Saturday, May 03, 2008

Sebelius Scores A Major Victory Against Coal Power

Who doesn't love a piece of good news here and there? Happy stories are even sweeter when they come from unlikely places and if it concerns the environment, seeing something out of Kansas is definitely a great sign of things to come. The hat tip goes to their incredible Governor Kathleen Sebelius, for standing up against the coal lobby and the majority of Republicans in the State House that were in the pockets of those who profit from that dirty black crap that comes out of the ground.

From The Kansas City Star:

TOPEKA | Opponents of two power plants proposed for western Kansas won a stunning victory Thursday that they hope signals the end of a six-month war over coal.

The Kansas House failed Thursday night to muster the 84 votes needed to defy Gov. Kathleen Sebelius and approve the plants over her veto. The vote was 80-45.

But plant supporters said they would keep trying until the legislative session ends.

“We’ll do something. We’re not through,” said House Speaker Melvin Neufeld, a major backer of Sunflower Electric Power Corp.’s project. Asked if Thursday’s vote was the last on the issue, the Ingalls Republican said, “Not hardly.”

Plant opponents called the vote historic, saying it may go down as a turning point in which Kansas becomes a leader in the movement away from old energy sources toward sustainable, environmentally friendly technologies and energy efficiency. They hoped Thursday’s vote was decisive.

I hope so too. We all know that with the money and power behind coal and all unrenewable resources, this won't knock them down in one punch. However if this attitude shown by Kansans holds steady, in the long run the environment and that of which our children and children's children will live in, things are looking on the up and up.

The most important side-story in all of this was how the veto override failed. The overwhelmingly Republican institution lost a few key votes from their own caucus thanks in part to constituents that pressured their lawmakers to side with them and not the coal industry. When citizens speak loudly and consistently, their representatives do hear them.