Venice is Sinking Says Researchers
Venice city is subsiding at a rate of 2 millimeters (.07 inches) a year. Scripps Institution of Oceanog

Beautiful and historical city of Venice is sinking, according to a new report.

Researchers from the Scripps Institution of Oceanography at University of California San Diego and the University of Miami have discovered that Venice city is subsiding at a rate of 2 millimeters (.07 inches) a year.

"Venice appears to be continuing to subside, at a rate of about 2 millimeters (.07 inches) a year," said Yehuda Bock, researcher at Scripps Institution of Oceanography in a statement.

Researchers discovered this when they analysed data collected by GPS and space-borne radar (INSAR) from 2000 to 2010.

"Our combined GPS and InSAR analysis clearly captured the movements over the last decade that neither GPS nor InSAR could sense alone" said Shimon Wdowinski, associate research professor of Marine Geology and Geophysics at the University of Miami.

The researchers also found out that the patches of land in Venice's lagoon (117 islands in all) are also sinking, with northern sections of the lagoon dropping at a rate of 2 to 3 millimeters (0.08 to 0.12 inches) per year, and the southern lagoon subsiding at 3 to 4 millimeters (0.12 to 0.16 inches) per year.

Venice's subsidence was recognised as a major issue decades ago, when scientists realised that pumping groundwater from beneath the city, combined with the ground's compaction from centuries of building, was causing the city to settle.

But officials put a stop to the groundwater pumping and subsequent studies in the 2000s indicated that the subsidence had stopped. However, new measurements indicate that the historic city continues to slowly sink, and even to tilt slightly to the east.