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Kansas Rejects Proposed Coal Plant Because Of CO2 Emissions

The Kansas Department of Health and Environment has become the first government agency in the U.S. to cite carbon dioxide emissions as the reason for rejecting an air permit for a coal-fired electricity generating plant, The Washington Post reports. Sunflower Electric Power, a rural electrical cooperative, proposed to build a pair of 700-megawatt, coal-fired plants in Holcomb at a cost of about $3.6 billion.

It may be the first of a series of similar state actions inspired by a Supreme Court decision in April that asserted that greenhouse gases such as carbon dioxide should be considered pollutants under the Clean Air Act.

Air permits have been denied over emissions such as sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides and mercury, according to WaPo. But Roderick Bremby, secretary of the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, said that “it would be irresponsible to ignore emerging information about the contribution of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases to climate change and the potential harm to our environment and health if we do nothing.”

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