One of the greatest industrial disasters ever recorded is the one that happened in Ukraine in 26 April 1986. Considered as the worst nuclear power plant catastrophe in history, the Chernobyl accident was due to a flawed reactor design paired with inadequately trained personnel. It shook the world having alarming casualties. But can you imagine this place to be the world’s largest solar power plant?
But fast forward to 2016, the Chernobyl nuclear wasteland may finally be put to good use. Plans by the Ukrainian government to put up the world’s largest solar power plants are being ironed out. The proposal is a 1GW solar power plant, if built today, will be the largest in the world. There are developing 1GW power plants underway in Egypt, India, UAE and China but none are yet finished.
Part of the proposal is to finish the entire project in merely six months of construction cycle. This can be done, considering that the transmission lines for Chernobyl’s 4GW nuclear reactor are still in place.
Ukraine’s government minister Ostap Semerak shared, “The Chernobyl site has really good potential for renewable energy. We already have high-voltage transmission lines that were previously used for the nuclear stations, the land is very cheap and we have many people trained to work at power plants. We have normal European priorities, which means having the best standards with the environment and clean energy ambitions.”
It’s quite an irony that the location of the worst industrial accidents will now be the home of the possible solar power plant, which is a clean energy technology.