SPAIN: Like hurricanes and cyclones, heat waves shall soon be named — to highlight their significance, alert people and push public officials to take necessary steps. Seville, Spain will become the first city to start naming severe heat waves.
Five other cities — Los Angeles; Miami; Milwaukee; Kansas City, Missouri; and Athens — have also designed a similar initiative, using weather data and public health criteria to categorise heat waves. They will use a three-category system, which best suits the particular climate of each city.
In 2000, a group of nations called WMO/ESCAP (World Meteorological Organisation/United Nations Economic and Social Commission for Asia and the Pacific), which comprised Bangladesh, India, the Maldives, Myanmar, Oman, Pakistan, Sri Lanka and Thailand, decided to start naming cyclones in the region. After each country sent in suggestions, the WMO/ESCAP Panel on Tropical Cyclones (PTC) finalised the list.
With a name, it is easy to identify individual cyclones, create awareness about its development, rapidly disseminate warnings to increase community preparedness and remove confusion where there are multiple cyclonic systems over a region. Heatwaves, like cyclones, need more attention to help alleviate their disastrous effects as rising global temperatures.
– INDIAN EXPRESS