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Venice is far from the only UNESCO site at risk of flooding in the next 100 years.
Nearly 50 World Heritage sites are at risk of coastal flooding or erosion from sea-level rise by 2100.
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If sea levels in the Mediterranean continue to rise over the next 100 years, the 49 low-lying UNESCO World Heritage sites along its coast are at risk of flooding or erosion by 2100, according to a recent study published in Nature from researchers at Germany’s University of Kiel.
In fact, their studies show that of the 49 UNESCO sites located at or near sea level on the Mediterranean, 37 are already at risk from a 100-year flood and 42 from coastal erosion.
It comes as no surprise that Venice is one of the most threatened sites, especially after an October storm flooded three-quarters of the city with more than five feet of water, the highest levels seen in 10 years. However, several other UNESCO sites in the northern Adriatic are also highly at risk, including the archaeological area and basilica of Aquileia, the early Christian mosaics and monuments of Ravenna, and the Renaissance city of Ferrara and its Po Delta.Croatia’s coast is the next highest risk area, according to the study. The UNESCO site that could be damaged or destroyed is the 6th-century Euphrasian Basilica in the Istrian town of Poreč on Croatia’s northern coast. Although it’s not as famous as Dubrovnik’s Old City, which is at a slightly lower risk level, the Byzantine mosaics at the basilica are some of the most spectacular examples of religious art in the region.
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