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4 March 2022

How Ukraine is reliant on nuclear power

The country has the third largest number of nuclear reactors in Europe.

By Ben Walker

In the early hours of this morning (4 March) Kyiv time news came of Russian forces shelling the Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant, the largest in Europe, in south-east Ukraine. Fires started, but scientists were quick to reassure the world that no changes in the radiation state had been recorded. After a few hours of fighting the plant was captured by the Russians.

The majority (51 per cent) of Ukraine’s electricity is generated by nuclear energy. The country has the third largest number of nuclear reactors in Europe (15), after France (56) and Russia (37).

Though Russian shelling raised fears a nuclear disaster, modern nuclear reactors are built to withstand heavy impacts, including bombing.

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