Warigia Bowman on COVID, Coal, and the Navajo Nation

Warigia M. Bowman has posted “Dikos Nitsaa’igii-19 (The Big Cough): Coal, COVID, and the Navajo Nation” on SSRN.

Here is the abstract:

This essay makes the following arguments. First, the US federal government knows how to electrify remote rural areas, and has in fact electrified rural areas as remote and inaccessible as the Appalachian Mountains. Yet, the US government has failed to electrify Navajo. Second, Navajo Nation is surrounded by power plants which send electricity to Phoenix, Los Angeles, and parts distant, yet transmission lines and infrastructure have not been properly extended from those power plants to inside of Navajo Nation. Third, the health risks of residential coal burning are well known, and given the health risks of COVID-19 and the fact that underlying respiratory conditions make the Navajo quite susceptible to this disease, the need to address this infrastructure gap is urgent.