Giuseppe Sandro Mela.
La chiatta Admiral Lomonosov ospita una centrale atomica da 70 MW, progettata per poter lavorare a temperature molto rigide, quali quelle artiche. Fornirà energia elettrica alla zona estrattiva di Pevek.
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L’immarcescibile Greenpeace dorme sonni agitati: è tormentata da tutti i più reconditi timori di immani disastri.
Nei fatti, però, ciò che più la rode, è che con questa centrale atomica, usata anche per desalinizzare l’acqua di mare, la Russia potrà aumentare in modo molto significativo la produzione del campo di Pevek che, data la sua ubicazione geografica, sarà in grado di risolvere molti problemi energetici della Cina.
Non solo, così operando la Russia si lega sempre più saldamente alla Cina, formando un blocco politico ed economico euroasiatico destinato a primeggiare nel mondo.
A seaborne nuclear plant has started its journey across the Arctic Circle to supply power to a Siberian town. Russian activists warned the barge could become a “Chernobyl on ice.”
Russia launched the world’s first floating nuclear power plant on Friday for a weekslong journey through the Arctic Circle, despite warnings from environmental groups.
The vessel, Akademik Lomonosov, is a 140-meter (459-foot) float carrying two nuclear reactors capable of providing enough energy for a town of 100,000 people. It is to be towed 4,700 kilometers (2,920 miles) to the town of Pevek in north Siberia.
Once there, the vessel will replace the local, aging nuclear power plant and also supply power to regional oil platforms. Russian nuclear officials said that the Akademik Lomonosov will serve as a key infrastructure element in the Northeast Passage, the route connecting the Atlantic and the Pacific. The route has become more accessible due to climate change.
The platform can also be used to desalinate sea water and turn it into drinking water.
Fears of storm, collision
Russian environmentalists have repeatedly slammed the project, warning it could turn into “Chernobyl on ice” or a “nuclear Titanic.”
Greenpeace representative Rashud Alimov warned that there might be a collision between the platform and the tugs moving it along.
“Any nuclear power plant produces radioactive waste and can have an accident, but Akademik Lomonosov is additionally vulnerable to storms,” he told the AFP news agency.
The ship is loaded with nuclear fuel and would also store spent fuel abroad.
Alimov warned there was “no infrastructure for a nuclear cleanup” in Russia’s far north.
Russia hopes for sales abroad
Officials from Russia’s nuclear agency Rosatom hope to sell similar nuclear floats to foreign countries within the next ten years. Indonesia and Sudan are the most interested in such a purchase, a senior nuclear energy official told the Interfax news agency earlier this month.
The Akademik Lomonosov started development in 2006. It is expected to start supplying energy to Russia’s central system before the end of the year.
Meanwhile, Rosatom is already developing the next generation of floating power plants, which will be smaller and 30% more powerful.