Liz Bonnin hosts Dead River – a new podcast on Mariana dam disaster 

February 26, 2024

We’re pleased to share that environmental broadcaster Liz Bonnin is the host of a new podcast titled Dead River. The podcast shares the story of the Mariana dam disaster.  

Launching today, the six-part series will follow Brazil’s worst ever environmental disaster. Listeners will hear the true stories of victims of the disaster and their ongoing pursuit of justice as they take on BHP and Vale in the English courts.  

From the moment I heard about the story of the Mariana dam disaster I was gripped. It’s been a true honor to be able to tell it from the perspective of the communities affected and the hundreds of thousands of people still fighting for justice.

Liz Bonnin, Dead River host and natural history and environmental broadcaster

The Mariana dam disaster

On November 5 2015, the Mariana dam collapsed. Over 50 million cubic meters of arsenic-laced waste was unleashed into the River Doce. Toxic mudflows ravaged over 700km of waterways, spilling into the Atlantic Ocean.

The disaster claimed 19 lives, hundreds of livelihoods, and destroyed the lifeblood of local and indigenous communities: their river source. 

Dead River Podcast

The podcast  weaves together the interconnected lives shattered by the events of November 2015 through powerful first-hand accounts from the victims and expert analysis. 

Listeners can expect gripping storytelling – spanning from Brazil’s complex colonial history to harrowing retellings of the dam collapse itself from people who nearly lost their lives.  

This is a story of a tragedy that took place in the name of power and greed, but it’s also a story about humanity, connection and heroic individuals who are striving for a better, fairer world.

I hope this podcast will help to amplify all too often unheard voices and raise awareness of the urgent need for accountability in what resulted in Brazil’s biggest environmental disaster.
I also hope that it can give us all pause for thought about how the way we live and what we prioritize can impact the health of the planet – that we all rely on to survive.

Liz Bonnin, Dead River host and natural history and environmental broadcaster

Nearly 700,000 victims are still seeking justice from mining giant BHP through the English courts in a £36billion case.  

This is the UK’s largest class action lawsuit ever. The trial is due to take place in October 2024 in which Pogust Goodhead is representing the victims.  

Listen to the first two episodes here.

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