Friday, May 22, 2009
Gov. Mark Parkinson has signed a renewable energy bill that was part of an agreement allowing a new coal-fired power plant in southwest Kansas.
The bill says wind farms and other renewable sources must provide 20% of public utilities' electricity by 2020. It also has provisions to encourage conservation and consumers' use of small wind or solar generators for their household power needs.
Parkinson struck a deal earlier this month with Sunflower Electric Power Corp. to end a 19-month dispute between the Hays-based utility and the governor's office. It allows Sunflower to build a coal plant outside Holcomb, in Finney County, but required passage of the renewable energy bill first.
Sunflower had wanted to build two plants, but the administration had denied the utility an air-quality permit.