Press release

Regulators give design acceptance to the AP1000® power station design

The AP1000® nuclear reactor, designed by Westinghouse, is suitable for construction in the UK

The AP1000® nuclear reactor, designed by Westinghouse, is suitable for construction in the UK
The AP1000® nuclear reactor, designed by Westinghouse, is suitable for construction in the UK

The AP1000® nuclear reactor, designed by Westinghouse, is suitable for construction in the UK said the regulators today following completion of an in-depth assessment of the reactor design.

The Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR), the Environment Agency (EA) and Natural Resources Wales (NRW), the regulators who undertake the Generic Design Assessment of new reactor designs, are satisfied that the reactor meets expectations on safety, security and environmental protection at this stage of the regulatory process.

ONR has issued a Design Acceptance Certificate (DAC) to Westinghouse and the environment agencies have issued a Statement of Design Acceptability (SoDA).

Dr Richard Savage, ONR’s Chief Nuclear Inspector, said:

The closure of our assessment of the generic design of the AP1000® reactor is a significant step in the process, ensuring the design meets the very high standards of safety we expect.

We will now focus our regulatory attention on site specific assessments, and NuGen’s application for a nuclear site licence.

Dr Jo Nettleton, Deputy Director for Radioactive Substances and Installations Regulation at the Environment Agency, said:

Successfully completing GDA means that the AP1000 is capable of meeting the high standards of environment protection and waste management that we require.

We’re already working with NuGen, as it develops its proposals to build and operate three AP1000 reactors at Moorside in Cumbria, to ensure that those high standards are delivered.

The regulators required 51 GDA Issues to be resolved before confirming the suitability of the AP1000. All of the issues have been addressed to the regulators’ satisfaction enabling the DAC and SoDA to be issued. The regulators’ assessment reports are all available online

ENDS

Notes for Editors

  1. The Office for Nuclear Regulation is the nuclear safety and security regulator for the UK.
  2. The Environment Agency and Natural Resources Wales are the environmental regulators of nuclear sites in England and Wales respectively.
  3. More information on Generic Design Assessment on the joint regulators’ website http://www.onr.org.uk/new-reactors/index.htm
  4. All assessment reports, decision documents and a copy of the Design Acceptance confirmation (DAC) and Statement of Design Acceptability (SoDA) are available online ONR http://www.onr.org.uk/new-reactors/ap1000/reports.htm Environment Agency http://www.gov.uk/government/publications/gda-decisions-and-soda-ap1000-nuclear-power-station-design-by-westinghouse-electric-company

  5. The DAC and SoDA are valid for a period of ten years from issue and can be extended subject to review and agreement of the regulators.
  6. The issuing of a DAC/SoDA does not mean the construction of the reactor can start. Before a new nuclear power station can be built, the operator (NuGen in this case) must obtain a number of site specific permissions from the regulators and Government, including a nuclear site licence and relevant consents, environmental permits and planning permission (Development Consent Order). https://www.gov.uk/guidance/guidance-for-operators-of-new-nuclear-power-stations
  7. The Statement of Design Acceptability (SoDA) is being issued jointly by the Environment Agency and Natural Resources Wales. GDA applies to both England and Wales.
  8. For more information, please contact the ONR press office on onr@onr.gov.uk or 020 3028 0505.
  9. For the Environment Agency media team contact newsdesk@environment-agency.gov.uk or 020 3025 5623
Published 30 March 2017