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Successful policy

Successful policy

Last week, I attended a hearing on House Bill 2241 to roll back the Renewable Portfolio Standard.

I was very impressed when 49th District Rep. Scott Schwab, R-Olathe, asked supporters of HB 2241 why it was only out-of-state organizations trying to change a successful Kansas energy policy.

From this Kansan's perspective, wind energy is working for my state.

More than $3 billion invested in Kansas in 2012 wind projects.

More than 13,000 jobs created by the wind industry in Kansas since the first utility scale wind farm was built in Kansas in 2001.

Kansas landowners receive $13 million in annual payments.

Wind developers donation agreements to cities, counties and schools total more than $10 million dollars in annual payments.

Billions of dollars are revitalizing our rural economy with this new kind of crop, which gives farmers a dependable, weatherproof income.

In Hutchinson, where I live, we have been fortunate to have new jobs from the Siemens nacelle plant. Even with the plant slowdown, 150 jobs is a big deal for us.

I hope House Energy and Environment Committee members will consider the rural economic benefits cities, counties and landowners have seen when they vote on HB 2241.

Dorothy Barnett, executive director, Climate and Energy Project, Hutchinson