Wikipedia titles their article “Chernobyl disaster” and it truly was the worst nuclear power plant accident ever. Since 1986 the area is a permanent no-go zone for humans. People left forever, but wildlife remained behind.
Studies soon after the cloud of radioactive particles were released “showed major radiation effects and pronounced reductions in wildlife populations.”
It’s been thirty years. How are they doing today?
Scientists from the University of Georgia in the United States compared wildlife populations to those in similar, uncontaminated nature preserves. They “found a relative abundance of elk, roe deer, red deer and wild boar” and seven times as many wolves.
What can we make of a world where wildlife is better off with radiation and no people than it is sharing habitat with us? I’m glad there are many national parks and forests to protect wildlife, and allow us to visit and view them, without the need for no-go nuclear sacrifice zones.
Study results published in the journal Current Biology. Thanks to csmonitor.com and other outlets covering this story.