As business owners, we examine every cost with a critical eye. Our bottom line -- our ability to make a profit, and the livelihoods of millions of families in America who depend on us demand an honest appraisal of the realities confronting us.

No one would dispute, for instance, that a business that does not budget for rent increases or rising fuel costs for a commercial fleet in the coming years is in for a rude awakening. Businesses will fail if we don't plan with creativity and care.

That is why it is troubling to us as business owners to watch the reaction of some in our great country to the current debate over the climate legislation that will be taken up by the Senate in September. Meaningful climate legislation, not industry bailouts or the status quo, is necessary now for two principal reasons.