ANCHORAGE, Alaska (AP) – A Russia-designed floating nuclear power plant has begun its journey through the Artic this month causing concerns in Alaska.

The Alaska Public Media reported Thursday that the 472-foot (144-meter) barge launched in St. Petersburg, Russia and will continue along the coast to the Bering Strait separating Alaska.

Russia officials say the plan is to dock the world’s first floating nuclear power plant at Pevek, Russia about 1,250 miles (2,012 kilometers) from Anchorage, Alaska.

Alaska advocates say they are concerned about potential radiation the barge could produce in the northwest region.

Officials say the barge named Akademik Lomonosov is capable of powering a city about the size of Fairbanks and will provide heat and power to the mining region.

Officials say the barge is expected to begin producing power in December.

Information from: KSKA-FM,