Yushchenko approves work plan of Chernobyl closure by 2012

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

15.01.2008, 20.12

KIEV, January 15 (Itar-Tass) -- Ukrainian President Viktor Yushchenko has approved a work plan for closing the Chernobyl nuclear power plant by 2012, Chernobyl NPP Director General Igor Gramotkin said on Tuesday.

He said the work plan implied the final removal of spent nuclear fuel from Chernobyl units.

The world’s worst man-made disaster occurred at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant on April 26, 1986. It is planned to conserve the reactors and worst polluted systems in 2013-2022. The conservation period will last until 2045, and then equipment will be dismantled and the power plant’s premises will be cleared in 2046-2064.

The fourth unit of the Chernobyl NPP exploded in 1986; the second unit was stopped in 1991 after an engine room fire; the first unit was halted in 1996; and the third on December 15, 2000.

The Chernobyl NPP and France’s Novarca signed a contract last September to build the new Shelter facility above the devastated fourth unit. The cover will be built by 2015. The contract costs $505 million. The shelter will be shaped as an arc with the length of 257 meters, the width of 150 meters and the height of 108 meters. It is meant to be safe for 100 years.

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