Ukraine Promised International Aid to Reprocess Chernobyl Radioactive Waste

KIEV, Ukraine -- Ukraine is to receive $7 million (5.8 million euros) in international aid to construct a facility for reprocessing Chornobyl nuclear waste, the Emergency Situations Ministry said July 22.

The aid was approved during a conference of donor nations in London, attended by Ukraine's Emergency Situations Ministry David Zhvania. Ukraine hopes to complete the facility to reprocess liquid waste within three years.

Chernobyl after nuclear accident in 1986

Plans are also underway to build a storage facility to hold the reprocessed materials. The Chornobyl plant was the site of the world's worst nuclear accident when a reactor exploded in 1986, spewing radiation over much of northern Europe.

The plant's remaining reactors were shut down in 2000 but decommissioning work continues.

On July 22, Ukraine announced the creation of a special committee which will oversee safety as work begins to strengthen the concrete and steel shelter hastily erected over the destroyed No. 4 reactor 19 years ago.

Work is set to begin next week. In May, the West offered more money to this cash-strapped government to help fund a replacement.

Source: AP