ONR began engaging with NuGen Ltd in 2011 in relation to the company's intention to apply for a nuclear site licence to construct and operate a new nuclear power station at Moorside in Cumbria.
In January 2014 NuGen confirmed that its choice of reactor technology was the Westinghouse AP1000. Subsequently, in March 2017 ONR issued a Design Acceptance Confirmation (DAC) to Westinghouse for the AP1000. The next step for NuGen was preparing a nuclear site licence application for the construction and operation of three AP1000 reactors at the Moorside site.
In January 2019, NuGen announced that it was suspending work on its nuclear new build projects, and ONR's resources that had been engaging with the company on its preparation of a nuclear site licence application were redeployed onto other regulatory work.
In June 2020, a group of companies, trade unions and individuals announced an initiative to develop a Clean Energy Hub centred on a package of nuclear projects at Moorside. The proposal is based on projects including a new 3.2 GW UK EPR plant, as well as small modular reactors (SMRs) and advanced modular reactors (AMRs), with links to technologies including renewables and hydrogen production.