A group of Ohio lawmakers are pushing legislation that would put the kibosh on the Buckeye State’s energy efficiency standards. They claim these standards hurt businesses. However, Small Business Majority asked Ohio small business owners what they think about strong clean energy and energy efficiency standards and found they strongly support them. Small businesses believe stronger energy standards save them money and open up a new segment of the economy that creates business opportunities.
One of those small business owners is John Cavanaugh, President & CEO of Cross Cultural Communications, a small consulting business in Columbus. Cavanaugh is a passionate defender of Ohio’s current energy efficiency standards, and showed his support for the standards by being one of the first to sign Small Business Majority’s letter urging lawmakers to oppose stop SB 310—legislation that would eliminate Ohio’s clean energy standards.
Small Business Majority: Ohio is currently looking to pass SB 310, a bill that would eliminate the state’s current energy efficiency standards. How do you feel about lawmakers’ attempts to diminish Ohio’s energy standards?
John Cavanaugh: Ohio’s current energy efficiency standards are good for our state and our small business economy. In my opinion, the time and energy of our esteemed legislature would be better spent on bills that encourage more clean energy technologies and innovations.
SBM: Do you believe Ohio’s current energy efficiency standards are good for the state and the small business economy?
JC: I believe energy efficiency incentives and standards help encourage new businesses, which create more economic activity and bring prosperity to our state. In turn, this will generate more revenue to fund important state and local government programs.
SBM: Why is clean energy such an important issue for small businesses to consider?
JC: There is little scientific dispute that climate change is causing extreme weather patterns. For example, the recent “polar vortex” we experienced is estimated to have cost our nation $5 billion. In fact, one of our own investment properties was damaged during the extreme cold and we are still battling to get our claim paid! Likewise, the 2013 Derecho knocked out power to our business as well as hundreds of others in Central Ohio, and the East Coast is still trying to recover from Superstorm Sandy in 2012.
Investing in clean energy strategies can help reverse this trend and sustain our economic recovery. It is very important for small business leaders to get involved and help shape sensible energy and environmental policies for our state and nation.
SBM: What are some of the things you do, or would like to be able to do, in order to make your business more energy efficient?
JC: We take great pride in our recycling efforts. In fact, we recently turned in several pieces of old electronics to Staples so those parts could be returned back to use. We have chosen energy efficient HP computer and printing equipment. Likewise, we carefully regulate the heating and cooling of our office space. We also do our very best to combine trips and car pool for work presentations. When available, we select ethanol blended fuel for our transportation needs.