The renewed focus is coming amid a renaissance of the nuclear power industry in Ukraine and in many nations of the world – even, perhaps, in Belarus, which absorbed 70 percent of the radioactive fallout from the accident.
Russia is a leader of the nuclear power revival, providing billion-dollar loans to its impoverished neighbors in a push led by Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin. Rosatom, the state-run nuclear power company, claims 16 percent of the world’s nuclear power construction market.
The government monopoly designed and helped build several plants in China, India and Bulgaria during the 2000s and has announced plans to construct more in India, Slovakia, Turkey, Jordan and Morocco. But many plans are now under review or being suspended in the wake of the disaster at the Fukushima Daiichi nuclear complex in Japan, the March 11 earthquake and tsunami that threatens the plant’s reactors with a radioactive meltdown.