Ukraine war: where is the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant?

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There are fears that a large explosion at the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant could trigger a crisis larger than the Chernobyl disaster in 1986



<p>The Zaporizhia nuclear power plant has been under Russian control since March 2022, with the country using the facility as a base for operations in Ukraine.  (Image credit: Getty Images)</p><div data-ad-id=
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The Zaporizhia nuclear power plant has been under Russian control since March 2022, and the country uses the facility as a base for operations in Ukraine. (Image credit: Getty Images)

Ukraine has said that Russian forces shut down the nuclear power plant in the city of Zaporizhia.

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The building has been under military control since March 12, 2022, with the Ukrainian nuclear power company now saying that Russia is using the building as a base for attacks in the region.

It comes after Russian and Ukrainian forces were accused of shelling the site, amid fears damage to the nuclear power plant could spark a bigger crisis than the Chernobyl disaster in 1986.

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A Russian attack has also taken place in the town of Nikopol, across the Dnipro River from the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant, wounding three Ukrainian civilians and 23 others in a 24-hour period.

Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskyy has called for tougher sanctions against Russia to prevent a nuclear disaster, while the Kremlin has blamed Ukraine for attacks on the compound.

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Here you will find everything you need to know about the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant.

Where is the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant located?

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The nuclear power plant is located in the city of Zaporizhzhia in the oblast region of southern Ukraine.

It was built on the outskirts of the city, about 77 miles from the center of Zaporizhia.

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The Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant is located on the banks of the Dnipro River – on the banks of the Kakhovka reservoir.

The Zaporizhia nuclear power plant is located in southern Ukraine. (Credit: Mark Hall/Mazic News)

The town of Nikopol is just across the river.

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The plant is still operational, with Ukrainian personnel working under the control of Russia’s nuclear power company Rosatom.

What is the blast radius of the Zaporizhia nuclear power plant?

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The power plant is the largest nuclear power plant in Ukraine and the tenth largest in the world.

Zaporizhia has six nuclear reactors, compared to Chernobyl’s four reactors, and disaster is expected if these reactors are damaged.

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Nuclear experts predict that a disaster in Zaporizhia could be ten times larger than the 1986 Chernobyl disaster.

How dangerous is the situation?

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In his late-night address to Ukrainians, Zelenskyy claimed that Russia was shelling the plant as “blackmail” against Ukraine.

He said: “We are actively informing the world about Russian nuclear blackmail – about the shelling and mining of the Zaporizhia NPP facilities.

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“Russia will pay no heed to words and concerns… The Chernobyl disaster is an explosion in a reactor; The Zaporizhzhia NPP consists of six power plants.

“There is no such nation in the world that could feel safe when a terrorist state fires on a nuclear power plant.”

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Ukraine has refuted claims that it attacked the power plant, with Ptero Kotin of Ukraine’s Energhoatom nuclear power plant saying: “You [Russian forces] Use it like a shield against Ukrainian forces because nobody from Ukraine will do anything.

“The Ukrainian Armed Forces know that these are Ukrainian personnel and this is a Ukrainian plant and there are Ukrainian people, so we will not kill our people and our employees and damage our infrastructure.”

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United Nations Secretary-General Antonia Guterres called Russia’s alleged treatment of the site “nuclear terrorism.”

However, Russia has also denied claims that forces are targeting the power plant.

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