© 2017 SE NNEGC Energoatom

All rights reserved


Natalia Shumkova,
Chief Operating Officer for Nuclear and Radiation Safety, Research and Technology, SE NNEGC Energoatom

Now nuclear power sector is rightfully at the forefront of the world’s energy market as it has the most environmentally and climatically friendly production of the basic energy. SE NNEGC Energoatom takes every effort to ensure that the power generation from the atom in Ukraine harms neither human beings nor the environment.

Safe production of clean electricity is the Company’s priority.

As in previous years, SE NNEGC Energoatom ensured the sustainable and safe operation of Ukraine's nuclear power plants in 2016 by complying with European and national environmental legislation. We met all the requirements of the EU environmental protection directives and complied with international environmental safety standards. There were no accidents involving the radiation contamination of the environment or higher radiation exposure of the Company's personnel. This is evidence of the high safety culture at Ukrainian NPPs and strict compliance with national nuclear power laws and international safety standards.

Nuclear power plants are the largest sources of low-carbon electricity in Ukraine, capable of operating around the clock, regardless of weather conditions. By preventing high greenhouse gases emissions, the energy production at NPPs helps Ukraine meet its international commitments to combatting climate change.

Nuclear power generation sector is not only the backbone of Ukrainian electric power industry, but also a completely environmentally friendly industry as the high safety standards are met.


Today, indispensable conditions for sustainable business development worldwide are efforts to reduce the negative environmental footprint, to use natural resources prudently and create comfortable conditions for human life. As Ukraine’s largest electricity producer, Energoatom places the environmental safety, environmental protection, health of employees and the public as its top priorities.

Nuclear power generation involves radiation, chemical and physical footprint on the environment. Therefore, Energoatom invests heavily in the upgrade of power units, uses natural resources in a prudent way and complies with international waste management protocols currently in force. Striving to instil the environmental culture and the safety culture in every employee, the Company allocates money to the environmental education of the workforce and holds regular dedicated training sessions.

Annually, Energoatom develops and puts in place a number of environmental initiatives aimed at reducing the negative impact of the nuclear power production processes on the environment, minimising the residual effects of the impact by NPPs, such as air pollution and impact on surface waters.

A growth in the nuclear power’s share in Ukrainian energy market to almost 60% in 2016 proves the reliability and irreplaceability of the sector for Ukraine. Despite the transparency in the Company’s operations and ongoing communications with the media, there are still public concerns about possible radiation and non-radiation impacts of the nuclear power on the environment. These fears arose after the accidents at Chernobyl NPP and Fukushima NPP, which built a series of persistent stereotypes. Nuclear power industry has changed tremendously over the past thirty years since the Chernobyl disaster. Today, this sector features a fully modernised production in line with international safety protocols and minimises impacts on the environment and human health.

Energoatom's mission is to produce eco-friendly electric and thermal power in a safe and stable way.

Human safety and environmental protection lie at the core of Energoatom's operations.

Energoatom implements the Complex (Consolidated) Safety Upgrade Programme of Power Units of Ukrainian NPPs, thus reducing the emergency risks and minimising the radiation impact on the environment significantly.


Energoatom applies the principles of European environmental laws, international standards and EU Directives on the ecology.

Environmental activities at Energoatom’s NPPs comply with Ukrainian environmental laws.

Environmental protection and lower ecological footprint are priority objectives for Energoatom, the operator of Ukrainian nuclear power plants. Environmental protection at the Company's nuclear power plants meets the requirements of the current environmental legislation of Ukraine.

Energoatom’s key environmental goals and objectives

Goals (objectives)

Ways to achievement

Expected outcomes


Improve environmental activities

Developing and implementing Energoatom’s Environmental Protection Programme

Improved environmental safety and reduced impact of non-radiation factors on the environment — achieved through measures outlined in the Programme


Prevent environmental pollution

Conducting chemical monitoring of the environment

Conducting internal environmental audits

Environmental management by the Company’s employees

Compliance with the maximum allowable limits of emissions and discharges of pollutants

Non-exceedance of pollution standards

No cases of non-compliance during environmental audits


Provide regulatory and methodological support to environmental activities

Developing regulatory, technical and guidance documents

A harmonised regulatory and methodological base in place for environmental protection — achieved through the development and review of the regulatory documents


Introduce eco-friendly technologies

Ongoing replacement of equipment (if out of service or life cycle ended) containing hazardous substances

A reduced build-up of certain types of hazardous waste (for example, luminescent lamps) by 10% annually during 2017-2019


Raise environmental qualifications and awareness of employees

Organising environmental training sessions and briefings for the Company’s employees

Placing visual propaganda about compliance with environmental approaches in the Company’s premises and information systems

Awareness of the Company's personnel about the adopted environmental approaches


In its operations, Energoatom applies the Environmental Policy, which seeks to preserve natural ecosystems in the vicinity of the Company's facilities, reduce the negative environmental footprint, ensure prudent natural resource management and environmental safety in general in the course of its sustainable operations.

The Company implements its Environmental Policy by developing and implementing relevant environmental measures that lie at the heart of the Company's Environmental Protection Programme, as well as by taking into account the environmental aspects identified and evaluated from time to time to control the extent of environmental impact during operation of Energoatom’s facilities.

There have been no above-limit emissions or discharges throughout operations of Ukrainian NPPs.

Key principles of Energoatom’s Environmental Policy


Effective environmental management

Environmental culture

Openness and transparency in decision-making

Balance of economic, environment and social interests

Best advanced technologies

Prevention principle

Open and reliable information provided to the public about the state of the environment in the areas of NPPs.

Our environmental safety management system consists of the following units:

  • Environmental Unit in Energoatom’s head office; the Unit coordinates overall environmental activities of the Company;
  • environmental services at our NPPs that are responsible for the protection of water resources and air, monitor safety approaches in waste treatment, conduct environmental audits, plan environmental activities and draft reports;
  • environmental and chemical laboratories operating as part of the environmental services; the labs control the state of water resources (ground waters, surface waters and underground waters), air and soil by testing samples.

In 2016, the environmental safety control over the use of nuclear power sector’s resources and technologies found a high level of safety at domestic nuclear power plants that met the requirements of national legislation, international recommendations and global practices.

In 2016, the performance of the environmental management system showed that operation of NPPs in Ukraine did not cause any changes that might affect the environment in the regions of the plants’ presence.


Energoatom continuously improves the environmental management system in accordance with ISO 1400161 ISO 14001 is an international standard focusing on environmental management system to make organisation’s environmental activities systemic and effective. .

Every year the Company undergoes ISO conformity assessment procedures carried out by TÜV Nord Cert.

In December 2016, Energoatom was Ukraine’s first energy company to receive three international conformity certificates at once: ISO 900162 ISO 9001 is an international quality management standard. , ISO 14001 and OHSAS 1800063 OHSAS 18001 is an international occupational health and safety management standard.


To ensure the safe operation of the nuclear power industry, protect Energoatom’s employees, the public and territories against possible consequences of accidents (emergencies), the Company employs an emergency response system (ERS) that meets the requirements of Ukrainian laws and international standards.

In accordance with the basic requirements of ISO 9001 and ISO 14001 for emergency management and emergency preparedness, the Company ensures emergency preparedness and response by:

  • responding to real accidents and emergencies and preventing (reducing) associated adverse environmental impacts;
  • analysing and reviewing emergency preparedness and response procedures if necessary;
  • developing, implementing and maintaining the effectiveness of procedures to identify and respond to possible emergencies and accidents involving environmental impact.

In case of a nuclear or radiation accident, the Company has established interaction with a government authority responsible for the nuclear energy use, a special authorised central executive authority for civil protection, a national regulatory authority of nuclear and radiation safety, and other central government agencies to ensure overall coordination and openness of ERS measures. This interaction takes the form of information exchange and participation of representatives of these agencies in Energoatom’s Emergency Commission.

A five-strong 24/7 nuclear monitoring group has been set up as part of Emergency and Technical Centre to improve the Company's emergency preparedness system with due regard to recommendations of the State Nuclear Regulatory Inspectorate of Ukraine as to the enhancement of emergency preparedness and crisis response and the additional monitoring of nuclear facilities. This move is in line with Energoatom’s Order No. 989 dd. 22 November 2011.

Main functions of the nuclear facility monitoring include:

Interacting (information exchange) with government authorities and other organisations responsible for decision-making, introducing and implementing emergency response plans at nuclear facilities

Ensuring ongoing availability of equipment and communication systems designed for crises and emergency response, their testing and verifying, streamlining communications with foreign partners that are established in accordance with international conventions and treaties

Ongoing monitoring of the power unit parameters to identify critical safety functions, complying with the limits and requirements for the safe operation of reactor plants, ensuring the availability status of safety system channels

Participating in emergency drills and training by using all communication systems, equipment, personnel and procedures administered by this monitoring group

Providing information support to supervision agencies and relevant government authorities about the operation of equipment which is key to the safety at NPPs, about regulated parameters and conditions

Maintaining a computerised database of crisis centres in Ukraine and other countries.


Normal operations of nuclear power plants generate practically no radioactive pollution, not to mention chemicals. The harmful effect (from physical, chemical, radiation, biological factors) of nuclear power plants is significantly less than that of other companies in energy, mining and metals, and chemicals industries. For example, thermal power generation has higher radioactivity (because of natural radioactive elements, uranium, thorium, potassium and their descendants, contained in coal) and emissions of non-radioactive substances.

The state of the environment in the areas where nuclear power plants are located is controlled by a ramified environmental monitoring system. The environmental footprint monitoring system includes control over radioactive and non-radioactive factors across the entire supervised area, which is 30 km around every NPP.

Over 200 highly qualified environmental specialists from the radiation safety departments, hydrotechnical shops, supervision services, environmental protection services and chemical shops control the state of ground, surface and waste water, soil, mulls and air. They conduct internal audits, inspect nuclear power plants to check compliance with the environmental laws and monitor the safety level during treatment of waste (including RAW) generated by NPPs.

The Company’s NPPs employ ARSMS, a state-of-the-art and Ukraine’s biggest automated radiation situation monitoring system that allows online and efficient monitoring of the state of the environment both onsite and in the supervised are (30 km around NPPs) at more than 61 stations. The monitoring results are available on the official websites of NPPs and the Company.

Realising the importance of controls over the environmental impact exerted by nuclear power plants’ operations, Energoatom carries out an environmental impact assessment (EIA).

In 2015, we carried out the environmental impact assessment at Zaporizhzhya and South-Ukraine NPPs. In 2011, the Complex (Consolidated) Safety Upgrade Programme of Power Units of Ukrainian NPPs underwent the first environmental assessment, a move that was essentially similar to a strategic environmental assessment. The Company adopted the best international practices, embraced advanced approaches and applied European environmental norms during the completion and commissioning of power units No. 2 at Khmelnytska NPP and No. 4 at Rivne NPP, as well as in the design of the Central Spent Fuel Storage Facility.

According to the assessment findings, the operation of the power units is environmentally, economically and socially feasible and will not lead to higher negative impact on the environment and public health in Ukraine and other countries in the future. Planned measures to enhance the safety of power units, including environmental mitigation measures, seek to reduce existing risks of environmental impact and observe laws on the environmental protection, sustainable use and renewal of natural resources, and environmental safety.

Monitoring results are recorded in statistics of Energoatom and the government and are regularly published in media to raise public awareness of the state of the environment around NPPs.

Radiation monitoring at NPPs includes::

  • Control of radioactive emissions and water discharges into the environment
  • Control of radioactive substances in natural environments
  • Control of equivalent and cumulative annual radiation doses of employees and the public in areas where NPPs are located.

Key EIA findings at Zaporizhzhya NPP and South-Ukraine NPP:

Zaporizhzhya NPP

South-Ukraine NPP

The construction of power units at Zaporizhzhya NPP in the past already caused irreversible changes in local landscapes, surface waters, ground waters, soil, vegetation, etc. During the operation of the nuclear power plant, changes in the environmental impact related to the completion and commissioning of a dry SF storage facility. No other irreversible changes have been recorded.

The construction of power units at South-Ukraine NPP has resulted in changes in local landscapes, surface waters, ground waters, soil, vegetation, etc. During the operation of the nuclear power plant, changes in the environmental impact related to the completion, commissioning and development of Tashlyk Hydroelectric Pumped Storage Power Plant and Olexandrivske Reservoir. No other irreversible changes have been recorded.

The current state of the environment, in particular the climate, adjacent landscapes, flora, fauna, and geological system, does not fundamentally differ from the situation that was in place before the construction of power units. We expect no other irreversible NPP-related changes in the environment.

The current state of the environment, in particular the climate, adjacent landscapes, flora, fauna and geological system, does not fundamentally differ from the situation that was in place before the construction of power units. We expect no other irreversible changes related to scheduled measured to extend the life cycle of power units.

If the scheduled measures are withheld, significant irreversible environmental changes may take place because of the need to decommission power units and shut down the plant. The nature and scope of these changes will be established according to a strategy for mothballing or liquidation of infrastructure at the production site.

Now environmental components are in a stable condition in the supervised areas at Zaporizhzhya NPP and South-Ukraine NPP. There are no abnormal impacts of power units and associated infrastructure. The assessment findings about particular environment components are as follows.

Microclimate. Present-day researches cannot isolate from climate changes near Zaporizhzhya NPP and South-Ukraine NPP from the global climate change trends.

Air. Air pollution outside buffer zones at Zaporizhzhya NPP and South-Ukraine NPP does not exceed the allowable national and international sanitary, ecological and radiation limits in none of the monitored parameters.

Geological system. system. The latest tectonics, geodynamic and seismic factors make no complications for further operations of the NPP.

Geological system. Historical and existing impacts relate to exogenous geological processes that appear in the area of impact of Tashlyk water reservoir and Olexandrivske Reservoir. The impacts are partly activated when the reservoir levels are elevated. We expect that these processes will reach a dynamic equilibrium and their negative impact on the reservoirs and hydroelectric units at Tashlyk Hydroelectric Pumped Storage Power Plant and Olexandrivska Hydro Power Plant will be insignificant. The latest tectonics, geodynamic and seismic factors make no complications for further operations of the NPP.

Water resources. It is regularly exposed to thermal, chemical and radiation impacts which do not exceed the allowable national and international sanitary, ecological and radiation limits in none of the monitored parameters. Changes in runoffs and levels of surface water and ground water, which are caused by the operation of Zaporizhzhya NPP and South-Ukraine NPP, do not make complications that may require intervention.

Soil. Chemical and radiation contamination of soils does not exceed the limits set by national and international standards. Current operations do not require additional land to be allocated. We expect no impact on agricultural and ecological characteristics of the territories and thus no changes.

Flora and fauna, natural assets and nature reserve areas. The NPP-related impact on flora and fauna has stabilised. According to monitoring observations, the content of radionuclides in vegetation is much lower than established limits. We expect no degradation in the vegetation and faunal groups.

Flora and fauna, natural assets and nature reserve areas. The area where South-Ukraine Energy Complex is located and the adjacent land have unique floristic and landscape features, which were a pre-condition to create the Buzky Hard National Park. The impact associated with operations of Hydroelectric Pumped Storage Power Plant, Olexandrivske Reservoir, Hydroelectric Power Plant and Tashlyk Reservoir has now stabilised. We expect that additional impacts will not be significant after the extension of NPP’s operations.

During operations of Zaporizhzhya NPP, there has been no significant radiation impact on the environment, where the impact may be related to the NPP operations. Radiation exposure of employees and the public is much lower than the levels allowed by the applicable laws. The gamma dose rates do not differ from the natural radioactivity background. Radioactive contamination of soils is down to natural radionuclides. Pollution of waters, atmospheric precipitations, vegetation and other components of the environment is not a result of nuclear power plant emissions that may need to be addressed.

During operations of South-Ukraine NPP, there has been no significant radiation impact on the environment, where the impact may be related to operations of the plant. Reported in 1986-1992, abnormal radiation indicators were a consequence of the Chernobyl fallouts carried by air. Radiation exposure of employees and the public is much lower than the levels allowed by the applicable laws. The gamma dose rates do not differ from the natural radioactivity background. Radioactive contamination of soils is down to natural radionuclides, primarily radiopotassium. Pollution of waters, atmospheric precipitations, vegetation and other components of the environment is not a result of nuclear power plant emissions that may need to be addressed.

Non-radiation impact factors. The scope and effects of chemical and physical (thermal) pollution are insignificant for the environment and the public, meet the approved standards, do not exceed the current maximum allowable sanitary and environmental limits, and do not cause additional impacts outside the buffer zone.

The likely consequences of potential design-basis accidents, beyond design-basis accidents and simulated events where the impact of accidental radioactive releases on the environment and the public was assessed demonstrate that current regulations will not be violated outside the buffer zone in any emergency scenario. We rule out any transboundary impacts that may relate to operations of Zaporizhzhya NPP and South-Ukraine NPP and can potentially require a response.

Environmental and chemical laboratories at NPPs monitor the environmental impact of non-radiation factors. The labs control sources of pollutions, manage the performance of gas purification facilities, take chemical and biological control of sources of pollution discharges into water bodies, manage the performance of wastewater and storm water treatment plants, control the state of soil on waste disposal sites, in buffer zones and supervised areas.

At nuclear power plants, an environmental control and management policy is in place. It seeks to introduce a system of integrated environmental monitoring of all factors and sources of all impacts relating to operation of power units and other components of the energy complex. In addition, NPPs plan and implement protection, recovery and compensatory measures aimed at mitigating environmental impacts, as well as resource-saving and energysaving measures. Moreover, NPPs have a waste management system in place. Further treatment of liquid and solid radioactive waste and spent fuel requires centralised solutions and depends on a strategic public policy in this matter.

Radiation parameters of Ukrainian NPPs do not exceed regulated limits. Nuclear power plants take sufficient efforts to ensure radiation safety of employees and the population.


Energoatom implements annually a number of environmental measures that minimise the environmental impact of the Company's production operations. These measures include:

  • purification of return water;
  • waste management, including low-level waste treatment, garbage composting and disposal;
  • protection and reclamation of land, ground water, surface water, reduction of noise and thermal pollution;
  • conservation of biodiversity;
  • protection and climate change measures.

NPPs take these actions as part of the Complex (Consolidated) Safety Upgrade Program of Power Units of Ukrainian NPPs and other initiatives.

Energoatom environmental expenses, 2014-2016, million UAH

Environmental expenses




Current expenses




Capital investments








Energoatom invests heavily in environmental activities focused on energy-efficient and eco-friendly technologies.

In addition, the Company pays an annual environmental impact tax, which amounted to almost UAH 1 billion in 2016 (including nearly UAH 800 million in a RAW generation and storage tax).

Energoatom environmental impact tax, 2014-2016, million UAH








Energoatom strives to use energy and other resources in a sustainable way. In 2013-2016, the Company had a dedicated programme in place focused on efficiency improvement at NPPs. Moreover, the 2017-2020 Complex (Consolidated) Safety Upgrade Program of Power Units of Ukrainian NPPs covers energy efficiency measures and efforts to reduce consumption of electricity, water and other resources in production processes.

Key energy efficiency and resource conservation measures as part of the Programme include:

Increasing the reliability of electrical equipment

Replacing measuring equipment and electric energy metering devices

Upgrading lighting systems, replacing filament lamps with energy-efficient bulbs until 2020

Improving water treatment technologies to improve the water quality, reduce water consumption and mitigate the environmental impact, and other measures.

Energy efficiency measures are also implemented annually as part of NPPs’ preparations for the autumn and winter period (repairs of heating systems, buildings and facilities, preparation of major electrical equipment).

Energy saving measures at Energoatom’s nuclear power plants are taken systematically as part of efforts to improve the energy efficiency management system in line with national and international standards.

Energoatom will continue implementing the energy efficiency programme in 2017 and in the future. Among the Company's main priorities are reduction in the consumption of energy resources, development and harmonisation of integrated management system of the Company and its subdivisions with international standards (ISO 50001:2011). For more details about this, please see our next reports.


Operations of nuclear power plants have no significant impact on the air. The main sources of air pollution are auxiliary facilities: start-up standby boiler houses, diesel generators, mobile transport, water supply and sewage water facilities, construction management enterprises, etc.

Ukrainian NPPs’ actions of air protection from chemicals released by stationary and mobile sources of nuclear power plants are in line with the laws of Ukraine On the Environmental Protection and On Air Protection, resolutions of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, orders of environmental authorities, industry-specific regulations and technical documents.

Energoatom takes air monitoring efforts in accordance with the regulations, instructions and schedules developed in compliance with the environmental legislation of Ukraine. NPPs take inventory of stationary and mobile sources of chemical air pollutants, obtain emissions permits, make primary records of pollutants and report to national statistical authorities.

Energoatom air emissions, 2014-2016, tonnes

Gross NOx emissions, tonnes

Gross SOx emissions, tonnes

Gross particulate emissions, tonnes

Gross СО emissions, tonnes

Gross emissions of nonmethane volatile organic compounds, tonnes

Total air emissions






































In production, nuclear power plants use great volumes of ground and surface waters in accordance with special water use permits. Treated and used waters are discharged according to the discharge limits approved by environmental authorities. Permits are granted with due account of the ecological footprint on water bodies by other industrial enterprises located in areas adjoining NPPs.

Nuclear power plants contribute to the chemical contamination of water basins by discharging blowdown waters from cooling ponds, as well as industrial and storm waters from production sites and territories of NPPs’ satellite localities. However, their impact is insignificant.

Water monitoring is carried out in accordance with the results of the inventory of the chemical pollution sources, primary records of discharged volumes, their quality and composition of pollutants.

Ukrainian NPPs protect water resources from chemical pollution in accordance with the Law of Ukraine On the Environmental Protection, the Water Code of Ukraine, resolutions of the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine, orders of environmental authorities, industry-specific regulations and technical documents.

Energoatom use of potable and service water, 2014-2016, thousand m3


Water source

thousand m3




Zaporizhzhya NPP

Artesian water




TPP's channel (Dnipro River)




Rivne NPP

Water well in Ostriv village




Styr River




South-Ukraine NPP

Tap water




Southern Buh River




Khmelnytska NPP

Artesian water




Hnyly Rih River, Horyn River





Potable water




Service water





* - total volume taken from natural sources, including water losses during transportation to satellite localities (which losses are attributed to NPPs' expenses) and water volumes used for NPPs' auxiliary facilities

** - used directly on production sites of NPPs

+ - total volumes taken from artesian water wells

Water use by Energoatom NPPs, 2014-2016, thousand m3

When cooling nuclear steam condensers, most Energoatom’s NPPs (three of four) use water from cooling reservoirs specially designed for these purposes. These are not classified as natural and are regarded as technical facilities.

NPPs have a thermal effect on the environment by discharging hot water from the condensers into the cooling reservoirs. The water mineralisation increases because of the fumes, a fact that negatively affects the performance of the heat exchanging equipment at nuclear power plants. To maintain water mineralisation at a proper level, NPPs regularly blow down water from cooling reservoirs into surface water bodies (rivers, water storage reservoirs).


The Company's environmental policy is aimed among other things at preventing pollution of the land resources in areas where NPPs are located. Energoatom’s specialists place focus on prevention of surface contamination with any waste, on reduction of the negative environmental impact of certain substances that are used or built up in the nuclear and thermal energy production at NPPs, and on development of effective technical means and organisational mechanisms to prevent and eliminate negative environmental consequences of accidents and disasters at power sector facilities.

The state of soil is inspected by the ecological and chemical laboratories, which also control the chemical composition of the soil in the area where industrial non-radioactive waste is released from the plant.

The external radiation monitoring laboratories monitor the radiation impact on the environment. The control is based on 25 indicators. Monitoring covers residential settlements in the 30-kilometer supervised area around each nuclear power plant. Tests are made for agricultural products, soil, fir needles, vegetation, river waters, bottom sediments, algae, fish, and potable water. In 2016, no significant negative impact of nuclear power plants on the environment was recorded.

It should be noted that Rivne NPP is participating in land recovery and reclamation projects developed in accordance with the instructions of the European Union.

One of the aspects of Energoatom's cooperation with government authorities and local self-governments focuses on land reclamation in NPPs’ supervised areas and on assistance to local communities in increasing the soil productivity. Such assistance involves provision of ameliorants to communities to increase the land yield. The ameliorant, lime sludge, is built up in the process of river water cleaning (a part of NPPs’ production operations) and contains 75-78% of active calcium. This helps local communities improve the quality of soils by reducing their acidity. In addition, this ameliorant contains a great number of trace elements useful for vegetation, making the yield increase very quickly, during the first year of use. As part of the EC initiative of land reclamation, the Company shipped 6,300 tonnes of the ameliorant to farms in Volodymyrets and Manevichi districts in June 2016. The use of this ameliorant boosts the grain yield significantly, making the chemical melioration possible at any time of the year.

Soil inspection in 2016 and in previous years proved that Energoatom’s NPPs cause no harm to natural resources, in particular to soil in areas where they are located.

Energoatom, in particular Rivne NPP, is a participant of the European Commission Programme “Development of agricultural activities by supporting regional programs of soil amendment and outreach activities among population” and the National Programme for Support to National Development Policy of Ukraine.


Consistent implementation of the Company's environmental policy has helped decrease waste generation, including RAW, over the recent years.

Waste management at Energoatom NPPs, 2014-2016

Non-radioactive waste generated by Energoatom, 2014-2016, tonnes

Radioactive waste generated by Energoatom, 2014-2016, m3

The generated radioactive waste is stored in specially designated storage facilities in compliance with nuclear and radiation safety standards, rules and norms.

In 2016, Energoatom’s NPPs generated the following types of industrial wastes:

Hazard Class 1

Mercury-containing exhausted fluorescent lamps

0 , 0 pieces
Hazard Class 2

Exhausted accumulator batteries, used lubricants

0 . 0 tonnes
Hazard Class 3

Spent oil products, oil contaminated sand, oil sludge, oily rags, filters

0 . 0 tonnes
Hazard Class 4

Heat insulation, sludge, silt, woodworking waste, non-burning limestone, household and construction debris, etc.

0 , 0 tonnes

Hazardous waste of class 1-3 is delivered to SS “Skladske Gospodarstvo” under Energoatom’s umbrella for the further transfer to specialised contracted waste management enterprises.

NPPs deliver waste of hazard class 4 to sludge dumps, solid waste landfills and other storage sites in accordance with established rules and regulations, as well as instructions adopted by the enterprises.


The National Dedicated RAW Management Programme was approved by the relevant law of Ukraine on 17 September 2008. It lay at the core of Energoatom’s Complex RAW Treatment Programme 2012-2016. The programme envisages complex lines for radioactive waste treatment to be built at Zaporizhzhya NPP, Rivne NPP, Khmelnytska and South-Ukraine NPP. This will allow bringing solid radioactive waste to a condition in which it can be transferred to the government for disposal in accordance with established standards.

The analysis of global practices shows that the safe RAW treatment is one of the top three pressing issues faced by the nuclear energy industry today (the other two are the sector’s safety and economic indicators). Key principles of the national RAW management policy are outlined in the Law of Ukraine On Radioactive Waste Management and the Complex Programme for Radioactive Waste Management.
These principles include:

  • Priority on the protection of life and health of employees and the public and environmental protection against radioactive waste impacts;
  • reliable isolation of RAW from the environment;
  • government regulation of RAW treatment;
  • segregation of functions of government regulation and management in the area of RAW treatment;
  • segregation of functions and responsibilities of government authorities at different stages of RAW management;
  • adoption of decisions on arrangement of new RAW storage facilities, where the decision-making involves the public, NGOs, and local governments;
  • prohibition to import RAW to Ukraine for storage and disposal;
  • international cooperation in radioactive waste management.

Energoatom’s focus areas in RAW treatment include:

Construction and operation of complex lines for radioactive waste treatment at Ukrainian NPPs

RAW accounting and control system

Development and implementation of advanced RAW conditioning technologies;

Development of the regulatory and legal framework for RAW treatment

R&D and information support

Wider international cooperation in RAW management.

In previous years, nuclear power plants implemented joint projects with the EU countries to ensure safety in the radioactive waste management. In particular, Khmelnytska NPP joined efforts with Germany-based NUKEM Technologies in 2015 to roll out a project, Instrument for Nuclear Safety Cooperation. This initiative sought to improve the overall radioactive waste management strategy at NPPs that were in operation or shut down. It was implemented within the framework of the European Commission Cooperation Program "Instrument for Nuclear Safety Cooperation".

In line with the National RAW Management Programme, Energoatom’s subdivisions have analysed the sources and volumes of radioactive substances, liquid and solid wastes generated in the course of normal operations of nuclear power plants and have developed and implemented measures to minimise their build-up.

The most effective measures to reduce RAW generation are:

  • eliminating leakage of SF cooling pools;
  • changing regeneration modes for filters at special water purification plants;
  • separating flows of liquid radioactive substances (Khmelnitsky NPP reduced by 11% the water flow from a specialised laundry to special water purification plants);
  • changing procedures for cleaning the contaminated boron concentrate released from the evaporation facilities at special water purification plants (South-Ukraine NPP has reduced the flow of floor drains by 200-250 m3 a year);
  • adopting advanced technologies for decontamination of facilities, premises and personal protective equipment;
  • controlling and accounting floor drains released at NPPs.

Complex lines for radioactive waste treatment


Zaporizhzhya NPP

Operational testing — end of 2018

Screening unit

Fragmentation unit

Activity metering system (RAW certification)

Extracting unit

Incinerator with emission monitoring system

High-pressure compaction machine

Rivne NPP

Operational testing — end of 2018

Activity metering system (RAW certification)

Screening and fragmentation unit

Extracting unit

Decontamination unit

High-pressure compaction machine

Grouting facility

Design and launch of construction

Khmelnytska NPP

Operational testing — 2021

Extracting unit


High-pressure compaction machine

Screening unit

Decontamination unit

Activity metering system (RAW certification)

South-Ukraine NPP

Operational testing — 2021

High-pressure compaction machine

Screening unit

Activity metering system (RAW certification)

Extracting unit


The storage facility for the spent nuclear fuel from Rivne, Khmelnytska and South-Ukraine NPPs is being built in the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone in accordance with the Law of Ukraine No. 4384-VI On the spent fuel management involving the allocation, design and construction of a central storage facility for spent fuel of VVER-1000 type reactors operated by domestic NPPs64 For more about the Law of Ukraine on the Central Spent Fuel Storage Facility, please go to http://zakon2.rada.gov.ua/laws/show/4384-17 . This project should improve the SF management system, which is in place at domestic nuclear power plants, and strengthen Ukraine's energy independence by forgoing the SF export services to the Russian Federation. Launched in 2012, the initiative will continue until 2050.

In October 2016, the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine allocated land plots of a total area of 45.2 hectares in the exclusion zone (Kyiv Oblast) for the construction of the Central Spent Fuel Storage Facility. The construction contract establishes that Holtec International shall supply special equipment for dry storage and transportation of spent fuel, as well as provide Ukraine with the technologies to be used at power units, during the SF transportation from NPPs to the CSFSF, and in the storage facility.

The technologies and design solutions chosen for the Central Spent Fuel Storage Facility meet international RAW management standards and ensure reliable and safe storage of spent fuel of Ukrainian NPPs. The CSFSF feasibility study underwent the government environmental assessment and received positive opinion. Today, all organisational and legal issues regarding the storage facility construction have been resolved. The start-up facility is to be completed in 2019. For more details about the CSFSF, please see the Investment Projects section.

A start-up facility on the CSFSF site will host all necessary infrastructure facilities and 94 SF storage systems.


Normal operations of nuclear power plants do not significantly affect the biodiversity in water bodies and adjacent areas, nor do they influence the structure and dynamics of vegetation communities or lead to changes in the populations of rare species of plants, as well as plants registered in the Red List of Threatened Species. Furthermore, they have no material negative impact on the animal world in the supervised areas.

Energoatom works to preserve the biodiversity. The project “Completion of Tashlyk Hydroelectric Pumped Storage Power Plant” is designed to elevate the level of Olexandrivske Reservoir65 Olexandrivske Reservoir and the Southern Buh River are a part of South-Ukrainian Energy Complex. The reservoir is near Yuzhnoukrainsk town, taking territories of Arbuzynka, Voznesensk and Domanivka districts, Mykolaiv Oblast. For more about the project, please go to the Company’s web site http://www.atom.gov.ua/en/ to 20.7 m. After the level is raised, 20% of the plant populations in the area of its influence will be flooded. They are 27 species of plants, including rarities (rare plants registered in the Red List of Threatened Species). To preserve rare plants, the Company has joined efforts with the Institute of Botany of the National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine to develop integrated reclamation measures for the preservation of rare and endangered plant species.


The nuclear power industry lays robust foundations for the energy independence of our country. In addition, it is the most developed and high-tech sector in the national economy. Operations of nuclear power plants do not contribute to climate change.

According to experts, annual air emissions would increase by 117 million tonnes of CO2 (by more than 30%) if Ukraine did not use nuclear power plants at all.

To combat climate change, Energoatom takes ongoing efforts to reduce harmful air emissions. The public outreach campaigns about the impact of Ukraine's nuclear energy on climate engage international climate experts and representatives of environmental organisations.

The Company's specialists are confident that the nuclear power, which will be used by 50% of the EU member states, can become a powerful tool to fight climate change by uniting all EU countries and neighbouring states in these aspirations. Despite the difficult situation in the Ukrainian energy sector, the domestic nuclear power industry is facing global challenges. In particular, they include record temperatures in the summer period, lower groundwater levels and river shallowness, which adversely affect the performance of the nation’s hydro power industry. In 2016, the nuclear power sector helped compensate for the reduction in electricity generation by thermal and hydroelectric power stations, reaching 55-60% of the total consumption. Therefore, Energoatom strives to keep to these indicators and sees its role in further fight against global climate changes.

Greenhouse gas emissions mostly generated by thermal power plants are the primary cause of the climate change. With the use of low-carbon electricity production technologies, the nuclear power industry is now taking on even more importance.

Thanks to the nuclear power development, Ukraine has more than halved its carbon dioxide emissions since 1990, a significant contribution to delivering the Europe 2020 goals.

Energoatom СО2 emissions, 2014-2016, tonnes





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CO2 emissions, tonnes/GWh (based on electricity generation life cycle)


In a move to increase its transparency and ensure constructive interaction with all stakeholders, the Company publishes annual reports that include information on the Company's strategy, financial performance, actions in the area of nuclear, radiation and environmental safety.

Energoatom takes ongoing efforts to inform personnel of nuclear power plants about the possible impact of their work on their health and raise public awareness about the safety of NPPs operations in the regions where they are based. Automated information systems for NPP personnel are vital for the rapid response to deviations in the equipment performance.

Energoatom brings up such issues as design, location, construction and operation of nuclear power facilities for public discussion. This approach enables experts, representatives of the public and government agencies to make their recommendations and helps people have a clear understanding about the development of their regions.

In 2011, the Cabinet of Ministers of Ukraine developed an Action Plan to ensure the openness and accessibility of information related to the nuclear energy use and to enhance the nuclear safety culture in the nuclear power industry. Energoatom strictly complies with the regulation developed in line with IAEA documents (SF-1, GSR Part 3) and the best European practices. The Plan lies at the core of “General requirements to the management system for nuclear facilities and activities” approved by the State Nuclear Regulatory Inspectorate of Ukraine in 2011.

The Company embraces the principles of transparency and openness of the nuclear energy use decisions, wider engagement of citizens and their associations in the discussion of the location, design, construction and operation of nuclear power facilities.

Energoatom actively uses its official website to publish documents related to the implementation of the Complex (Consolidated) Safety Upgrade Program of Power Units of Ukrainian NPPs and the findings of the environmental impact assessment. Internet links and a specially organised contact e-mail address are shared with potential stakeholders and other parties that expressed their interest in the environmental assessment process. The documents are available online or for download.

Questions and comments can be submitted to the Company within not less than 30 days from the date of publication, and the contact email address continues to operate.

Interested parties can send environment-related questions, comments and complaints to electronic addresses of the officials or via the Energoatom’s website. After processing, answers are posted on the website in the form of updates of the Q&A Book.

Answers to all questions and comments received via all communication channels are posted in the Q&A Book and its annual updates on the Company's website.


As a nuclear power company, Energoatom should take public outreach efforts to respect human and civil rights to receive information about the nuclear energy and radiation safety. The Company also encourages citizens and their associations to participate in discussions of issues related to the nuclear power use and possible impacts of nuclear power plants on human health and the environment.

In its day-to-day operations, Energoatom regularly conducts awareness raising campaigns to inform the population living near nuclear power plants about the radiation risks associated with the operation of the nuclear power plant. The outreach tools include:

In addition, the nuclear safety outreach to schoolchildren and students helps the Company build an understanding of the environmental friendliness of the nuclear thermal and electricity generation in Ukraine.

Dissemination of information and publications to executive government agencies at all levels, media and civil society organisations, as well as on official websites and printed media of Ukrainian NPPs

Lectures with visits to NPP facilities for the public, including schoolchildren, loving in a 30-km zone around the nuclear power plant

Awareness raising on official and thematic pages in social media (Facebook, Twitter, Google+), Youtube

Broadcasting dedicated television and radio programmes, speeches of senior managers and specialists of nuclear power plants, designing and distributing printed handouts (posters, booklets, postcards, etc.)

Public hearings and consultations

Information centres at NPPs.

Answering enquiries of the public, mass media, executive government authorities at all levels, etc.


Operations of nuclear power plants, especially procedures for extension of life cycles of nuclear power units are under the close supervision of Ukrainian and European environmental non-governmental organisations. Energoatom adheres to the principle of an open and constructive dialogue with environmental NGOs and is constantly working to improve nuclear safety transparency standards. In addition to the national laws on the access to environmental information, the Company complies with the Aarhus Convention66 For more about the Aarhus Convention, please go to http://zakon2.rada.gov.ua/laws/show/994_015 (the UN Economic Commission for Europe Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation in Decision-Making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters) and the Espoo Convention (Convention on Environmental Impact Assessment in a Transboundary Context)67 For more about the Espoo Convention, please go to http://zakon3.rada.gov.ua/laws/show/995_272 .

Despite that the national legislation lacks procedures for transboundary consultations regarding the extension of life cycles of nuclear power units, Energoatom has initiated a transboundary environmental impact assessment, which will be used later in the decision-making about the extension of life cycles of power unit No. 3 at South Ukraine NPP and power units No. 3-6 at Zaporizhzhya NPP. This is an important precedent both for Ukrainian nuclear energy sector and international practices.

In addition to official communication channels and public hearings, the Company is constantly expanding the list of public information tools and provides more opportunities for direct communications between the public and experts. In particular, the Company widely uses its social media pages, discussion platforms, informal thematic meetings, briefings and other ways for daily communications.

Energoatom is not afraid of challenges and considers criticism as a way to build a dialogue and an opportunity to improve.

Proposals and comments given to the Company during public hearings are registered and considered by specialists. For example, all ideas and recommendations given during public hearings on raising the level of Olexandrivske Reservoir will be included in the Considering Public Views section of the Environmental Impact Assessment. Later they will be added to a final document to be referred to the Ministry of Ecology and Natural Resources of Ukraine for the government environmental assessment.

Public discussions of the Complex (Consolidated) Safety Upgrade Program of Power Units of Ukrainian NPPs and the Environmental and Social Action Plan in NPPs’ satellite localities

Zaporizhzhya NPP

South-Ukraine NPP

Rivne NPP

Khmelnytska NPP

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In 2017 and in the medium term, Energoatom plans to move to the ISO 14001:2015 standard for its environmental management system.

In 2017, we are also set to conduct transboundary consultations about the assessment of environmental impacts of Zaporizhzhya and South Ukraine NPPs, about ecology-related e-reporting, etc.

At Rivne and Zaporizhzhya NPPs, the Company plans to construct complex lines for radioactive waste treatment to be put into operation in late 2017.

In 2017, Rivne NPP also intends to build a technical centre for automated remote control systems and reconstruct cooling towers to improve the water use efficiency (water taken from the Styr River) and increase the safety level of power units.

Between 2017 and 2019, all separate subdivisions of the Company plan to reduce the use of dangerous fluorescent bulbs by 10% and replace them with LED lamps.

We expect that 2017 will become the year when the construction of the Central Spent Fuel Storage Facility will actually begin.