"Sustainable energy is the sustainable provision of energy that meets the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their needs."
Renewable energy, as defined by Clean Line Energy Partners, is energy that is produced by a renewable source, even if production and delivery of that energy causes permanent harm to humans, animals, and businesses, and removes sustainable farmland from production...forever. Clean Line Energy Partners' unsustainable energy practices force regulators to make a conscious choice of who must sacrifice so that others may benefit. Sustainable energy requires no sacrifice.
These cheerful people are the Kansas Corporation Commissioners who will be presiding over an evidentiary hearing this week, where Clean Line Energy Partners will be spinning a web of lies and justifications for its project, and asking these people to silence the objections of Thomas Stallbaumer, and other landowners just like him all across Kansas.
This year, Clean Line was back with another application, this time for a route meandering across the state, from southwest to northeast. The only "notice" some affected landowners received occurred at a very late date, in some instances AFTER the deadline to file testimony that had already been set by the KCC. The "notice" also misinformed landowners of their legal rights to participate in a hearing that could result in the condemnation of their real property. Further inquiry at the KCC produced more misinformation, with landowners being told that they must hire an attorney to intervene in the case on their behalf.
And the legal errors continue. Last week, pro se intervenors were prohibited from filing testimony because the deadline for testimony had passed nearly two months prior, weeks before the legal deadline to intervene. Read the direct testimony of Thomas's son, Matthew, that was filed before the Order denying it. I dare you to forget Matthew's testimony after reading it and looking at the exhibits. Intervenors were also told that they would not be permitted to participate in cross-examination, submit exhibits or even call witnesses. Intervenors will be limited to making opening statements and filing post-hearing briefs. In essence, intervenors are now being limited to meaningless "participation" whereby they will not be allowed to submit any evidence that may contradict Clean Line, nor allowed to even question Clean Line's evidence. This is not due process. This is not justice.
The KCC is in a big hurry to make a decision on this case within an arbitrary 120-day deadline. They have been hurried along by aggressive Clean Line attorneys who have been doing their best to ban Kansans from the proceeding. What's the hurry on a project that has no customers and is not needed for reliability or market efficiency reasons? Why must this project be rushed through approvals in Kansas to such an extent that the citizens are stripped of their right to participate in a legal process that could take their property?
If the KCC and Clean Line thought a quick process would avoid scrutiny, they are mistaken. In fact, this travesty of justice has attracted nationwide attention, and will continue to do so this week as the case is heard.
Check back here for more landowner stories and updates on hearing progress.