64-kilometer-long Russian convoy largely dispersed
Ukraine has lost all communications with the Chernobyl nuclear power plant, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said in a statement Thursday.
The statement comes a day after the Russian-controlled site lost external power supplies.
Power to the site: IAEA chief Rafael Mariano Grossi said the United Nations’ nuclear watchdog is aware of reports that power has been restored to the site and is looking for confirmation.
Earlier on Thursday, Ukraine’s regulatory authority told the IAEA that emergency generators were providing electricity to the Chernobyl plant.
“The subsequent loss of communication meant that the regulator could no longer provide updated information about the site to the IAEA,” the statement read.
IAEA cited the Ukrainian regulatory authority, saying: “According to the information received before the loss of communication, both of the site’s power lines had been damaged, in effect disconnecting it from the grid.”
Effect of the disconnection: The IAEA statement said the disconnection from the grid “will not have a critical impact on essential safety functions at the site, where various radioactive waste management facilities are located, as the volume of cooling water in the spent fuel facility is sufficient to maintain heat removal without a supply of electricity.”
According to the IAEA, Ukraine’s regulator said eight of the country’s 15 reactors remained operating, including two at the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, three at Rivne, one at Khmelnytsky and two at South Ukraine. Radiation levels at the four sites were normal, it said.
Grossi also said the IAEA is in touch with Ukrainian authorities about radiation monitoring systems in Ukraine.
The IAEA has not been able to re-establish communication with the monitoring systems installed to monitor nuclear material and activities at the Chernobyl and Zaporizhzhia facilities following the loss of remote data transmissions from those systems.
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