Sunday, January 29, 2012

Deja vu in Venice

photo by Alvaro Leiva

This is the time of year that we New Englanders dread blizzards, but Venice dreads the flooding high waters—the acqua alta—that constantly threatens their beautiful city. This week these high waters reached the highest level that Venice has seen in 22 years at just over five feet above sea level. If you've every been to Venice and seen the gilded churches, palaces, museums, markets and high end stores, you'll ache at the thought of this as much as I do. Venice was built on muddy islands, so what can be done? Lots, but it's an pricey job. Named after Moses, who parted the seas, the Moses project is in full swing. Enormous and expensive gates (costing billions of Euro) built in the Adriatic would lift when very high tides are predicted to help slow the flow of water into the city. And now there is another clever idea, which involves slowly injecting the soil under Venice (over a ten year period) to plump up and raise the soil beneath it. Read about it here on the National Geographic website, and see photos of the December 2008 floods here. In the meanwhile, pull up those Wellies.

Most of these photos are from the December 2008 floods
photo by Toshio via Flickr

photo by Luigi Costantini
photo by Andrea Pattaro

photo by Manuel Silvestri

photo by Michele Crosera

photo by unknown

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