Brussels, 18 July 2002
A team of British and Italian scientists are working on a project addressing problems with flooding in Venice due to both the city sinking and the sea level rising.
Funded by the EU under the Fifth Framework programme, the TIDE project will last three years and will primarily map tidal flows and marine life. This research will be carried out before a separate project, entitled project Moses, begins the construction of a flood barrier designed to prevent further flooding.
The need to address the flooding in Venice was demonstrated in mid-July, when St Mark's square, the lowest point in Venice and one of its most popular locations, flooded twice in one week. Global warming has led to a rise in sea levels, which, coupled with the city's slow sinking, has led to an urgent need to deal with the situation. In addition, predictions that sea levels could rise over 18 inches (around 45 centimetres) this century, mean that the level of flooding will only get worse.
'We are characterising the tidal dynamics of the system so that we can have accurate information on how the marshes are developing,' said Professor David Paterson of the University of St Andrews, who is heading the team. 'This will help us establish the nature of change in the Lagoon, which will help those working on the engineering project.'
For further information, please consult the following web address: http://www.cordis.lu/eesd