TROPICAL storms and hurricanes have been named for years, but now Sevilla will become the first city in the world to classify and christen heatwaves.

The year-long pilot project will put spells of hot weather into three categories based on severity. All ‘Category 3’ heatwaves will be named in the descending order of the alphabet, starting with Zoe, Yago and Xania.

City authorities will classify them based on their impact on public health, including mortality rates, as part of a project launched by the Adrienne Arsht-Rockefeller Foundation Resilience Centre (Arsht-Rock).

“We are the first city in the world to take a step that will help us plan and take measures when this type of meteorological event happens – particularly because heatwaves always hit the most vulnerable,” explained the city’s mayor Antonio Muñoz in a statement this week.

Spain experienced its earliest heatwave for at least four decades earlier in June, when temperatures across much of Spain soared above 40ºC.


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