IAEA Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi spoke today about the current radiation situation at the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant (ZNPP), which Russian forces have occupied since the beginning of March.
According to Ukrinform, he said this in a statement on the situation in Ukraine, published on the IAEA’s official website.
“Ukraine has informed the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) of renewed shelling in recent days at the site of the country’s Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant (ZNPP), but it said all safety systems remained operational and there had been no increase in radiation levels, Director General Rafael Mariano Grossi said today,” the statement said.
It added that the ZNPP has continued access to off-site electricity after the plant temporarily lost connection to its last remaining operational 750 kilovolt (kV) external power line on Thursday. In addition, both reactor units that were disconnected from the electricity grid during Thursday’s power cuts are operating again after being re-connected on Friday. The other four units at ZNPP were disconnected before Thursday’s events and remained in shutdown.
Grossi said there had been shelling in the area of the ZNPP on Thursday, Friday and Saturday, but Ukraine did not yet have complete information on the nature of the damage.
“The shelling had hit the area of the plant’s two so-called special buildings, both located about 100 meters from the reactor buildings, as well as one overpass area. Those buildings house facilities including water treatment plants, equipment repair shops or waste management facilities. There was also damage on some water pipelines at the site but they had been repaired,” the statement said.
Grossi said, citing information from Ukraine, that all measurements of radioactivity at the ZNPP site were within normal range, and there was no indication of any hydrogen leakage.
According to the statement, the latest shelling once again underlined the risk of a potential nuclear accident at the ZNPP, Europe’s largest nuclear power plant.
“Director General Grossi said he was continuing his consultations with all parties with the aim to send an IAEA expert mission to the plant in the next few days to help ensure nuclear safety and security there. The planned mission would assess the physical damage to the ZNPP’s facilities, determine whether the main and back-up safety and security systems were functional and evaluate the staff’s working conditions, in addition to performing urgent safeguards activities on the site,” the IAEA said.