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Nuclear Power Stations: Construction

Volume 496: debated on Wednesday 15 July 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what progress has been made on the generic design assessment for nuclear new build against the Office for Nuclear Development's draft timeline. (285042)

[holding answer 8 July 2009]: The UK nuclear regulators are currently assessing two designs under the Generic Design Assessment (GDA) process—EdF/Areva's UK-EPR and Westinghouse's API 000.

This process is being undertaken by the Nuclear Installations Inspectorate (NII) and the Office for Civil Nuclear Security (OCNS) (both part of the Health and Safety Executive's Nuclear Directorate) and the Environment Agency.

GDA began in July 2007 on a contingent basis, pending the outcome of the Government's consultation on nuclear power in January 2008. Regulators completed their initial stage of the assessment in March 2008. The more detailed assessment stages of GDA commenced in June 2008.

Regulators have stated that they remain on track to complete GDA by June 2011. The NII will produce interim reports in November 2009 and the Environment Agency aim to undertake a public consultation on their findings in spring 2010. This is consistent with the Government's indicative timeline for the first new nuclear power stations coming online from around 2018.

Regular updates on the progress of GDA, including quarterly reports, are published on the regulator's joint website: