Ukraine remembered the event (see the pictures) and Yushchenko wants to attract tourists to Chernobyl. You may see a photo gallery here. Despite the legacy, Ukraine has plans to expand nuclear energy.
Today I think that the communist authorities did more or less exactly what they should have done - for example try to avoid irrational panic. It seems that only 56 people were killed directly and 4,000 people indirectly. See here. On the other hand, about 300,000 people were evacuated which was a reasonable decision, too. And animals are perhaps the best witnesses for my statements: the exclusion zone - now an official national park - has become a haven for wildlife - as National Geographic also explains:
- Reappeared: Lynx, eagle owl, great white egret, nesting swans, and possibly a bear
- Introduced: European bison, Przewalski's horse
- Booming mammals: Badger, beaver, boar, deer, elk, fox, hare, otter, raccoon dog, wolf
- Booming birds: Aquatic warbler, azure tit, black grouse, black stork, crane, white-tailed eagle (the birds especially like the interior of the sarcophagus)
Ecoterrorists in general and Greenpeace in particular are very wrong whenever they say that the impact of technology on wildlife must always have a negative sign.
In other words, the impact of that event has been exaggerated for many years. Moreover, it is much less likely that a similar tragedy would occur today. Nuclear power has so many advantages that I would argue that even if the probability of a Chernobyl-like disaster in the next 20 years were around 10%, it would still be worth to use nuclear energy.
Some children were born with some defects - but even such defects don't imply the end of everything. On the contrary. A girl from the Chernobyl area, born around 1989, was abandoned by her Soviet parents, was adopted by Americans, and she became the world champion in swimming. Her name? Hint: the Soviet president was Gorbachev and this story has something to do with the atomic nucleus. Yes, her name is Mikhaila Rutherford. ;-)
If you have Google Earth, you may also
Incidentally, if you want a three-dimensional modelling software, try
The files created by users are shared at
- Google 3D warehouse (reload if you receive an error message)