Letters to the Editor

Letters on alternative energy, horse park, bond issue, fracking

Grow economy with wind energy

As a 30-year-old living in the middle of Wichita, I am constantly thinking about job growth and how to keep my friends from moving away to states with job opportunities more in line with their needs. I am in love with this state because of its natural beauty – prairie grasses, limestone and sunsets that I can enjoy nearly every day.

The more I learn about renewable energy, the more excited I become for what it could do for our state. At a legislative roundtable in 2013 discussing the benefits of Kansas wind energy, they said that more than 13,000 jobs could be created from construction and operation of wind turbines. The American Wind Energy Association reports as of late 2016 that Kansas has 4.4 gigawatts of wind capacity.

What if we utilized our energy capabilities right here instead of purchasing coal from other states? Let’s grow our economy and start thinking of alternatives that would withstand our extreme realities of droughts and floods, employ citizens, and allow Kansas to become more energy independent.

Alisha Gridley, Wichita

Don’t change park

The city of Wichita has a unique tourist attraction that sets it apart from other cities in Kansas. Wichita has a park with dedicated trails for horses and hikers. These are the Plumlee horse trails located in Pawnee Prairie Park.

They are now in danger, as a bicycle club wants to turn them into trails for bikers. This would put equestrians in danger, as horses and bicycles don’t mix well, and the city would lose this tourist resource.

These trails have been used by local equestrians for many years. Wichita should promote these trails to horse people from surrounding areas and those who travel through our area.

Money slated for this park’s improvements should be spent enhancing the present use and not adding bicycle access. Putting in overnight camping for equestrians would bring in revenue, as they shop, buy gas, food, etc. when they come to ride these beautiful unique trails.

We have many bicycle trails but only one equestrian trail. Don’t let Wichita lose the diversity of our park system. Let your City Council member know you support the Plumlee equestrian trails and ask them to vote against opening these trails up to bicycles.

Ellen Querner, Wichita

Vote ‘yes’ on bond

Unfortunate tragedies – such as the devastating tornado in Moore, Okla., that took the lives of several elementary-aged students – started a conversation with the Goddard school board and our community about the safety and security of the 12 schools that serve 5,800 students. We discovered that 9 out of the 12 schools, do not have adequate tornado shelters.

After several months of planning and collaborating with hundreds of parents, staff and community members, we created a plan to protect our kids before a tragedy were to strike. Our school board voted unanimously to support a bond election for April 25, so our patrons could have the opportunity to vote on tornado shelters that will protect all of our students and staff. We further want to invest in security measures, such as intruder-prevention locks on every classroom door and secured entrances at every building.

As a retired Goddard principal and teacher myself, I would do anything I could to try to protect my students from harm. I believe this bond will give all of our staff the appropriate facilities and resources to protect our kids. Please vote “yes” for the safety and security of our students.

Ruth Wood, Wichita

President, Goddard Board of Education

Fracking dangers

I wonder how much those who are for fracking take into consideration what fracking does to our environment. Not only does the disposal of wastewater cause earthquakes, fracking can pollute our water, cause explosions, cause water shortages and cause other kinds of health problems.

Winifred Weinberg, Wichita

Letters to the Editor

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Phillip Brownlee at 316-268-6262, pbrownlee@wichitaeagle.com.