AMU Emergency Management Public Safety

EDM Tuesday Briefing: Senate Gun Vote, New CA Fires, Heat Wave, Power Grid

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Emergency and disaster management briefing for June 21, 2016: Senate Republicans vote down four separate gun control measures, California’s wildfire situation worsens, the Southwest continues to battle a deadly heat wave, the NOAA reports May 2016 as the hottest month ever, the threat of power grid failures looms over parts of CA.

  1. The Senate [link url=”″ title=”voted down four separate gun measures“] Monday in the midst of a recent wave of gun violence in the U.S. Last week, Senate Democrats [link url=”″ title=”forced 15 straight hours of discussion“] about gun control just days after the [link url=”” title=”worst mass shooting in U.S. history“] in Orlando. Republican leaders then agreed to allow votes on several gun control measures. But the [link url=”″ title=”partisan paralysis“] continued with yesterday’s stalling votes.
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  3. With California already fighting multiple wildfires, [link url=”″ title=”new wildfires began Monday“] near Los Angeles. Two fires grew to about 5 square miles combined, and [link url=”″ title=”chased people from their suburban homes“] as the state also deals with a relentless heat wave. Progress was made on [link url=”” title=”Sherpa Fire,“] which has been burning since Thursday — officials reported 62 percent containment of that fire as of late last night.
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  5. The searing heat wave slamming the Southwest and Southern California that [link url=”” title=”led to several record highs“] over the weekend [link url=”″ title=”continued yesterday.“] There have been [link url=”” title=”six confirmed deaths“] associated with the heat wave thus far, all in Arizona. Excessive [link url=”” title=”heat warnings remained in effect Monday“] in parts of Arizona, Nevada, Utah and California.
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  7. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) National Centers for Environmental Information reported May 2016 to be the [link url=”” title=”thirteenth consecutive warmest month“] across the globe. Data showed May 2016 to be the month with the [link url=”” title=”highest ever recorded average temperatures“] since record keeping began — on both land and sea.
  8. The heat wave hitting southwestern regions of the U.S. has brought on obvious effects like worsening drought conditions and increasing wildfire risk. It has also caused issues with the [link url=”” title=”power grid“] in many regions, as well. Various power outages were been reported over the weekend in Southern California as record temperature put a [link url=”” title=”huge strain on the region’s power grid.“] California energy officials [link url=”” title=”warned homes and business on Monday to conserve electricity,“] and the potential for rolling blackouts was very high on the first day of summer.
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  10. The U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) recently [link url=”” title=”analyzed global response to climate change “] in an effort to determine how climate change adaptation can ultimately lead to better risk management. The GAO [link url=”” title=”selected five governments in particular to analyze,“] and chose those governments because each has enacted laws as a part of its overall approach to climate change adaptation.
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  12. [link url=”” title=”Grenada’s Tradewinds 2016,“] a joint EDM training exercise with partner nations, was held June 4 – 14. Seeking a [link url=”” title=”whole society approach,“] the exercise was designed to teach law enforcement and other first responders enhanced capabilities for addressing human-caused threats and natural disasters, along with how to [link url=”” title=”provide humanitarian relief“] in a coordinated and cooperative manner.
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  14. The Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) [link url=”″ title=”denied the emergency declaration request“] from Florida Governor Rick Scott on Monday. Scott [link url=”” title=”requested a declaration“] following the mass shooting at an Orlando nightclub that turned out to be the worst mass shooting in U.S. history. The governor called the response [link url=”″ title=”disappointing“] and said it was “unthinkable” that the federal government did not accept the request.
  15. FEMA announced that it [link url=”” title=”awarded Oregon more than $2 million“] to help with recovery from the severe winter storms that occurred December 6-23, 2015. Regions of the state experienced severe straight-line winds, flooding, landslides and mudslides in the winter storms. FEMA’s Public Assistance grants will fund [link url=”” title=”400 eligible projects in 14 counties.“]
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Matt Mills has been involved in various aspects of online media, both on the editorial side and on the technology side, for more than 16 years. He holds a Master's Degree in Journalism from Northwestern University's Medill School of Journalism, and is currently involved in multiple projects focused on innovation journalism.

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