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16 Dec 2016

Nuclear power plant to help Belarus fulfill Paris Climate Agreement

MINSK, 16 December (BelTA) – The launch of the nuclear power plant will help Belarus fulfill the goals outlined by the Paris Climate Agreement. The statement was made by Vasily Kovalenko, Deputy Head of the State Environmental Appraisal Office of the Belarusian Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Ministry, during a briefing in BelTA’s press center on 16 December.

The official said: “Belarus joined the Paris Climate Agreement and undertook to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by over 28% by 2030 in comparison with 1990. This is why the development of a low-carbon power engineering industry is becoming a high priority task for the Belarusian economy. There is no doubt that the commissioning of the nuclear power plant will allow accomplishing a number of goals.”

In particular, the amount of natural gas, furnace oil, and coal Belarus burns is supposed to go down. Calculations indicate that Belarus will be able to reduce the annual import of natural gas by 5 billion m3 thanks to the nuclear power plant. Nuclear energy may also help reduce the prime cost of electricity. In turn, it will allow reducing the prime cost of merchandise since electricity costs represent a fair share of production costs.

“The development of the nuclear energy industry will encourage the development of urban electric transport. In turn, air quality will be improved. It is also important to replace boiler plants that burn organic fuel with electric boilers. There is no doubt that all the changes will allow Belarus to reduce the emission of pollutants and greenhouse gases,” said the Deputy Head of the State Environmental Appraisal Office of the Belarusian Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Ministry.

In the course of operation of the nuclear power plant the Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Ministry will pay close attention to monitoring radiation levels near the power plant. “New additional parameters will be examined, for instance, the presence of radioactive isotopes of tritium and carbon-14. Radiation monitoring efforts neglected them in the past. New modern equipment will be bought to make the relevant research possible. The qualifications of the specialists that will do the job will be improved,” explained Vasily Kovalenko.

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