Magavern, Bill


Bill Magavern is the Director of the Sierra Club California.

Why CEQA Is Essential for California Neighborhoods

By Bill Magavern
Sierra Club California

The California Environmental Quality Act, or CEQA, is the centerpiece of California’s economic democracy. Since 1970, when it was signed by Ronald Reagan, this law has given all citizens a voice in what happens in their communities, allowing them to take action to protect their health and local environments. CEQA makes sure that those who will be most affected by development have the right to get the facts about the environmental impact of proposed projects, and to seek alternative project designs that will lessen or eliminate the potential negative impacts.  This principle of broad public involvement would be eliminated under a plan put forth by Republican lawmakers and business groups to “reform” CEQA, supposedly as a way to boost California’s economy.

New Clean Car Standards Would Save CA Families $13 Billion Annually, Cut Oil Use By 5 Billion Gallons

By Bill Magavern
Sierra Club California

New car fuel efficiency standards would save Californa residents over $13 billion at the gas pump and cut oil use in the state by more than 5 billion gallons, according to a new analysis done by the Union of Concerned Scientists and the Natural Resources Defense Council and released by Sierra Club California.

The report calculated the potential benefits to California families of raising average fuel efficiency standards to 60 miles per gallon for cars and light trucks by the year 2025. The standards would achieve oil savings equivalent to taking 8.8 million cars off California’s roads.

Sierra Club California's 2009 Report Card Reveals Backsliding by Governor and Legislature

By Bill Magavern
Sierra Club California

Sierra Club California has published its 2009 Legislative Report Card, exposing a significant deterioration in the performance of Governor Schwarzenegger and the Legislature.

Billionaire developers and fossil-fuel polluters cynically manipulated California’s economic distress to weaken protections for our air, water, and wild places, and our elected officials too often went along.

The report card grades legislators on their votes on 15 bills, chosen for their importance to Sierra Club California. Only five legislators – Senators Corbett, Hancock and Wiggins and Assemblymembers Monning and Skinner -- voted the pro-environment position on all 15, way down from the 42 legislators who scored perfect records last year. 13 of those 15 bills reached Schwarzenegger’s desk, and he sided with the pro-environment position on only two of those.