Belarus NPP: Lithuania getting ready for worst scenario

Officials of Lithuanian institutions intend to hold discussions in early December on preparations for the threats of the Astravets nuclear power plant, Lithuanian media report.

The factual status of the project shows that the power plant may be completed, Verslo Žinios daily said on Wednesday.

The discussion of the problem should involve representatives of the ministries of energy, finance, environment, defense interior and foreign affairs, as well as the agencies responsible for radiation safety, Deividas Matulionis, an adviser to the Lithuanian Prime Minister, believes.

Belarus might have reiterated that nuclear power is safe, but Lithuania should be ready for different scenarios, Karolis Vaitkevičius, an adviser to the Lithuanian Interior Minister, stresses.

“The most topical issue is the preparation for protective actions recommended by radiation safety and health specialists, in order to protect the population and minimize the possible effects of accidental and nonrandom events caused by ionizing radiation,” Delfi quotes Interior Minister Eimutis Misiūnas.

After visiting the NPP, Polish journalist Michał Potocki told Belsat TV that he had seen the reactor of the second unit ‘being placed under covering without walls’. “

When we showed it to experts from Lithuania, they could not believe,” said Potocki.

In early December, a reactor pressure vessel was installed as part of the second power-generating unit of the Belarusian nuclear power plant.


The reactor pressure vessel and all the four steam generators of the first power-generating unit were installed earlier.

As reported in the summer of 2016, during installation the enclosure of the future reactor fell from the height of 2–4 meters at the construction site of the Belarusian nuclear power plant in Astravets (Hrodna region).

At first, the Belarusian Energy Ministry declined any comment on the situation. The press office group of the company Atomstroyexport, a subsidiary of the Russian state corporation Rosatom and the general contractor at the Belarusian NPP construction, said the information about the reactor’s fall was untrue.

Later, however, the Belarusian side confirmed that the ‘emergency situation had occurred in the storage area of the reactor body during its movement in the horizontal plane’.

“Even if the reactor vessel has suffered the slightest bit of damage, we should get rid of it. And Russians say that if we reject this one, they will bring another. And that’s the end of the story,” Belarusian president Alyaksandr Lukashenka stressed.

A new reactor vessel for Belarusian NPP was spotted in a transportation accident in December, 2016. According to official information, during the vessel transportation, at the ‘Slaunaye’ station, the reactor vessel for nuclear power plant came in a light contact with a utility pole.

The NPP first power-generating unit is scheduled for commissioning in 2019, the second one – in 2020. The construction of two nuclear reactors is provided in the agreement reached by Belarus and Russia, the reactors being supplied by Atomstroyexport, Russia.

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