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Chernobyl Is Still a Mess Weeks After Russian Retreat

Worst-case scenarios were averted, but enormous risks remain

(Newser) - Ukrainian workers and state authorities are still recovering from the effects of Russian occupation in Chernobyl, one of the world’s most radioactive places. Even now, weeks after the Russians left, “I need to calm down," the plant’s main security engineer, Valerii Semenov, told the AP . He...

Russian Troops Leave Chernobyl
Russian Troops
Leave Chernobyl

Russian Troops Leave Chernobyl

Ukraine says radiation is to blame, but that has not been verified

(Newser) - Russian troops left the heavily contaminated Chernobyl nuclear site early Friday after returning control to the Ukrainians, authorities said, as eastern parts of the country braced for renewed attacks and Russians blocked another aid mission to the besieged port city of Mariupol. Ukraine’s state power company, Energoatom, said the...

Mission to Take Chernobyl May Have Been 'Suicidal'

Russian soldiers had no protection from radioactive dust, workers say

(Newser) - Russian soldiers' seizure of the Chernobyl nuclear plant in Ukraine may have been "suicidal," according to Ukrainian workers at the site. Two workers on duty during the takeover tell Reuters that Russian vehicles kicked up clouds of radioactive dust as they drove through the Red Forest, a heavily...

Ukraine: Russia Destroyed Lab at Chernobyl

Control of radioactive material samples has been lost, Ukraine says

(Newser) - Russian military forces have destroyed a new laboratory at the Chernobyl nuclear power plant that among other things works to improve management of radioactive waste, the Ukrainian state agency responsible for the Chernobyl exclusion zone said Tuesday. The Russian military seized the decommissioned plant at the beginning of the war....

Inside Chernobyl, Staffers Are on the Brink
Inside Chernobyl,
Staffers Are on the Brink

Inside Chernobyl, Staffers Are on the Brink

Some 210 workers have been held there, working nonstop since late February

(Newser) - Update: Sixty-four of the around 300 people who have, effectively, worked 600-hour shifts at the closed Chernobyl nuclear power plant were allowed to leave Sunday, the Washington Post reports. The 210 or so workers who were on shift when Russian forces took control of the plant three and a half...

UN Nuclear Watchdog Issues Warning on Chernobyl

IAEA says it has lost contact with systems reporting on nuclear material at plant in northern Ukraine

(Newser) - The International Atomic Energy Agency has been keeping tabs on nuclear-linked sites in Ukraine as the war there waged by Russia continues, and recent news is concerning. Per Reuters , the international group that reports to the United Nations on nuclear power and technology worldwide, says it has lost contact with...

Higher Radiation Levels Detected Near Chernobyl

Russia seized control of site Thursday

(Newser) - Ukraine’s nuclear energy regulatory agency on Friday said that higher than usual gamma radiation levels have been detected in the area near the decommissioned Chernobyl nuclear plant, after it was seized by the Russian military . The AP reports the State Nuclear Regulatory Inspectorate attributed the rise to a "...

Russian Attack on Chernobyl Worries Scientists

Ukrainian forces lose control of nuclear disaster site in battle

(Newser) - It was among the most worrying developments on an already shocking day, as Russia invaded Ukraine on Thursday: warfare at the Chernobyl nuclear plant, where radioactivity is still leaking 36 years after history's worst nuclear disaster . Russian forces took control over the site after a fierce battle with Ukrainian...

Ukraine Suggests Chernobyl Should Land on List of Wonders

UNESCO designation could bring in tourists and spread a message of hope

(Newser) - The Great Barrier Reef. The Grand Canyon. The Great Wall of China. The Galapagos Islands. Chernobyl. One of these things is not like the others, but the gap could close if Ukraine gets its way. Monday is the 35th anniversary of the worst nuclear disaster the world has seen: The...

Pilot Who Braved Chernobyl Dies After Contracting COVID

Russia's Nikolai Antoshkin led helicopter mission to try to put out fire

(Newser) - Nikolai Antoshkin survived the Chernobyl nuclear explosion, but it appears he has fallen victim to COVID more than three decades later. The New York Times reports that the 78-year-old, who led helicopter missions to put out the fire at the nuclear plant, has died after contracting the virus last month...

'Bad News' on Radiation as Fire Burns Near Chernobyl

Radiation spikes near the forest fire

(Newser) - Two forest fires were still burning near the Chernobyl nuclear power station as of Sunday night, and radiation levels in the area were said to be substantially higher than normal, the AP reports. "There is bad news—radiation is above normal in the fire’s center," said the...

For This New Tourist Site, You Need a Hazmat Suit

Ukraine makes Chernobyl control room open for short visits

(Newser) - Not every vacation requires you to receive not one but two tests for radiation exposure, but not every vacation involves a visit to the control room at Chernobyl. Officials in Ukraine are now letting tourists make five-minute visits to the room where the infamous meltdown took place in 1986, reports...

Russian Government Backs New Version of Chernobyl

Remake of HBO hit includes a CIA agent at the nuclear plant

(Newser) - In a bit of delayed counterprogramming, a Russian TV network will tell the story of the 1986 Chernobyl nuclear disaster from a different perspective: that of KGB agents trying to unmask a CIA agent doing bad things at the plant. The news comes as the first season's finale of...

Their Ancestors Abandoned at Chernobyl, These Pups Persist
Found Around Chernobyl:
Hundreds of Playful Pups
In Case You Missed It

Found Around Chernobyl: Hundreds of Playful Pups

Dogs' ancestors were abandoned by residents after the nuclear plant meltdown in '86

(Newser) - Tarzan loves to fetch sticks, run after snowballs, and is, per Julie McDowall, "a playful example of global kindness and cooperation." Writing for the Guardian , McDowall explains that Tarzan is one of hundreds of stray dogs living in the 1,000-square-mile exclusion zone surrounding the Chernobyl nuclear plant,...

Rare Cancer in NYC Linked to Chernobyl

Radiation from 1986 meltdown may have caused 10 cases of eye cancer

(Newser) - It was a rare form of eye cancer seen only a few times in the US in the past two decades. So when 10 New Yorkers developed vitreoretinal lymphoma within four years of each other, researchers hunted for a common link. That search led them across the world to the...

Robots and Giant Sliding Dome Are Finally Sealing Chernobyl

The $1.6B arch is taller than the Statue of Liberty

(Newser) - In the aftermath of the world's worst nuclear disaster in Chernobyl in 1986, which resulted in radiation that ultimately reached as far as Japan and the US, the Soviet Union slapped together a massive sarcophagus of metal and concrete as hastily as possible to contain further fallout at the...

Amid Chernobyl's Ruins, One Thing of Value Remains

Sunshine is about the only thing safe to export from the exclusion zone

(Newser) - If anything, the land in the 1,000-square-mile exclusion zone left largely untouched since the Chernobyl disaster of 1986 is cheap. After all, studies suggest it won't be inhabitable until the year 4986, reported McClatchy DC in April, and pretty much nothing can be harvested from it. But now...

German Man Claims 'Fantastical' Find: Nazi Nukes

Peter Lohr warns his alleged find will eventually decay

(Newser) - A Nazi gold train . The Amber Room . Claims of legendary Nazi-era finds have been surfacing of late—and, it's worth noting, not panning out —and Nazi nukes now join that list. In what it describes as a "fantastical" claim, the Local reports retired mechanical engineer and amateur...

Wolves Have Taken Over Chernobyl

Elk, deer, wild boar also enjoying life free from human habitation

(Newser) - What happens when humans abandon 1,600 square miles because of radioactivity? Wildlife runs rampant, apparently. A new study on animals in the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone shows what once looked something like a wasteland is now packed with elk, roe deer, red deer, wild boar, and wolves. Researchers conducted aerial...

Nothing to See Here Except a Fox Making a Giant Sandwich

Radio crew near Chernobyl captured video of animal creating 5-layer delight

(Newser) - A now-under-control forest fire that had threatened to encroach upon the abandoned Chernobyl nuclear plant may have created a lot of smoke and charred debris, but one thing it did not do is mess up one Ukrainian fox's sandwich-making skills. A radio crew in the Pripyat exclusion zone spied...

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