Environment

Three champions of Build Back Better make pitch for federal economic development bill

BY: - December 6, 2021

A trio of Kansas activists laud the Build Back Better bill pending in Congress because it greatly enhances Medicaid, child care and preschool services.

Biden’s oil and gas policy falls short on climate goals, House Democrats say

BY: - December 4, 2021

Democrats on the U.S. House Natural Resources Committee on Thursday encouraged President Joe Biden to take stronger action to limit oil and gas production, while Republicans said reducing domestic production would only increase global emissions from overseas suppliers. In a hearing less than a week after the U.S. Interior Department released a report that called […]

OPINION

Incomplete climate science has pushed us toward the wrong solutions

BY: - December 2, 2021

The 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. Margy Stewart and husband Ron Young are the proprietors of a native-prairie preserve on McDowell Creek and are restoring 70 acres of former crop ground to […]

OPINION

In 1923, a Kansan saw a fireball overhead. He helped popularize a new science.

BY: - November 28, 2021

Look up. The Kansas sky on a clear winter’s night is a picture window to the universe. Seek out a place where, as the astronomers say, the seeing is good — my local favorite is the Tallgrass Prairie National Preserve near Strong City — and you can peer into a star-spangled slice of the Milky […]

Kansas state parks offer free admission for those who #OptOutside on Black Friday

BY: - November 25, 2021

TOPEKA — The 28 state parks in Kansas will participate in a nationwide outdoors promotion by waiving entry fees on Friday. Visitors also can get a shot at winning a free night’s stay in a state park cabin by sharing a selfie from one of the parks on Instagram, Facebook or Twitter with the tags […]

Consumer advocates fear hedge funds’ influence could mean more spending, rate hikes at Evergy

BY: - November 24, 2021

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Four of the five members on Evergy’s finance committee, tasked with recommending management and investment decisions to the board of directors, were selected by activist hedge funds that critics worry are asserting undue influence over the electric utility. That involvement, consumer advocates say, could drive up rates for Evergy’s 1.6 million […]

OPINION

Despite addictive news of gloom and doom, hope flourishes around us

BY: - November 24, 2021

The 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. Shawna Bethell is a freelance essayist/journalist covering the people and places of Kansas, Nebraska and Missouri. I talked to a friend of mine recently. She has […]

U.S. Senators urge increased production of fossil fuels in reaction to spiraling energy costs

BY: - November 20, 2021

Days after global leaders agreed for the first time to decrease coal usage and subsidies for fossil fuels, U.S. senators battled over rising gasoline prices and urged action on the high cost of energy — including by increasing production of coal, oil and gas. The Tuesday hearing, led by Senate Energy and Natural Resources Chairman […]

Lee Norman steps down as Kansas health secretary, months after internal dispute

BY: - November 19, 2021

TOPEKA — Lee Norman stepped down Thursday from his high-profile cabinet post as the chief medical officer in Kansas, where he managed the state’s response to COVID-19 throughout the pandemic. His departure from Gov. Laura Kelly’s administration follows months of conversations between Norman and her office about whether he was ready to leave state government. […]

OPINION

Want to avoid a repeat of February’s billion-dollar energy crisis? Transparency is the first step.

BY: - November 14, 2021

Back in September I filed an open records request with the Kansas Corporation Commission for contracts and invoices related to the February 2021 cold wave, which drove wholesale natural gas prices through the stratosphere. It was the kind of request that journalists routinely make in the public interest. We seek information from governmental entities to […]

White House touts clean energy, transit, rail projects in sprawling infrastructure bill

BY: and - November 10, 2021

WASHINGTON — Federal officials on Tuesday offered details about how money from the recently passed bipartisan infrastructure bill would be spent, emphasizing the pending law’s potential to add clean energy capacity. Department of Transportation officials highlighted the $1.2 trillion bill’s record funding for public transit like buses and subways, as well as for Amtrak. They […]

Black Hills reaches deal with Kansas regulators to add $11.47 to monthly bills for five years

BY: - November 10, 2021

TOPEKA — Kansas regulators have reached an agreement with Black Hills Energy to recoup $87.9 million in costs tied to excessive natural gas prices during a week in February when an arctic chill dropped temperatures more than 20 degrees below zero. The natural gas utility’s residential customers will pay, on average, an additional $11.47 each […]