The Republic of Niger is the largest country in West Africa, named after the Niger River. Over 80 percent of its land is covered by the Sahara Desert.
The former French colony acquired its freedom in 1960 and is still one of the world's poorest countries. It was ranked last at 187th in the United Nations' Human Development Index in 2013.
This week on Living Planet, stories of how local movers and shakers deal with global problems. Glaciologists in Oregon tell us what they've learned about the climate from frozen caves, while a community in Lyon, France protests meatless school lunches. We also debate the ethics of traveling by cruise or by plane. And women from the Niger Delta share their fight for justice over oil pollution.
In Nigeria’s oil producing Niger Delta, women are the breadwinners in many homes, doing traditional jobs like farming and fishing, while men often head to cities to work. After decades of oil pollution, women especially have suffered the consequences of serious pollution, and the health problems associated with it. But they are now leading the movement to change that.