posted by Edward Felker, P-B Washington Bureau
President Bush three weeks ago signed a new national energy bill that increases auto mileage standards to 35 miles per gallon by 2020. Brian Davis, one of three Republicans running for the endorsement against freshman Rep. Tim Walz, D-Mankato, already wants to repeal those standards.
Davis, a Mayo physician from Rochester, on Thursday issued a five point energy plan, (click highlighted area to go to his blog), which calls for a repeal of all mileage standards and an increase in the use of nuclear energy, which he calls a "clean and safe source of electric energy."
He also wants to open Alaska's Arctic National Wildlife Refuge and the outer continental shelf areas off the coasts to oil exploration, and have the government work to increase the production of bio-fuels and alternative energy sources, but without any mandates.
Lastly, he wants to keep regulations in place to, in his words, "safeguard our air and environment from the known pollutants of sulfur dioxide, nitrogen oxides, mercury, lead and particulate matter."
Davis clearly has decided to run counter to much of the prevailing energy consensus in Washington and in the Midwest, which calls for increased, mandated use of ethanol and biofuels, and against opening wilderness and coastal areas to oil exploration. ANWR has been a particular battle ground between the oil companies and environmentalists.
That last commercial nuclear power plant to be ordered was in the 1970s and the last new reactor to come on line was in 1996, according to the federal Energy Information Administration.