Protesters in Venice took to the water yesterday to block cruise ships from passing through the Venice Lagoon, using gondolas and small boats. About 2000 took part.
The protesters are concerned over two issues: the effect on the lagoon of having huge ships passing through, and the effect on Venice of having up to 30,000 cruise passengers a day coming to the city. On a summer day, the number of visitors frequently exceeds the number of residents.
The environmental concern involved the effect on both the marine life in the shallow lagoon and the effects on the fragile infrastructure of the city itself, which rests on small islands stiffened with long (and ancient) wooden poles driven through them.
In previous protests, hundreds of swimmers have gone into the Guidecca canal to block the ships. For more information from The Telegraph (UK) click HERE