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The Competitive Enterprise Institute Daily Update

Daily Update

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The Competitive Enterprise Institute Daily Update

Issues in the News

1. ENERGY

The Senate Finance Committee holds a hearing on energy policy titled “ Coal: A Clean Future ”.

CEI Expert Available to Comment: Senior Fellow Iain Murray on how activist pressure is slowing the development of necessary energy infrastructure, especially new coal-fired power plants:

“To back up their objections, many environmental pressure groups generally have large budgets and huge teams of lawyers. One group boasted of having 75 lawyers working on a measure in California. These groups are currently running a massive campaign in Texas to prevent the building of new coal-fired plants without which the state will be patently unable to meet its needs. Transmission lines face even worse obstruction.”

2. TELECOM

Analysts express skepticism about government approval for the merger of XM and Sirius satellite radio .

CEI Expert Available to Comment: Vice President for Policy Wayne Crews on why the government should let the deal go forward :

“Regulators should refrain from using the merger review process to extract a parade of concessions from these struggling companies. Meanwhile, antitrust policy should allow aggressive competitive responses to the combination. Wall Street, investors, programmers, consumers, already-poised rivals, and new entrants collectively will discipline more thoroughly than could the Federal Communications Commission. That's as it should be.”

3. ENVIRONMENT

Dutch officials unveil tough new environmental restrictions on the production of biofuels .

CEI Expert Available to Comment: Adjunct Analyst Dennis Avery on how crops grown for biofuel production threaten wildlife habitat and food security :

“The United States might well have to clear an additional 50 million acres of forest—or more—to produce economically significant amounts of liquid transport fuels. Despite the legend of past U.S farm surpluses, the only large reservoir of underused cropland in America is about 30 million acres of land—too dry for corn—enrolled in the Conservation Reserve. Ethanol mandates may force the local loss of many wildlife species, and perhaps trigger some species extinctions. Soil erosion will increase radically as large quantities of low-quality land are put into fuel crops on steep slopes and in drought-prone regions.”

Blog feature : For more news and analysis, updated throughout the day, visit CEI's blog, Open Market .