SOURCE: Westar Energy, Inc.

February 22, 2008 17:11 ET

Westar Energy Publishes Comprehensive Energy Plan

Strategy Outlines Company's Plans to Meet Customers' Needs

TOPEKA, KS--(Marketwire - February 22, 2008) - Westar Energy, Inc. (NYSE: WR) today announced it has published a comprehensive energy plan that outlines the company's plans to meet growing customer needs while operating in rapidly changing financial, environmental and political climates.

The plan is entitled "Meeting Our Customers' Energy Needs: A Strategic Plan for Uncertain Times." As outlined in the plan, Westar's strategy embraces state and federal policies encouraging greater reliance on energy efficiency and the development of more transmission and renewable energy sources. It also calls for deferring as long as possible constructing a new conventional coal plant, but maintaining existing coal plants and making substantial investments in them to improve their environmental performance. During this period of deferral, Westar will be vigilant regarding the development and costs of emerging generation technologies that are not yet commercially feasible. The strategy also would extend the operating life of existing nuclear generation.

"We are staying true to our mission as an electric-only utility with this strategy," said Bill Moore, Westar president and CEO. "We recognize and respect that there will be differences as to how best we should proceed. Nevertheless, we offer our plan as an invitation to engage in a constructive discussion with policy-makers and interested customers on the challenges we face together. It is intended to be an open, transparent disclosure of how we see our future. We hope it will be viewed as a useful contribution to broader policy forums where energy and environmental issues are considered and thoughtfully discussed."

Westar Energy's comprehensive energy plan is available on the company's Web site www.WestarEnergy.com.

Westar Energy, Inc. (NYSE: WR) is the largest electric utility in Kansas, providing electric service to about 675,000 customers in the state. Westar Energy has about 6,100 megawatts of electric generation capacity and operates and coordinates approximately 33,000 miles of electric distribution and transmission lines.

For more information about Westar Energy, visit us on the Internet at http://www.WestarEnergy.com.

Forward-looking statements: Certain matters discussed in this news release are "forward-looking statements." The Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 has established that these statements qualify for safe harbors from liability. Forward-looking statements may include words like "believe," "anticipate," "target," "expect," "pro forma," "estimate," "intend," "guidance" or words of similar meaning. Forward-looking statements describe future plans, objectives, expectations or goals. Although Westar Energy believes that its expectations are based on reasonable assumptions, all forward-looking statements involve risk and uncertainty. Therefore, actual results could vary materially from what we expect. Please review our Form 10-K for the period ended Dec. 31, 2006 for important risk factors that could cause results to differ materially from those in any such forward-looking statements. Any forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date such statement was made, and the company does not undertake any obligation to update any forward-looking statement to reflect events or circumstances after the date on which such statement was made except as required by applicable laws or regulations.

Contact Information

  • Media contact:
    Karla Olsen
    director, corporate communications
    Phone: 888.613.0003
    FAX: 316.261.6769
    Email Contact

    Investor contact:
    Bruce Burns
    director, investor relations
    Phone: 785.575.8227
    Email Contact