Russian Ambassador: Bataan Nuclear Power Plant revival not possible, 'absolutely outdated'

What happened to Bataan Nuclear Plant?

Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology (Phivolcs) Director Renato Solidum said in March that nuclear facility is on safe ground.

Solidum also explained the possible hazards that may occur, which are only limited to minimal ground shaking, which can be mitigated. Other hazards like eruption of a nearby volcano – Mount Natib, which is not happening as it is not an active volcano.

Furthermore, Tsunamis and landslides are also unlikely since the nuclear facility was built on a flat surface that is 80 meters above sea level.

"So if you conclude based from what I said, then it is... remember, hazards can be mitigated lalo sa ground shaking. Hindi po 'yun delikado, safe po siya," Solidum added.

It was the late president Ferdinand Marcos who commissioned the 620mv nuclear power plant in 1970s anticipating the need of cheap energy supply in the Philippines.

Meanwhile, in an exclusive interview with CNN Philippines ‘The Source’ Russian ambassador to the Philippines Igor Khovaev said that he believes Bataan Nuclear Power Plant (BNPP) is beyond restoration.

He said that BNPP is  “absolutely outdated” based on the current standards being followed nowadays.

"The safety standards, [the] international standards are much, much higher than the standards on which the Bataan Nuclear Power Plant was built. So I think it's not possible at all," he said.

This statement from the Russian Ambassador came after Russia’s State Atomic Energy Corporation Rosatom conducted an assessment whether the facility is still fit for commissioning.

In the same interview, Khovaev clarified that there is no nuclear infrastructure agreement with the Philippines in the plan – neither the revival of NBPP.

"It's not in our agenda... simply because the Philippine government didn't request us to do that," Khovaev said.
"The final say always belongs to the Philippines' side," he added

Russia said that they are however, open for "sophisticated nuclear technology" in other fields and agriculture.

"We have advanced nuclear technologies which allow the extended shelf life of fresh fruits and vegetables," said Khovaev. "If you are interested to export fresh fruits and vegetables to the Russian market, I think... it must be useful. We can sign the relevant contracts." Khovaev said.

"I would like to remind you that unlike your traditional ally and partner, my country has never used nuclear weapons or any other weapon of mass destruction," he said.

"So believe me please. I don't see any reason to be worried here in the Philippines," said Khovaev. "We are your partners, your friends, and everything we are doing in the field of weapons of mass destruction is in full compliance with international law."  The Russian Ambassador added.


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