Archive for Wednesday, February 25, 2009

Sebelius says any coal bill arriving on her desk is ‘DOA

Governor says reasons she cited last year are even more valid now

In a press conference Wednesday morning, Kansas Gov. Kathleen Sebelius said any legislation that arrives on her desk to enable constructing two coal-fired power plants in southwest Kansas is "DOA."

February 25, 2009, 11:25 a.m. Updated February 25, 2009, 2:26 p.m.


Sebelius says any coal bill arriving on her desk is ‘DOA’

Governor says reasons she cited last year are even more valid now. Enlarge video

— Gov. Kathleen Sebelius says an energy bill before the House is dead on arrival if it reaches her desk.

Sebelius told reporters Wednesday: “It’s DOA with me — absolutely.”

The bill would allow two coal-fired power plants in southwest Kansas and restrict the power of the secretary of health and environment. But it ties those provisions to others designed to promote renewable energy.

The House plans to debate it Thursday.

Sebelius said the green provisions are too weak. And, she said, allowing two coal plants would be a step backward when the federal government is moving toward policies to promote green energy.

But House Speaker Mike O’Neal, a Hutchinson Republican, said it’s frustrating that she’s standing in the way of good energy policy.


Godot 9 years, 1 month ago

Last night Obama praised "clean coal." Knowing that Sebelius is pure Obamaphant, her actions demonstrate that Obama does not mean what he says. He soothes the sheeple while Sebelilus does the dirty work.

georgeofwesternkansas 9 years, 1 month ago

Obama is for clean coal, the stimulis bill is building an identical coal plant in Illinois at taxpayor expense.

d_prowess 9 years, 1 month ago

I understand the need for "clean" coal plants because people need energy now, not when alternative fuels get up an running. But Kansas doesn't need the energy for these plants. If Illinois does, then go ahead and build them in Illinois. Perhaps Sebelius is not opposing the idea of clean coal plants, but instead the idea that they are needed in Kansas at this point.

OldEnuf2BYurDad 9 years, 1 month ago

At this point I'd allow them to burn kitties if I thought it'd bring jobs to Kansas. Our motto should be "the next Missippippi".

ENGWOOD 9 years, 1 month ago


Richard Heckler 9 years, 1 month ago

That coal plant in Illinois became too expensive which made BUSHCO pull the tax dollar plug on that baby.

Why build expensive sources to generate electricity? We pay on the meter readings and in large tax subsidies which in essence is making it appear affordable....that which it is not.

Artificial affordability stinks.

As for Governor Kathleen Sebelius YES!

Clean coal..... I doubt there is any such thing considering it is the industry and politicans pushing their new tax dollar money source. Taxpayers and ratepayers need to wise up.

Godot 9 years, 1 month ago

Kathleen Sebelius got her Democrat national office cred by opposing this clean coal plant. Her decision has nothing to do with the welfare of Kansas and everything to do with the unproven belief that man can control CO2 in our atmosphere.

ENGWOOD 9 years, 1 month ago


Richard Heckler 9 years, 1 month ago

Wind, Solar,Hydro power and geo thermal are up and running.

Remember once again the only people who say it is not are the coal power people,coal mining people,nuke people and politicians.

============================ Cashing In on Clean Energy

A National Renewable Electricity Standard Will Benefit the Economy and the Environment

calvin 9 years, 1 month ago

Now that is bipartisanship at its best. What an idiot.

SettingTheRecordStraight 9 years, 1 month ago

I'd like the South Lawrence Trafficway completed and eventually extended out to the two new power plants in western Kansas. Let's build 'em, baby!

number1jayhawker 9 years, 1 month ago

We need all forms of energy today. Coal, nuclear, solar & wind all must in some form, be used.

Kryptenx 9 years, 1 month ago

Thank you, ocean.

No matter how many times it is pointed out, republicans jump on any chance to bitch about Sebelius. To all those who support the coal plants, would you support and pay for me to build a well on your property only to send 85% of the water elsewhere? Do you even wonder why they're not trying to build them in Colorado, since that's where 85% of the power is going to?

KatWrangler 9 years, 1 month ago

barrypenders (Anonymous) says… It will only take 346,897 wind machines to replace the coalburner plant. Why isn't this gal lap dancing for Obama by now?

What a sexist comment! That is uncalled for and rude!

Lowell Holmes 9 years, 1 month ago

barrypenders, do you know why Colorado wont build the plants in their own state? It is because they dont want the pollution but they will take the energy. If not wanting to supply another state with power at the cost of polluting own own air is being isolationist then so be it!

SettingTheRecordStraight 9 years, 1 month ago

ocean and Kryptenx,

It's called an export. Most states are working hard to develop exports. Kansas is not.

feeble 9 years, 1 month ago

So barrypenders, does that mean I can leave my trash on your lawn? Oh and will you pay the utility bill too?

Heck, let's put the next JoCo landfill in where Farmland used to be, gotta think of those poor JoCo people.

Lowell Holmes 9 years, 1 month ago

settingtherecordstraight, I think the concept of exporting is clear. What doesnt appear clear to you and your fellow supporters is the fact we dont want to pollute our air for the sake of "export".

Richard Heckler 9 years, 1 month ago

It seems windpower, solar power,hydro power and geothermal power are far more home grown. The resources are already in Kansas. Now that is homegrown and far less toxic than nuke and coal could ever be.

Far more jobs jobs jobs jobs jobs will accompany wind,solar,hydro and geothermal. This is what I call green bigger dollar thinking.

Danimal 9 years, 1 month ago

"Kathleen Sebelius, running Kansas into the ground since 2002!"

Seriously Kathy, go back to Ohio. Isn't there a song about that? Or go to DC, but pleas leave Kansas and our affairs to Kansans. As governor you've done nothing but foil literally hundreds of millions (if not billions) of dollars of development in our state. I know you haven't always lived here so let me remind you that it isn't everyday that railroads and utility companies want to expand or establish operations in Kansas.

And for those of you out there who are stumping so hard for wind energy, why can't we have both?

sunruh 9 years, 1 month ago

barrypenders, I think your math is off a little. The large wind turbines like those now in Kansas are putting out between 1 and 2 megawatts. The data I found suggested 1.6, and they are currently working on a 5 megawatt turbine. The proposed coal plants are 1400 megawatts, so my math comes to 875 turbines, not 346897. You might have been doing your math on back yard turbines.

Danimal 9 years, 1 month ago

Oh and Merrill, where are all these jobs associated with renewable energy going to come from? Guess what, as part of her work to crush the Kansas economy we don't have many people with the skills to put in geothermal wells or wind turbines in Kansas. They're all coming up here from Texas. Further, I would argue that with our ample wind resources, central location and plentiful aquifers we should seek to become a turbine manufacturing haven. But guess what, turbines are made out of composites that produce the evil toxins and hazardous waste that Kathy would never allow in our state.

Danimal 9 years, 1 month ago

They are also working on magnetic levitation wind turbines that will crank out around 2 gigawatts, but they're gigantic (100 acre footprint) and still a few years out. The best short term solution would be small, vertical axis wind turbines on homes, public buildings and businesses. Unfortunately, in all of her wisdom and 6 years in office, Sebelius has failed to get our utility regulations changed to make this a possibility.

I think we should build all the large turbines we can, but lets also build the coal plants, or nuke plants would be even better.

Danimal 9 years, 1 month ago

Pacwind ( also makes some pretty cool vertical turbines. Their system is pretty cool because the cages protect avian life and can be installed in an afternoon.

Richard Heckler 9 years, 1 month ago

Johnson County Community College will begin classes this fall to prepare Kansans for the new energy industry. This is seen as a lucrative source for highly skilled jobs.

Wind,Solar,Hydro and geothermal are cleaner and multiple sources that can back up one another plus generate far more employment across the state = economic growth statewide rather than centered around Holcomb.

Shardwurm 9 years, 1 month ago

"Do you even wonder why they're not trying to build them in Colorado, since that's where 85% of the power is going to?"

This is a prime example of the difference between Dems and GOP.

Kryptenx as a liberal wants to know immediately 'What's in it for ME?' Where a GOP would say: "Jobs are being created, people from other states are sending money here. That money is going into the pockets of the people working and being spent to stimulate the economy."

average 9 years, 1 month ago

I'm not entirely isolationist.

But, if Colorado wants the power and doesn't want the plant, we shouldn't simply be rolling over and giving it to them with zero concessions, either.

If nothing else, we should demand that, if western Kansas consumption grows to need more power, we have first 'dibs' on Sunflower power. As it stands now, it is contracted out as guaranteed to leave the state. If Garden or Dodge needed more power, Kansas would be told "go build yet another coal plant".

A 2c/kWh surcharge on exported could be used to lower power costs in Western Kansas (attracting other industry). It could also be used to fund green initiatives (wind, solar, and perhaps cleaning up other Kansas coal-fired plants).

Coal is there. We'll probably use it. But, when Kansas has the upper hand (we don't have to build it at all) rolling over and giving away the ranch for the weak sauce of a few dozen permanent jobs is ludicrous.

kansanjayhawk 9 years, 1 month ago

I think Sebelius is way beyond her authority to limit these industries in Kansas. She has single handedly destroyed thousands of jobs in Kansas and she is giving Kansas a negative business environment. If she is so concerned about the environment why is she allowing other power plants, that are by the way, much dirtier to stay on line? Like the one in Lawrence??? She is playing politics with the people and economy of this state. Shame, shame, shame.!

sunruh 9 years, 1 month ago

kansasjayhawk, it seems to me you have bought into the all or nothing fallacy. If the governor is going to disallow the new power plants because of CO2 emissions, then she should shut down every plant in the state that is emitting? Don’t you think it better to draw a reasonable line in the sand? We all know it is much less disruptive and less costly to prevent a plant being built (especially one where we are going to export the power) than to shut down an existing infrastructure.

I keep hearing the term “clean coal”. The new plants are cleaner in terms of many pollutants, but none of the new “clean plants” are doing anything to prevent CO2 emissions, to my knowledge.

Arguments can be made all day long that global warming may not be caused by man-made activity, such as the link that XD40 provided. The bottom line is that CO2 is a known greenhouse gas, we are putting measurable amounts of it into our atmosphere, and the planet seems to be warming up.

If my doctor tells me he is not sure, but there is a good chance some activity is contributing to a downslide in my health, I stop the activity.

KsTwister 9 years, 1 month ago

Good for her. Kansas gets nothing but bad luck from this one.

OldEnuf2BYurDad 9 years, 1 month ago

"It seems windpower, solar power,hydro power and geothermal power are far more home grown. The resources are already in Kansas. Now that is homegrown and far less toxic than nuke and coal could ever be."

I've lived in N. California, right next to real geothermal energy plants. WHERE exactly does Kansas have steam rising up out of the ground? You GROSSLY overstate the viability and availability of these resources in our state. Where is there an appropriate location for us to build a Kansas "Hoover Dam" for generating electrical energy on the scale of a coal-fired plant? Or were you thinking of something along the lines of a second Bowersock plant [eyes rolling].

Energy is an INDUSTRY. We need industry in Kansas. We need almost any industry in Kansas (outside of the dead ends of ag and aircraft). I'd trade the effects of burning coal (in what would be cutting edge facilities) for the jobs it would create.

Richard Heckler 9 years, 1 month ago

The Tea House at 13th and Mass is geo thermal equipped.

When I talk about Solar,Wind,Hydro and Geo Thermal it is about all of them throughout the state of Kansas where applicable = more jobs throughout the state.

Yes I would support more local Bowersock Dam power as one piece of the pie in order to shut down the Lawrence coal fired plant. Yes I am for the local source of power and why not.

straightforward 9 years, 1 month ago

Obama says he supports "clean coal" energy. If this is actually the case then, then we shouldn't have to worry about any new CO2 regulations that would limit emissions, as long as we're building "clean coal" plants

We can argue over whether it should be built in Kansas or Colorado, but if you'll look at a map, you'll see that both are west of here and any potential air pollution will come our way. We might as well be the ones making he money from this. Lord knows our state could use all the tax revenues we can get. I agree that we should be pushing for wind energy too, but that doesn't mean we can't do both.

I don't know that we would even notice a large increase in air pollution from a plant that is 350 miles away, especially since I've never noticed any pollution from our own "dirty" coal plant just several miles away.

Bill Griffith 9 years, 1 month ago

To be clearer, Colorado does not want these coal plants. It is Tri-State that is wanting this power for the most part. The state of Colorado is taking under consideration the possibility of requiring Tri-State to file an integrated resource plan and justify any new power based upon costs. This will put a big damper in any plans for importing coal powered electricity into Tri-States franchised area. Also, if a bill does get by the (Kansas) governor it will probably be subject to litigation along with the current litigation in state and federal court. To add to the matter, Congress is looking to pass a cap-and-trade bill by the end of the year that will raise the price of Holcomb-bred electricity quite abit. Bottom line: I don't think the expansion plants at Holcomb have a prayer.

ENGWOOD 9 years, 1 month ago

To HELL with Obama's Mama it's all about jobs now, I just heard on the radio that Pelosi and her bunch are pushing a $410 billion bill with 8570 porky projects. So much for Obama's rant last night about no more earmarks. We will need every job and every industry we can scrape togather. Or maybe we can just all move east and go on welfare and live off all the pricks in Dougl_ASSSS county and Shawnee County.

ENGWOOD 9 years, 1 month ago

AG- Tri State has purchased land just west of the Colorado Kansas border north of Holly Colorado and about 65 miles west of the existing Holcomb plant. Maybe they are going into Ranching.

spankyandcranky 9 years, 1 month ago

I'm with Kathleen on this one. And for those concerned about lack of jobs, implementing cleaner energy sources creates jobs too.

ENGWOOD 9 years, 1 month ago

AG- In 2007, Tri-State purchased nearly half of the shares in the Amity Canal, which stretches 80 miles from below John Martin Reservoir to the Kansas state line, in order to gain a supply for coal-fired power plants near Holly. The purchase came after Tri-State presented an open offer in late 2005 to irrigators to purchase water in Southeastern Colorado. Tri-State estimates the shares could yield 20,000 acre-feet of water annually. The association also purchased farm land in the sale, which it intends to use for reservoirs, well fields and the plant site. Until the water is needed, perhaps 12-15 years down the road, farmers could continue to use it. Later in 2007, Tri-State filed for a change of use in water court, and Environment Colorado was among 20 objectors.
Last year, Tri-State began a study of the possibility of building a nuclear power plant at Holly, but has made no decision on what type of fuel will be used. HMMM breath easy Dougl_ASSS county

Bill Griffith 9 years, 1 month ago

They have eyed a site around Holly as a back-up if Holcomb II doesn't go through and have bandied about plans there for a couple of years. The problem now is the state of Colorado doesn't like their plans for more coal and is probably going to bring them under more control by the state PUC out there. Another spanner in the machinery is that a decent amount of the power was going to go to the ever-burgeoning ethanol plants on the plains, but they are going bust at an accelerating rate in both Sunflower and Tri-State's service territory.

purplesage 9 years, 1 month ago

Idiot. I believe in being respectful of our elected leaders. She was a decent insurance commissioner and a disaster as a governor. Could we fast forward a couple of years and change out the occupant at Cedarcrest?

KS 9 years, 1 month ago

It is going to happen sooner or later, but in this case maybe later. She too will be history. Go coal!

staff04 9 years, 1 month ago

I have to admit, commenting on legislation you haven't seen is a poorly advised position. Knowing the KS legislature though, I can't imagine they intend to put anything on her desk that she can sign.

FreshAirFanatic 9 years, 1 month ago

Anyone know why the current wind generators west of Salina are not turning? Has anyone talked to family/friends western Kansas who use electricity? If so, what do they pay per kwH? Green energy is much more expensive to generate., [and even harder to store] how do they feel about paying ~$.20/kwH? Any idea what the current demand is on the current infrastructure? Sunflower and the member coops are not for one has to at least consider they may be trying to meet growing demand and be prepared for upcoming grid problems.

KEITHMILES05 9 years, 1 month ago

The vast majority of legislators support the Holcomb project. They represent the citiznes, Kathy doesn't.

Bill Griffith 9 years, 1 month ago

FAF-The Tradewinds site west of Salina is being constructed in two phases. The first phase is complete (further east) and the next phase is being put in place. A separate buyer(s) is doing part of the western half-although utilities involved in the first part may purchase some of the new addition. The rates in western Kansas vary depending on the provider. The highest rates in the state are in central Kansas. Wind power is NOT more expensive to generate than new coal. It is more expensive than an all ready running facility. Electricity growth is Kansas is projected at a low rate of increase and is now in fact in a negative growth rate due to the economy.

BigPrune 9 years, 1 month ago

When will this lady leave Kansas to be on Obama's cabinet? The State of Kansas would be much better off if this were to happen.

Maddy Griffin 9 years, 1 month ago

Hold your ground, Kathleen!! There's no such thing as "clean coal". Let Colorado worry about it's own energy and pollution problems. Save the land for wind turbines.

Chris Ogle 9 years, 1 month ago

She is just pissed because DC doesn't want her... yet

rdave13 9 years, 1 month ago

FreshAirFanatic (Anonymous) says…

Anyone know why the current wind generators west of Salina are not turning?

My guess is that the dispatch cost of the wind farm power far exceeds the price for cuurent power avavilable to the gris ( coal fired gen power since gas fired peakers are not being used right now). I am not a proponent of this plant project or coal...but costs are costs and we better get ready for high bills if we want to eliminate a cheap supply of generating fuel.

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