High-voltage power project approved

State officials Tuesday praised approval of the V-Plan, a 200-mile high-voltage electric transmission project that will run through Kansas.

The Southwest Power Pool Inc. approved for construction a number of priority projects that are designed to improve the regional electric grid.

“We need an electric grid that will meet near- and long-term needs, and allow us to better manage many uncertain future scenarios, such as carbon policy, varying fuel prices, growth in electricity demand, and state or federal renewable energy standards,” said SPP President and Chief Executive Officer Nick Brown.

Included in those projects was the V-Plan, a double-circuit 345-kilovolt line running from Spearville to Medicine Lodge to Wichita that is projected to cost $356 million.

Lt. Gov. Troy Findley said approval of the V-Plan will help Kansas expand its wind power generation network.

“With the SPP making the V-Plan transmission project a priority, we are well on our way to providing reliable energy service to consumers and creating thousands of jobs in the renewable energy economy,” Findley said.

Gov. Mark Parkinson has said in the past that approval of the transmission line was as important to the Kansas economy as the proposed federal biosecurity lab in Manhattan or the designation of a National Cancer Center at Kansas University Medical Center.