In 1986 the city of Pripyat in Ukraine fell victim to one the world’s worst man-made nuclear disasters due to a massive nuclear meltdown at the Chernobyl power plant. Pripyat was evacuated as radiation particles spread into the atmosphere and contaminated large areas of Northern and Eastern Europe. It took 3 decades and billions of dollars to contain the leak. Unfortunately, the damage is so severe that Chernobyl is now a wasteland, but Ukraine is determined to give Chernobyl a new life.
International investors are giving serious consideration to turning Chernobyl into a 1 gigawatt solar farm. The plan is to install a large amount of solar panels right outside of the exclusion zone. Ukraine believes that the low cost of land and existing high voltage power lines will help attract investors.
The proposed Chernobyl solar farm will produce about one-third of the energy that the nuclear power once plant produced. But the solar farm will help Ukraine become less dependent on natural gas from Russia, and will bring them in step with their European neighbors of using more clean energy.
Image by: JR on Flickr