02/27/2013 06:23 pm ET

Erin Brockovich, Environmental Activist, Talks Landmark Case In 'Makers' Doc

Environmental activist Erin Brockovich was a single mom of three when she spearheaded one of the largest class action lawsuit of its kind against Pacific Gas and Electric Company of California in the 1990s.

In the clip above, Brockovich discusses how she felt when PG&E settled the case for $333 million in 1996, years after polluting the local water supply in the city of Hinkley, Calif. The pollution caused Hinkley residents to suffer from ailments ranging from chronic nosebleeds to cancer for more than 30 years.

"Money wasn't going to give these people back their lost lives or lost spouses or children," Brockovich says of the more than 600 residents who filed the lawsuit. "I don't know if you ever had to give them a dime. The victory was that they hoped something would change in the future."

Brockovich divorced first husband, Shawn Brown, in 1987, when she was 26. Her mariage to second husband, Steve Brockovich, ended in 1990. Her third husband, Eric Ellis, filed for divorce in October 2012.

Brockovich's interview is part of the documentary "MAKERS: Women Who Make America," a joint project between AOL and PBS which chronicles how women have shaped America over the past 50 years.

Watch the video above for more from Brockovich's "MAKERS" interview, then click through the slideshow below for more on the environmentalist's life.

Erin Brockovich

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