Russian invaders mine the Crimean Titan plant – what will happen if they blow it up

27 June, 04:47 PM
The Crimean Titan plant is located in Armyansk (Photo:Oleksandra Surgan / RFE/RL)

The Crimean Titan plant is located in Armyansk (Photo:Oleksandra Surgan / RFE/RL)

The Zaporizhzhya Nuclear Power Plant (ZNPP) is not the only dangerous facility where the Russian invaders have prepared to cause another man-made ecological catastrophe.

In June, various sources warned that the Russians are likely preparing an attack at the Crimean Titan chemical plant in the Crimean town of Armyansk, currently occupied by Russian forces.

The Crimean Titan plant produces titanium dioxide, sulfuric acid, and mineral fertilizers. In 2014, the plant produced 532 tons of sulfuric acid per year.

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In early June 2023, Kherson regional governor Oleksandr Prokudin reported that the Russians were preparing a false flag attack at the plant. He said the invaders had mined the plant’s territory and brought explosives there, and that the aftermath of the potential explosion could become “a second Chornobyl.”

“Emission of thousands of tons of toxic substances into the atmosphere will lead to mortal danger for people and the environment,” Prokudin said.

“Residents of the Republic of Crimea and at least seven other Ukrainian regions will be affected, as well as Turkey and the aggressor country itself.”

He suggested that the goal of Russia’s possible false flag may be the Russians’ desire to stop the counteroffensive of the Armed Forces of Ukraine, to accuse Ukraine of “ecological terrorism,” as well as exerting pressure on the military and political leadership and the global community.

Andriy Yusov, a representative of Ukrainian military intelligence, said on June 13 that Ukrainian intelligence sources confirmed that the plant’s territory and workshops were mined.

Yusov also named three possible goals of such actions by the Russian invaders:

  • Demonstrative blackmail;
  • Putting the enterprise out of order in case the Russian troops flee;
  • Preparation for a full-scale terrorist attack similar to the destruction of the Kakhovka Hydroelectric Power Plant.

“All these scenarios are being worked out,” Yusov said.

“We understand that we’re dealing with war criminals and an aggressor country. Therefore, Ukraine and the whole world should be ready for this.”

What will happen in case of a blast at the Crimean Titan plant

The main threat, if the Russians blow the Crimean Titan plant, is the spread of pollution if containers storing hazardous substances are destroyed. These currently hold: sulfuric acid, ammonia, and sulfur.

The pollution radius, depending on the wind direction, would be around 7-7.5 km.

In this case, the following settlements will be affected:

  • Perekop
  • Preobrazhenka
  • Pershokostiantynivka

In this scenario, ammonia persistence would last for 12 hours, and sulphuric acid could persist for 18 hours.

This date was calculated with wind speeds of 5-10 m/s and temperatures of 20 degrees Celsius, based on NV’s sources.

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