Town of Agidel in northwestern Bashkortostan was built in 1980s for the purpose of hosting the Bashkir nuclear power plant (NPP). The construction of the Bashkir NPP started in 1989-90 but was suspended in 1991 due to environmental concerns by the general public and the Russian anti-nuclear movement, which has emerged after Chernobyl disasters in 1986. The anti-nuclear activists organized protests in front of the House of the Government of the Russian Federation and were supported by eminent scientists who suggested that the area was not apt to host a NPP due to tectonic activities and swamp soil. The Russian authorities decision to mothball construction of Bashkir NPP left half of the inhabitants of Agidel without jobs.
Although lasted almost 30 years, the suspension of the construction of the Bashkir NPP turned out to be of temporary character since in 1998, the Bashkir parliament abolished the previous decision to stop the construction of the NPP. Although the Bashkir state authorities received support by the Ministry for Atomic Energy of the Russian Federation (MINATOM), they faced lack of money to complete the NPP. The supporters claimed that electricity produced by the NPP was cheap and easily sold in other neighboring republic of Tatarstan and Udmurtia. In addition, in 2000 the Russian government approved a scheme for siting electric power plants to 2030. According to this federal program, the first two power-generating units at the Bashkir NPP are to be commissioned in 2024 and 2027. In 2001, the Russian State Atomic Energy Corporation (ROSATOM) took over the costs of conserving industrial facilities of Bashkir NPP that have not been maintained or secured since the abortion of construction work (80% completed). In 2004, the Bashkir State Assembly appealed to Russian Prime Minister to resolve the issue of financing the construction of the Bashkir NPP and to help launch in 2011 its first block capable to generating 1 million kilowatts of electricity. Their main arguments were that the NPP will help overcome the region's energy shortages and will save 4 million tons of oil a year. However, construction of the Bashkir NPP remains uncertain and one of the most controversial. There are doubts if the station project will meet environmental protection standards, as well as region’s energy shortage was questioned. In addition, there are proposals of building the river port or industrial park as non-nuclear, fast and cheap solutions to unfavorable economic situation in Agidel.