Close this search box.
Close this search box.

Pain Expected in Northeast as Infrastructure Shortfalls Bite

Relatively high electricity bills in states including New York and Connecticut could rise further, should pipeline projects continue to be opposed, report claims.

Doing business in America’s northeast also means bearing some of the nation’s heaviest cost burdens, whether it be higher state tax rates or more stringent workplace rules.

Now, a U.S. Chamber of Commerce report indicates that companies operating in states including New York and Connecticut face a spike in power prices due to an infrastructure deficit.

Most American businesses have enjoyed a significant reduction in energy costs brought about by the release of natural gas supplies trapped in dense shale formations. Some states, however, are more concerned than others about the purported risks of shale drilling, such as water-supply contamination or man-made earthquakes.

Their resistance hasn’t just been limited to drilling. Lawmakers in various states, including New York, have opposed construction of pipeline infrastructure that could more economically transport fuel from major production hubs. The giant Marcellus shale resource, for example, is already heavily exploited by several nearby states, including Pennsylvania, Ohio and West Virginia, keeping their energy costs down.


In its report, the Chamber found that a lack of additional northeastern pipeline infrastructure would cost around $7.6 billion in lost gross domestic product by 2020, crimping employment.

“Residents in the northeast are paying the highest electricity rates in the continental United States, with no relief in sight if infrastructure is not built,” said Karen Harbert, CEO of the Chamber’s Energy Institute. “High energy prices are costing the region jobs and income, so maintaining the status quo will be painful.”

Connecticut currently has the third-highest electricity rates in the country, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration. Massachusetts ranks fourth, Rhode Island fifth, New Hampshire sixth, New York eighth, Vermont ninth, New Jersey tenth and Maine eleventh.

That means northeastern manufacturers on average are paying 62% more for electricity supply than the national average, while residents fork out an extra 44%.

Donald Trump has shown a willingness to address concerns about America’s crumbling infrastructure by pledging a $1 trillion spending package, though funding details remain scant. He’s also shown he’s prepared to defy environmentalists and back controversial energy sources, including the Keystone XL pipeline, which would transport Canadian oil sands to Gulf Coast refineries, and the Dakota Access pipeline, which met stiff resistance from indigenous groups.

Two key northeastern projects, the Constitution and Access Northeast pipelines, have been stalled by legal challenges and resistance from lawmakers, including New York Governor Andrew Cuomo.

Earlier this month, New York state’s Department of Environmental Conservation blocked the Northern Access project following three public hearings. “DEC has denied the permit due to the project’s failure to avoid adverse impacts to wetlands, streams and fish and other wildlife habitat,” the department said. “We are confident that this decision supports our state’s strict water quality standards that all New Yorkers depend on.”

You might also like:
One CEO’s Solution to the $1 Trillion Infrastructure Funding Challenge
Top 3 Things CEOs Need to Think About to Achieve a Successful Digital Transformation


  • Get the CEO Briefing

    Sign up today to get weekly access to the latest issues affecting CEOs in every industry
  • upcoming events


    Strategic Planning Workshop

    1:00 - 5:00 pm

    Over 70% of Executives Surveyed Agree: Many Strategic Planning Efforts Lack Systematic Approach Tips for Enhancing Your Strategic Planning Process

    Executives expressed frustration with their current strategic planning process. Issues include:

    1. Lack of systematic approach (70%)
    2. Laundry lists without prioritization (68%)
    3. Decisions based on personalities rather than facts and information (65%)


    Steve Rutan and Denise Harrison have put together an afternoon workshop that will provide the tools you need to address these concerns.  They have worked with hundreds of executives to develop a systematic approach that will enable your team to make better decisions during strategic planning.  Steve and Denise will walk you through exercises for prioritizing your lists and steps that will reset and reinvigorate your process.  This will be a hands-on workshop that will enable you to think about your business as you use the tools that are being presented.  If you are ready for a Strategic Planning tune-up, select this workshop in your registration form.  The additional fee of $695 will be added to your total.

    To sign up, select this option in your registration form. Additional fee of $695 will be added to your total.

    New York, NY: ​​​Chief Executive's Corporate Citizenship Awards 2017

    Women in Leadership Seminar and Peer Discussion

    2:00 - 5:00 pm

    Female leaders face the same issues all leaders do, but they often face additional challenges too. In this peer session, we will facilitate a discussion of best practices and how to overcome common barriers to help women leaders be more effective within and outside their organizations. 

    Limited space available.

    To sign up, select this option in your registration form. Additional fee of $495 will be added to your total.

    Golf Outing

    10:30 - 5:00 pm
    General’s Retreat at Hermitage Golf Course
    Sponsored by UBS

    General’s Retreat, built in 1986 with architect Gary Roger Baird, has been voted the “Best Golf Course in Nashville” and is a “must play” when visiting the Nashville, Tennessee area. With the beautiful setting along the Cumberland River, golfers of all capabilities will thoroughly enjoy the golf, scenery and hospitality.

    The golf outing fee includes transportation to and from the hotel, greens/cart fees, use of practice facilities, and boxed lunch. The bus will leave the hotel at 10:30 am for a noon shotgun start and return to the hotel after the cocktail reception following the completion of the round.

    To sign up, select this option in your registration form. Additional fee of $295 will be added to your total.