Meanwhile in ... Mauritania, climate change has pushed women into leadership roles

And in South Korea, the tremendous popularity of K-pop music is drawing more foreign students, particularly Europeans, to study at Korean universities.

Joe Penney/Reuters/File
Nouakchott, Mauritania

Mauritania, climate change has pushed women into leadership roles. Lengthy periods of drought have significantly reduced the amount of available grazing land in this West African nation, forcing herders to travel long distances to feed and water their herds. While the herders are away, their wives are taking charge. “Women pastoralists are the first up in the morning and the last to go to bed at night,” Aminetou Mint Maouloud, who started the country’s first association of women herders in 2014, told Reuters. “Whether it’s making butter from cow milk, fetching wood or tending to ill animals, it all comes down to women.” 

South Korea, the tremendous popularity of K-pop music is drawing more foreign students, particularly Europeans, to study at Korean universities. Once, Asian students outnumbered all others at Korean universities, but in 2017 France became one of the top 12 countries sending 1,000 or more students. Paulina Bonnevier, a Swedish student attending Seoul National University, told The Korea Times that K-pop was the main reason she wanted to study in Korea. “I would have never been interested in Korea without K-pop,” she said. “K-pop was like the door that opened up for my visit to Korea.” 

Baskinta, Lebanon, an architect and his team are turning garbage into houses. The initiative was prompted by Lebanon’s waste crisis in 2015, when a sanitation plant was shut down and garbage accumulation spiraled out of control. Now architect Nizar Haddad and his Lifehaus Project operate a separation plant where garbage that can’t be treated is compressed under high temperature. It then is formed into ecoboards for use in prefabricated houses. 

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