Chornobyl safeguards resumed – IAEA Update

12 May 2022

On 9 May the International Atomic Energy Agency issued the following statement, Update 75, from the director general, Rafael Mariano Grossi.

“Remote transmission of safeguards data from Ukraine’s Chornobyl Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) has been fully re-established. This resulted from the deployment of new transmission channels based on satellite technologies and of other technical work conducted by the Agency since the visit of safeguards inspectors and technicians to the Chornobyl NPP, 26-27 April 2022. This is the first time that remote data from all sites where such systems are in place in Ukraine, including all nuclear power plants and associated spent fuel storage facilities, has been transferred in full to the IAEA Headquarters since the two months interruption at the Chornobyl NPP.

“This is a very important step for the IAEA to continue to implement safeguards in Ukraine. However, implementing safeguards also includes in-field verification activities. The situation at Zaporizhzhya NPP continues to be challenging owing to the presence of Russian forces and Rosatom personnel at the site. Although the IAEA continues to adjust its safeguards activities, the situation is unsustainable. I have therefore proposed to lead a visit to Zaporizhzhya NPP, including safeguards inspectors and nuclear safety and security experts, after the necessary consultations and at the earliest possible opportunity”. 

Ukraine separately informed the IAEA today that there had been no significant developments related to nuclear safety and security in the country over the past 24 hours.

Regarding the country’s 15 operational reactors at four NPPs, Ukraine said seven of them are currently connected to the grid, including two at the Russian-controlled Zaporizhzhya NPP, two at the Rivne NPP, two at the South Ukraine NPP, and one at the Khmelnytskyy NPP. The eight other reactors are shut down for regular maintenance or held in reserve. Safety systems remain operational at the four NPPs, and they also continue to have off-site power available.

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