When was the last time you thought about Kansas? We often fly over it and sometimes have to drive through it, but Kansas is one of those flat states that people on the coasts, and in the mountains, tend to forget about (unless we’re watching Wizard of Oz). It’s time to start paying attention.
Last year, Kansas made a landmark decision to reject permits for two coal-fired power plants, on the grounds that carbon emissions would contribute to climate change, and therefore pose a risk to health. The Clean Air Act had never been interpreted this way, and it set an amazing precedent for similar decisions in other states. But this week, the Kansas state legislature is debating a somewhat sneeky bill that would veto this decision, and drastically limit the state’s right to regulate polluting industries like Big Coal. Whether you live in New York or Nebraska, this is a big deal, and has major repercussions for your own state.