Invisible
"Chernobyl 30 years after, Belarus..." - For Le Monde, April 2016

« Chernobyl 30 years after, Belarus… » – For Le Monde, France. April 2016.

 

Belarus is the country that suffered the most from the Chernobyl catastrophe. Around 70% of radionuclides have fallen on its territory. Over 23% of its territory is highly polluted and forming now an exclusion zone.

Thousands of people had to migrate from their home villages. Over 1 million of people is still living on the less polluted areas around the exclusion zone.

30 years after, the problems with pollution and health are still widely presented. The first half-life of cesium is over, but other radionuclides like strontium and plutonium will stay in the sol for lot of years more.

The cases of cancer, disease of a thyroid gland, problems with bones, heart and mental health are still increasing. Officially, only the cancer of thyroid is recognized as a disease provoked by radiation.

The government had eliminated the benefits and help for the liquidators and victims of the catastrophe and equated the status of liquidator to a victim.

Nowadays some villages in the exclusion zone are rehabilitated and re-populated. Earth around zone is used for agricultural needs.

The present consequence of Chernobyl are understated in light of the construction of a new nuclear power plant in Belarus.