Library from Kansas

Some see proposed wind farm as a threat in Squaw Creek National Wildlife Refuge

Among the regulars are pelicans, wood ducks, trumpeter swans, blue-winged teals, sandhill cranes, blue herons, snow geese and smaller shorebirds such as the killdeer. After a layover, they ride the updraft from wind hitting the nearby Loess Hills, formed thousands of years ago from wind-blown soil. Now a company wants to capture that same wind by building Missouri’s largest wind farm nearby.
5 May 2014

Lawmakers to vote on altered renewable energy bill

The revised legislation keeps the current 10 percent requirement and allows the 15 percent requirement to run from 2016 to 2021. But after that, the RPS would sunset, explained Sen. Forrest Knox, R-Altoona ...Rep. Dennis Hedke, R-Wichita, chair of the House Energy and Environment Committee, accepted Knox’s offer.
2 May 2014

House rejects bill repealing Kansas' RPS energy mandate

Rep. Marc Rhoades, R-Newton, said continuation of the RPS in Kansas would eventually lead to a significant increase in the cost of electricity. "Forty percent increases to the electrical rates to your constituents," said Rhoades ..."Folks, be advised you vote this down people will be hearing about the fact that you allowed their rates to rise," Rhoades said.
27 Mar 2014

Senate panel advances bill to repeal renewable energy standards

[The RPS] is not needed anymore,” said Mike O’Neal, president of the Kansas Chamber of Commerce. “I’d make an argument that it never was needed.” The RPS statute requires that utility companies get 15 percent of their energy from renewable sources by 2015, and O’Neal said they’ve already reached that point. “Time to take the training wheels off. We don’t need the RPS anymore.”
20 Mar 2014

Wind power line proposal Irks some midwest farmers

"We have sacrificed everything for this land," said Jennifer Gatrel, 33, who, along with her husband, Jeff, farms a 430-acre cattle ranch in western Missouri. "We don't go on vacation. We don't go out to eat. Everything we have is tied up in this land. The idea that somebody can come in and take it from us is appalling and it goes against what it is to be an American."
16 Mar 2014

Battle over renewable energy ahead in legislative session

Demands from conservatives to jettison Kansas' renewable energy standards died down by halftime of the 2014 legislative session, but like the Kansas weather, that could change at any moment. Asked if the effort to repeal renewable energy goals was dead for 2014, Senate President Susan Wagle, R-Wichita, responded. "Oh no. The session is just starting."
1 Mar 2014

County allows wind energy company to apply for construction of two meteorological towers west of Baldwin City

In December, the commission placed a moratorium on wind farm projects until it had time to draft regulations on their development. But at the commission's Wednesday meeting, the panel ruled the meteorological towers did not fall under the moratorium and allowed the application process for a conditional use permit to continue.
26 Feb 2014

Wind farm substation burglarized

“The first time was about two weeks ago,” said the substation’s site manager, Tony Nikabadze. “It was on a Friday. We had all the tools and equipment stored in two trailers. The thieves cut the chains on the doors of the trailer and stole a welder and power tools.” This past weekend thieves struck the site again,” Nikabadze said.
19 Feb 2014

Snakes and prairie chickens pit development against species preservation in Kansas

Threats to the bird include wind farms, oil and gas production, herbicides, drought and livestock grazing. Kansas Electric Cooperatives and the Kansas Farm Bureau back the bill. Designating the bird as endangered or threatened could stymie the state’s wind industry by limiting placement of wind turbines. It also could double the cost of building power transmission lines.
9 Feb 2014

Utility companies lobby for lower solar reimbursement

Mark Schreiber, Westar’s executive director of government affairs, told legislators that under current law his company “is paying net-metered customers a retail price for a wholesale commodity” and that the 1-to-1 kilowatt credit doesn’t account for infrastructure costs like power plants and power lines.
5 Feb 2014

Wind farms could endanger small aircraft, study says

Wind energy turbine farms could be hazardous for small aircraft. That’s the conclusion of a study done by the University of Kansas for the Kansas Department of Transportation. “These turbines can set up a circular vortex that can roll a plane if it gets in there,” said Tom Mulinazzi, a KU professor of civil, environmental and architectural engineering.
18 Jan 2014

Kansas Chamber to back repeal of renewable energy standard, get involved in education issues

Chamber leaders said businesses' concerns about energy costs are prompting it to enter the debate over a state law requiring utilities to see that renewable resources, such as wind power, account for 20 percent of their capacity to generate electricity by 2020. The chamber is not "anti-wind." "We are against government picking winners and losers. Wind energy has its place, but those investments have to be self-sustaining."
16 Jan 2014

Study finds small aircraft face risks at airports near wind farms

Current Federal Aviation Administration guidelines only evaluate vertical structures from a static perspective within an airport zone. However, wind farms are dynamic with spinning blades that can create rotational vortices. "This research points out a shortcoming in the current evaluation process and that is why this is so important.”
15 Jan 2014
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