Early in the morning of May 22, the Russian military fired again at the territory of the Zaporozhye NPP, as a result, the last high-voltage power line, the Dnieper (750 kV), from which the ZNPP fed its own needs, was disconnected. This is reported by the Ukrainian "Energoatom", which is the legal operator of the occupied station.
The statement says that this is the seventh time since the beginning of the occupation of the station (March 4, 2022), when the ZNPP goes into blackout mode. The Russian Federation threatens the nuclear and radiation safety of the whole world for the seventh time, Energoatom claims.
“After the loss of external power, which is vital for the operation of nuclear fuel cooling pumps in the spent fuel pools and nuclear reactors of power units, all diesel generators of the nuclear power plant switched on automatically. They have enough fuel for ten days. The countdown has begun."
If it is impossible to restore the station's external power during this time, an accident may occur with radiation consequences for the whole world, the report says. The company called on the international community to respond immediately.
The occupation administration of ZNPP confirmed the shutdown of external power supply, without specifying the reasons. The press service claims that the radiation background at the station is normal.
On August 25, 2022, for the first time in its history, ZNPP was completely disconnected from the power grid, the last (fourth) line of communication between the station and the power system of Ukraine, the 750 kV Dneprovskaya overhead line, was disconnected twice. According to nuclear physicist Andrey Ozharovsky, the shutdown of the station could be used by the Russian authorities as a pretext for connecting it to Crimea, but this would require the restoration of power lines towards Crimea and Russia and the synchronization of generators with the Russian power grid.
In May of this year, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) stated that the situation around the Zaporozhye NPP was becoming "increasingly unpredictable and potentially dangerous." IAEA Director Rafael Grossi expressed his deepest concern about Russia's evacuation of civilians and increased military activity in the region. Also, the General Staff of the Armed Forces of Ukraine reported that the Russian military, under the pretext of evacuating Ukrainians, continues to export stolen property from the annexed Zaporozhye region to Crimea. All enterprises located in the industrial area near the ZNPP were completely looted, the General Staff noted.
In April, at the ZNPP, the windows of the turbine hall of the fourth power unit were knocked out by an explosive wave, Renat Karchaa, adviser to the head of Rosenergoatom, reported. According to him, this happened due to the operation of the UAV. Zaporozhye NPP has been under the control of Russian troops almost since the beginning of the Russian invasion of Ukraine.