Spain will allocate over a million euros to the construction of a ground-based solar power plant in the Chernobyl exclusion zone, a Ministry of Environment spokesman told Sputnik.
"Recently, working within the framework of the Kyoto Protocol, [Spain and Ukraine] arrived at an agreement under which Spain undertakes to allocate funds for projects aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions," Angel Sanchez, deputy director of emissions trading at Spain's Climate Change Office, said.
The official confirmed Spain has committed over a million euros to the Chernobyl power plant project, with the construction start date yet to be determined.
Ukraine's Ministry of Natural Resources and officials in charge of the exclusion zone proposed the allocation of land for the creation of renewable energy facilities at Chernobyl in late 2016. Over 60 companies from the US, China, Germany, France, Denmark, Belarus and Ukraine expressed interest.
In late 2018, a solar plant was opened in the ghost town of Pripyat on the territory of the Chernobyl nuclear power plant. The plant has an annual capacity of 1024 MWh per year (1 megawatt is capable of powering about 1,000 typical homes). Chernobyl is seen as an ideal territory for solar farms, given the generous availability of land, the existence of power transmission lines nearby, and the energy's low cost per megawatt.
The Chernobyl catastrophe took place on the night of April 25, 1986, and was caused by an experiment simulating a power blackout run by the system's deputy director which blatantly violated multiple safety regulations, resulting in an uncontrolled reaction leading to a steam explosion and resultant graphite fire. The disaster killed as many as 4,000 people, mostly due to cancer, according to World Health Organisation figures, and contaminated 50,000 square kilometres of land across Ukraine and up to 20 percent of neighbouring Belarus's land area.