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Forests are are on fire near the Chornobyl nuclear power plant, radiological indicators are deteriorating

Wednesday, 23 March 2022, 22:18
Forests are are on fire near the Chornobyl nuclear power plant, radiological indicators are deteriorating

Kateryna Tyshchenko - Wednesday, 23 March 2022, 23:18

Forest fires are raging in the Exclusion Zone near the Chornobyl nuclear power plant (NPP), Ukraine has informed the IAEA.


Source: IAEA on Twitter, Verkhovna Rada (Ukrainian parliament) website

Quote from the IAEA: "Ukraine informed the IAEA that firefighters have been trying to put out forest fires near the Chornobyl nuclear power plant. There has been a slight increase in the concentration of cesium in the air at two nuclear power plants and in Kyiv, which is not a significant cause for concern."

"The IAEA continues to work with Ukraine's nuclear regulator to obtain additional information on the fire situation near the Chornobyl nuclear power plant."

Details: As of 20 March, the Verkhovna Rada reported 7 fires within the Exclusion Zone, according to Sentinel-2 satellite images from the European Space Agency (ESA).

Quote from the Verkhovna Rada: "The fire was allegedly caused by the armed aggression of the Russian Federation, namely by shelling or arson. The automated nuclear verification system, as well as the staff of the State Specialised Enterprise ‘Ecocentre’, are unable to perform their functions to the full extent in light of these circumstances and martial law."

The spread of a fire in the Exclusion Zone should not exceed 0.05-0.2 sq. km, according to the Classification of Emergencies. However, the current area of ​​fires exceeds these indicators by over ten times.

"Taking into account the radiation risks recorded by the automated nuclear monitoring system (ANMS) at 39 points, the fires in the areas with significant levels of radionuclide contamination, and at the locations of radioactive waste management infrastructure within a 10 km radius of Chornobyl NPP, pose imminent danger."

More details: As of 23 March, the Verkhovna Rada also reported that fires were detected within the Exclusion Zone.

The Verkhovna Rada also claims that a number of indicators at the Chornobyl nuclear power plant have deteriorated due to the aggressors’ actions.

Verbatim: "We received information from the Chornobyl NPP on safety parameters and the state of the radiation situation at the site. These data indicate a steady deterioration in a number of indicators. The aggressor continues to grossly violate the requirements of radiation safety and sanitation at the site and in the Exclusion Zone. Subsequently, this contributes to the spread of radioactive contamination outside the Exclusion Zone. "

Background: The Russians looted the Central Analytical Laboratory in Chornobyl for a value of 6 million euros.

The Russian military seized the Chernobyl nuclear power plant after a fierce battle on 24 February.