The Philippine Atmospheric, Geophysical, and Astronomical Services Administration (Pagasa) only chose names that are Filipino-sounding to establish an effective recall among the public, Pagasa Public Information Unit chief Venus Valdemoro explained.
Through its “Name A Bagyo” contest in 1998, Pagasa asked Filipinos to submitted all the names they want to use for the typhoons that enter the Philippine area of responsibility (PAR). A committee chose about 140 names from the nominations in 1999.
“Since it was launched in 2001, the sets of new names haven’t changed. We need to change the international names of these cyclones so it will be easier for our countrymen to remember them.”
She explained that each set of names also has an additional 10 auxiliary names starting with A to J that will be used for should typhoons exceed 25 for a specific year.
“We put these names in four columns (sets). We will use the first column for 2009, the second one for 2010 and so on until we use the last set for 2012. Then we have to go back to use the first column for 2013.”
Valdemoro noted the names of extraordinarily destructive storms, which claimed more than 300 lives and destroyed properties amounting to more than P1 billion pesos, had to be removed from the list.
So what will Pagasa call the next storms? Here’s the list of possibilities: