This atmospheric phenomenon has always been a feature of Venetian life, it‘s caused by a combination of high tides, fluctuations in atmospheric pressure and wind. But the frequency and severity of flooding has increased markedly since the middle of the XX century. This phenomenon is the result of changes in the way the lagoon has been managed. In fact, large areas of lagoon have been removed to build the Marco Polo airport and the industrial sites of Marghera and other areas. The marshes and mudflats have an important role to absorb the rise of the sea level and the destructive effect.
Also the volume of motor-powered traffic on Venice’s canals has doubled in the past 20 years and the foundations of more than 60% of the buildings on the Grand Canal have been damaged by the wash from the water-buses and cruise ships.
If, with global warming, sea levels continue to rise, the situation is going to get a lot worse. Having an average depth of little over one metre, the Venetian lagoon is particularly vulnerable to the climate changes.