Assessment of Impact of Russian Nuclear Fleet Operations on Russian Far Eastern Coastal Regions

Mahura, A. (2002). Assessment of Impact of Russian Nuclear Fleet Operations on Russian Far Eastern Coastal Regions. IIASA Interim Report. IIASA, Laxenburg, Austria: IR-02-004

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The main purpose of this study is evaluation of the atmospheric transport of pollutants from the Vladivostok and Kamchatka nuclear risk sites (NRSs) - nuclear submarines and radioactive storage facilities -- located at the Russian Far East. The evaluation is given from the probabilistic point of view. The main question is: What is the probability for a radionuclide atmospheric transport to the neighboring countries in the case of an accident at the nuclear risk sites in the Russian Far East?

To answer this question, we applied two research tools. The first tool is the isentropic atmospheric trajectory model to calculate trajectories originating at two NRSs. The second tool is the statistical analyses - exploratory, cluster, and probability field analyses -- to explore the structure of the calculated trajectory data sets seasonally, monthly, and year-to-year. The selected regions of potential impact due to atmospheric transport -- Japan, China, North and South Koreas, State of Alaska, and Aleutian Chain Islands. Additionally, we discussed possible approaches to investigate impacts of the radionuclide removal processes during atmospheric transport.

The main findings of these study are:

(1) For both NRSs: -- The westerly flow is dominant throughout the year in the boundary layer (more than 60% of the time). At altitudes of the free troposphere, the probability of transport from the west increases up to 85% of the time. -- The relatively rapid westerly flow toward the North America reaches maximum occurrence during fall-winter (8-11% of the time) and during winter-spring (12-13% of the time) for the Kamchatka and Vladivistok NRSSs, respectively.

(2) For the Vladivostok NRS: -- The North China and North Japan regions are the highest risk of possible impact in comparison. The lower (and upper) bounds of the Vladivostok NRS's possible impact are about of 32 (54) and 35 (87)% for the North China and North Japan regions, respectively. -- On average, atmospheric transport to these regions could occur in 0.5 and 1.6 days, respectively. The fast transport events (i.e. in less than 1 day) could represent major concerns for the Japanese and North Korean regions, but these are not common for the US territories. -- Except for the US territories, the boundary layer transport reaches all considered regions more than half of time.

(3) For the Kamchatka NRSs: -- The US territories are at the highest risk compared to the rest of the regions. The lower (and upper) bounds of the Kamchatka NRS's possible impact are 30 (54) and 13.4 (32.1)% for the Aleutian Chain Islands and the State of Alaska, respectively. -- On average, atmospheric transport to these regions could occur in 3.0 and 5.1 days, respectively.

The free troposphere transport dominates in the Chinese and North Korean regions, but boundary layer transport dominates in other considered regions.

We believe that results of the study are applicable for the emergency response and preparedness measures in cases of accidental releases at NRSs. Several directions for applicability of results in the studies of the consequences for population and environment, risk and vulnerability analysis, social and economical aspects resulting from the accidental releases at the nuclear risk sites as well as recommendations for the future studies are discussed.

Item Type: Monograph (IIASA Interim Report)
Research Programs: Radiation Safety of the Biosphere (RAD)
Depositing User: IIASA Import
Date Deposited: 15 Jan 2016 02:14
Last Modified: 27 Aug 2021 17:18

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