Environment

OPINION
Evergy headquarters stand out in downtown Topeka.

Ballooning Evergy spending plans raise questions, prove need for public hearings in Kansas

BY: - December 1, 2022

Kansas Reflector welcomes opinion pieces from writers who share our goal of widening the conversation about how public policies affect the day-to-day lives of people throughout our state. Glenda DuBoise is the state director for AARP Kansas. She has previously worked in both large and small companies and nonprofit organizations across Kansas and beyond, most […]

Evergy building in downtown Topeka

Kansas regulators want to slash Evergy’s energy efficiency plan

BY: - November 23, 2022

Regulators’ opposition could unravel a consensus plan to provide millions of dollars in energy efficiency programs to Evergy’s Kansas customers. Evergy, the largest electric utility in Kansas, came to agreement with consumer and environmental advocates on a variety of programs meant to lower energy demand and save customers close to $100 million over four years. […]

A view of electricity transmission lines stretching across a partly cloudy sky above a field

As utilities spend billions on transmission, support builds for independent monitoring  

BY: - November 20, 2022

An aging electric grid, fossil fuel power plant retirements and a massive renewable electricity buildout are all contributing to a boom in transmission and distribution wire projects by electric utilities across the country. In 2020, investor-owned electric utilities spent $25 billion on transmission, up from $23.7 billion in 2019, figures that the Edison Electric Institute, […]

Kansas, western Missouri at low risk for insufficient electrical supply this winter

BY: - November 18, 2022

The electrical grid that covers Kansas and western Missouri is expected to have plenty of power to keep up with demand this winter. But in the event of severe weather, the St. Louis area could be at risk.  The North American Electric Reliability Corporation released its winter outlook Thursday assessing potential vulnerabilities to the grid. […]

Lesser prairie chicken perform dancing

Federal wildlife officials list lesser prairie chicken as threatened in Kansas

BY: - November 17, 2022

Federal wildlife officials have listed the iconic lesser prairie chicken as threatened across its Kansas habitat, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service announced Thursday. The bird is in even more dire straits in the southwest, where it will be listed as endangered. The listing comes after years of fighting by wildlife advocates to protect the […]

Gov. Laura Kelly greets staff from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers

Kansas Gov. Laura Kelly pledges focus on water: ‘Waiting for a miracle is not an option’

BY: - November 16, 2022

MANHATTAN — Kansans have “a responsibility to do something” about the state’s rapidly depleting water supply and the risk of widespread contamination, Gov. Laura Kelly said at a conference Wednesday in Manhattan. “Waiting for a miracle is not an option,” she told a crowd of about 500 at the 11th annual Governor’s Conference on the […]

A brand new Chevrolet Bolt EVU sits on a sales lot

Amid a major federal investment in electric cars, it’s time for states to step up, advocates say

BY: - November 12, 2022

For years, electric vehicles posed something of a chicken-and-egg problem.  Mass adoption, seen as critical to cutting the largest single source of U.S. carbon emissions, couldn’t happen until the infrastructure to allow drivers to recharge wherever they were heading was in place. And those charging stations weren’t coming until more drivers switched to plug-in electric […]

Opponents of a proposed 2,000-acre solar farm in Jackson County rise up Monday to show county commissioners those eager for imposition of an 18-month moratorium on consideration of new solar projects. (Tim Carpenter/Kansas Reflector)

Jackson County Commission gathers input ahead of vote on 18-month solar farm moratorium

BY: - November 7, 2022

Jackson County Commission members check the public's temperature regarding a proposed 18-month moratorium on consideration of solar farm applications.

OPINION
The Japanese Friendship Garden in downtown Lawrence.

With Kansas elections approaching fast, I searched for peace in this tranquil hideaway

BY: - November 7, 2022

Next to the Watkins Museum of History in downtown Lawrence sits a tiny park, a mere 90 by 92 feet. If you don’t keep your eyes open when strolling along the Massachusetts Street sidewalk, you could easily miss it. Walk up the concrete path and behind the cast iron fence, however, and you’ll find an […]

A view of the Gavin Power Plant in Cheshire, Ohio

Coal plant operators shirking responsibilities on ash cleanup, report contends

BY: - November 5, 2022

In the wake of major coal ash spills from power plant containment ponds in Tennessee and into the Dan River along the North Carolina and Virginia border, the federal Environmental Protection Agency in 2015 laid out the first federal rules for managing the ash, one of the nation’s largest waste streams, and the toxins it […]

Podcast guests appear via video conference on laptop screen

Annual Kansas opinion survey captures robust support for gun control measures

BY: - October 31, 2022

Majority of Kansans surveyed by Docking Institute eager to broaden gun control laws by blocking sales to violent offenders and setting minimum age at 21.

Even as drought forces water cutbacks, climate gets short shrift in midterm election

BY: - October 29, 2022

LAKE MEAD, Nev. — The streaks of white on the rock ringing the nation’s largest reservoir show how far its water levels have dropped since it was last full. Lake Mead and nearby Lake Powell, which send water to 40 million people in the Southwest, are at their lowest levels since they were filled in […]