MOSCOW, April 25 (RIA Novosti) – The use of US-made fuel in nuclear power plants in Ukraine may lead to emergencies comparable in scale to the Chernobyl disaster, a group of veteran atomic scientists announced Friday.
The use of US-made fuel in Soviet-designed reactors in Ukraine does not meet safety standards, the International Union of Veterans of Nuclear Energy and Industry said.
"We believe that it is a miracle that the South Ukraine Nuclear Power Plant had not yet faced any accident because of this fuel," the statement said. The use of the Westinghouse fuel in the Ukrainian reactors was considered “irresponsible and cynical” by the industry veterans.
The Ukrainian state enterprise Energoatom and the Westinghouse Company previously agreed to extend the contract for the supply of US nuclear fuel for Ukrainian nuclear power plants until 2020. A Czech nuclear power plant faced depressurization of the fuel elements produced by Westinghouse several years ago, followed by the Czech government abandoning the company as a fuel supplier.
"This decision is cynical due to the fact that it was made almost on the eve of the sorrowful date – the 28th anniversary of the global accident at Chernobyl – which occurred as a result of a similar irresponsible experiment on the active reactor," the nuclear scientists stressed.