Córdoba – along with Jáen and Sevilla – all of which are in inland Andalucía are typically the most sweltering provinces in the country and, whilst the rest of Spain complains whenever a heatwave strikes, these three barely notice them because they are not so different from a typical summer there anyway.
Whilst temperatures shot up to around 40ºC in the early part of the week, this was quite normal for the city of Córdoba, the capital of a province which holds Spain’s record for the highest-ever temperature in the country’s history at 47.3ºC in the shade.
But residents say without Haviland Carrier’s early-20th-century invention, it would be literally impossible for human life to survive there.
This may be a slight exaggeration, but almost every house in the city has this facility since the risk of heatstroke, which is frequently fatal, would be very high without it.
And the US-based scientist did not, in fact, create air-conditioning to cool people down in summer: it was originally designed for refrigeration of machinery in factories.
Despite this, if Haviland Carrier were alive today, he would probably be receiving gushing thanks via social media from those who live in the provinces of Córdoba, Sevilla and Jaén – and, quite possibly, many of those on the Mediterranean, in the Canary Islands, and on the south coast, too.
A petition on Change.org calling for his name to be given to a street in Córdoba has only amassed 1,000 signatures so far, but the city council’s head of planning, Pedro García, has already taken notice and says he is searching for a road whose name can be feasibly changed.