Washington: Venice, the fabled city of canals, could sink by up to three inches over the next 20 years.
New measurements indicate that the historic Italian city continues to sink slowly, even as previous studies certified its stability.
"Venice appears to be continuing to subside, at a rate of about 2 mm a year," said Yehuda Bock, geodesist with Scripps Oceanography Institute, University of California, San Diego, who led the study, reports the journal Geochemistry, Geophysics, Geosystems.
Given that the sea level is rising in the Venetian lagoon, also at 2mm per year, the slight subsidence doubles the rate at which the height of surrounding waters are increasing relative to the elevation of the city, he noted.
As geodesist, Bock deals with the measurement and representation of the Earth, including its gravitational field, according to a Scripps statement.
Bock worked with colleagues from the University of Miami in Florida and Italy`s Tele-Rilevamento Europa, a company that measures ground deformation, to analyse data collected by GPS and space-borne radar (InSAR) instruments regarding Venice and its lagoon.