Russia has sent its controversial floating nuclear power plant out to sea.

The Akademik Lomonosov – a giant floating plant designed to provide power for remote assets like ports and oil rigs – has been towed out of its St Petersburg shipyard for the first time.

Is it on its way around the northern tip of Norway to Murmansk where its reactors will be loaded with nuclear fuel.

The Lomonosov is set to enter service in 2019 in the Arctic off the coast of Chukotka.

Greenpeace has called the plant a “floating Chernobyl”.

“Nuclear reactors bobbing around the Arctic Ocean will pose a shockingly obvious threat to a fragile environment, which is already under enormous pressure from climate change,” Greenpeace nuclear expert Jan Haverkamp said in a statement.

“The floating nuclear power plants will typically be put to use near coastlines and shallow water … contrary to claims regarding safety, the flat-bottomed hull and the floating nuclear power plant's lack of self-propulsion makes it particularly vulnerable to tsunamis and cyclones.”