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Depositphotos | DNKSTUDIO

© Depositphotos | DNKSTUDIO

Chernobyl’s exclusion zone to be revived with solar

The Ukrainian government has announced plans to use Chernobyl’s nuclear wasteland for solar energy generation.

Meanwhile in Belarus, a 22.3 MW PV plant is already under construction in Brahin district, around 20 miles from Chernobyl.

30 years after the Chernobyl accident, the Ukrainian government aims to give a new renewable life to thousands hectares of the exclusion zone in the northern part of the country. While long-lasting radiation makes the area unfit for human habitation, agriculture or forestry, its cheap land and remaining electric transmission facilities can be used for solar power generation.

“Land and transmission line connection are the most expensive parts of any solar project, and we have both of them here,” general director of the Chernobyl plant Igor Gramotkin told local news outlets in April, when the country was commemorating the 30th anniversary of the nuclear disaster.

At the end of June, Ukraine’s minister of the environment and natural resources Ostap Semerak presented country’s plans for the revival of the exclusion zone at Canada-Ukraine Business Forum in Toronto. After the forum, he announced that a number of Canadian investors are looking at developing solar and biofuel power plants near Chernobyl…

According to the ministry of environmental and natural resources, 34 solar power plants with the total capacity of over 120 MW are scheduled to be completed in Ukraine in 2016. Despite the political and economic difficulties facing the country, Ukraine is aiming to increase the share of renewables in its energy mix up to 11% by 2020, the ministry reports.

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pv magazine | Adilya Zaripova 2016

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