Spanish city of Seville has become the first in the world to name and classify heatwave - in the same way tropical storms and hurricanes are named. The idea is to warn and shield residents as periods of excessively hot weather become more frequent, according to a report in Time magazine. Seville's meteorological data system has named the current heatwave, the city's fourth this summer, as Zoe, the outlet further said. It is the very first heat event to officially be named in this way in the world, Time quoted the city weather officials as saying.
The new categorisation system for heatwave was launched last month to understand the impact of humidity and time of the day on extreme temperature.
The city's weather department said that during heatwave Zoe, the daytime temperature will be above 43 degrees Celsius. The other names chosen for heatwaves scheduled to come are Yago, Xenia, Wenceslao and Vega, said the Time report.
Meteorologists say that hearing "Heat wave Zoe is coming" rather than "it's going to be extremely hot" could cause people to take warnings more seriously and remember to do things like avoid exertion and drink water.
The categorisation is part of a year-long project launched by local meteorological body ProMeteo Sevilla and Arsht-Rockefeller Foundation Resilience Center (Arsht-Rock) in Washington, DC, according to local media reports.
Under the project, the climatologists will analyse historical climate records and local health and mortality data for the city of Seville, and powered by a novel algorithm, forecast heatwaves up to five days in advance of an adverse event and automatically categorise it based on its impact on human health and mortality.
More than 600 people have died in Spain as heatwaves, led by climate change, cause temperatures to reach record levels across the country.