Devastating Floods Hit Venice

The beautiful tourist attraction of Venice, is now approximately 3/4 underwater.


Stefano Mazzola

Jenna Johnson, Editor

Earlier last week, Venice experienced what many believe to be is the worst episode of flooding ever recorded in the recent history of city, for the past several decades. While this severe weather did affect other regions in Italy as well, such as Rome, which experienced many thunderstorms and tornadoes, as well as Sicily, Venice has been hit the worst. Venice, which is known as being a beautiful tourist attraction for its gondolas and scenic canals, is now approximately 3/4 underwater, as severe flooding as well as high winds caused the water level to rise to unprecedented levels. The sudden rise in sea levels can be attributed to climate change caused by human activity. The accumulation of greenhouse gases such as methane, as a result of the burning of fossil fuels, has caused climate change. As greenhouse gases absorb the UV radiation emitted from the sun, this in turn is leads to climate change as the earth’s surface begins to increase in temperature, causing a change in sea levels and the weather. (National Geographic)

The death toll in Italy, as a result of these dangerous floods has been reported as 17. In addition to the loss of human life, severe damage to infrastructure all throughout major cities has amounted to approximately one billion euros.  The city, which lies well below sea level, must now take much more serious measures in insuring such devastating effects will not occur by way of flooding, in the future. With winds reaching 118 MPH, the Stradivari (Violin) Forest, in the Italian Alps has been severely impacted, as such high winds caused many trees to fall down. The city of Venice harbors much of the cultural heritage of Italy, as it is home to historically significant locations and monuments. With the advent of such horrific weather conditions, the integrity of these monuments has been put to the test, causing many of them to become worn down due to water damage. For example, the 12th century marble pavement in front of an ancient monastery has become submerged, which is a huge cultural loss to the community. As a result of these floods, many residents have left Venice, in hopes of escaping the dangerous conditions.

In order to combat the flooding, the Moses Project, which hopes to create underwater barriers that shield the city from high sea levels, is attempting to put their plan into quick action. (CNN) Due to the high costs of undertaking such a huge project, many public officials have delayed putting the Moses Project, into action. For a city that runs on profiting from the lucrative tourism industry, these floods have without a doubt dampened the economy of Venice.