- Kansas Gov. Sam Brownback (R) has signed legislation ending the state's 20% renewables goal, instead replacing it with a voluntary target with a similar timeline.
- The measure also gives new renewable generation a 10-year property tax exemption, while simultaneously extending the exemption for existing facilities.
- Renewables advocates indicated support for the proposal was based around the eroding business climate in Kansas, and green energy project developers' growing unwillingness to invest in the state.
Kansas has nixed its renewables mandate, which targeted 20% by 2020, instead replacing it with a voluntary goal to meet the same target and timeline. The state now joins Ohio and West Virginia as rolling back renewables goals in favor of business interests and coal generation.
Lawmakers initially approved the measure two weeks ago, following a compromise between environmentalists and business interests, but it was held up to consider language related to tax breaks, Argus reports.
The compromise reached between wind advocates and business interests is aimed at supporting the state's wind industry, which is in fact on track to help the state meet the 2020 goal four years early and has created 12,000 jobs and attracted $8 billion in state investment.
“The wind energy industry has been an economic and job growth engine for Kansas. We are pleased that an agreement was reached that will provide investment and policy stability so Kansas can continue be an industry leader,” Kimberly Svaty, representing The Wind Coalition, said in a statement last month. "We are always willing to come to the table with anyone who is willing to recognize wind energy’s economic benefits."