The Chernobyl Disaster

  • David R. Marples


The twelfth-century town of Chernobyl (Chornobyl in Ukrainian) occupies the junction of the Prypiat and Uzh Rivers, 133 kilometres north of the Ukrainian capital city, Kiev. It stands in an area that has long been considered a problem for agricultural cultivation; of sandy podzolic soil, peat bogs and marshland. And while by Soviet standards, it is located close to major population centres, such as Kiev, Chernihiv and the city of Gomel in Belorussia, it is in one of the most sparsely populated areas of Ukraine. Before the construction of the nuclear power plant, what little industry there was consisted of food processing and small-scale shipbuilding; the main agriculture consists of flax and potato growing, and only about one-third of the overall territory is suitable for crop production. Consequently, the main speciality of the few state farms and over eighteen collective farms in existence has remained dairy farming.1


Nuclear Power Plant Nuclear Plant Summer Camp Danger Zone Geiger Counter 
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Copyright information

© David R. Marples 1986

Authors and Affiliations

  • David R. Marples
    • 1
  1. 1.Canadian Institute of Ukrainian StudiesUniversity of AlbertaCanada

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