May 6, 2016

#SmallBizWeek: Affordable Energy Key to Success

Thousands of small businesses across our region rely on an affordable supply of reliable energy to operate effectively and remain competitive. According to a recent poll by the National Federation of Independent Businesses (NFIB), energy costs are one of the top three business expenses in 35 percent of small businesses.

In the face of rising and often unstable energy prices, many small business owners are not able to adapt quickly enough to offset an increase in price without cutting other areas of the balance sheet like payroll, employee benefits, or product offering. In addition, while new, energy-efficient equipment can lower a business’s long-term expenses, it is also highly cost prohibitive, demanding large upfront costs.

As a coalition, CEPI recognizes the challenges faced by small business in communities across our region. In fact, some of our coalition members like the Ohio Grocers Association and Ohio Council of Retail Merchants represent the interests of small businesses every day. These organizations joined CEPI to secure long-term affordable energy that their members can count on for generations to come.

Our region is uniquely positioned at the heart of the American energy revolution with abundant supplies of clean-burning natural gas now being produced in the Marcellus and Utica Shale regions. The problem is, many households and businesses don’t have access this domestic resource due to a lack of pipeline infrastructure necessary to transport it. Proposed projects like the Rover pipeline offer a responsible path forward to expand our energy infrastructure and ensure that our small businesses have access to this affordable resource.