On March 1, Ukraine informed the IAEA that it had maintained control of all the nuclear reactors in the country, but by the end of the day that had changed. According to a message from Russia’s military, the invading forces had taken control of the area surrounding the Zaporizhzhia Nuclear Power Plant in south-central Ukraine.
The notice from the Permanent Mission of the Russian Federation to the International Organizations in Vienne said personnel at the plant remained at work “providing nuclear safety and monitoring radiation in normal mode of operation.”
The message added, “The radiation levels remain normal.”
The Zaporizhzhia plant is the largest of Ukraine’s NPP sites with six out of the country’s 15 nuclear energy reactors.
In response to the crisis in Ukraine, the IAEA has been monitoring the country’s nuclear power plants, including the Chernobyl plant, site of the world’s most elaborate and expensive environmental protection project.
This is the first time a military conflict is happening amidst large nuclear power facilities.