How to prevent a nuclear catastrophe at the Zaporizhia NPP: interview with nuclear safety expert Olga Kosharnaya

The Russian army has deployed artillery pieces and Grad MLRS near the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant in occupied Energodar. The invaders shell the city of Nikopol every day from there. Russians use the ZNPPt in Europe as a “nuclear shield”, realizing that the Armed Forces of Ukraine will not retaliate.

On August 5, the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant was shelled again. As a result, the nitrogen-oxygen station and the combined auxiliary building at the Zaporizhia NPP were seriously damaged.

In addition, in the engine rooms of power units No. 1 and No. 2, the invaders placed military equipment with weapons and explosives. This is the actual mining of power units with two nuclear reactors.

Olga Kosharnaya, an independent expert on nuclear security, spoke about this on the air of the “Ukraine Speaks” marathon on the Dom and UA TV channels.

The expert believes that the Russians prepared for the provocation beforehand:

“Russian representatives of Rosatom were withdrawn from the site of the Zaporizhzhya nuclear power plant before the shelling began. Then, military men in chemical protection suits ran around there.”

She explained what threatens the provocations of the Russian forces on ZNPP:

“On the evening of August 6, IAEA Director General Rafael Grossi released a new statement. He actually says that we are on the verge of a huge nuclear accident. Grossi reiterated in his statement that some of the fundamental safety principles have already been violated at nuclear power plants. In particular, accounting and control of nuclear materials.”

“Station security was violated on March 4. We have many cases of kidnapping of station workers.”

“Ukraine is not the only country, which is on the verge of a radiation catastrophe. I would not talk about nuclear, but radiation is quite possible.”

Olga told how the nuclear power plant works and what is the danger here:

“Zaporizhia thermal station does not work. There is no coal. Even if nuclear units do not produce electricity, they need to be cooled. We need electricity for this. Moreover, if there is no connection to the unified power system, then backup diesel generators must be turned on so that pumps, process control systems, and communications work. And diesel generators have a limited supply of fuel.”

Nuclear safety expert demonstrated her vision of solving all these problems:

“UN peacekeeping forces could help.

Our diplomats should work actively here. They should convene the UN General Assembly so that there is a mandate for “blue helmets” with calls not only to the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant but to all operating nuclear power plants. Therefore, the South Ukrainian NPP in the Mykolaiv region is at risk.”

She described the circumstances in which Ukrainian scientists work at ZNPP:

“They are all in place. Employees of technical departments who work with papers, and office workers are leaving. And those who are involved in the operation of nuclear power plants, operational personnel – they are all in place.

Our employees are hostages there.

What is happening at the Zaporizhia NPP is an unprecedented event in the history of the world’s nuclear energy.

The nuclear power plant was not designed for cruise missiles and military operations.”

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