Radio-Friendly Senator Appeals to Carmakers.

Senator Ed Markey (D-MA), a ranking member of the Senate Commerce Committee, sent a letter to 20 carmakers asking them to keep AM radio on the dashboards of their vehicles. In the letter, Senator Markey requested written responses to three questions: Have you decided to drop AM radio, and if so, why? Will you drop AM from future models? Do your vehicles currently offer digital radio? The senator wrote, “Despite innovations such as the smartphone and social media, AM/FM broadcast radio remains the most dependable, cost-free, and accessible communication mechanism for public officials to communicate with the public during times of emergency. As a result, any phase-out of broadcast AM radio could pose a significant communication problem during emergencies. Although the auto industry’s investments in electric vehicles are critical to addressing the climate crisis and reducing greenhouse gas emissions, automakers need not sacrifice the benefits of radio in the process.”