Energy strategy outside the Beltway.
Rep. Thomas J. Sloan, PhD (R-45th District) recently was re-elected to his 10th term in the Kansas House of Representatives. He serves as a member of the DOE Electricity Advisory Committee; the Council of State Governments Interstate Transmission Siting Compact Task Force; the NCSL Energy Supply Task Force; and the GridWise Architecture Council. His article, “A State Legislator Looks at Retail Wheeling,” appeared in Fortnightly’s July 1, 1996 issue.
Many energy experts and media representatives have observed that the U.S. doesn’t have a coherent national energy plan. There are many reasons for this situation, most emanating from the significant differences in energy resources and requirements across this vast nation. However, several noteworthy proposals advanced at the state level offer hope that, in the absence of a national policy, states demonstrate options for reframing national electric energy policy debates.
Economic development, quality of life, and democratic practices are directly tied to per-capita consumption of electricity. China, India, and other developing countries, as well as the United States in historic trends, demonstrate the linear relationship between affordable, reliable electric supplies and individual prosperity. Federal and state policies that promote access to responsibly generated electricity and that reward development of resilient infrastructure will provide tangible benefits to all Americans. In Kansas and across the nation, state legislators are at the forefront in shaping electric energy policies.