Belarus: Atomic power on the EU’s doorstep
Reportage from Belarus on nuclear power and its geopolitical impact on Europe
A nuclear power plant on the EU’s border with Belarus continues to court controversy due to a number of incidents during its construction and serious concerns raised by neighbouring countries. EURACTIV.com visited the ex-Soviet nation in October to learn more.
On the European Union’s northeastern frontier, two massive cooling towers loom out of the mist near a small Belorussian town. This is the nuclear plant of Ostrovets, Belarus’s first foray into atomic power and a source of national pride for the former Soviet country.
Construction has been ongoing at the site for five years and the first of two reactors is scheduled to come online in mid-2019. Both cooling towers are all but finished and the two reactor buildings and turbine halls have taken shape.
But the project is controversial. Located just 16km from the Lithuanian border and only 45km from the capital of Vilnius, the plant has been opposed from the very beginning by the Baltic neighbour, which has raised its objections at the highest level.