While one might not expect manufacturers and farmers to share many commonalities, both energy-intensive industries rely on natural gas to fuel their operations. Bob White, president of the Ohio State Grange, and Ryan Augsburger, managing director of public policy services for the Ohio Manufacturers Association, recently joined together to underscore this fact in an opinion editorial in the Findlay Courier.
As Mr. White and Mr. Augsburger relate:
As it stands, Ohio is the eighth largest consumer of natural gas in the U.S., due in large part to the roughly 75,000 agricultural operations and more than 14,000 manufacturing facilities in the state.
On average, American farms spend roughly 30 percent of their total operating capital on energy expenditures and in particular on natural gas. In the last 40 years, between one-third and one-half of the fossil fuel energy used on farms has been natural gas.
In 2015, roughly 27 percent of total natural gas consumption in the U.S. was for industrial/ manufacturing purposes. By comparison, 12 percent went to commercial buildings, while about 17 percent went for residential use.
Natural gas is not only a fuel for industrial machinery, heating and cooling, and electrical systems, but is also vital to the manufacture of many products, including plastics, fabrics, paint, glue, and even diapers and pharmaceuticals.
It fuels the manufacture of critical infrastructure products such as cement, glass and steel.
Additionally, construction of the Rover Pipeline – which is currently in its beginning stages – will result in broader economic impacts across Ohio, including job creation for hardworking tradesmen and women of the state:
Rover is also projected to create more than 10,000 construction jobs, of which 4,500 to 6,500 of those will be for Ohioans. Rover has allocated $620 million for labor expenses, which will contribute to the state’s economy.
With the tremendous economic development opportunities afforded to their industry sectors, and to Ohio at large, The Ohio Manufacturers Association and the Ohio State Grange jointly encourage support for the Rover Pipeline.
The Coalition for the Expansion of Pipeline Infrastructure reiterates Mr. White and Mr. Augsburger in “encouraging support for the Rover Pipeline.” This is an incredibly exciting time for the project, and CEPI looks forward to continued backing for Rover from a range of industries and residents as it progresses with construction.