The Kansas Senate has voted 25-15 to repeal the state's Renewable Portfolio Standards, which require 20 percent of Kansas power generation to be from renewable sources by 2020. The requirements were passed in 2009 and have been credited with helping promote wind power development.
The vote came after more than an hour of debate. Opponents of the standards say they pick winners and losers, and wind power growth has outpaced the renewable requirements. They argue that the standards have led to rate increases with more in the future. Senator Rob Olson is an Olathe Republican.
Westar Energy Inc. is trying to expand its renewable energy portfolio.
The state's largest electric utility says it's accepting proposals from developers to add at least 80 megawatts of wind energy production, through September 13. Westar wants to enter into long-term contracts to help it meet state renewable energy requirements for 2016. The standard requires utilities to get 15 percent of their peak power through renewable sources.
Westar has almost 700 megawatts of renewable energy resources in Kansas, in addition to its coal and natural gas power plants.
A new effort to roll back new green energy standards in Kansas utilities has stalled in the state Legislature.
The House Energy and Environment Committee tabled a bill today that would put off a requirement for utilities to generate at least 20 percent of its energy with renewable resources by the year 2020. The tabled bill would rolled back the standard to 15 percent, not 20.