The head of the International Atomic Energy Agency has called for an immediate halt to military action threatening Ukraine’s nuclear facilities following the loss of external power at all the country’s nuclear plants on Wednesday.
This was the first time that all Ukraine’s plants had simultaneously lost external power.
IAEA Director General Rafael Grossi said in a statement on Thursday that external power had been restored to the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant the day after it lost access to off-site electricity.
The statement noted that Ukraine’s national nuclear operator Energoatom was doing everything possible to restore nuclear generation as soon as possible at the country’s three other operational nuclear power plants.
They were disconnected from the power grid on Wednesday after emergency protection was activated due to a decrease in frequency in the power system.
Energoatom said the three facilities had been relying on diesel generators for back-up electricity to cool the reactors while in shutdown mode.
Grossi noted that Ukraine’s nuclear industry had experienced the most extensive loss of off-site power since the conflict began nine months ago. He said this further underlined the need for stepped-up action to protect the plants and prevent the danger of a serious nuclear accident.