Data From Ukraine’s Largest Nuclear Power Plant Goes Offline, IAEA Reports

Update (1536ET): Nuclear risks in Ukraine continue to mount Wednesday after another nuclear power plant has experienced issues. 

The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) reports it has lost remote data transmission from its safeguards systems at Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Station in southeastern Ukraine. 

On Sunday, IAEA said Russian forces seized Zaporizhzhia. It’s important to note that the power plant is the largest in Europe. 

The deteriorating situation in the war-torn country regarding nuclear power plants is concerning. Earlier, IAEA reported Chornobyl Nuclear Power Plant lost power.  

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Ukraine informed the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) Wednesday of “power loss” at the Russian-occupied Chernobyl Nuclear Power Plant.

The atomic agency said, “the heat load of the spent fuel storage pool and volume of cooling water at Chornobyl Nuclear Power Plant sufficient for effective heat removal without the need for electrical supply.” 

IAEA Director General Rafael Mariano Gross said the “development violates key safety pillar on ensuring uninterrupted power supply.” 

Spare diesel generators will power the Chornobyl nuclear power plant and its facilities for 48 hours.

Then, the cooling system of the spent nuclear fuel storage will be shut down, which will threaten the leakage of radiation,” the Verkhovna Rada of Ukraine tweeted. 

The State Service of Special Communication and Information Protection (SSSCIP) tweeted that a “high-voltage line is currently disconnected due to the damage caused by the occupiers.” 

“As a result, the Chernobyl station and all nuclear facilities in the Exclusion Zone are without electricity,” SSSCIP added. 

Kadri Simson, the EU’s commissioner for energy, said Ukraine has told her about the ongoing situation, and “backup systems have been deployed.” She also said, “We are in constant contact with IAEA to help ensure nuclear safety in Ukraine.” 

The defunct plant resides within an exclusion zone that houses decommissioned reactors and warehouses of radioactive waste. About 2,000 staff work at the site to prevent another nuclear disaster. 

NPP has been under the Russian military force’s control since the first week of the Ukrainian invasion beginning on Feb. 24. 

*developing

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