the rest must live without very many creature comforts.
Something most Americans don't understand. Poor in the United States is having a cell phone, an apartment, a car, and a television. Poor in other countries is living in a hut with a dirt floor cooking over an open campfire. A lot of people in other countries don't understand why the western nations are trying to prevent them from using fossil fuels. They don't understand why they can't have a better life as well. Why do they have to live in a dirt floor hut, suffer cold and heat, and eat rotted food when they could build a coal burning electrical generating plant, have cheap energy and live a better life? It is just proof that the great colonial powers are still trying to dominate them. That is one of the reason third world nations are demanding transfer payments. (As if any of the money would reach the poor.)
To get completely off fossil fuels would requires the people in developed countries to go back toward that type of life.
I hope this helps you understand why there is resistance. Any danger from CO2 is centuries away but restricting the use of fossil fuels causes real human suffering today.