The UK has allocated GBP2.1 million to design and build a secure storage facility for used radioactive sources from across the Ukraine to reduce the potential risks to public health and dangers of illicit trafficking.
Funding for the project to build a centralised store for sealed radioactive sources (SRS) inside the Chernobyl Exclusion Zone, will come from the UK Government’s Global Threat Reduction Programme, the UK's largest programme of non-proliferation assistance. Working through collaborative projects in vulnerable locations worldwide the aim of the GTRP is to reduce proliferation risks and improve the security.
The project is being delivered in close cooperation with the Ministry of Ukraine of Emergencies and Population Protection From the Consequences of Chernobyl Catastrophe, and USC Radon.
The UK will be leading the design and construction effort. Following a successful tender, UK programme managers were appointed in spring 2008, and management and design contracts were signed with Ukrainian partners in summer 2008. The design is currently ongoing, with the expectation that the project will continue to the construction stage in late 2009, pending licensing approval.
It is anticipated that the project will be complemented by work on source management and transportation, to be funded by other international donors. A donor coordination group, bringing together representatives of six countries as well as the EU and IAEA, has been established to facilitate this process.
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