New study pinpoints rate of subsidence, which is partly due to plate tectonics as the Adriatic plate subducts beneath the Apennines
This NASA satellite image shows Venice, a city of canals stretching out across numerous small islands in a marshy lagoon along the Adriatic Sea in northeastern Italy. The saltwater lagoon stretches along the shoreline between the mouths of the Po (south) and Piave (north) Rivers. This image from the Advanced Spaceborne Thermal Emission and Reflection Radiometer on the Terra satellite shows the watery city in spectacular detail, using false-color image enhancements that bring out the details of water and vegetation.
This resident wants to know ...
By Summit Voice
SUMMIT COUNTY — Venice could sink deeper into its own lagoon by another three inches or so during the next 20 years, according to a team of researchers with the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at the University of California.
Using some of the latest technology available, the scientists say they’ve come a little closer to answering the vexing question of whether the city is actually drifting downward. Some recent studies suggested that’s not the case, but the recent analysis of GPS and satellite radar data shows otherwise.
“Venice appears to be continuing to subside, at a rate of about 2 millimeters a year,” said Yehuda Bock, a research geodesist with Scripps, and the lead author of the new article on the city’s downward drift. “It’s a small effect, but it’s important,” he said.
Given that sea level is rising in the Venetian lagoon, also at 2mm per year, the slight subsidence doubles the rate at which the heights of surrounding waters are increasing relative to the elevation of the city, he noted. In the next 20 years, if Venice and its immediate surroundings subsided steadily at the current rate, researchers would expect the land to sink up to 80 mm (3.2 inches) in that period of time, relative to the sea. (more…)
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