Venice and Maldives are two of the world's island regions covered almost completely by water. These regions have some similarities and differences which make then much important. A study on Venice and Maldives will reveal features present in them and the problems both regions are facing at the present point in time.
The city of Venice and seaport is located in Italy in Veneto region. It is located within 118 minor islands which are linked with the bridges and separated by canals. The beauty of this situation is its artworks and architecture characterization that distinguish it. Venice has a population of 270,098 people. The city is most notable for the flood tides that often threaten it. The flood comes in from the Adriatic between autumn and the beginning of spring. Venice comprises six administrative regions known as a municipality that are governed by a council and a president. Constitution of Italy governs the city, and its urban organizations follow the art.114 of the constitution (Venice).
Venice was a major center of commerce and trade during the time of middle Ages and the Renaissance. It controlled lots of wealth, and it was a vast sea empire. However, by the 17th century, there was a change in the economic activity of the city as the trade empire was taken over by Portugal and other countries. Venice was an important agricultural and industrial exporter in the 18th century. Venice’s today’s economy is based on the building of ships, tourism, trade, industrial exports and services.
Venice has been experiencing flood disaster for a longtime. The renowned tourist region of Italy suffered a great deal from the effect of floods. Tourists had to attach plastic bags to their legs to take a dip in St. Mark's Square on Sunday when sea water rose beyond normal and gushed through the city. The water heights during the disaster extend to 1.49 meters that are about 5 feet. This goes beyond the normal range of the Adriatic Sea. The disaster was also accompanied by bad weather that took a toll on Italy during the weekend.
According to history, the recent acqua alta (Venice’s high water) is the sixth highest flood disaster since 1872. The flood took over the entire city and its peak reached several meters upwards. Many residents of the Italian city left the city mainland and relocated to other regions (Kington, 2012).
Maldives is also known as Maldive Islands, is an archipelago nation in Southern Asia. It is settled in the Indian Ocean and specifically situated between Minicoy Island and the Chagos Archipelago. The capital of the country is Male that is also its administrative region. In the context of population, Maldives is the smallest Asian country as well as land size. It is ranked with the lowest natural highest point, in the world. Maldives experienced a devastating tsunami on December 26, 2004. This resulted to the destruction of some islands in the nation as well as the devastation of many islands in Maldives. Some islands were forced to close due to serious damage. The 2004 tsunami brought about the death of 102 Maldives and six foreigners (Maldive).
Maldives is a water bound nation. Because much of its security lies at the sea, Maldives is almost covered with water. Water engulfs 99 percent of the nation. The remaining 1 percent of the country island, but it is scattered throughout the nation. The largest island in the country is only 8 square kilometer. Maldives mount surveillance under water as much of its security and protection activities lie beneath the water (Maldives).
Severe Flood Disaster in Maldives
Rise in sea water occurs regularly in Maldives. Many regions of the country are flooded. Several flood seasons have taken place in Maldives; a good example of these is the 1987 and 1988 storms. Although the damage caused by this particular storm was minimal, but the government responded to make up for the damage caused. The government constructed different breakwaters on the outer coast of the capital city and thus Male was protected from the ravaging storms and waves. However, further rise in storm brings devastation to Male the capital city of Maldives.
Male, the capital of Maldives, also experienced reduction in its freshwater table. Freshwater was only available at the center of the island. To address the recent flood issues and other environmental issues in Maldives, must policy response in order to counter the effects of the disaster. Such policy response would be important even without a rise in sea level. If the policy responses are well implemented, some of the city's demands will be supplied by the groundwater. The rise if sea water of the city reduces the storage capacity of freshwater in the city. Water supply and overcrowding are major issues of concern in Male. In response to this, there is a plan to create some new cities on un-crowded islands. Some of these new islands include Eydhafushi, Thulhaadhoo, Goidhoo, Fehendhoo and Fulhadhoo, Thoddu, Aduu Atoll, Fua Mulaku and Thaa Atoll. There are possibly three potential responses that can be leveraged to reduce the effects of flooding in Maldives. These include abandoning islands, building the island upward and holding back the sea with dikes. Each of these responses has its own associated problem. Firstly, people do not want to abandon their islands. These solutions seem to be temporal in consideration of the conditions at hand in Maldives. However, there the flooding action has a great propensity of inundating the entire nation if coastal engineering measures are not leveraged to cut it short (John. & Danny,1992; Titus, 1989).
Although dikes have been used as handy tools by many countries Netherlands, Bangkok and so forth to protect themselves, they do not favor Maldives as these other countries owing to the conditions in the country. The cost of building and maintaining dikes in Maldives might be greater than the overall benefit that would be obtainable from it (Titus, 1989).
Figure 1 Relationships b/w the relative sea level change at tide gauges, and absolute sea level change
Comparison and Contrast of Maldives and Venice
Venice and Maldives are both in great threat to flood. The ravaging flood action in these nations makes a huge toll on them. If careful measures are not taken to minimize the environmental disaster, it is likely that Maldives and Venice might disappear. Both nations are covered with water to a great extent only a small percentage of the landmass is dry land.
According to Mörner (2011) Maldives and Venice are under great threat of extreme storm waves especially Maldives that faced worse events of tsunami. In last 4000 years, it experienced high sea level event ranging from 0.6 to 1.2 meter. One could not condemn glacial ecstasy for those oscillations, rather sea dynamic factors like extreme changes in redistribution's or precipitation off the water masses. Sea level changes and seaside development launched a global water level phenomenon in Maldives, partly considering that this is an area, where numerous sea level criteria connect and mostly because this was an essential area for the proposed water level rise as a feature of international warming. On the expedition by the water level researcher, significant proof was discovered that there is a fast change in y the water level. They claimed that the sea the level dropped by 20 centimeters in the 1970s, but observations obtained do not verify the specific claim although security in this regard is well documented for the three to four decades (Mörner et al., 2011) .
Ostanciaux et al., (2012) conducted research on regional systems like sediment compaction and anthropogenic processes. They focused to add the concept of Vertical Ground Motion (VGM). This holds for the vital situations of Venice, and the Maldives and some other regions, which are specifically subjected to the present sea level surge.
VGM is a significant issue for anthropisation of the seaside locations that are subjected to the current water level increase, which occurs at 2-3 mm/yr. typically, but, that spatially differs by numerous mm/yr. (Cazenave et al., 2008). They predicted that an excellent expertise of VGM might help to understand their different reasons and contribute to the resolution of such a crucial social challenge. Recognizing the causes of VGM and anticipating their impacts is a probability, however, uncertainty continues to be large. Conversely, a selection of methods supplies suggests collecting direct observations of such processes. Anthropogenic causes, tectonics, mantle mechanics, volcanism, and glaciers modifications are amongst the major contributors in charge of upright ground motion. Anthropogenic reasons feature hydrocarbon or water pumping. They pointed out that, in the representative case of Venice, sediment deprivation causing by river diversion, dams and irrigation are some significant factors need to take into consideration. Because of their effect on the morphology, the function of structural task or volcanism is conceptually simple at energetic plate margins, although it is occasionally challenging to quantify. Last, mantle flow regularly forms the strong Earth by customizing the heterogeneous distribution of its interior masses. On the long-term, vibrant topography, i.e. the departure of the Earth's surface area from a static stability as a feedback to the viscous flow in the mantle, affects all components of the world with a magnitude that may go beyond 1000 m (John. & Danny, 1992; Ostanciaux et al., 2014) .
However, Maldives and Venice each has its own peculiarity despite the obvious similarity in the environmental disaster. The southeastern nation, Maldives, is not suitable for dike construction, but dike construction can well fit in into Venice in order to control the action of flood. The governments of these two regions are doing the best to bring these issues in control and to arrest the flooding action as well as other environmental disasters.
Flooding is one of the severest environmental disasters which can wreck havocs in a nation. This is clearly made obvious in Maldives and Venice, which might likely disappear if appropriate action and measures are not taken by the government to arrest the situations. Despite the fact that these regions are most vulnerable to flood attack, national survival is not threatened by rising sea level as long as measures are taken in anticipation of the problem. It is also important for residents of these nations to adapt to these environmental issues and make appropriate efforts to counter them. The governments of these regions are tasked with the responsibility of anticipating the problem and employing appropriate response to prevent or even minimize them.
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John C. P. & Danny L. E.(1992).Climate, Sea level rise and the coastal zonei management and planning for global changes, Jr. Ocean & Coastal Management, 18 113-160.
Kington, T. (November 11, 2012). Venice 'high water' floods 70% of city [Online forum comment]. Retrieved from http://www.theguardian.com/world/2012/nov/11/venice-floods-high-water-italy
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Mörner, N.A. (2011). Chapter 7 – The Maldives: A Measure of Sea Level Changes and Sea Level Ethics, 197-209.
Ostanciaux, E. , Husson, L., Choblet, G. , Robin, C. ,& Pedoja,K.(2012) .Present day trends of vertical ground motions along the coast lines, Earth-Science Reviews,110,74-92.
Titus, J. G. (1989, November 14). Policy implications of sea level rise-The case of the Maldives [Web log comment]. Retrieved from -http://papers.risingsea.net/Maldives/Small_Island_States_3.html
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