Plan to limit turbines riles growing Kansas wind industry
TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) - A Kansas legislative committee’s leader lit a political prairie fire with a proposal that critics say would end investments in wind energy.
State Senate Utilities Committee Chairman Mike Thompson said Wednesday that he is trying to protect landowners who fear that a proliferation of large turbines in their rural areas will drop property values and lessen their quality of life.
The Shawnee Republican is pursuing a bill that would impose statewide regulations on wind turbines. His proposal has split fellow Republicans and inspired a strong backlash from both environmentalists and economic development officials who see wind energy as a jobs creator.
Wind farms provide 41% of Kansas’ electricity.
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