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Scientists say July will go down as the warmest month on record globally. The record temperatures are hitting parts of the Navajo Nation.

In response to the high temperatures in parts of the country's largest Indian reservation and the surrounding Southwest region of the United States, the Navajo Nation Commission on Emergency Management on Tuesday, July 25, 2023 declared an extreme heat State of Emergency.

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The Commission is calling for immediate collaboration with all relevant entities with the Navajo Nation in an all-out effort to utilize resources effectively to address the impacts of extreme heat.

The focus of the Navajo Nation Commission on Emergency Management includes the following:

  • Conducting assessments.
  • Identifying areas most in need.
  • Coordinating the implementation of heat health action plans.
  • Seeking solutions to meet the unique needs of the Navajo Nation during this challenging period.

The Commission says the extreme heat presents a wide array of risks that negatively impact human health, especially among the elderly, infants, children, and pregnant women, and those with chronic medical conditions, and those who may lack necessary cooling resources. 

Also cited by the Commission is the fact that heat exacerbates the impact on ecosystems, agriculture, property, livestock, pets, infrastructure, homes, and roads. It dries up surface water sources vital for wildlife and increases the potential for wildland fires. Additionally, these conditions intensify the existing drought conditions, further straining our environment and resources.

The declaration of a State of Emergency will stay in effect until August 31, 2023, unless changes are made to extend, modify, or terminate it beforehand

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