Interim design acceptance for EPR

EDF Energy and AREVA are pleased by the decisions by the Office of Nuclear Regulation (ONR) to issue an Interim Design Acceptance Confirmation, and the Environment Agency to issue an Interim Statement of Design Acceptability, for the EPR Pressurised Water Reactor.

This achievement is a major step forward for the construction of the next generation of safe, low carbon nuclear power plants in the United Kingdom.

The companies welcome the ONR’s conclusion that: “we are largely satisfied with the design and safety cases” and “a major milestone has been achieved in that we have reached the end of our planned assessment”.

Equally welcome are the comments from the Environment Agency that, “We are content with the environmental aspects of the design, that it should meet the high standards we expect.”

All areas requiring final resolution have been identified and detailed plans to address them to the satisfaction of ONR have been agreed. Additionally, the companies have agreed a dedicated resolution plan for new issues that have been identified as a result of the events at Fukushima.

The companies welcome the ONR’s indication that final Design Acceptance Confirmation should be issued provided the companies’ resolution plans for outstanding issues are delivered. AREVA and EDF Energy are committed to delivering these resolution plans.

EDF Energy Chief Executive, Vincent de Rivaz said:
“This is very good news for the EPR and for UK new nuclear build. It is a major milestone which follows a detailed four-year review by one of the most rigorous independent nuclear safety authorities in the world. We are conscious that there is still a lot to do to achieve final certification, and we will do it.
“All this is important for new nuclear build and its legacy of clean, secure and affordable energy, as well as the jobs and economic boost our project is now delivering.”

Alain-Pierre Raynaud, Chairman of AREVA UK, said
“This is a very important moment. After four years of the most detailed and careful examination of the EPR design by the UK regulators, they have concluded that they are largely satisfied with both the design and the safety case of the EPR and are prepared to issue an Interim Design Acceptance Confirmation for the UK”.