A hot topic these past few years, Global Warming, has evolved into a Green fad in 2009. Catch words such as Sustainability and Carbon Footprint are popular. As a result, people, companies, and governments are changing (or talking about changing) their habits.
I wonder if state highpointing will suffer.
Two things may make it more difficult to pursue our far-flung highpoints: expense and technology. Increased taxes are being considered for those who over-drive, and smaller vehicles with less range are being promoted.
Yesterday's announcement of changes in CAFE fuel efficiency standards may signal the move to hybrids & electric cars, which may complicate the ability of people to travel long distances and to remote places. Much is being written about a massive increase in fuel taxes (to fund carbon reduction?) which would financially eliminate highpointing for some. Also being considered is a mileage tax that is computed from mandatory on-board GPS units that record your monthly mileage.
There are many ways to get around government standards (which is why we never seem to make progress with energy independence, nor does there ever seem to be a sustained shortage of oil), but the change may come about with "attitude."
The more long-term consideration is the anti attitude towards travel and fuel consumption, which may create a generation of kids that see activities like highpointing to be negative.
Driving is not diminishing. In fact it is increasing. Since 1973, the population increased 47% but miles driven increased 70%.