The Office for Nuclear Regulation (ONR) in Britain said the license application for the proposed Sizewell C nuclear power plant in Suffolk had not quite made the grade with "two outstanding matters which require resolution prior to the formal granting of a license."
The first issue relates to the current ownership of the land, known as security of land tenure, which is yet to be acquired by the license applicant, which is French state-owned power company EDF.
The second issue, said the ONR, relates to the current shareholder agreement which places control of key policies relating to safety and security with a holding company, NNB Holding Company (SZC) Ltd, rather than the license applicant, NNB Generation Company (SZC) Ltd.
Engagement between ONR and the applicant has indicated that plans are in place to address both matters in due course.
The ONR said it was "satisfied NNB Generation Company (SZC) Ltd has put in place an organizational capability and associated arrangements suitable for license granting and no issues have been identified regarding the suitability of the site which would prevent a license being granted.”
Once the two outstanding factors are resolved ONS said they would carry out a proportionate reassessment of the application, focused on the two outstanding matters and any other relevant licensing issues that emerge during the intervening period.
To build and operate a new nuclear power station in the UK, a number of site-specific permissions are required from regulators and government, and granting a site license does not permit the start of nuclear-related construction on the site. The license application is separate to a Development Consent Order (DCO), considered by the Planning Inspectorate, which determines if overall proposed scheme is acceptable under national planning legislation. A government decision on the Sizewell C DCO is currently pending.
NNB Generation Company (SZC) Ltd has also submitted applications for environmental permits to the Environment Agency.
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