During the visit to the Exclusion Zone dedicated to the anniversary of the accident at ChNPP, President of Ukraine noted progress in overcoming the consequences of the Chornobyl accident
On the day of the 32nd anniversary of the Chornobyl accident, Petro Poroshenko, President of Ukraine, and Ostap Semerak, Minister of Ecology and Natural Resources, accompanied by Vitalii Petruk, Head of SAUEZM, paid tribute to the liquidators of the accident, visited important objects of the ChNPP industrial site, and also took part in the the meeting on the revival of areas that have been exposed to radioactive contamination, and improvement of the state policy in the field of radioactive waste management.
In particular, Head of State visited the Spent Nuclear Fuel Storage Facility No.2, where he became acquainted with the process of preparing the facility for conducting "hot" tests on nuclear fuel from reactors No.1, 2, 3 of the Chornobyl Nuclear Power Plant. SNF from Chornobyl NPP must be transported to this storage from the old one for safe storage of 100 years.
After visiting ISF-2, Petro Poroshenko, together with Ostap Semerak, Vitaliy Petruk and the employees from the Exclusion Zone enterprises honored the memory of the liquidators of the accident and solemnly laid flowers to the memorial to the participants of the liquidation of the Chornobyl accident. He also rewarded the Order "For the courage" of the third degree to three participants of the overcoming the consequences of the Chornobyl accident, who in the first days after the explosion emptied the pool-bubbler and secured the station from the possibility of a secondary explosion: Oleksii Ananenko, Valerii Bespalov and Borys Baranov (posthumously).
"This is just one story, one of those dozens, hundreds of stories, heroic deeds committed by the liquidators in order to save humanity. And each year on April 26 we put flowers and wreaths in memory of the heroes-liquidators, who were first to fearlessly rush to battle with the invisible and little-known to humanity threat,"- Petro Poroshenko said.
Upon completion of the festivities during the meeting, Head of SAUEZM presented the results of work and plans for the main activities of the agency: radioactive waste (RW) management at the stage of their long-term storage and disposal, provision of environmental radiation monitoring and implementation of the barrier function, overcoming the consequences of the Chornobyl accident, decommissioning of the Chornobyl Nuclear Power Plant and transformation of the Shelter Object into an ecologically safe system.
"In the future, the territory of the Exclusion Zone will be divided into the territory of special industrial use, where the main objects of safety and management of RW are concentrated, and the territory of the reserve. For this, an appropriate draft law has been developed and already submitted to the Verkhovna Rada for consideration, and work is underway to develop a Project for the organization of the territory and the protection of the natural complexes of the Chornobyl radiation and ecological biosphere reserve," - Vitalii Petruk, Head of SAUEZM, said.
Considerable attention was paid to the issue of the system of radioactive waste management, since Ukraine is in the 4th place in the world by the amount of radioactive waste, and 95% of it is of Chornobyl origin.
As Head of SAUEZM underlined, construction of the management of radioactive waste and spent nuclear fuel is currently underway in the Exclusion Zone: ISF-2, Centralized storage of spent ionizing radiation sources, plants for the processing of solid and liquid radioactive waste processing of the first stage of the Vector complex.
In addition, Ihor Hramotkin, General Director of the State Specialized Enterprise "Chornobyl Nuclear Power Plant", presented the state of work on one of the main objects of the Exclusion Zone - New Safe Confinement. At this time there is work on sealing the space below Arch, which will bring it closer to commissioning.
"I am confident that the progress that has been demonstrated over the past four years has been unprecedented. This is also noted in the assessments of our international partners, donors, EU, USA, EBRD," - the President said.
Summing up, the President of Ukraine stressed that he was very impressed with the fact that recently the chronological order of the meetings concerning the Chornobyl issues changed: in the past, it was solely about the tragedy and the memory of it, now there is a clear understanding of what needs to be done and whose area of responsibility this is.
"We changed the philosophy of attitude towards the contaminated territory of the ChNPP - began the transition from "overcoming the consequences of the accident" to the "revival of territories," - Petro Poroshenko said.
The event was also attended by Andrii Reva, Minister of Social Policy of Ukraine, Oleksandr Gorgan, Head of the Kyiv Regional State Administration, the management of SE "NNEGC "Energoatom" and managers of the Exclusion Zone enterprises.