Over the past half century, the Atlantic Ocean has consumed more and more of Atafona, a port city in Brazil.
On average, the sea moves inland five meters each year. About 500 homes were snatched from the sea.
Because of climate change, not much can be done to save the city. It will eventually be covered by the sea.
The sea swallows everything
– There was a chapel here and a bakery. It was a very large city, of which only one piece remained. The sea swallows everything, says Vanessa Gomez Barreto, a fisherman in the city, to the news agency AP.
Several possible solutions were considered. Among other things, banishing large amounts of sand, or building a barrier. But the solutions are not effective enough to stop the sea.
The devastation will continue
Previously, the Paraíba do Sul River brought a mass of land and sand to the Atavona. Portions of the water flow were diverted in the 1950s to secure water to São Paulo. This had dire consequences.
Pedro de Araujo, a professor of materials technology, told the AP that the river is weakening the Atavona’s natural barrier to the sea.
The lack of land mass and sand that has settled the coast means the city is being wiped out by the sea, Araujo tells Ap News.
He went on to say that sea levels are rising globally due to melting ice, and that the devastation will continue at a faster rate.
Almost five hundred buildings in the Atavona were flooded by the sea.
Julia Maria de Assis is one of those who changed her life. She had hoped to acquire her father’s hotel, which had been built in the Atavona.
– Although the structure of the hotel was sturdy, it was damaged whenever waves hit the building. It collapsed 13 years ago. It’s now at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean, she told The Associated Press.
Assis says she is often asked if it made her sad.
– I am grateful that I was born in Atavona. But people should respect nature. I miss the home I spent all summer. Now it is at the bottom of the Atlantic Ocean.
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