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Under pressure: raising Venice above water (using… water?)

Everyone knows that on a sinking ship, you want to pump water out. But what do you do with a sinking city? In this case, the plan might be to pump water in.

The city of Venice has long been valued for its unique character. Built in a lagoon along the coast of Italy, the scenic city is crisscrossed with canals. Its waterlogged nature draws a steady stream of visitors, but also makes it vulnerable to costly flooding. The region sometimes experiences unusually high tides, locally referred to as “acqua alta.” The phenomenon is caused by winds that drive water to “pile up” on the north end of the long and narrow Adriatic Sea. When that coincides with a high tide, the City of Water gets even wetter, and the water level can rise by 1-2 meters.

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