A Ukrainian official said Friday that a mission from the UN’s International Atomic Energy Agency is scheduled to visit the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant next week.
Fire damage to power lines at Europe’s largest nuclear power plant caused a region-wide blackout on Thursday, raising fears of catastrophe in a country still plagued by the 1986 Chernobyl accident.
Ukraine’s state-owned nuclear power company said six reactors at the power plant had been cut off from the country’s grid, and President Volodymyr Zelensky condemned the Russian shelling. Zelensky said the power plant’s emergency backup he needs to start the diesel generator to provide the power needed to operate the plant.
“If station staff did not react after the blackout, we would have been forced to overcome the effects of the radiation accident,” he said in a video address Thursday night.
It was not immediately clear whether the damaged power lines carried transmission or receiving lines needed for the reactor’s critical cooling system. A loss of cooling can cause a nuclear meltdown.
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Ukraine is about to restart operation of two reactors at the plant, regional governor Oleksandr Starv said on Friday.
The plant’s sixth reactor is running at 10% capacity and the fifth reactor is in the process of restarting operations, Starukh said in a commentary on television.
Regarding the UN’s International Atomic Energy Agency, Lana Zelkar, an adviser to Ukraine’s energy minister, said on Thursday night that logistical problems had been resolved for an IAEA team to come to a factory occupied by Russian forces and run by them. Ukrainian workers from the beginning of the war six months ago. Since March, independent outsiders have been unable to access Zaporizhzhia.
Ukraine claims that Russia is essentially taking the factory hostage, storing weapons there and launching attacks from around it, while Russia claims that Ukraine is recklessly firing at the facility. accuses.
Further shelling in the area overnight
Ukrainian officials say amid growing concerns that armed clashes near a working nuclear power plant could cause more serious damage, even though the Zaporizhia reactor is protected by a reinforced concrete containment dome. said areas close to the power plant were exposed to a barrage of artillery fire overnight.
Valentin Reznichenko, governor of Dnipropetrovsk region, said the artillery shelling in the city of Nikopol across the Dnieper from the Zaporizhia factory damaged 10 houses, a school and a sanatorium and caused no casualties. .
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About 1,000 local residents have no electricity, he said. Nikopol has come under near-constant Russian shelling since his 12th July, killing 8 people, damaging 850 buildings and forcing more than half of the city’s 100,000 population to flee the city.
Many nuclear power plants are designed to automatically shut down, or at least reduce reactor power, if power lines are lost. According to the IAEA, Ukraine has reported that the reactor’s emergency protection system has been activated and all safety systems remain operational.
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The plant’s three regular power lines are out of service due to previous war damage. Ukraine is so dependent on nuclear power plants during the war that it cannot simply shut them down. Fifteen reactors in four stations provide about half of the electricity.
Elsewhere, two people have been killed and six injured in the past 24 hours in the East Donetsk region, Governor Pablo Kirilenko said Friday. In the northeastern Sumy province, which borders Russia, more than 100 rounds of ammunition were fired and houses burned to the ground in the past 24 hours, Dmitro said.
Explosions were heard early Friday in the southern city of Mykolaiv as Russian forces tried to advance further west along the coast to cut Ukraine off from the Black Sea.
The immediate cause of the blast was unknown, said provincial governor Vitaliy Kim, pointing out that two nearby villages had been hit by artillery fire. There were no reports of casualties.
Ukraine is working to restart Zaporizhia reactor after fear of catastrophe
Source link Ukraine is working to restart Zaporizhia reactor after fear of catastrophe