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What do you think of KDHE’s decision to reject coal plants for Western Kansas?

Response Percent Votes
65% 656
30% 307
3% 35
Total 998


Frank Smith 10 years, 7 months ago

It's odd that a coal-fired plant proponent poster would make a sarcastic remark about the diminishing water supplies in Holcomb. The expanded plant would use a huge amount of water and that extraction of a free resource would have a substantial negative impact on agriculture, existing industrial operations and domestic supplies in the area.

To answer another poster, ethanol production from corn is but another taxpayer-subsidized scam, done for the benefit of agribusiness giants such as ADM and a horrendous drain on water resources.

If this was going to be such a great deal, why did eastern Colorado residents successfully fight siting in their towns, including Lamar, just 60 miles west of Holcomb and why did Sunflower insist on a 12-year tax abatement? Why did it let its valid permit for expansion expire?

Though they talk about "economic development" this expansion would create perhaps two or three dozen line worker jobs. The labor to build the new generating capacity would likely be imported from out of state (or the country) and I'm guessing so would be the construction supplies and equipment.

Spare us all the hyperbole. This was a ripoff of Kansas, pure and simple in virtually every aspect. Depending on the sources, only 10-20% of the increased generating capacity would have only been used in Kansas. Thank goodness Bremby declined the issuance of a permit.

melott 10 years, 7 months ago

While wind energy is "clean", it does kill a lot of birds. Basically any bird that flies through the area has a large chance of being killed. The ground under them is littered with dead birds. They don't see the blades as a threat. We have to live with this if we want wind energy. Plus, they are ugly.

This doesn't mean I'm against them. I'm proud of the coal decision, but we have to live with the consequences. Right now, every viable source of energy has a downside. Conservation is the best way to make quick progress while trying to do the research to develop better sources.

"Hydrogen" as possible now is not a source. It's only a way to move energy around like a battery. It takes energy to make hydrogen.

lounger 10 years, 7 months ago

This is wonderful news! Progressive has a nice ring!!!!

MariposaUnfolding 10 years, 7 months ago

This is one of the most progressive state agency decisions I've seen in a while. Now, we can start putting our state money and tax dollars toward other energy sources, such as wind power!

It's about time we really put our efforts into finding transportation alternatives - such as a state-wide bus system and road repairs. Think of all the money and time we could have saved building a better bus system (and restricting motor vehicles) between KC/Lawrence/Topeka instead of fighting over the SLT! Then, everyone would win!

  • Mariposa

BigDog 10 years, 7 months ago

Energy alternatives would be nice, I doubt many of them will bring the same kind of economic development for western Kansas though. The spending for the construction of these power plants was $3.6 billion, then whatever the ongoing jobs that they would have provided.

In reality though the state's money will now go to defending the decision in court. I expect this to drag on for a while in the court system.

Richard Heckler 10 years, 7 months ago

The economic growth will be more wide spread rather than concentrated to a small area.

Why keep generating radioactive waste that costs billions upon billions to store plus needs to be hauled from everywhere?

According to the Wall Street Journal one of the reasons Nuke Plants have not been built is because they were declared a risky investment due to radioactive waste,too expensive to construct and constant cost overruns.

If energy is to be subsidized why not something safer and cleaner while at the same time creating a new industry that cannot be outsourced? Hydro power with new technology,solar power and wind power.

Renewable energy basics No single solution can meet our society's future energy needs. The answer lies instead in a family of diverse energy technologies that share a common thread: they do not deplete our natural resources or destroy our environment.

Renewable energy technologies tap into natural cycles and systems, turning the ever-present energy around us into usable forms. The movement of wind and water, the heat and light of the sun, heat in the ground, the carbohydrates in plants-all are natural energy sources that can supply our needs in a sustainable way. Because they are homegrown, renewables can also increase our energy security and create local jobs.


Germany shines a beam on the future of energy Nation gambles on amped-up push for renewable power Robert Collier, Chronicle Staff Writer Monday, December 20, 2004

(12-20) 04:00 PDT Muhlhausen, Germany -- A solar-power project built by a Berkeley company may point Germany toward a pollution-free future. Set in the heart of Bavarian farmland, the 30-acre facility went online earlier this month, becoming the biggest solar energy plant in the world. For the government of Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder, the Muhlhausen solar farm represents a gamble that Germany, the world's third biggest economy, can replace its principal energy sources -- coal, natural gas, oil and nuclear power -- with clean, safe and renewable alternatives. "There's a huge amount of opportunity here in Germany because the government has created a system that encourages large installations," ======

ralphralph 10 years, 7 months ago

Gosh, Merrill, you're right! Hydro is just the ticket for Western Kansas!

.... huh? It means 'water'? Oh. They don't have much of that in Holcomb.

BigDog 10 years, 7 months ago

Seems like alternate energy is more talk than anything. Those who favor wind energy then turn around and oppose having turbines in certain areas because birds fly into them or they don't look good in the Flint Hills areas. The Kennedy's sued to stop windmills near their summer resort because it was going to ruin their view. Solar is a good alternative too ...... unless they are unsightly or birds fly into them (sarcasm).

Hydrogen works well if you have water. Ethanol plants use a huge amount of water and you actually get less miles per gallon using ethanol. I guess that is why oil companies aren't fighting ethanol.

If people are truly supportive of some of the alternative energy sources (wind, solar, etc) then they need to quit trying to keep them from happening.

local_support 10 years, 7 months ago

Isn't it awfully windy out there on the plains of Western Kansas?

I bet the region would do well if they declared themselves the "wind power capital" of the world and began building thousands of windmills.

Jerry Stubbs 10 years, 7 months ago

We should hope that some energy companies would see the value of the wind in the windy state of Kansas and invest.

toefungus 10 years, 7 months ago

This decision will damage the state's economic interests for 50 years.

ASBESTOS 10 years, 7 months ago

This is going to be overturned. The Secretary violated the statutes!

Do any of you research and read?

Baille 10 years, 7 months ago

You know, it used to be when people used up all the water or other natural resources of an area they would move away. Maybe it is time...

BTW, Asbestos, lead us there, buddy. Which statutes are you talking about?

BigDog 10 years, 7 months ago


I am agreeing with you. People need to not complain about the coal fired plants and then when the better cleaner alternatives be presented whine about aesthetics. Nothing is going to be perfect. Its kind of like those who complain about cellphone services and then don't want towers built in their area because towers are ugly.

pbutcher 10 years, 7 months ago

I just returned from a trip to Dodge City. I drove past one of the new wind farms. It is beautiful! I could see it from miles away, and watched it as I got closer. I thought of large silver dancers. The wind turbines are truly an amazing sight. What a great way to generate clean power.

Jerry Stubbs 10 years, 7 months ago

I don't think birds have a problem with the newer, better designed windmills. There is an old project in California that was a disaster in that regard, the towers weren't tall enough.

labmonkey 10 years, 7 months ago

"Want to show me a lyrically beautiful conventional power plant? Anything inherently asthetically pleasing about tons of black coal emissions being vomited up out of smokestacks?"

Drive by KCPL in LaCygne and tell me how much black smoke you see. As long as the right technology is used, coal is failry clean and not much more than water vapor leaves the stacks. All the visitors who drive through western Kansas who think the windfarms are beautiful don't have to look at them every day (plus how many acres of land will it take to replace these two coal many windmills does it take to produce the 1.21 gigawatts of electricity to send Marty back to 1985?). And for the person who said that it would create a dozen or so line jobs has no clue how many jobs these plants create. The two units in LaCygne create hundreds of jobs for the plant itself plus other jobs for the contractor companies who are permanently attached to the plant.

The only good argument I have heard against the plants is lack of water, and that should be the only argument used against these coal units (although the lake in LaCygne is much shallower and contains much less water than the designers intended and they have done well for over 30 years).

milkweed 10 years, 7 months ago

Thanks to KDHE Secretary Rod Bremby for making this very wise decision. Our children and grandchildren will be much better off because of his action.

happyscriv 10 years, 7 months ago

Good Job on a well-made decision to Mr. Bremby! I hope the power company has the foresight to NOT go ahead with legal action and to realize they need to generate power from other alternative methods as mentioned. Put money and time into building wind farms, solar collection and other renewable energy sources instead of the lawyers and courts. Be Productive NOT Destructive! I would gladly let them use my roof for solar power collection. And I would pay a little more for electricity if needed. I would also switch everything to electric in my house if I knew that a lot of that power was being generated from renewables.

ConcernedAmerican 10 years, 7 months ago

All you have to do is travel through northern Arizona, the Grand Canyon area, the Four Corners region at the corner of the states of Arizona, New Mexico. Colorado and Utah to see the devastation huge coal-fired energy plants do to the environment and air. So why would we want all the pollutants spreading across both western and eastern Kansas so Denver (or whoever, San Diego?) could run their air conditioners cheaply? Back in the late '70's, I built a solar adobe house and had a wind powered water pump, etc., and the powers in our government decided enough of solar credits and development of alternative energy sources, for that matter, and move on with cheap and profitable fossil fuels. Not so CHEAP but still VERY profitable today. Think how far ahead of the game we would be if that research would have been supported and promoted over the past 30 years. Has anybody heard anything else about the fuel-cell cars George Bush touted in his State of the Union address? Too bad individual inventors around the world have already made working fuel cell engines (one was murdered over his), but GM, Ford, etc. haven't rushed to knock on these peoples doors to see how they did it. They are too busy living off the profit from nonrenewable fossil fuels (the last tree!). 'nough said.

snowWI 10 years, 7 months ago

"Drive by KCPL in LaCygne and tell me how much black smoke you see. As long as the right technology is used, coal is failry clean and not much more than water vapor leaves the stacks."

That is not really true. They have cleaned the coal plant up recently, but the CO2 emissions are massive at over 10 million tons a year. The only good thing recently is that KCP&L put state of the art pollution control devices on the La Cygne plant. That is a very good thing because the prevailing winds often come from the south and blow into the Kansas City metro area.

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