Let Us Now Praise Fran Pavley
The largely unsung Pavley gets her due in this NPR report, which notes that, "in climate change circles, this 57-year-old former teacher has become something of a rock star." True enough. Pavley's star status derives from her role as the architect of an earlier law to regulate greenhouse gas emissions from cars and trucks. That legislation -- the so-called Pavley Bill -- was signed by Schwarzenegger's predecessor, Gray Davis, and is being challenged in court, but it has been adopted by ten other states and it set the stage for last week's historic signing.
Of course, no matter how many laws it passes, California can't tackle climate change alone, but someone had to step into the leadership vacuum created by the White House. And that's exactly what Ms. Pavley, from her unlikely position, has done.