Kakhovka Dam Failure May Poison Black Sea; Concerns Rising Over Nuclear Power Plant

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Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelenskiy said the floodwaters released by the destruction of the Kakhovka Dam threatens over 100,000 people, 30,000 animals and has flooded 50,000 hectares (125,000 acres) of forests. In addition, Zelenskiy warns against the sewage, oil, chemicals and even possibly anthrax from animal burial sites. “The poisoning and contamination coming from the flooding area goes to the groundwater almost immediately, poisoning rivers and then the water basin of the Black Sea,” he said.  Concern is also growing around the cooling ponds for the Zaporizhzhia nuclear plant which comes from the now draining Kakhovka Reservoir. The International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) said there is no immediate risk as the ponds are large, but if the water level goes below 10 meters the dykes could collapse. The reservoir is currently at 13 meters and falling.  A Ukrainian official said plans are in progress to build a temporary buffer dam, but that can’t happen until the fighting stops.