Stop Ukraine's zombie reactors

Right at Europe’s doorstep, Ukraine is extending the lifetimes of its soviet-era nuclear reactors - ignoring risks, neighbouring countries and international law. This is about nuclear safety in Europe. Find out what you can do.

or find out more first

  • Bankwatch

The problem

Ukraine operates 15 nuclear reactors from the Soviet era and is planning to extend their life by up to 20 years. This year it should decide about 2 reactors - unit 2 at the South Ukraine plant and unit 1 at Zaporizhia. The life-time extensions are done without a proper safety-review, environmental impact assessment and public consultations and without considering sustainable alternatives.

International law (codified in the Espoo convention) obligates Ukraine to consult neighbouring countries and their citizens on the lifetime extensions. Five neighbouring countries have requested information and involvement, but Ukraine’s government is still ignoring them.

The lifetime extensions are perpetuating Ukraine's dependency on Russia: They use Russian technology and nuclear fuel and spent fuel is sent back to Russia.

European public money is paying for upgrades that are necessary for prolonging the reactors' lifetimes. Euratom and the European Bank for Reconstructions and Development have approved loans over EUR 300 million each. They disbursed the first payments without Ukraine meeting their conditions.

We cannot stand by while Ukraine is increasing the danger of a nuclear catastrophe.

or read even more details on the Bankwatch website

The solution

The European loans and the life-time extensions need to be delayed until a proper impact assessments and public participation are completed in compliance with international law.

At the same time the gradual replacement of nuclear energy with more efficient and safer alternatives is needed to increase the safety and security of the whole region and to reduce dependency on Russia.

Help us call for this solution.

What we do (and how you can help)

We push European governments to pressure Ukraine to launch public consultations before each reactor’s life-time extension. We demand that EUROATOM and the EBRD change their approach and stop disbursing public money until international law is respected. When public consultations are launched, we will be actively involved.

You can help by making this case publicly known and by asking your government to put pressure on Ukraine's nuclear industry.

Get involved

We will keep you informed about campaign developments and will invite you to take part in actions within the campaign.