Turkish nuclear plant dodges disaster
The still under construction 4-reactor nuclear power plant, Akkuyu, in Turkey, dodged disaster this time despite the deadly 7.8 magnitude earthquake on February 7 that has devastated the country and neighboring Syria. According to the International Atomic Energy Agency, they found “no issues so far related to radiological safety & security of radioactive sources, and the country’s under construction nuclear power plant is unaffected”. There are four Russian VVER reactors being built at Akkuyu with the first, until the devastating February 7 earthquake struck, predicted to begin operation some time this year.
However, there was widespread opposition early on to Akkuyu, especially after the devastating earthquakes of 1998 and 1999 in Turkey. In 2000, due to opposition and high costs, the project was canceled. However, it was revived in 2010 under current Turkish president, Recep Erdogan, who made a deal with Rosatom to build the four reactors. In a blog post this week by Greek IPPNW president, Maria Sotiropoulou, we learn the rocky history of the Akkuyu plant and what Erdogan’s real motives might be in persisting with such a reckless project, given his country’s seismic risks. (Headline image shows a model of the 4-reactor Akkuyu site by ( Voice of America/Wikimedia Commons.)
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