The head of Russia’s state-run atomic energy agency, Rosatom, warned on Monday there was a risk of a nuclear accident at Ukraine’s Zaporizhzhia nuclear power plant following renewed shelling over the weekend.
Nearly three weeks ago, Ukraine’s nuclear energy company, Energoatom, warned that the plant was running on back-up diesel generators after being disconnected from the country’s power grid by Russian shelling. At the time, Energoatom warned that Zaporizhzhia only had about 15 days’ worth of fuel to run those generators.
Russian forces took control of the facility in March shortly after invading Ukraine. Before the invasion, Zaporizhzhia had provided about one-fifth of Ukraine’s electricity. It has been forced to operate on back-up generators a number of times since Russian forces took it over.
The United Nations’ International Atomic Energy Agency has called for the creation of a security zone around the plant, something Rosatom’s CEO said would only be possible if it was approved by the United States.