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SAUEZM together with Ukrainian and foreign scientists is working on the Concept of water facilities management in the context of reorganization of activities in the exclusion zone

A working online meeting was held at the State Agency of Ukraine on Exclusion Zone Management to discuss the Concept of water facilities management in the context of reorganization of activities in the exclusion zone. The event was attended by representatives and scientists of the Chornobyl Radiation and Ecological Biosphere Reserve, the State Specialized Enterprise «Ecocenter», the Ukrainian Hydrometeorological Institute, the Institute of Geological Sciences of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, State Natural History Museum of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, the University of Portsmouth and Fukushima University.

«Modern challenges to ensure the safety of the exclusion zone in the current radiation situation, climate change, the development of the Chornobyl Radiation and Ecological Biosphere Reserve and the creation of a special industrial use area require new evidence-based approaches to water management decisions. Therefore, the Agency is interested in the work of scientists on the new Concept of water facilities management», – said Sergii Kalashnyk, Head of the State Agency of Ukraine on Exclusion Zone Management.

Today, protection activities in the exclusion zone are carried out according to the rules set out in the 1993 document – «Scheme of water protection measures against radioactive contamination of surface and groundwater in the exclusion zone of the Chornobyl nuclear power plant. Ukrvodproekt». This document needs to be replaced, as the condition of water protection structures and pollution levels of water facilities and territories has changed. If earlier the Scheme provided for the reduction of the flooded area by groundwaters, today the process of watering the territory of peatlands in order to prevent large-scale fires is of current concern.

In the spring of 2019, SSE «Ecocenter» together with the «Center for Monitoring Research and Environmental Technologies» on the recommendation of the SAUEZM decided to develop a new Concept, which was supported by the University of Portsmouth within the iCLEAR project. The main idea of the Concept is to optimize the management of water facilities of the exclusion zone (clarification of objectives, revision of regulations for maintenance of hydraulic facilities and monitoring, development of a monitoring system) with an emphasis on modern tasks to be solved in the exclusion zone. According to scientists, the document is a timely response to the needs of water protection practices.

During the meeting it was proposed to finalize the Concept taking into account the comments and remarks of stakeholders. Work on the Concept is now at the final stage.

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