Espreso. Global

Russia's attempt to launch ZNPP could lead to radiation accident

27 March, 2024 Wednesday
18:05

If the Russian forces try to restart Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant (ZNPP), it could lead to an accident with radiation consequences that will have cross-border effects

Head of SNRIU, Chief State Inspector for Nuclear and Radiation Safety of Ukraine, Oleh Korikov said this at a meeting with IAEA Director General Rafael Grossi, the press service of the Ukrainian agency reports.

According to Korikov, possible attempts by the Russian troops to launch ZNPP power units to generate electricity will completely contradict the terms of the license, rules and regulations on nuclear and radiation safety.

"We are well aware that the safety systems and equipment of the occupied Zaporizhzhia NPP are far from being in the best condition. More than two years of military occupation, lack of proper maintenance and repairs, incompetent and illegitimate personnel led to significant degradation of nuclear and radiation safety, lack of emergency response capability," SNRIU chairman said and emphasized that any attempts to resume electricity production at ZNPP are another cynical blackmail by the Russian invaders.

Korikov emphasized that safe operation of the plant is possible only after it is demilitarized and returned to Ukrainian control.

  • ZNPP reactors are reaching the end of their shelf life. Energoatom said that Russia is not able to replace it on its own. "To do this, it is necessary to disassemble the reactor, gain access to it, and then carry out a very complex technological operation to reload it. This requires licensed personnel, which is not available now. It also requires complex management and technical decisions on what to do with the fuel that will be unloaded. There are people who have never done this before," explained Energoatom CEO Petro Kotin.
  • The IAEA Board of Governors has voted overwhelmingly in favor of a draft resolution on nuclear safety, security and safeguards in Ukraine. It requires the return of Zaporizhzhia NPP to Kyiv's control.
  • The Russian Foreign Affairs Ministry stated that any resolutions and statements regarding the return of Zaporizhzhia NPP to Ukrainian control are considered "a violation of Russian sovereignty.”
  • At the same time, on March 12, Grossi said that the non-admission of Ukrainian specialists to the temporarily occupied Zaporizhzhia NPP poses no danger to the plant.
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