The Mose is a complex engineering project designed to protect Venice from flooding.
The name stands for Electromechanical Experimental Module.
The realization of the project started in 2003 and should end by December 31, 2021.
What is Mose?
The Mose is composed of 4 barriers, located at the three inlets of the Venice lagoon (Lido, Malamocco, and Chioggia).
The project consists of rows of mobile floodgates at the three inlets, which temporarily separate the lagoon from the sea in the event of acqua alta.
The system, according to the project, can protect Venice and the lagoon from tides up to 3 meters high.
Two barriers (of 21 and 20 sluice gates) have been placed at the mouth of the Lido harbor, the rest in Malamocco (19), and Chioggia (18).
The project was chosen after years of studies, research, and discussions and construction began in 2003. Other years were lost in controversies, protests, trials, bribes, which delayed the completion of the work.
On July 10, 2020, Italian prime minister Giuseppe Conte and three government colleagues visited the control room on Venice Lido to see the 90-minute operation take place.
For the first time, the entire system of 78 mobile dams came into operation at the three harbor ports of the Venice Lido, separating the lagoon from the sea. The MOSE should be completed by December 31, 2021.
What is Mose for?
The project along with other measures such as coastal reinforcement, the raising of quaysides, and the paving and improvement of the lagoon is designed to protect Venice from the Adriatic Sea during acqua alta high tides.
Acqua alta is the term used in Veneto for the exceptional tide peaks that occur periodically in the Adriatic Sea.
Acqua Alta may become significant when associated with other atmospheric and meteorological factors such as low pressure and the wind.
The phenomenon may be further aggravated by the rise in sea level as a result of global warming.