Renewable energy to power Journal-World’s presses

The World Company this month will start buying enough renewable energy generated from the Kansas River to offset what the company uses every day to print the Journal-World.

The company will purchase the power from Lawrence’s Zephyr Energy, which is operated by Bowersock Mills and Power Co.

Dan Simons, president of The World Company’s electronics division, says the company pursued the switch for about six months.

“I believe it’s the right thing to do and hopefully can start a trend here in Kansas and in Lawrence. We can use the alternative energy opportunities that are available to us,” he said.

As part of the agreement, The World Company will pay Zephyr Energy to produce enough energy to print the paper in place of what Westar Energy typically has to produce. “This effort will benefit Kansas and the surrounding region both economically and environmentally,” said Sarah Hill-Nelson of Bowersock Mills.

The agreement will help reduce the combustion of coal and natural gas in the Midwest, she said.

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The Bowersock Dam in Lawrence and regional wind-power generators produce the renewable product. Bowersock Mills and the Bonneville Environmental Foundation, of Portland, Ore., developed the Zephyr Energy Green Tags product. A green tag will also appear daily on the Journal-World’s front page.

Simons said the company may look at expanding its purchase of the energy, possibly including enough to power its 6News broadcasts, and to entirely power the Lawrence Public Library if it were to move to the Riverfront Mall site at Sixth and New Hampshire streets.