Energy Supply and Distribution Act of 2015 (S.1312)

By at 15 June, 2015, 3:06 pm

The Honorable Lisa Murkowski


Energy and Natural Resources Committee

United States Senate

Washington, D.C. 20510


The Honorable Heidi Heitkamp

United States Senate

Washington, D.C. 20510


Dear Senators Murkowski and Heitkamp:

On behalf of the Small Business & Entrepreneurship Council and our nationwide membership of entrepreneurs and small businesses, I am writing in strong support of the “Energy Supply and Distribution Act of 2015” (S.1312), which would end the ban on U.S. crude oil exports. Thank you for your leadership in introducing this important legislation.

Back in the 1970s, Congress imposed restrictions on U.S. crude oil exports in response to the Arab oil embargo. That was a debatable step entangled with other energy policy decisions at the time. However, it is clear today that given the energy revolution in the U.S., thanks to technological advancements, the crude oil export ban is outdated. The bans is detrimental to U.S. investment, small business growth, new business creation and job growth.

Regarding energy production, the U.S. is in a far different position than it was some four decades ago, or even just a decade ago. This year, for example, the U.S. is expected to produce 85 percent more crude oil than in 2008. For good measure, the U.S. now stands as the globe’s largest producer of oil and natural gas. In fact, one estimate places the U.S. as the largest crude producer.

Economic common sense, confirmed by study after study, tells us that expanding U.S. crude exports would be a major boost for U.S. energy production, investment, economic growth, income growth, and job creation, while also reducing prices paid at the pump.

All of this would be good news for America’s small businesses. Small firms have played a big role in recent energy innovations. In fact, small firms dominate key energy sectors. For example, employer firms with less than 20 workers account for 91.1 percent of firms among oil and gas extraction businesses, 79.8 percent of those among drilling oil and gas wells businesses, 83.3 percent among support for oil and gas operations businesses, 65.5 percent among oil and gas pipeline and related structures construction businesses, and 57.6 percent among oil and gas field machinery and equipment manufacturing businesses.

In addition, increased crude production by the U.S., if incentivized by lifting the crude exports ban, would reduce the global price for oil. And given that the price of crude oil is the main driver of the price of gas at the pump, gasoline prices benefit (i.e., experience downward pressure) as a result of lower oil prices. That, too, is good news for U.S. consumers and small businesses.

The Energy Supply and Distribution Act of 2015 (S.1312) deserves to be passed, as it would be a huge positive for U.S. investment, small businesses, growth and jobs.

Please feel free to contact SBE Council if we can help to further this important legislation, and thank you for your support of America’s entrepreneurs.


Karen Kerrigan President & CEO

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