World Russia: Floating nuclear power plant starts up despite criticism

Russia: Floating nuclear power plant starts up despite criticism

The first floating nuclear power plant (nuclear power plant) in Russia’s Far East has fully started operating after recent reviews. “Today we can consider the project to build a floating nuclear power plant to be successfully completed,” said the Russian state-owned nuclear company Rosatom. The “Akademik Lomonossow”, which is anchored near the city of Pewek on the Arctic Ocean, is now officially the “northernmost nuclear power plant in the world”. The operators had already started generating electricity at the end of 2019.

The nuclear power plant is very controversial among environmentalists. They criticize the facility because of possible security risks as “floating Chernobyl” and “Atom-Titanic”. It is not possible to fully protect the power plant in the Arctic Ocean from external threats.

An entire fleet is planned

The floating nuclear power plant weighs 21,000 tons, is 144 meters long and 30 meters wide. It consists of two 35-megawatt reactors, which require around 70 workers to operate. Rosatom boss Alexei Lichachev spoke last year of a “turning point for the development of small modular nuclear power plants”.

Unlike Germany, Russia is increasingly focusing on nuclear energy and wants to sell the floating nuclear power plants, which look like normal ships, to other countries. The country wants to build a whole fleet of floating nuclear power plants in the future. According to Rosatom, the “Akademik Lomonossow” can supply the remote region with electricity in the next 40 years.

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