Letters to the Editor

Coal damage

March 12, 2008


To the editor:

What are the tax implications for Melvin Neufeld and his group of coal burners? Their main concern seems to be how much money can be generated taking cleanliness out of our air in order to produce electricity for Colorado. What about water? Will much be needed? Where will it come from? Who will pay for our wounded air? Who will know how to restore it? Maybe we should consider an excess carbon tax so that those who will reap the benefits of the new coal-burning plants can be a part of mending the damage they will cause.

Sarah Casad,


Ragingbear 9 years, 10 months ago

What you need to understand is that these people are Creationist. That means that they believe either the world will end before any of this will matter, or that "God" will take care of it. That is how they justify themselves. Regardless of the fast that "God" specifically told man that it was his job to take care of the Earth.

On another note... Wounded air?

CatFan 9 years, 10 months ago

Sarah, the Gov's position would be a lot more credible if she'd apply her beliefs evenly to the entire state. But no, she's chosen to veto a project to the detriment of only Western Kansas. Yet her minion Bremby continues to allow less efficient and much more polluting coal plants operate in Eastern Kansas. Those existing coal plants are largely the reason why electric rates are considerably lower in the East. Until the Gov takes a stance that applies environmental restrictions evenly and fairly, she'll be nothing more than a politician positioning herself for higher office. She's missing a great chance to be an authentic leader.

just_another_bozo_on_this_bus 9 years, 10 months ago

"Carbon dioxide is not pollutiion."

By the same narrow definition, neither is water-- but too much of it can be a very bad thing.

grimpeur 9 years, 10 months ago

"...understand the general population of Colorado likes warmth when it's freezing outside, washer/dryer, air conditioning, toaster, vacuum sweeper, clocks, hot water, coffee pot, computer, TV, cordless phones, lights, oven, refrigerator, radios, stereos and just a few little things like that."

There, fixed that for ya.

deec 9 years, 10 months ago

I don't think the wind props/birds connection is substantiated by facts.

gr 9 years, 10 months ago

"Who will pay for our wounded air?"

Maybe someone can sue someone if they "feel" the air is "wounded"? Oh wait, they already are. The loser's name escapes me at the moment.

"By the same narrow definition, neither is water- but too much of it can be a very bad thing."

Ok bozo, one can say how much water is a bad thing. How much CO2 is a bad thing? Your reference was the amount of water for one person. Implication can only go for CO2 for one person. Except, you are doing a bait-and-switch and applying it to the whole earth. How much water is bad for the earth? Think of the oceans. Compare that with CO2. Kind of similar, don't you think?

"I don't think the wind props/birds connection is substantiated by facts."

And when did facts ever enter into the global warming / CO2 hype?

For all you who believe anything, why not boycott the coal plants. Use no electricity for the next month and that will force a shutdown.

No takers? Yep, just a bunch hot air blowers.

jafs 9 years, 10 months ago


I posted some basic suggestions for using solar power to generate one's own electricity for you on another post yesterday.

BrianR 9 years, 10 months ago

"Wounded air?"

I usually blame the dogs.

georgeofwesternkansas 9 years, 10 months ago

Logic you continue to insist that the Sunflower rate payors be forced to pay for devloping the the infrastructure and wind farms for generation that will never ever be 66% efficient.

Westar had a wind proposal on the table at KCC that you (westar customers) beat down because of the cost.

Your actions are so loud we cannot hear what you are saying. Which is, wind is good four your bill but not mine.

CatFan 9 years, 10 months ago

logicsound04, why are existing plants and new applications "two entirely different issues"? Last I heard, they both produced the same kind of CO2. Actually, new plants produce less. Is your CO2 less damaging than ours? (Maybe so, since it drifts over Missouri. I hear you folks are still engaged in some type of Civil War border battle.) You say the plants are unnecessary. Contracts for Eastern Kansas coal generation capacity being sold to Western Kansas utilities expire in the coming years. That means that Eastern Kansas customers will be responsible for even more CO2 emissions. Why doesn't Bremby stop that? The portions of the new plant capacity that will be used by Western Kansas utilities is not for load growth, it's needed to replace the expiring contracts. And it will be considerably cleaner. Western Kansas utilities already contract for proportionally more wind generation than Westar and KCPL. When will Eastern Kansas do its part to improve the environment instead of easing its conscience at the expense of the West? The Gov could gain a lot of credibility by applying fair standards.

kansascrone 9 years, 10 months ago


You are brave for speaking out. All Kansans who want their children and grandchildren to grow up in a safe environment should do the same.

In addition to sacrificing their health we are likely sacrificing their financial future as they will be left with the burden of cleaning up the environment (likely through increased taxes) long after those who are profiting and those who are benefiting from cheap electricity are gone.

It is short sighted to ignore the true cost of coal, petroleum, ethanol, or any other energy solution.

As for arguments that global warming is a myth - I'm not buying it. I would never gamble with my children's and grandchildren's futures and I don't see the harm in taking care of the earth regardless.

ilikestuff 9 years, 10 months ago

Catfan said, "...she's chosen to veto a project to the detriment of only Western Kansas".

Tentatively, I agree with you. The "least politically-defensible" part of the state (except for Russell and Russell county) always comes last.

I wish solar panels were installed on every home. Were this case, it would obviously lead to very dramatic energy-savings. This one simple step could have a tremendous impact on our collective energy-footprint as well as our individual pocket book.

I believe a dramatic reduction in energy bills would appeal to everyone, regardless of ideology. Further, it would create an "environment" in which each one of us is aware of his or her energy-footprint. Hopefully, this would lead to a culture of greater energy conservation. Finally, as the cost of solar panels is currently prohibitive, they would need to be subsidized for many of us.

Thank you.

Bruce Liddel 9 years, 10 months ago

Much of the nonsense across this forum can be attributed to the lack of scientific education in the Kansas Public School System.

There is no free lunch. The closest we Americans ever came to developing a free lunch energy-wise (fusion) died along with the SuperCollider in Texas under the Clinton One dynasty.

Solar energy can't be harvested at night, wind turbines don't turn when the wind is (sometimes) calm, and energy storage technology is so horribly inefficient as to be wholly impractical. The point is, all generating methods have drawbacks, and most methods are by definition more expensive than the least expensive methods. The ones environmentalists seem to like the most are typically the most expensive. You cannot afford a total-solar energy economy. So who wants to spend whose money, and is this really wise?

The electrical generating companies know what viable options exist, and politics aside, what these various options cost. Their job is to produce enough electricity at affordable rates that the rest of us don't freeze in the dark. If the government and the environmentalists interfere too much, then the power companies can't do their job.

If you think you can do a better cleaner safer job than the power companies, then quit whining about the environment and possible future taxes, and start generating electric power, where people need it, when they want it, and at competitive prices. If you get rich, then hurray for you. If you go bankrupt, then you'll understand my reluctance to tie the hands of the companies who have no choice but to obey all the laws and regulations (and permit denials) that too often are based on emotional fears and Utopian ideals instead of sound engineering.

Most people will agree that they don't want to freeze in the dark, but too many people in Lawrence seem to think it's OK to force other people to freeze in the dark.

gr 9 years, 10 months ago

"As for arguments that global warming is a myth - I'm not buying it. I would never gamble with my children's and grandchildren's futures and I don't see the harm in taking care of the earth regardless."

Isn't that a bunch of emotion, if not a bunch of something else.

Fallacy of the false premise.

True, there would be no harm in taking care of the earth. True, one should not gamble with children's futures.

Now for the disconnect.

Global warming may or may not be a myth. Because you are not "buying it", does not influence it either way. Because you are not "buying it", should not be a reason to dictate your beliefs to everyone else and make all of society suffer.

Let's suppose global warming is true. That still does not imply that we caused it nor that we can correct it. It does not imply that CO2 is bad for the earth. I have seen lots of emotion presented, but no facts supporting such imaginary claims. In fact, I've seen lots of facts supporting a much warmer earth than we now have. Just recently, I heard that digging through the ice in Greenland, they found plant life and evidence it was much warmer than now.

So, you are taking two disconnected things, and trying to merge them together, then dictating how we should suffer.

I don't want to gamble with my children's and grandchildren's futures by not planning for present and future power generation so we don't have the situations of other states in past years with rolling blackouts, power loss for days on end, or like other countries with power for only a few hours a day.

Do you want your children to have inadequate power and suffer going backwards in progress, with dark nights, wanton crime sprees, rioting, and a general economic collapse?

(See, I can wear waders, too)

toefungus 9 years, 10 months ago

At least the Gov treats the wine industry the same as the power industry. Poorly.

jafs 9 years, 10 months ago

Actually, the KCC approved a raise to cover the costs of wind power for Westar - they simply denied an extra raise to ensure extra profit.

Makes sense to me.

How and why did the large corporations convince our government (and us?) that we should be subsidizing/ensuring their profits?

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