New Energy and Transition News | Kentuckians For The Commonwealth

New Energy and Transition News

Kentucky communities face choice: risk new fossil fuel commitments or turn to clean energy

August 23, 2020 at 11:50am
Kentucky Municipal Energy Agency (KYMEA) Weighing New Investments in Coal and Natural Gas Power as One Existing Coal Contract Sunsets in 2022

As the cost of building clean energy systems drops lower and lower, Kentucky’s electric utilities have the opportunity to meaningfully shift their energy mix away from fossil fuels and towards affordable, renewable energy–if only they would take it. This question is playing out right now at the Kentucky Municipal Energy Agency (KYMEA), a wholesale supplier that provides energy to several cities and towns across Kentucky. 

The KYMEA is developing an Integrated Resource Plan (IRP) to determine how to meet its customer’s energy needs over the coming 10 – 20 years. In the process, it is considering whether to invest in new coal or natural gas power contracts to serve its municipal members. These potential investments would pose a significant financial risk to KYMEA’s member-communities, in addition to negative environmental and public health implications.

If you or someone you know live in a KYMEA member-community, your voice is needed to make sure KYMEA invests in a clean energy future, rather than risky fossil fuels.

RECLAIM Act and AML pass the House as part of The Moving Forward Act

July 3, 2020 at 12:50am

Kentucky will have a better chance at seeing its $400 million backlog of mine reclamation projects move forward thanks to legislation passed by the U.S. House of Representatives on July 1.

Both the RECLAIM Act and reauthorization of the Abandoned Mine Lands Program were included in the INVEST in America Act (a.k.a The Moving Forward Act), a broad bill addressing the country’s infrastructure needs.

"I am overjoyed that Congress is finally helping to clean up abandoned mines and polluted waterways," said Joanne Hill, a retired nurse originally from Harlan County now living in Pulaski County. "For too long, Kentuckians have been pleading for action with no response.”

A road map to a Just Transition

June 9, 2020 at 10:05am

A new report from a diverse set of frontline organizations outlines a set of comprehensive solutions needed to respond to the cascading and interlocking crises our communities face, including the climate crisis, COVID-19, and structural racism and inequality. 

The report, A People’s Orientation to a Regenerative Economy, offers community groups, policy advocates, and policymakers a pathway to solutions that work for frontline communities and workers. These ideas have been collectively strategized by community organizations, including KFTC, and leaders from across multiple frontline and grassroots networks and alliances to ensure that regenerative economic solutions and ecological justice.

Tackling the A-Z Impacts of Plastics

May 14, 2020 at 05:21pm
Northern Kentucky

Members of Kentuckians For The Commonwealth have built connections with allies across the Ohio River valley over the past few years around the fight to protect ORSANCO's regulatory mission.

Revisioning what we mean by "A Just Transition"

April 17, 2020 at 03:40pm

The Empower Kentucky Leadership Network – a cohort of 40 grassroots leaders across Kentucky dedicated to growing a stronger movement for Just Transition and climate justice – had its first gathering in Bowling Green in early November 2019. Among many resources provided to the cohort during this weekend was the KFTC document “Appalachia’s Bright Future – Working Together to Shape a Just Transition.” This document was created in 2013, but is still frequently used to reflect KFTC’s work related to Just Transition. 

During a generative group discussion at this first gathering, a member of the cohort pointed out that there were problematic aspects of this document. For instance, the document’s list of frontline communities whose leadership should be centered in a Just Transition did not include people of color. The document also included a photo of a KFTC member of color who had been a strong leader in KFTC’s just transition work, but the lack of actual content emphasizing the importance of centering racial justice made the image feel tokenizing in nature.

Empower Kentucky Leadership Network digs into Race-Class Narrative with JaNaé Bates

Minister JaNaé Bates speaking on Zoom
April 16, 2020 at 02:16pm

The Empower Kentucky Leadership Network–an ongoing cohort of 40 Kentuckians committed to building a stronger movement for climate and just transition–continues to grow and learn through monthly webinars and peer coaching calls. 

Media campaign pushes Congress to act on RECLAIM Act and black lung fund

February 24, 2020 at 03:12pm

In January, KFTC and several ally groups launched a paid media campaign – including 10 billboards plus radio, newspaper and digital ads in central and eastern Kentucky – calling on members of Congress to stand up for coal miners and communities by passing a package of Just Transition bills in 2020.

KFTC’s London office is on track to be completely solar-powered!

February 12, 2020 at 11:36am

Solar panels on KFTC's London office building

Solar panels were recently installed on KFTC’s main office in London. This was the final step in a series of energy upgrades that the building had been undergoing in the last several months, which puts the office building on track to be completely solar-powered.

Kentucky Utility Regulators Sue To Limit Public Records Access

January 23, 2020
WFPL-FM Public Radio

Amid last year’s fight over net-metering legislation, a lobbyist working on behalf of utilities asked the regulatory agency that oversees utilities to weigh-in with a letter to lawmakers.

The Public Service Commission sent a letter to lawmakers a week later.

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