Chornobyl, Ukraine – Near the ruins of the Chornobyl nuclear power plant, an international team of radiation experts led by Greenpeace Germany is examining abandoned Russian positions for radioactive contamination. Trenches and dugouts were built by Russian soldiers during their occupation of the Chornobyl site in March. About 600 soldiers were deployed there. The research project is being conducted with the approval of the Ukrainian government and in cooperation with scientists from the State Agency of Ukraine on the Exclusion Zone Management (SAUEZM).
For the first time since the beginning of the Russian invasion, independent measurements will be taken and the April 28 statement of the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) will be assessed. According to the IAEA, while there was increased radiation the levels did not pose a great danger to the environment or people. The IAEA’s deputy director is Mikhail Chudakov, a long-time employee of the Russian nuclear company Rosatom.
Shaun Burnie, a nuclear expert from Greenpeace Germany, on site in Chornobyl, said:
“We want to know what really happened on the ground. The IAEA’s information so far is insufficient. The Ukrainian authorities are enabling the Greenpeace Germany research team to gather independent information about radiation safety in the region. This includes investigating the radioactive contamination that deposited in the Exclusion Zone when the Chornobyl reactor exploded in 1986. Between seven and nine tonnes of nuclear fuel were pulverized and ejected into the atmosphere in the 1986 explosion.”
During the Russian occupation of the Chornobyl region, Greenpeace experts warned that this could lead to increased radioactive contamination. But the IAEA gave an “all-clear” at the end of April. The nuclear agency has a mandate to promote nuclear power.
“While the European Commission actively supports nuclear power by including it in its taxonomy, it’s more important than ever to investigate the environmental impact of Chornobyl, the world’s worst nuclear disaster,” said Burnie.
Greenpeace Germany will present the results of the Chornobyl radiation research, in English, at a press conference in Kyiv on July 20 at 9:00 am CEST (ZOOM Link: https://t1p.de/dzbks).
Press conference on July 20 at 9:00 am CEST via ZOOM link
Contacts (both on site)
Shaun Burnie, nuclear advisor, Greenpeace Germany: [email protected], +447904958266
Björn Jettka, press officer, Greenpeace Germany: [email protected], +491718780778
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