Researchers from The Cyprus Institute, in collaboration with scientists from the Max Planck Institute for Chemistry in Germany, have calculated the risk from potential emission of radionuclides by the Akkuyu nuclear power plant, which is under construction. The scientific climate-chemistry atmospheric transport model was used for the simulations on The Cyprus Institute’s Cy-Tera Supercomputer.
The risk was calculated for gas (Iodine-131) and aerosol (Caesium-137) radionuclides for a representatively large range of possible meteorological conditions, in high spatial and temporal resolution. Caesium and iodine radionuclides can negatively affect human health through the contamination of air, water, soil and agricultural products. The results are considered precise, taking into account the accuracy of the underlying scientific models. The simulations show that the risk for surface-level concentration, deposition and human dose in the Eastern Mediterranean region is relatively large due to the prevailing northwesterly winds that affect the island. The mean monthly relative concentration of the radioisotope Iodine-131 in Mersin, the city closest to the plant in Turkey, follows comparable values to those in Nicosia. The risk exhibits seasonal variability, with the highest concentrations of radioactive gas during the winter months. The studies were published in peer-reviewed journals.
In view of their findings, the scientists call for an in-depth analysis and reassessment of the risks associated with nuclear power plants.
Relative risk for surface-level concentration of gaseous radionuclides from a
potential accident at the Akkuyu nuclear power plant
Atmospheric Dispersion of Radioactivity from Nuclear Power Plant Accidents: Global Assessment and Case Study for the Eastern Mediterranean and Middle East
Energies 7 (12), 8338-8354
Global risk from the atmospheric dispersion of radionuclides by nuclear power plant accidents in the coming decades
Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics 14 (9), 4607-4616
Modelling the global atmospheric transport and deposition of radionuclides from the Fukushima Dai-ichi nuclear accident
Atmospheric Chemistry and Physics 13 (3), 1425-1438