80% of Venice is underwater - and a preview of what climate change will bring to coastal cities.
Mayor Luigi Brugnaro said the "dramatic situation" was brought on by climate change, in an appeal for additional donations to repair the devastation caused by the worst flooding in half a century.
While the city may recover on the surface, as it has before, climate scientists have said Venice is a harbinger of the problems facing all coastal cities, as melting ice sheets and warming oceans raise sea levels to unprecedented heights.
Because of rising seas, extreme flooding that used to occur in Venice once every 100 years is expected to recur every six years by 2050, according to a recent report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change.
"It's a city full of history. A history that, little by little, with water, will end up like Atlantis. People are destroyed, anguished, sad. They see a city that is disappearing."
said Vladimiro Cavagnis, a fourth-generation Venetian gondolier