Aiona says he can wean Hawaii from foreign energy

James "Duke" Aiona
James "Duke" Aiona

HONOLULU (AP) - Republican candidate for Hawaii governor James "Duke" Aiona says the state would produce half of its energy locally within eight years if he were elected, an ambitious leap from the state's current 90 percent dependence on foreign oil.

Aiona, the state's lieutenant governor, said Thursday he wants to speed up Gov. Linda Lingle's Hawaii Clean Energy Initiative, which has a goal of getting 70% of the state's power from clean sources by 2030 - 40% from renewables and 30% from efficiency improvements.

He says his plan is "aggressive, but achievable" by the time he would leave office if he were elected this year and re-elected in 2014. Aiona said he would push smart grids, battery storage, ocean energy and electric vehicles.

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