pISSN 0705-3797 eISSN 2586-1298
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Episodes 2003; 26(3): 264-268

Published online September 1, 2003


Copyright © International Union of Geological Sciences.

The Lagoon of Venice: geological setting, evolution and land subsidence

Antonio Brambati1, Laura Carbognin2, Tullio Quaia1, Pietro Teatini3, Luigi Tosi2

1Dipartimento di Scienze Geologiche, Ambientali e Marine, Università di Trieste, Via E. Weiss 2, I-34127 Trieste, Italy.
2Istituto di Scienze Marine, Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (CNR), San Polo 1364, I-30125 Venezia, Italy.
3Dipartimento di Metodi e Modelli Matematici per le Scienze Applicate, Università di Padova, Via G.B. Belzoni 7, I-35100 Padova, Italy.

This is an Open Access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution Non-Commercial License (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-nc/4.0) which permits unrestricted non-commercial use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


The paper deals with the geological setting, history and subsidence of the Venetian Plain. Major attention is paid to the Pleistocene-Holocene stratigraphic sequence in the Lagoon of Venice, in relation to its origin that dates back to 6–7 kyr BP. Geological land subsidence, which played an important role in the origin and the evolution of the lagoon, and anthropogenic subsidence, that has recently assumed a major importance for the Venetian environment, are discussed. Considering also the sea level rise, 23 cm loss in land elevation has occurred in the last century, leading to increased flooding events and environmental problems that require protective works.