Kansas Senator Mike Thompson speaks on industrial wind energy to concerned Bourbon County residents

He provided an educational presentation on the negative impacts of wind turbines

FORT SCOTT, Ks.- Anne Dare is just one of dozens of concerned citizens in Bourbon County, Kansas that gathered to hear State Senator Mike Thompson (R) speak on industrial wind energy in Fort Scott’s River Room event center.

“The more we talk about it the more people we hear pop up and say what’s going on I didn’t know that was happening”

She is hoping to gain more information on the impact of wind turbines.

“If we are incorrect in some of the things that we are reading that we can correct that now and put correct information out on how wind turbines affect an area”

Some residents are worried about the Jayhawk Wind Farm Project, a wind project designed to meet Kansas’s growing electricity demands that would lie between Bourbon County and Crawford County.

The project may be coming to the area and they wanted to learn as much as they could.

“We’re just not seeing a whole lot of benefit to the county as a whole” added Dare.

Senator Thompson spoke of the negative impacts the turbines would have to the county, like costs to the county and costs of decommissioning the turbines, change of scenery for homeowners near the designated area, disposal issues if they were to be decommissioned, and legal considerations.

He says they are a danger to birds, bats and to property if they are in close proximity to someone’s home.

“These communities are facing a big decision because it can be very divisive in the community, some people don’t like it, some people want it, and I think the more they can be educated on this the better.”

While the room was full of those against the wind farm project, there were some residents who were on the fence, and voiced their concerns about alternative energy sources.

“I’m not for or against these things, I’m trying to learn, and we do have a problem with nuclear waste the same way so what are we going to do with that?” asked a concerned citizen.

Bourbon County Commissioners will soon vote on whether to proceed with the wind farm project or not.
None of the commissioners attended the presentation.

“There’s a lot of different things that people need to understand because it affects not only this area but the entire state of Kansas and surrounding states as well” added Senator Thompson.

For Anne she is hoping the commissioners will vote no.

“I’m hopeful that they say no, that at the very least they say we have got to back up and wait.”

They are expected to vote on Tuesday, March 10th.