Sinema Working to Protect Arizonans from Extreme Heat Illness and Deaths

Jul 28, 2023

Sinema co-introduces the Preventing Health Emergencies and Temperature-related (HEAT) Illness and Deaths Act as Arizona experiences record heat wave

WASHINGTON – Arizona senior Senator Kyrsten Sinema co-introduced the Preventing Health Emergencies and Temperature-related (HEAT) Illness and Deaths Act alongside Senators Ed Markey (D-Mass.) and Alex Padilla (D-Calif.) to protect Arizonans from the harmful impacts of extreme heat, and heat-related illnesses and deaths by providing financial assistance for community-based projects that reduce exposure to extreme heat and issuing recommendations for federal action on heat health. 
The legislation comes as Arizona experiences a historic heat wave, with the City of Phoenix setting records with each subsequent day for the most consecutive days at 110 degrees or higher. 
“We’re protecting Arizonans from heat-related illnesses and deaths as our communities face dangerous heat,” said Sinema.
Recent findings indicate that Arizona’s heat is getting more dangerous and resulting in more frequent trips to the hospital. Sinema’s HEAT Illness and Deaths Act seeks to reduce the risk of illness and death by providing $100 million in grants to help communities reduce exposure to extreme heat. 
The Senator’s legislation additionally requires a study to issue recommendations for additional federal action on heat-health issues. 
Specifically, the Preventing HEAT Illness and Deaths Act would:

  • Create the National Integrated Heat Health Information System (NIHHIS) Interagency Committee to enhance interagency efforts to address extreme heat;
  • Formalize and expand the existing NIHHIS within the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration;
  • Commission a National Academies of Science, Engineering, and Medicine study on federal action on heat-health issues and response; and,
  • Establish and authorize a $100 million financial assistance program to provide federal funding to community projects that reduce the health impact of extreme heat events, prioritizing projects in vulnerable communities, communities with significant heat disparities associated with race or income, and communities with large gaps in heat preparedness.