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We have never been responsible for protecting combined heat and power, thermal, and hydroelectric power plants – Ukraine's infrastructure minister

Friday, 26 April 2024, 20:47
We have never been responsible for protecting combined heat and power, thermal, and hydroelectric power plants – Ukraine's infrastructure minister
Oleksandr Kubrakov. Stock photo: Getty Images

Ukraine's Ministry of Infrastructure has never been responsible for protecting energy generation facilities such as combined heat and power plants, thermal power plants and hydroelectric power plants.  It is impossible to protect static objects of several hectares in size with a dome – it is too time-consuming and expensive. The only possible solution is air defence systems.

Source: Ukraine's Infrastructure Minister Oleksandr Kubrakov during an hour of questions to the government in the Verkhovna Rada, Ukrainian parliament

Quote: "The only possible solution is air defence. We are dependent on steady supplies of weapons from partner countries," Ukraine's Infrastructure Minister said.


Kubrakov added that the ministry is responsible for nearly 4,000 critical infrastructure facilities, ranging from railway traction substations and water utilities to overpasses and port infrastructure.

"At the same time, in September last year, in accordance with the Government's decision, our team began building physical protection at 22 distribution substations of Ukrenergo [Ukraine's national energy company – ed.]. Only 22 of the existing 90 main substations and thousands of smaller ones," he said.

According to Kubrakov, the decision on what kind of protection should be provided was made jointly with engineers from the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine and military engineers from the US, the UK, Japan and Germany.

The construction of level II protection has been completed or is in the final stages at the 22 facilities for which the ministry's team is responsible, Kubrakov said. In some oblasts, power distribution has been protected thanks to these structures, Ukraine's Infrastructure Minister added.


  • The Trypillia Thermal Power Plant (TPP) was completely destroyed in a large-scale Russian missile attack on the early morning of 10-11 April.  
  • Previously, Mustafa Naiiem, Head of Ukraine's State Agency for Restoration and Infrastructure Development, reported that the fortifications at all facilities had withstood direct and indirect attacks during the large-scale missile and drone attack on Ukraine's power grid on 22 March, ensuring full protection of autotransformers and electrical equipment.
  • As Ekonomichna Pravda previously reported, when it comes to billions for the protection of energy facilities, this does not apply to power plants, as it is impossible to protect them with sarcophagi, as in the case of the Chornobyl Nuclear Power Plant.
  • The protections were built at high-voltage substations, which suffered the most from last year's Russian attacks. In addition, according to sources, the structures are not designed to withstand a direct hit from a ballistic missile. It is impossible to build such protective structures at huge generation facilities.

Read more: Russia continues to destroy the Ukrainian energy infrastructure. What should Ukraine expect without thermal power plants?

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