Kuwaiti geologist says Bushehr nuclear plant location is source of dangers for region

September 14, 2010

A Kuwaiti geologist has warned that the location of the recently-opened Bushehr nuclear reactor in Iran in an earthquake zone could mean catastrophic radiation leak consequences in the event of a major tremor.

“The ominous results will be similar to those of the Chernobyl disaster for the whole region,” Dr Jassem Al Awadhi, a Professor of Geology and the Environment at Kuwait University’s science faculty, said.

The reactor is only 276 kilometers across the Gulf from Kuwait and this puts Kuwait at serious risk if a radioactive leak should occur, the expert said.

Kuwait would also be quickly affected by a leak because of the northwesterly winds that are predominant in the region throughout much of the year, he said, according to Kuwait Times daily.

According to Al Awadhi, the Kuwait Institute for Scientific Research’s seismological centre has detected daily seismic activity in the coastal area of western Iran bordering the Gulf.

“This is caused by this site being the meeting point of three continental plates – the Arabian, African and Eurasian plates,” he said.

Al Awadhi said he wondered whether the standards laid down by the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) for the construction of such facilities had been followed in building the Bushehr plant, particularly in ensuring that it was designed in such a way as to ensure that it could withstand earthquakes.



About the author

Born August 3, 1960 in Monastir, Tunisia
Media career:
  • ABC News (Tunisia)
  • Bahrain Tribune
  • Gulf News
  • Bahrain Television News
Teaching career:
  • Monastir (Tunisia)
  • University of Bahrain
  • MA  Mass Communications, University of Leicester
  • BA  in English & US literature and studies, University of Tunis

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