By: Taylor Demeere
Summary: The Venice Italian water ways have been the clearest they have been in 60 years, and that is because water transportation has taken a halt. Venice typically flourishes with tourists, meaning there is always some sort of transportation going on, mainly in the famous Venice canals. But because of the lack of tourists, and civilians remaining in isolation, the canals are seeing little water movement. This has caused sediment to settle to the bottom and calm, while typically boats are stirring up the sediment. With no traffic the canals have a chance to settle itself creating a clearer look to the water. The water has been so clear that citizens can actually see fish swimming at the bottom of the canal. Although water ways are not being “cleaned” and only cleared, there is a bright side to this. It has been rumored that it is highly likely that the air quality in Italy is improving day by day while there is less and less pollutants being released into the air. With humanity taking a pause on their day to day lives, wildlife creatures are taking back their natural habitats. Swans and dolphins have been spotted swimming around the port, meaning that they are feeling comfortable and unthreatened by humanity to finally flourish in their natural homes. Just because the water ways are not technically being cleaned and their quality remains the same, does not mean good has not come out of this situation. Good indeed has come from this situation in many ways. Animals swimming freely in their natural habitats, air quality improvements and an overall break on the harsh pollutants that humans release into the atmosphere every day.
Why we should care? Humans should be concerned about polluting the earth. Wildlife has been flourishing in canals, which means that they are feeling comfortable in their natural habitats. This should be a wake-up call for humans to stop pollution as much as possible and work towards a cleaner planet not for just humanity, but all wildlife creatures as well.
Example News Article:
This article was especially interesting because not only did it talk about the water ways being cleared but also the potential of cleaner air quality. Venice’s governor has mentioned that it is not confirmed but it is highly likely that the air quality has improved in Italy since pollutants have decreased a lot. The typically cloudy canals are now clear enough to see fish swimming at the bottom. Although this does not mean better water quality it does mean that wildlife is coming back to their habitats without human disruptions. The tourist industry came to a “screeching halt” in Italy causing transportation rates to drop. Another very interesting fact in the article was that colder temperatures also play a part in the clear water ways. At 57 degrees Fahrenheit there is little synthesis of organic compounds from carbon dioxide which does not begin until about 62 degrees Fahrenheit. Because of these events that make the water appear clearer, swans, dolphins and fish are now flourishing in the beautiful water ways of Venice, when they typically would not have.
Science in Action:
Dr. Pierpaolo Campostrini is Managing Director at Corila Consortium for managing scientific research of the Venice Lagoon System, Venice, Italy.
Pierpaolo Campostrini is an author of several scientific papers, reviewer and member of the Editorial board of scientific journals, editor of volumes on the safeguarding of Venice, and the lecturer for Venice International University. He was also tenured researcher of National Council Research and Contract professor at the University of Padua and Udine, acquiring international experience in large scientific projects. Campostrini was the manager of several research programs under the role of CORILAS director. He also participates in various European projects, and was even part of the “Group of Ten” for establishing a stakeholder platform related to the Integrated Maritime Policy. Campostrini’s research for this specific topic concluded that Venice’s waterways are not technically “cleaner”, but only clearer. This is because of less transportation due to no visitors, so boats are no longer traveling through the canals, causing the sediment to settle and creating a clearer look. Boat traffic typically brings sediment to the waters surface, so without boat traffic in place, the canals finally have a chance to settle and calm down, which leads to the attraction of more wildlife than per usual.