Twenty-five years after Chernobyl became known for the world’s worst nuclear accident, the Secretary General of the United Nations has visited the shut-down plant, saying there are lessons to be learned here. Ukrainian President Viktor Yanukovich showed Ban Ki-moon around.
Ban also referred to the terrible effects of the recent earthquake and tsunami in Japan: “The Fukushima nuclear power accident together with this Chernobyl disaster have given us enough strong messages, and we have learned lessons from these tragedies. We have to strengthen nuclear safety standards both on national and international levels.”
Ban said nuclear safety reviews should also look at protection from terrorist attacks.
Cash-strapped Ukraine has just hosted an international conference marking a quarter of a century since one of Chernobyl’s reactors exploded.
Donors pledged 550 million euros to help build a new containment structure. The total cost is pegged at well over double that. Once Chernobyl gets a steel hood, known as New Safe Confinement, some of the concrete and lead old one, and other contents, will be removed.