Documentaries and Podcasts

Below you can find a long list of documentaries and podcasts that are relevant for political ecology, teaching it, and the field in general. We welcome contributions to make this list even more comprehensive!


Into EternityIt follows the construction of the Onkalo waste repository at the Olkiluoto Nuclear Power Plant on the island of Olkiluoto, Finland. Director Michael Madsen questions Onkalo’s intended eternal existence, addressing an audience in the remote future.
The psychosis of whiteness The Psychosis of Whiteness is a documentary film that sheds light on society’s perceptions of race and racism by exploring cinematic representations of the slave trade. This documentary takes an in-depth look at big budget films that focus on the transatlantic slave trade and, using a wealth of sources and interviews, it argues that these depictions are metaphoric hallucinations about race. Rather than blaming the powerful institutions that are responsible for slavery, these films rewrite history by praising those same institutions for abolishing the slave trade.
Anote’s ArkClimate refugees, small island. ‘Anote’s Ark’ follows both the relentless struggle of President Anote Tong to raise international awareness and to ensure the survival and cultural heritage of his countrymen, as well as the young mother Sermary, who literally fights against the rising water level while trying to reconcile herself to the idea of a new life in New Zealand
Keepers of the Future: La Coordinadora of El SalvadorasEl Salvador, community organization showing how local initiatives can show they way to alternative and better ways of living, 24 min
Opening the earth: the potato kingPeruvian Andes mountains. Changing ways of life and culture. Tradition versus modernity.
Gender in Coffee
The Borneo CaseLogging and indigenous peoples Indonesia, high level corruption, 1 h 18 m
Burned: Are trees the new coalCritically discusses the use of biomass from a climate and environmental justice perspective. US focused
Marathon for JusticeEnvironmental justice documentary featuring Bob Bullard
When Two Worlds Collide
Big MenOil in Ghana and Nigeria
Land GrabLand grab in Detroit City
CrudeOil and Indigenous People in Ecuador
Darwin’s NightmareFishing industry Mwanza, Tanzania. Poverty, nature.
VirungaStruggle over Virunga National Park, Congo. Could problematize it, neo-colonial
Chasing CoralDocumenting that chorals are disappearing and why
Sun Come UpFollowing islanders who become climate refugees
GaslandFracking in the US. There is also a sequel, Gasland II
Everyday RebellionDocumentary about creative forms of nonviolent protest and civil disobedience worldwide. Not necessarily about environment. 1h 58 m
Super PollutersShort documentary about huge power plants in Indiana, US. 12 m
SeedAbout seeds, patenting/licensing, and protest against this. 94 min (58 min classroom version)
The Island PresidentMaldives, climate change, political struggle, 1 h 41 m
Dead Donkeys Fear No HyenasAbout land grabbing in Ethiopia. 1 h 30 m
The Doubt Machine Short documentary about the Koch Brothers’ and the oil industry’s lobbying against climate regulation. 30 min
Marmato Documentary about the struggle against Canadian Barrick over a gold mine. 1h 27 m
The Smog of the Sea
Plastic Oceans (netflix)
Jack Johnson and friends documenting micro plastic in the seas. For debate see this. 30 min
Coal rush Environmental justice movie about a rural Appalachian community’s struggle against pollution and health hazards from coal mining, 90 min
Micro debt Critically examining micro-credit. 57 min
The carbon crooks How the EU carbon market was used for fraud. 58 min
Disruption Showing climate crisis, industry interests, the process of launching the peoples’ climate march in 2014. 52 min.
Hija de la laguna Mining Peru, protest march, etc. 1 h 27 m
Under the dome Air pollution in China, 143 min TED talk, controversial
I am Chut Wutty Struggle against a rubber plantation to be established in the Prey Long forest, Cambodia. 53 min
A place without people How PAs in Tanzania created places without people by displacing indigenous people, 53 min.
Biutiful Cauntri Environmental justice movements in Campania but also to open up a discussion on the politics of representation of pollution and disaster and on the political use of science
Come hell or high water: the battle of turkey creek Environmental justice in Mississippi, 56 min
Habilito Lowland Bolivia. Role of debt relations in timber extraction.
Fractured Country: An Unconventional Invasion Risk to communities from invasive gas fields, 40 min
Eldorado Pretty cool documentary about mining in Greece, political protest, repression, etc. 1 hour +
Silas Liberian activist struggling against illegal logging. Portrait of an activist. 1 h 20 m
Awake A film about the Standing Rock conflict; made by indigenous peoples’ organisation
Angry Inuk A film about Greenpeace’s campaign about seal hunting the consequences of it to indigenous communities (punching down) 85 m
The condor and the eagle Indigenous leaders from South and North America meeting to examine climate justice 90 m
In Our Hands Agroecology movement in the UK, 60 min (optimistic)
We will win peace About humanitarian aid as business. 1 h 38 min
Stealing Africa Copper mining Zambia, corruption. 52 min
Appetite for Destruction: The Palm Oil Diaries How the palm oil industry operates on the ground in three countries, 1 h
Death by design Electronics industry. Sustainability, 1h13m
Time to choose Climate change, worldwide challenge and solutions, 1h40m
Yasuni Man Oil Amazon 1 h 40 m
The Island and the Whales Faroe islands, whale hunting, mercury, toxic bodies – 1 h 21 m
The Last Guardians Two tribes fighting to preserve their way of life threatened by oil companies in the Ecuadorian amazon. Emphasis on different ontologies and way of life. 45 min
Tomorrow 1 h 58 m. local initiatives: farming, money
Time for GeographyInspiring, open-access geography educational videos


KPFA Against the GrainIn-depth analysis and commentary on a variety of matters — political, economic, social, and cultural — important to progressive and radical thinking and activism. Against the Grain is co-produced and co-hosted by Sasha Lilley and C.S. Soong.
David Harvey’s Anti-Capitalist ChroniclesDavid Harvey’s Anti-Capitalist Chronicles is a bimonthly podcast that looks at capitalism through a Marxist lens.
Finding SustainabilityStefan Partelow (ZMT Bremen, Germany) and Michael Cox (Dartmouth, USA) interview environmental social scientists and practitioners around the world about their research, career paths, interdisciplinarity, social science and sustainability topics.