10 Ways the Earth Is Trying to Kill You

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Why King Tides Are Flooding Coastal Cities More Often

Why King Tides Are Flooding Coastal Cities More Often

Is climate change to blame for king tides flooding coastal cities more often? Some scientists say yes. Find out why at HowStuffWorks.

Author's Note: 10 Ways the Earth Is Trying to Kill You

I distinctly remember the first time I was sure I was going to die. I was whitewater kayaking on a river in Montana. It was late summer, and the river level was low, slow and docile compared to its springtime fury. Yet it only took one mistake to remind me that Mother Nature — not me or my paddle or even my life jacket — was in charge of the situation. I bumped a boulder hard, flipped and then was sucked deep underwater for what seemed like an eternity. The water was so overwhelmingly powerful that I instinctively knew that I had no way to fight back, and that without some twist of good fortune I was going to drown. Luckily, a swirl in the current swept me back up toward the surface ... and a second chance. Our planet might offer all sorts of beauty and fun, but it also serves of regular doses of pain and suffering, too. Sometimes we're just barely lucky enough to survive.

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