Google announced that it's bringing extreme heat notifications to Google Search later this year. The alerts will show up when a user will search for extreme heat information, for instance, when typing queries like "heat wave" in the search bar.
Climate change has contributed to extreme weather conditions in recent years, including prolonged heat waves and flooding from large storms. The search giant says that heat wave-related queries peaked during July last year and data shows (PDF) that around 500,000 people lose their lives every year due to extreme heat.
Once rolled out, Google Search heat alerts will show various information including tips for staying cool and predicting when a heat wave would start and end. As of now, Google already displays crisis-related alerts for natural disasters like earthquakes, floods, storms, and wildfires in Search and Maps. The company also uses satellite imagery data to track wildfires in real time.
Furthermore, Google also announced that its Tree Canopy tool now works for 350 cities across the globe, up from 14 in the past. The AI-powered tool is designed to reduce 'heat islands' which are basically concrete-rich urban areas that experience comparatively higher temperatures. The tool uses satellite imagery to create a digital map of tree canopy coverage in cities. Local authorities can use this data to plan urban forestry initiatives and improve tree coverage to keep the cities cooler.
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