While the world debates the practice of scrapping toxic ships on the beaches of 3rd world nations, some environmentalists point to a much larger problem… Russia’s history of sinking outdated nuclear subs.
Russian media outlets claim the government is considering salvaging then scrapping two nuclear submarines, К-27 and К-159, currently resting at the bottom of the Kara and Barents Seas. This plan is included in a revised draft for strategic development of Russia’s Arctic zone and is seen by some experts as a step towards easing international protests over the country’s plans to drill in the region.
“A broad range of measures for cleaning Arctic waters of pollution is specified [in the draft]. In addition to the sunken submarines particular attention is given to removal of dangerous waste left behind after the military units on Franz Josef Land, New Siberian Islands and Bely Island,” a Minister of Defense said to a Russian reporter.
Details remain scarce, but Russian navy sources say they are equipped with special diving vessels, tugs, pontoons, and barges capable of recovering submarines in depths up to 200 meters.