Letters to the Editor

Energy policy

April 30, 2008


To the editor:

Gov. Sebelius has rejected the idea of building two 700-megawatt coal-burning units and cited concerns over the project's emission of 11 million tons of CO2 annually. Good for her, but this doesn't provide the long-term energy policy Kansas needs.

Under the deal the Legislature offered, the project would be reduced to two 600-megawatt plants, and Sunflower Electric Corp. would promise to accelerate development of renewable energy sources.

Due to rapidly developing climate and fuel supply issues, Kansas needs a modern and comprehensive long-term energy and environmental policy now.

Building two 600-megawatt plants would produce 1,200 megawatts and about 9.5 million tons of CO2 emissions, and most of the energy would not be going to Kansans. It would make more sense to build one small biorefinery plant in each Kansas county. Building 105 small community-owned biorefinery projects over 10 to 15 years, with each plant capable of producing up to, say 5 megawatts, and having the ability to add power to the local distribution system, and having the ability to produce liquid and gaseous biofuels is a better long-term policy for Kansas.

This concept is the wave of the future and should be the basis for our energy policy.

Les Blevins,


lounger 10 years, 1 month ago

Yes anything but filthy, old, worn out, polluting, coal plants

jafs 10 years, 1 month ago

What's wrong with smaller, local plants which can provide for local needs and produce less pollution?

LogicMan 10 years, 1 month ago

"What's wrong with smaller, local plants which can provide for local needs and produce less pollution?"Assuming the same underlying technology (coal, gas, nuclear, bio, ...):Because of the economies and efficiencies of scale. Larger machines are cheaper and almost always more efficient, and their pollution controls are more effective. They also require smaller staffs, less maintenance, less land, etc. per unit output.But they also require longer distribution systems. Our predecessors optimized the plants/wires long ago, so it is no mistake that we have the electrical systems that we do.NIMBY will also limit construction of local plants of whatever primary energy source.

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