Kansas tries to drop a house on Sustainability

  • Published on April 17th, 2013

dust bowl 1936... it's climate change, stupid

You know how it goes… when sustainability is outlawed, only outlaws will be sustainable.

You’d think that Kansas, of all states, would be the one that would look at climate change and say “OMG! Bigger, stronger, more destructive storms?!? Epic droughts that will blister our corn in the fields?!? What can we do to prevent this?”

But then, Kansas keeps building trailer parks, too. And outlawing evolution. And… well, banning sustainability.

The latest lunacy: House Bill No. 2366, which criminalize the use of  “public funds to promote or implement sustainable development.”

And just in case you’re thinking, “Oh, they don’t know what that means, they’re afraid it’s a UN conspiracy to send in black helicopters and take away our guns and put grandma in front of death panels, here’s how the measure defines “Sustainability”:

development in which resource use aims to meet human needs while preserving the environment so that these needs can be met not only in the present, but also for generations to come.”

Well, okay then.

Bloomberg (the publication that brought us the simple and direct, “It’s Climate Change, Stupid!” headline after Hurricane Sandy) caught an interview with Dennis Hedke, who they describe as “the geophysicist who does contract work for oil and gas companies and is chairman of the [House] committee that wants to ban sustainability in Kansas.”

So what’s the scoop? Why ban sustainability? Writer Tom Randall lays it out:

Hedke said in a phone interview that he brought the bill to the committee on behalf of a group of “maybe a dozen” people who approached him about it. “The idea of sustainable development and its association with a range of activities is something that needs to be scrutinized in the public domain,” he said. Hedke declined to comment on what sorts of activities he was referring to and wouldn’t disclose who was involved in the group that brought him the bill.

And of course, there’s a fine line between “scrutinizing it in the public domain” and “Dropping a house on it, stealing its ruby slippers, wicked_witch_gets_houseand then melting its green sister, for good measure.” But that’s what they’re looking at: totally throwing cold water on any kind of sustainable development (at least with public money).

Bloomberg’s Randall adds that Hedke said this wouldn’t affect wind power development – you’d think Kansas would by stampeding toward wind power, right? – because Kansas already doesn’t support wind power development with public money. Because, you know, Socialism!

For the record, Randall looked into what that sort of dastardly evils the Sustainability Monster could bring to the good, simple folk of Kansas, and this is what he found:

Kansas has the wind-energy potential of 3,102 terawatt hours a year, according to the U.S. Department of Energy. That’s about 80 percent of the annual electricity consumption of the entire United States. If Kansas developed just a tiny fraction of that — 7,158 megawatts — by 2030, it would provide economic benefits of about $7.8 billion for the state, according to the Energy Department’s National Renewable Energy Lab. And it would do so without contributing to the global warming that’s frying the state’s wheat and corn and pushing America’s breadbasket north.

Well, we can’t have that, can we?

(Image “Dust Bowl 1936”, Student Project, Vintage Collection.Via erjkprunczýk. “Witch Gets House” image from Lifetime Collectibles.)

About the Author

Jeremy Bloom is the Editor of RedGreenAndBlue. He lives in New York, where he combines his passion for the environment with his passion for film, and is working on making the world a better place.
  • digger

    Good on Kansas! Just say no to Agenda 21 and it’s so-called ‘sustainability’ bs. It’s NOT about sustainability, it’s about power and control over our constitutional rights, including property rights. Allowing an unelected bureaucracy like the U.N. to have a say in the lives of sovereign Americans is insanity on its face. Don’t think the U.N. has anything to do with this? Think again or just think for a change. Go ahead and live in your la-la-land of socialism/communism bs but don’t do it in a free America. You want to be enslaved, go elsewhere and have government micro-manage your lives because you’re too incompetent to take care of your own life. Stop trying to micro-manage other peoples lives when you can’t take care of your own.

    Those of you who still believe in fairy tales like evolution, so why aren’t we still seeing humans walking out from the water or wherever they supposedly came from? If you cannot see the intricacies of life whether it’s human, animal, etc. and not see that there is intelligent design as from a creator, then I am sad for you as you miss out on the majesty of life and all of God’s creation by pigeon holing it into some nonsensical belief that life, the mountains, sea, air, etc. is like some primordial soup that came into being. Good luck with that mindset.

    • Are you INSANE? Sustainability is about the OPPOSITE of government and global control. It’s about LOCAL food, LOCAL energy, people doing things on their own without having to buy it from some giant corporation.

      Gee, who could have spread propaganda convincing YOU that doing stuff on your own without giant corporations is actually a conspiracy of a (non-existent) shadowy world government?

      Who could possibly benefit if you keep all your food and energy controlled by a few giant corporations?

      Gosh, I can’t figure this one out….

  • Well said. I live in Georgia where we close libraries, furlough teachers and refuse federal public transportation dollars to fight socialism. Sad.