/ / News

Economic reasons behind Lithuania’s negative interest in Belarusian nuclear station

MINSK, 29 April (BelTA) – The negative interest of Lithuania in the construction of a nuclear power plant in Belarus is caused by purely economic reasons. The opinion was voiced by Professor Yakov Kenigsberg, Head of the Radiation Safety Lab of the National Hygiene Research Center, Chairman of the Radiation Protection Commission under the Council of Ministers of Belarus, during the online conference hosted by the BelTA website on 26 April.

“Lithuania takes a live interest in the construction of the power plant in Ostrovets but the interest is negative, frankly speaking. It is not caused by the power plant being 22km away from the Lithuanian border,” remarked Yakov Kenigsberg. “It is purely an economic issue”.

Lithuania wanted to build a nuclear power plant together with other countries. A consortium of Poland and the three Baltic states was supposed to do it. But Poland quit on the idea, saying it will build a nuclear power plant on its own. “The Lithuanians don’t have the money for it, therefore, all the projects are nothing but paper, they are late. When the Baltic nuclear power plant in Kaliningrad Oblast goes online and a similar Belarusian nuclear power plant does the same, the region will have ample supplies of electricity,” stated the expert.

As far as the proximity to the border is concerned, some nuclear power plants are built exactly on the border, for instance, in Switzerland, Germany, and France. And no questions are asked over there. The IAEA requires building a nuclear power plant away from large cities. If a city is home to over 2 million people, the power plant has to be about 100km away from it. If a town is home to over 200,000 people, then the distance should be at least 30-50km. The distance between Ostrovets and Vilnius where over 550,000 people live is 50km. So there are no problems, everything meets the requirements, concluded Yakov Kenigsberg.

He also reminded that the Ostrovets site had been fully explored and meets all the IAEA requirements. In line with all the documents the reliability of the nuclear power plant site in Belarus meets all the IAEA requirements, he stressed.