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Written Answers

Volume 460: debated on Thursday 24 May 2007

Written Answers to Questions

Thursday 24 May 2007

Solicitor-General

Magistrates Courts: Closure

22. To ask the Solicitor-General when he next expects to meet representatives of the lay magistracy to discuss the closure of small magistrates courts. (138949)

I regularly meet with lay magistrates when visiting areas of the country; however, the specific issue is not regularly raised.

Ministry of Justice

23. To ask the Solicitor-General what assessment he has made of the likely impact of the creation of the Ministry of Justice on the work of the Crown Prosecution Service. (138950)

The creation of the Ministry of Justice does not affect the responsibilities of the Law Officers or those of their Departments. The prosecuting authorities, including the CPS, will remain independent, and subject to our statutory superintendence. The existing trilateral arrangements for the criminal justice system are preserved. The Law Officers and the CPS play a full part in those arrangements.

Antisocial Behaviour: Prosecutions

24. To ask the Solicitor-General what assessment he has made of the conduct of recent prosecutions by the Crown Prosecution Service for breaches of criminal antisocial behaviour orders; and if he will make a statement. (138951)

Since 2004, the Crown Prosecution Service has had a team of specialist prosecutors providing guidance and training to all prosecutors in the effective application of antisocial behaviour legislation. This has ensured a consistent approach to the prosecution of antisocial behaviour across all areas, including breaches of those orders granted following conviction, and following application by a relevant authority.

Reoffenders: Kettering

To ask the Solicitor-General if he will visit Kettering constituency to discuss with local people the prosecution of persistent offenders by the Crown Prosecution Service. (139093)

I will certainly consider such a visit if it can be accommodated in my diary of visits to other areas of the country.

Culture, Media and Sport

Betting Shops

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what change there has been in the number of betting shops since the enactment of the Gambling Act 2006. (137050)

Local magistrates courts currently issue bookmakers’ permits. The Government does not hold information centrally on the number of bookmakers’ permits held.

However, the Gambling Commission has undertaken to publish figures on the number of licensed betting offices in 2008.

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport how many betting shops there were in each local authority area in each of the last three years. (138879)

Local magistrates courts currently issue bookmakers permits. The Government does not hold information centrally on the number of bookmakers permits held.

However, the Gambling Commission has undertaken to publish figures on the number of licensed betting offices in 2008.

Olympic Games: Greater London

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport (1) what estimate she has made of the potential value of land in the Olympic park following the games in 2012; (132550)

(2) what the sharing mechanism will be between the National Lottery and London council tax payers in respect of any windfall profits earned from the sale of land in the Olympic park after 2012;

(3) what estimate she has made of the likely provision to the national lottery good causes from any windfall profits earned from the sale of land in the Olympic park after 2012 to which she referred in her statement of 15 March 2007, Official Report, column 451.

The Mayor of London and I have now agreed after further discussion that we will rewrite our memorandum of understanding to put in place profit-sharing arrangements. This will provide that, after the The London Development Agency (LDA) has been repaid for the purchase and remediation of the land, the first call on any profit will be to repay the lottery.

LDA is currently leading detailed work to make a thorough assessment of the potential end values of land in the Olympic park and we await the outcome of that work. At this point—over five years before the games—it is difficult to predict this with certainty. However, land disposal plans will aim to maximise land revenues.

Written Questions

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport when she expects to reply to questions (a) 132550, (b) 132557 and (c) 132636, on the Olympic park, tabled by the hon. Member for East Devon on 18 April. (139233)

Leader of the House

Departments: Advertising

To ask the Leader of the House which (a) advertising agencies and (b) other organisations supplied consultancy services for advertising campaigns for his Office in each of the last five years; and what the cost of these services was. (139440)

Departments: Data Protection

To ask the Leader of the House how many times his Office was found to have been in breach of the Data Protection Act 1998 in each of the last five years; and if he will make a statement. (139217)

Departments: Property

To ask the Leader of the House what the cost of leasing buildings and office space was for his Office in each of the last five years. (139467)

This information is not held. For the period in question, the Leader of the House of Commons Office was a minor occupier in property leased by the Privy Council Office and was not hard charged for the space occupied.

Members Staff: Unsolicited Official Documents

To ask the Leader of the House what guidance is available to hon. Members' staff on action which they should take on receipt of unsolicited official documents. (138166)

Hon. Members’ staff are employed by the hon. Member concerned. It is a matter for hon. Members, as their employer, to give advice to their staff on any matter, including through the standard contract of employment.

Members' staff are subject to the same obligations under the law in respect of handling and returning any unsolicited official documents as other citizens.

Parliamentary Scrutiny: Legislative Drafting

To ask the Leader of the House which Bills were subject to pre-legislative scrutiny in each of the last 10 years; and which Bills he plans to allocate for pre-legislative scrutiny in the next 12 months. (138975)

Bills which have been published in draft for pre-legislative scrutiny since 1997 are listed, by parliamentary session. The list includes draft bills published so far in the current session. The Government have also announced that a draft Cultural Property (Armed Conflicts) Bill will be published in the current session. Decisions about bills to be published in draft in the next session will be announced in due course.

1997-98

Pension Sharing on Divorce

Criminal Justice (Terrorism and Conspiracy)

Limited Liability Partnerships

1998-99

Financial Services and Markets

Food Standards

Local Government (Organisation and Standards)

Electronic Communications

Freedom of Information

Political Parties, Elections and Referendums

1999-2000

Commonhold and Leasehold Reform

Football

Insolvency

International Criminal Court

Regulatory Reform

Water

2000-01

Export Control and Non-Proliferation

Proceeds of Crime

2001-02

Communications

Companies

Extradition

Justice (Northern Ireland)

Local Government

Mental Health

NHS (Wales)

2002-03

Civil Contingencies

Corruption

Electricity (Trading and Transmission)

Gambling (part)

Gender Recognition

Housing

Mental Incapacity

Nuclear Sites and Radioactive Substances

Police (Northern Ireland)

Public Audit (Wales)

2003-04

Animal Welfare

Charities

Civil Service

Criminal Defence Service

Disability Discrimination

Gambling (part)

Identity Cards

Mental Health

Regional Assemblies

School Transport

Single European Currency

Transport (Wales)

2004-05

Children (Contact) and Adoption

Commissioner for Older People (Wales)

Company Law Reform

Corporate Manslaughter

Natural Environment and Rural Communities

2005-06

Terrorism

Tribunals, Courts and Enforcement

Coroners

Legal Services

2006-07 (to date)

Climate Change

Human Tissue and Embryos

Local Transport

Regulatory Enforcement and Sanction

Northern Ireland

Abandoned Vehicles

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many investigatory cases have been delayed because of Operation Cube; and when he expects the review to be brought to conclusion. (133331)

The Forensic Science Service (FSS) has provided PSNI with a list of those cases that it believes may have been affected. PSNI is presently gathering further information regarding the investigative status of cases on the list and their priority before deciding upon further action. Given the current position of this exercise PSNI are unable to provide a timeline or quantify the cases involved.

Departments: Manpower

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many staff funded by the public purse were classified as people without posts in (a) his office and (b) its agencies, prior to the restoration of the devolved institutions. (137902)

Currently nil staff funded by the public purse were classified as people without posts in the Northern Ireland Office or any of its agencies prior to the restoration of the devolved institutions.

Departments: Private Finance Initiative

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland (1) what the total value of private finance initiative projects included in his Department’s balance sheet (a) is in 2007 and (b) was in each of the last five years, broken down by project; (137816)

(2) what the value was of annual private finance initiative payments made by his Department from (a) capital and (b) revenue budgets in each of the last five years;

(3) what value of annual private finance initiative payments by his Department was classified as (a) identifiable and (b) non-identifiable in each of the last five years, broken down by project;

(4) what value of annual private finance initiative (PFI) payments by his Department were (a) to repay capital and (b) expenditure on other parts of each PFI contract in each of the last five years, broken down by project.

The Northern Ireland Office (NIO) does not have any private finance initiative projects.

The NIO has an off-balance sheet commitment under public-private partnership (PPP) which is the Causeway project. The Causeway project is a partnership between Fujitsu Services and the NIO. The PPP contract was let with Fujitsu in August 2003 to deliver a managed service related to the electronic sharing of information across the criminal justice organisations in Northern Ireland over a 10 year period.

Forensic Science: Criminal Investigation

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what assessment he has made of the potential for the operational review of techniques on forensic analysis (Operation Cube) to delay the conduct of police investigations in Northern Ireland. (132059)

An issue has arisen regarding examinations for traces of DNA undertaken by the Forensic Science Service (FSS), during the period December 1999 and September 2005. FSS has provided PSNI with a list of those cases that it believes may have been affected. PSNI is presently gathering further information regarding the investigative status of cases on the list and their priority before deciding upon further action.

Payments: Police Service of Northern Ireland

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how much discount in payment for goods and services was lost by the Police Service of Northern Ireland in each of the last three years owing to a failure to pay invoices within the stipulated period. (132426)

It is PSNI policy always to avail itself of supplier discount when offered. No discount has been lost by PSNI in any of the last three years.

Defence

Afghanistan: Peace Keeping Operations

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many heavily armoured Land Rovers are available to British troops in each region of Afghanistan. (136394)

There are around 140 Weapon-Mount Installation Kit Land Rovers and 130 Snatch Land Rovers deployed with British forces in southern Afghanistan. I am withholding deployment by region as disclosure would, or would be likely to, prejudice the capability, effectiveness and security of our armed forces.

Armed Forces: Dental Services

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the annual cost of one defence dental officer was in each of the last five years. (133148)

In order to calculate the average cost of one uniformed defence medical services dental officer, average capitation rates have been obtained as follows. These include pay, allowances, earnings-related national insurance contributions and superannuation as well as allowances for support, training and higher formation costs. It has not been possible to obtain historic rates prior to 2004-05.

Financial year

Total capitation rate (£)

2004-05

174,103

2005-06

179,326

2006-07

185,809

The pay of all general dental practitioners is calculated from a single incremental tri-service pay spine, and the pay element of the aforementioned figures is based on a simple average across the spine. An average figure has been used in calculating the other elements (as noted) making up the capitation rates.

These do not take into account the differing rates across the services for support functions such as accommodation and infrastructure.

Armed Forces: Facilities

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what incentives are given to garrison commanders and unit commanders to generate income from the hire to the public of military facilities for non-military purposes; and if he will make a statement. (137916)

Under the Treasury’s Wider Markets Initiative, garrison and unit commanders—in common with the rest of the armed forces, the Ministry of Defence and other Government Departments—are encouraged to exploit commercially those assets which need to be retained but are not fully used.

The Treasury allows Departments to keep, and use as additional expenditure, the revenue they earn from Wider Markets. Within the armed forces and MOD, the extra income can be used both towards achieving core objectives and, at budget holders’ discretion, funding ‘quality of life’ improvements at the workplace of the unit concerned. Incentives to generate income can be summarised as:

Better value for defence, resulting from this extra contribution to running costs.

More efficient use of irreducible spare capacity.

A benefit to public relations from working more closely with industry and the public. An opportunity for personnel to acquire commercial skills.

Armed Forces: Intimidation

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will make a statement on the recent Continuous Attitude Survey findings relating to bullying and harassment in the armed forces. (137775)

These surveys demonstrate that we are listening to our armed forces personnel. Like any good employer, we need to monitor the long-term perceptions of our people so that we can review our policies.

Harassment and bullying are unacceptable in the armed forces, because of their impact on individuals, team cohesion and thus operational effectiveness. The armed forces are committed to raising awareness that bullying and harassment will not be tolerated, and allegations will be thoroughly investigated and action taken, where appropriate.

The armed forces have entered into formal agreements with the Commission for Racial Equality to promote racial equality and take action to prevent racial harassment and discrimination and, with the Equal Opportunities Commission to prevent and deal with sexual harassment. They also have a range of work in hand in response to the Adult Learning Inspectorate report on “Safer Training”, the HCDC’s report on Duty of Care and Sir Nicholas Blake’s report on the death at the Princess Royal Barracks Deepcut.

Armed Forces: Pensions

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many people who served in the armed forces between 1948 and 1974 do not receive a pension arising from that service. (134136)

Armed Forces: Schools

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what criteria apply to applications from (a) service personnel and (b) civilian personnel for places in Service Children’s Education schools. (138792)

The admission criteria for SCE schools is contained within Joint Service Publication (JSP) 342 - Education of Service Children.

Chapters 3 and 6 contain details relevant to admission and can be found at:

www.sceschools.com/publications

The document is currently being updated.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what mechanisms are in place for discussions between his Department and (a) the Department for Education and Skills, (b) devolved administrations and (c) local authorities on the educational needs of service children; what progress has been made on the implementation of a cross-UK forum to discuss these issues; and if he will make a statement. (138793)

There is regular contact between the Ministry of Defence and the Department for Education and Skills, the devolved administrations and local authorities regarding the educational needs of service children. Both Departments have a nominated lead for these matters and policy discussions—such as MOD input for the new schools admissions code—take place as required. The MOD Children's Education Advisory Service is the Department's main conduit in dealing with devolved administrations and local authorities for specific casework.

The inaugural meeting of the Service Children's Education Forum was held on 17 April this year and was attended by representatives from DFES, the devolved administrations, the MOD Children's Education Advisory Service and Service Children's Education (for service schools overseas). The forum's main purpose is to raise and resolve educational issues that affect service children, particularly where movement in or between the different countries of the UK or between the UK and overseas is a significant contributing factor. The forum will meet in the spring and autumn of each year.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what recent discussions his Department has had with the Department for Education and Skills on improving the transfer of the statements of service children with special educational needs and high mobility. (138795)

Discussions are continuing with the Department for Education and Skills—and with devolved education authorities—to identify ways of addressing difficulties that arise when service children with special educational needs move between local authority areas, between the devolved education authorities of the UK or between the UK and overseas. This issue was raised most recently in the service children's education forum on 17 April this year.

The MOD Children's Education Advisory Service provides direct support to service families that have registered a child with special educational needs, which they are advised and strongly encouraged to do. This includes acting with and on behalf of parents in establishing how needs will be met in a new location and advising and accompanying them in dealings with local authorities, education authorities and the SEN and Disabilities Tribunal.

Armed Forces: Weapons

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many (a) 51 mm light mortars, (b) 81 mm mortars, (c) 105 mm light guns, (d) AS 90 artillery guns and (e) 227 mm multiple launch rocket systems are (i) in service and (ii) fit for purpose. (137352)

The information is provided in the following table:

In service

Fit for purpose

51 mm mortars

1,190

11,081

81 mm mortars

339

339

105 mm light guns

142

142

AS90 howitzers

146

2143

Multiple launch rocket system

59

59

1 109 awaiting inspection and repair

2 Three permanently with industry for reference and test models.

Fit for purpose in this context has been interpreted as equipment which is, or will be shortly, available to the user for the purpose intended.

Armoured Fighting Vehicles

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many armoured vehicles are (a) in service and (b) fit for purpose, broken down by type. (137318)

The following table gives details of the total number of armoured vehicles in service. Those vehicles deployed with units and with units used in training are all deemed to be fit for purpose. The remainder of the fleet is undergoing programmed maintenance and repair, in storage, on loan and with the design authority and also used for reference, training aids and specific trials.

Vehicle type

Fleet size

Fit for purpose

Challenger 2

385

320

CVR(T)

1,158

979

FV430 Mk 2

1,265

1,031

FV430 Bulldog1

227

187

Saxon GWR2

442

94

Saxon Patrol

147

119

Warrior

793

717

1 Bulldog vehicles are currently in the course of delivery to MOD. The fleet sizes therefore relate to the total requirement and fit for purpose to the number delivered to date.

2 Saxon GWR is currently being withdrawn from service.

Armoured Fighting Vehicles: Peace Keeping Operations

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many Land Rovers of each type have turned over in (a) Iraq and (b) Afghanistan since the first deployment of British armed forces in each country. (137618)

Our collective records show that to date, there have been some 87 reported accidents, in Iraq, of Land Rovers “overturning without first colliding” and 13 in Afghanistan.

I can also confirm that at least 22 of these incidents in Iraq involved the Snatch variant Land Rover and at least two involved the WMIK variant; in Afghanistan at least three involved the Snatch and one involved a WMIK variant. The other incidents in both theatres involved the standard ‘General Service’ or ‘Fitted For Radio’ type variants. Further details of these vehicles could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Army: Costs

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer of 20 March 2007, Official Report, column 50W, on the Army: costs, what the reasons were for the amount spent on maintenance of the property occupied by the General Officer Commanding Northern Ireland, broken down by main budget heading. (136625)

The figure of £4,702.52 previously provided under the generic heading ‘maintenance’ contained an error of £17.50. The total figure spend on maintenance was actually £4,685.02, which covered a range of costs. The breakdown is as follows:

Work carried out

Cost (£)

Supply gardening sundries

196.20

Various electrical repairs

288.40

Power wash external areas

654.48

Treat flea infestation

100.00

Wash windows/frames (internal and external)

599.25

Rebed loose masonry at patio wall

341.61

Eradicate wasps nest at driveway

99.88

Clean out guttering and down pipes

352.50

Replace dish washing machine

348.92

Rectify leak at waste disposal m/c

102.23

Trace/rectify leak in roof space

156.28

Supply and fix chrome soap dish

14.61

Reseal kitchen sink

26.40

Supply and fix handle at T/dryer

88.13

Replace x 8 tensioners at curtains

188.00

Replace bath c/w taps etc.

587.50

Replacement of oil pump

185.51

Testing of portable appliances (33)

88.20

Replace thermostatic valves x 2

125.92

Planned maintenance for boilers and smoke alarms

141.00

Total

4,685.02

Army: Greater London

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence on which occasions the General Officer Commanding London District met hon. Members and peers in the last 12 months. (137437)

The information is provided in the following table.

Date

Event

11 May 2006

Armed forces parliamentary scheme visit.

17 June 2006

Lunch with Lord Inge

27 July 2006

Office call with Lord Guthrie

4 December 2006

Dinner with Philip Dunne MP

17 January 2007

Dinner with Keith Simpson MP

21 March 2007

Ex Household Division MP’s dinner at Queen’s Guard:-Hugo Swire MP, Andrew Robathan MP, Ben Wallace MP, Hugh Robertson MP, Mike Penning MP, David Tredinnick MP, and Adam Holloway MP

The above list does not include meetings with Ministers.

Army: Ski Lodges

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence which regiments of the Army have ski lodges. (138519)

The Army does not own any ski lodges. A number of lodges are rented by the Army to enable the conduct of Adventurous Training Activities under the auspices of the Joint Service Adventurous Training Scheme.

Individual regiments or corps are at liberty to have ski lodges using non-public funds. Information on which regiments or corps do so is not collated.

Chief of Defence Materiel

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list the claims for expenses made by the Chief of Defence Materiel since January 2005. (137131)

[holding answer 14 May 2007]: The Chief of Defence Materiel has made no claims for expenses since 2 April 2007, when the post was established.

Civilian Operational Allowance

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer of 28 November 2006, Official Report, column 622W, on the civilian operational allowance, what progress has been made on the introduction of a new allowance. (138786)

The new allowance was introduced with effect from 1 April 2007. It replaces the previous separate entitlement to claim overtime, travelling time, shift allowance, night duty, stand-by, recall and on-call allowances. All MOD civil servants deploying to operational theatres now receive a simplified allowance ‘package’ comprising a one-off pre-deployment grant and, during deployment, the operational deployment allowance and the operational working allowance.

Departments: Consultants

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list the outside (a) agencies and (b) consultancies which are undertaking work commissioned by his Department; and what the (i) purpose and (ii) cost is of each commission. (138459)

The specific information requested is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

However, summaries of MOD expenditure on external assistance are available in the Library of the House for the years 1995-96 to 2005-06.

Figures for financial year 2006-07 will be placed in the Library before the summer recess.

Departments: Intimidation

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many complaints of bullying have been investigated in his Department in the last 12 months; and how many complaints have been upheld. (134832)

The information is summarised in the following table for armed forces and MOD civilian personnel in the period April 2006 to March 2007.

Service

Investigated1

Upheld2

Royal Navy

13

9

Army

60

6

Royal Air Force

17

4

MOD Civil Service

39

4

1 This column records the number of formal complaints of bullying reported within each service and the MOD civil service. This number includes ongoing cases and complaints which were later withdrawn.

2 This column records the number of formal complaints upheld and excludes ongoing investigations (i.e. where some type of action was taken against the respondent).

The Department’s Unified Diversity Strategy makes clear that bullying and harassment are not tolerated in the Ministry of Defence or the armed forces. Revised complaints procedures were published in January 2007. Ongoing internal communications keep personnel informed of their rights and responsibilities.

Departments: Official Hospitality

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what (a) gifts and (b) hospitality were received by the (i) Chief of the General Staff, (ii) Adjutant General, (iii) General Officer Commanding Northern Ireland and (iv) Commander in Chief Land in the last 12 months. (135010)

Between 26 April 2006 and 26 April 2007 the gifts and hospitality received and accepted by the Chief of the General Staff, the Adjutant General, the General Officer Commanding Northern Ireland and the Commander in Chief Land are shown in the following tables.

During the same period, the Chief of the General Staff received 209 offers of hospitality/gifts and accepted 46. Commander in Chief Land received 75 offers, and accepted 19. General Officer Commanding Northern Ireland received 41 offers and accepted 16 and the Adjutant General received 42 offers and accepted 10.

Chief of the General Staff

Date

Provider

Description

1 May 2006

Brazilian Chief of the General Staff

Books

2 May 2006

General Commanding 1 Division

Plaque and clock

2 May 2006

Chilean ambassador

Book

2 May 2006

Chief of Joint Operations Chile

Pencil case

2 May 2006

Chief of Joint Operations Chile

Metal salver

2 May 2006

Chief of Joint Operations Chile

Pair of spurs

10 May 2006

Australian Chief of the General Staff

Boomerang

22 May 2006

Oxford Union

Address and dinner

25 May 2006

Editor of the House Magazine

Dinner

26 May 2006

Royal Chelsea Flower Show

Tickets and lunch

1 June 2006

De la Rue

Dinner

6 June 2006

Bucks Club

Dinner and speech

13 June 2006

Deborah Tan

Dinner

14 June 2006

Andrew Nurnberg

Lunch

15 June 2006

Aberdeen Asset Managers

Scottish music spectacular

16 June 2006

Robert Fox

Lunch

20 June 2006

Royal Academy of Music

Concert and dinner

23 June 2006

Afghani Minster of Defence

Plaque

29 June 2006

Fergus Greer (Studios)

Drinks

2 July 2006

Brazilian Defence Attaché

Books

8 July 2006

Lawn Tennis Association

Tickets and lunch

14 July 2006

Dutch Chief of the General Staff

Statuette

15 July 2006

Jamaican Chief of Staff

Picture

20 July 2006

Pakistani Vice Chief of the Army Staff

Plaque

23 July 2006

Canadian Forces Base Suffield and British Army Training Unit Suffield

Embroidery

24 July 2006

Vauxhall Cross

Dinner

25 July 2006

Archbishop of Canterbury

Reception

31 August 2006

Victory Services Association

Lunch

5 September 2006

Defence Correspondents

Cocktail party

6 September 2006

Brazilian embassy

Reception

6 September 2006

Pakistani high commissioner

Reception

7 September 2006

Ralph Zoellner (Boeing)

Dinner

12 September 2006

Lieutenant General Shoke

Figurine

14 September 2006

Brigadier-General Quezeda

Plaque

19 September 2006

The Lord Boyce

Dinner

20 September 2006

Egyptian embassy

Reception

21 September 2006

Saudi Arabian embassy

Reception

25 September 2006

Vickers Defence Systems

Bronze cannon

3 October 2006

Nigerian Chief of the General Staff

Book

2 December 2006

New Zealand Army Chief

Ceremonial weapon

2 December 2006

New Zealand Army Chief

Scarf and gloves

2 December 2006

New Zealand Army Chief

Plaque

2 December 2006

New Zealand Chief of the Defence Force

Plaque

2 December 2006

Australian Army Chief

Boomerang

2 December 2006

Australian Army Chief

Plaque

2 December 2006

Australian Army Chief

Scarf

Adjutant General

Date

Provider

Description

6 May 2006

The Babcock Inter-Services Championship

Rugby match/reception

23 May 2006

Visit of the British American Forecasting Exchange (BAFEX)

Gift—paperweight

29 June 2006

The British Forces Foundation

Annual charity ball

6 October 2006

The Variety Club

Lunch—guest

11 November 2006

Royal British Legion—Festival of Remembrance

Guest—Army Board representative

14 November 2006

United Services Mess

Remembrance dinner/speech

9 January 2007

The Basic Skills Agency

Reception/speech

15 January 2007

Visit from UAE, Chief of Administration and Manpower

Silver plate

24 January 2007

Woodroffe's

Lunch/speech

19 February 2007

Company of Fruiterers, The Masters, Wardens and Court of Assistants

Livery banquet—guest

General Officer Commanding Northern Ireland

Date

Provider

Description

8 May 2006

Lord Mayor of Belfast

Civic dinner, City Hall Belfast

9 May 2006

PUS (NIO) and Director of Policing and Security NI

Reception, Hillsborough Castle

15 May 2006

Secretary of State (NI)

Garden Party, Hillsborough Castle

7 June 2006

Stn Comd RAF Coningsby

Plaque on occasion of GOC's visit

9 August 2006

NICSS Regt

BFPO official first day cover

23 August 2006

25 Engr Regt

Plaque made of South Armagh Tower

9 September 2006

Order of Malta

Victory Day lunch and mass, Armagh

20 October 2006

North Irish Horse

Dinner, Belfast

4 November 2006

Royal British Legion

Festival of Remembrance, Belfast

11 November 2006

Queens University Services Club

Dinner, Belfast

23 November 2006

Presentation from unit under Command

Hip flask and cup set

24 November 2006

Forces Financial

Champagne reception London

11 December 2006

Secretary of State (NI)

Christmas reception

22 December 2006

Secretary of State (NI)

Security forces Christmas reception, Hillsborough Castle

20 February 2007

Thales

Meeting and lunch, Castlereagh

21 February 2007

Chief Constable

International policing conference, City Hall

Commander in Chief Land

Date of hospitality

Provider

Description

1 to 4 May 06

Allied Canadian Army StaffTalks

Mounted rock statue on base

23 to 24 May 06

Gen McNeil US Army

US army silver plate

22 June 2006

CGSNZ

Book and ceramic bowl

10 to 11 July 2006

Commander in Chief Germany

Tank in case

10 to 11 July 2006

Commander in Chief Germany

Paperweight

18 July 2006

Vice Chief of Army Staff Pakistan

Plaque

18 July 2006

Vice Chief of Army Staff Pakistan

Cufflinks and tie pin

13 September 2006

Lt Gen Shoke—CGS South African Army

Plaque

16 October 2006

Comd US Army Combined Arms Centre

Four silver cups in case

17 October 2006

CO US Army Welfare College

Wooden pencil box

17 October 2006

CO US Army Welfare College

Book on Westpoint

17 October 2006

CO US Army College of General Staff

Book ‘Block by Block’

13 December 2006

BAE Systems

Christmas drinks

12 October 2006

COS US Army

Bronze coin

15 October 2006

Chief of Staff Army (US)

US army book

15 October 2006

Deputy Chief of Staff Army (US)

Tankard

15 October 2006

Chief of Staff US Army

Serving bowl

9 March 2007

BAE Systems

Grand Military—lunch and hospitality

29 to 30 January 2007

COMFAT

Pewter ashtray

Departments: Private Finance Initiative

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the total value is of private finance initiative projects included in his Department’s balance sheet for (a) 2007-08 and (b) each of the last five years, broken down by project. (137781)

The total capital value of each PFI project that is included in the MOD balance sheet is published in the Her Majesty’s Treasury PFI Signed Projects List which can be found on the HMT website at:

http://www.hm-treasury.gov.uk/documents/public_private_partnerships/ppp_pfi_stats.cfm

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the total value is of the annual private finance initiative payments made by his Department from (a) capital and (b) revenue budgets in each of the last five years. (137782)

Details of the annual private finance initiative unitary charge payments are published in the Her Majesty’s Treasury PFI Signed Projects List which can be found on the HMT website at:

http://www.hm-treasury.gov.uk/documents/public_private_partnerships/ppp_pfi_stats.cfm

The relevant columns are V - Z.

All payments come from the revenue budget.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what value of the annual private finance initiative payments for his Department is (a) identifiable and (b) non-identifiable in each of the last five years, broken down by project. (137783)

All payments made under private finance initiative (PFI) are identifiable. Prior to a PFI contract being signed, the profile of unitary charge payments is agreed between the contractor and the public sector, subject to the operation of the payment mechanism.

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what value of annual private finance initiative (PFI) payments is (a) to repay capital and (b) expenditure on other parts of each PFI contract in each of the last five years, broken down by project. (137784)

The information requested is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Departments: Sovereign Strategy

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many meetings (a) Ministers and (b) officials from his Department held with Sovereign Strategy in each year between 1997 and 2006. (136866)

There were no departmental meetings between Defence Ministers and Sovereign Strategy between 1997 and 2006, although the Minister for Europe, my right hon. Friend the Member for Ashfield (Mr. Hoon) met Alan Donnelly, Executive Chairman of Sovereign Strategy, on a number of occasions as they have been personal friends for a number of years. Also Ivor Caplin, a previous Defence Minister, met Alan Davidson, an Assistant Director of Sovereign Strategy, in a private capacity on 25 November 2004.

Specific data on the number of meetings between MOD officials and Sovereign Strategy are not held centrally within the Department and could only be provided at disproportionate cost.

Ex-servicemen: Medical Treatments

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many cases of medical treatment which have (a) been delayed and (b) not been received have been raised by veterans in the last five years. (137548)

This information is not held by the MOD or its Service Personnel and Veterans Agency (SPVA). Where a war pensioner raises priority treatment issues with MOD or SPVA, officials investigate and as appropriate take up cases with the relevant health authority.

HMS Albion

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence for what reasons it is proposed to reduce HMS Albion to a state of extended readiness; and when he expects to announce a decision on the reduction. (138526)

[holding answer 21 May 2007]: It is not MOD policy to publish details of the readiness states of individual Royal Navy vessels or types (we have made exceptions for the aircraft carrier HMS Invincible and those ships entering refit, as detailed in my letter of 6 March 2007); nor would we be prepared to divulge the readiness profile of the fleet as a whole, or comment on individual changes. Such information could enable deductions to be made about the condition and preparedness of units and of the Navy, and would therefore be prejudicial to the safety of individual units and to national security.

Iraq and Afghanistan: Peace Keeping Operations

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many visits he has made to servicemen and women wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan; and how many visits have been made by other Ministers. (138833)

[holding answer 22 May 2007]: Since 2003, Defence Ministers have made a total of 48 visits to injured service personnel in hospitals in the UK and overseas. Those injured service personnel include servicemen and women wounded in Iraq and Afghanistan. The following table shows the number of visits made by each Minister.

Visits

Secretary of State for Defence

19

Minister for the Armed Forces

10

Minister for Defence Equipment and Support

6

Under Secretary of State

13

In addition, Ministers have also visited personnel in the UK once they have returned from operational duty. On some of these occasions Ministers will have met injured personnel and their families.

Navy: Vessels

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence which naval vessels have been sold by the Royal Navy in the last five years; what the (a) vessel type, (b) service cost and (c) destination country was in each case; and if he will estimate the (i) original costs of each vessel and (ii) financial gains accrued to public funds as a result of each sale. (137565)

[holding answer 16 May 2007]: The information is provided in the following table:

Type

Country

Service cost

Original cost (£)

Sale price (£)

2002-03

HMS Beagle

Bulldog Class Hydrographical Survey Ship

1

2

353 million

750,000

HMS London

T22 Frigate

Romania

2

4156million

116 million

HMS Coventry

4147 million

HMS Shetland

Island Class Offshore Patrol Vehicles

Bangladesh

2

353 million each

8 million

HMS Aldernay

HMS Anglesey

HMS Lindisfarne

HMS Guernsey

HMS Sheffield

Type 22 Frigate

Chile

2

4151 million

27 million

2003-04

HMS Unseen

Upholder Class Submarine

Canada

5

5

6

HMS Scylla

Leader Class Frigate

7

5

5

2004-05

RFA Sir Geraint

Round Table Landing Ship Logistical

8

5

5

300,000

2005-06

HMS Marlborough

Type 23 Frigate

Chile

2

4120 million

134 million

HMS Norfolk

4142 million

HMS Grafton

479 million

2006-07

HMS Sandown

Sandown Class Mine Hunter

Estonia

2

353 million each

32 million

HMS Inverness

HMS Bridport

1 Records not kept beyond point of sale.

2 This information is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

3 Information concerning original cost is not held. Average cost has been estimated at 2007 prices and includes Government furnished equipment.

4 Original cost of vessels not held. Original build cost provided but does not include other costs such as Ministry supplied material and equipment.

5 No records held.

6 Leased to Canada in 1998, with an option to purchase, which was exercised in 2003. It is impossible to calculate exact value for this submarine as lease covered four submarines, remaining three still under lease. Total value of lease is Canadian $360 million for all four submarines.

7 Sunk as artificial reef.

8 Records not kept beyond point of sale—ultimately dismantled in Pakistan.

These figures are rounded and those in the “sale price” column reflect the total sales revenue.

It is standard practice for sales of surplus warships to foreign Governments to include a package of modernisation and regeneration work provided by industry. It is not possible to provide figures relating to industry costs or the subsequent detailed financial returns to the UK defence budget and British taxpayer, without incurring disproportionate costs. Moreover, any such figures would be commercially sensitive, and could not be released.

In many cases the only alternative to a sale of these surplus warships would have been recycling, potentially at a cost to the British taxpayer. The benefits of these sales extend beyond the capital return, as they provide a defence diplomacy impact and enhance British industrial participation. It is not possible to quantify these benefits; however, in each case, the sale represented the best available outcome.

Snow Queen Exercise

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the cost of the last exercise Snow Queen was; and if he will make a statement. (137440)

Exercise “Snow Queen” used to be run in Germany with the objective of introducing soldiers to skiing. This exercise was discontinued over ten years ago and details of the costs incurred on the last occasion that it took place have not been retained. An adventurous training activity weekend undertaken by the wives and other female members based in Suffield, Canada in March this year, also titled “Exercise Snow Queen”, was funded through the British Army Unit Suffield Wives’ Club. All costs incurred by the Army were recovered from the participants.

Submarines

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence whether the commitment to maintaining and deploying an eight-boat attack submarine fleet in the 2004 supplement to the 2003 Defence White Paper remains in place. (138524)

[holding answer 21 May 2007]: As set out in the 2004 "Future Capabilities" supplement to the 2003 White Paper, by late 2008 our attack submarine fleet will consist of eight boats. Thereafter, the existing Swiftsure and Trafalgar class submarines will be progressively replaced by the new and more capable Astute class.

Education and Skills

Teenage Boys: Literacy

11. To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what steps are being taken to encourage teenage boys to read. (138964)

Reading for pleasure is essential to improving children's chances of success.

The Boys into Books initiative I launched last week allows every state-funded secondary school with boys on roll to select 20 free books. The Reading Champions initiative provides a range of ideas and resources to encourage boys to read more by using the motivational power of reading role models.

Both initiatives support our wider programme to promote literacy, including the planned National Year of Reading in 2008.

Mandarin

12. To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what steps he is taking to encourage the teaching of Mandarin at GCSE level. (138965)

The Qualifications and Curriculum Authority have recently consulted on which languages schools should teach to 11 to 14-year-olds. We expect them to advise that schools should be free to teach any major languages they choose from 2008. The Specialist Schools and Academies Trust provide support to over 80 schools already teaching Mandarin. We expect this number to rise when the new secondary curriculum is introduced.

Young Adults: Learning Difficulties

13. To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills if he will make a statement on his Department's provision of resources for post-19 education for young adults with severe learning difficulties. (138966)

For young people studying higher education courses there is comprehensive student support available. Disabled students' allowances (DSAs) help meet the additional costs arising from a disability, mental health condition or learning disability. Under the Learning and Skills Act 2000 we have a commitment to provide suitable facilities for learners in further education aged 19 onwards. In 2004-05 the Learning and Skills Council (LSC) provided almost £1.5 billion to support 640,000 post-16 learners of all ages with learning difficulties and/or disabilities.

City Academies

14. To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many academy schools are planned to be opened in the next 12 months. (138967)

There are 47 academies already open. In September this year we plan to open another 36 academies, with up to a further 50 projected to open in September 2008.

Basic Skills Training

15. To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills whether he has had discussions with ministerial colleagues in the Department for Work and Pensions on co-ordinating basic skills training for the unemployed and other benefit claimants who would like to work. (138968)

In March 2006 DfES and DWP Ministers agreed an approach for transferring responsibility for the planning and funding of basic skills training to the Learning and Skills Council as recommended by the National Employment Panel with the aim of improving quality and co-ordination of learning opportunities.

We are working across Government to develop a new programme for Basic Skills and Employability which will provide opportunities to improve their skills and move into sustainable employment

Further Education Funding

17. To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills if he will make a statement on extending further education funding to support 17 to 19-year-olds. (138970)

I refer my hon. Friend to the reply previously given today to my hon. Friend the Member for East Lothian (Anne Moffat).

Grammar Schools

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what recent discussions he has had with local authorities on the future of grammar schools. (138969)

We have not discussed the future of grammar schools with local authorities recently but our position remains unchanged: we are not in favour of academic selection and do not wish to see it extended.

Child Care

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what steps the Government are taking to ensure that there is sufficient quality child care available in local areas. (138971)

From next April, every local authority will have a duty to secure sufficient child care for working parents in their area. They will be supported in doing so by the £3 billion the Government have made available between 2006 and 2008 to support the child care market and to develop 2,500 children’s centres; and the further £3 billion invested each year in free early education for every three and four-year-old.

Adoption

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills pursuant to the answer of 15 May 2007, Official Report, column 662W, on adoption, what intensive targeted work has been carried out by his Department with local authorities to improve placement stability for children in care; and what assessment he has made of the effect of this work. (138972)

Too often, children who stay in care long-term are affected by numerous changes of carer, which impacts on their security and wellbeing, their ability to make and maintain friendships, and their schooling, which is often disrupted as a result. The Department appointed a small team of independent consultants—all former senior managers in social services—to work with 34 local authorities who had a significant contribution to make to the department's PSA target on improving stability for children in long-term care. Each local authority received five days’ free consultancy to help them develop their own action plans to improve stability. Each authority is also being encouraged to share their learning with others in the same region, and materials are being developed to facilitate this. Telephone consultancy was also offered to 50 more local authorities, if they wished to accept it. The work ended in March this year, and it is therefore too soon to identify the impact it has had on performance.

Children: Armed Forces

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what steps he is taking to improve the transfer of the (a) records and (b) special needs statements of service children with high mobility; and if he will make a statement. (138794)

Under The Education (Pupil Information) (England) Regulations 2005, when any pupil moves from one school to another the ‘old’ school must transfer the pupil’s common transfer file and education record within 15 school days of the child ceasing to be registered at the school. Where a pupil has special educational needs (SEN) the common transfer file will include the type of special educational provision that is being made.

For children with SEN statements who move between local authority areas there is a statutory process, set out in the SEN Code of Practice, for the old authority to transfer the statement to the new authority. The new authority must tell the parents within six weeks of the date of transfer when they will review the statement and whether they propose to reassess the child. Until such time as the new authority amends the statement they are under a duty to arrange the special educational provision set out on the statement.

A new forum, the Service Children’s Education Forum, has been established, with representatives from this Department, the devolved administrations and the Ministry of Defence, to examine difficulties faced by Service children as they move in, or between, the different education authorities of the UK and between the UK and overseas. The forum is exploring a number of strands of work including those of mobility and continuity of SEN support. A Mitigating Mobility project led by the Service Children’s Education Agency is producing best practice guidance and the Service Children in State Schools Forum—an advisory group of schools in England with a high proportion of Service children—is contributing to this (and associated) work.

Education Maintenance Allowance

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many young people in Easington constituency received (a) £30, (b) £20 and (c) £10 in education maintenance allowance in each of the last three years. (135861)

This is a matter for the Learning and Skills Council, who operate the education maintenance allowance (EMA) for the DfES and hold the information about take-up and payments made under the scheme. Mark Haysom, the Council’s Chief Executive, has written to my hon. Friend with the information requested and a copy of his reply has been placed in the House Library.

Letter from Mark Haysom, dated 15 May 2007:

I am writing in response to your recent Parliamentary Question that asked:

“How many young people in Easington constituency have received (a) £30, (b) £20 and (c) £10 in educational maintenance allowance in each of the last three years.”

Information on the number of young people who have applied, enrolled and received education maintenance allowance (EMA) is available at local authority level, but not at constituency level. EMA take-up is defined as young people who have received one or more EMA payments in the academic year.

The following table shows EMA take-up data split by payment band for Durham local authority area during each academic year since the scheme’s inception.

Take-up of EMA in each academic year

Durham LA

£30

£20

£10

Total

2004/05

1,838

271

336

2,445

2005/06

3,438

472

458

4,368

2006/07

4,641

574

554

5,769

I hope this information is useful and addresses your question.

Employment Schemes

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills (1) how many starts on the Entry 2 Employment programme were contracted between the Learning and Skills Council and providers in each county in England for each of the last four years; how many starts there were in each county in each year; and what the percentage difference is between the two figures in each case; (131647)

(2) when he will reply to Question 131647, on the Entry 2 Employment programme, tabled by the hon. Member for Cheltenham on 29 March 2007.

[holding answer 16 April 2007]: Data on Entry2Employment programme participants are collected on the Learning and Skills Council’s (LSC) Individualised Learner Record (ILR). The Entry2Employment programme was introduced in the work-based learning ILR collection for the first time in 2002/03 and figures are presented from that time.

The following table shows the number of starts on the Entry2Employment programme in each local Learning and Skills Council area—these data are not currently available by county.

We are unable to provide figures on the number of starts contracted between LSC and providers, and the difference between the number of actual and contracted starts, because data on contracted starts are not collected. Contracts are for places rather than starts; a provider may be contracted to fill 30 places but these 30 places may be filled by 70 or more young people during the year.

Volume of E2E starts by local LSC area

2003/04

2004/05

2005/06

Derbyshire

1,510

1,110

1,610

Nottinghamshire

1,580

830

920

Lincolnshire and Rutland

680

530

470

Leicestershire

720

520

800

Northamptonshire

870

620

680

Norfolk

950

550

700

Cambridgeshire

550

520

580

Suffolk

610

460

570

Bedfordshire and Luton

530

510

540

Hertfordshire

800

640

710

Essex

1,730

1,300

1,550

London - North

850

820

740

London - West

780

640

650

London - Central

2,340

1,950

1,910

London - East

1,820

1,690

1,760

London - South

1,370

1,000

1,010

Northumberland

420

470

420

Tyne and Wear

2,410

2,260

1,840

County Durham

880

770

780

Tees Valley

1,360

1,390

1,300

Cumbria

860

660

720

Lancashire

2,100

1,940

1,840

Greater Merseyside

3,980

3,300

3,090

Greater Manchester

3,540

3,300

3,290

Cheshire and Warrington

580

520

520

Milton Keynes, Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire

1,040

890

910

Berkshire

320

350

350

Hampshire and Isle of Wight

1,500

1,560

1,560

Surrey

270

330

320

Sussex

650

920

550

Kent and Medway

1,210

1,210

1,320

Devon and Cornwall

1,600

1,020

1,170

Somerset

450

340

290

Bournemouth, Dorset and Poole

600

530

540

West of England

980

1,050

960

Wiltshire and Swindon

380

380

310

Gloucestershire

1,050

740

590

Shropshire

910

670

550

Staffordshire

1,510

1,520

1,240

The Black Country

1,960

1,680

1,240

Birmingham and Solihull

1,880

1,880

1,770

Herefordshire and Worcestershire

610

540

550

Coventry and Warwickshire

1,340

930

880

North Yorkshire

440

320

260

West Yorkshire

3,720

2,780

2,700

South Yorkshire

2,070

1,700

1,610

Humberside

1,390

1,230

1,380

England

59,680

50,830

50,030

Note:

Numbers are rounded to the nearest 10.

Source:

Individualised Learner Record

Further Education

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many 16 to 18-year-olds were in (a) full-time education and (b) work-based learning in each year between 1997 and 2006 in each local education authority. (130989)

GCSEs

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what percentage of pupils in maintained schools achieved five A* to C grades at GCSE, including English and mathematics, but excluding both (a) equivalents and (b) applied double GCSE awards, in 2006. (114673)

[holding answer 22 January 2007]: Revised 2006 figures show that 42.6 per cent. of pupils at the end of key stage 4 in maintained schools achieved five or more A*-C grades including English and mathematics at GCSE only. 43.4 per cent. of pupils in maintained schools achieved five or more A*-C grades at GCSE and equivalent, including English and mathematics excluding applied double GCSE awards.

Nurseries: Kettering

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills if the Minister responsible for the 2006 code of conduct for nurseries will visit Kettering constituency to discuss its impact on local nursery provision. (139092)

My colleagues and I regularly meet representatives of a range of national and local stakeholders with an interest in the free early education entitlement and other childcare issues.

The current code of practice was introduced in April 2006, following a full consultation with interested parties and sets out key principles by which local authorities plan the delivery of the free entitlement in their area in accordance with local circumstances and market dynamics.

Pre-school Education: Finance

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills (1) what guidance his Department has given to local education authorities on the topslicing of the nursery education grant to nursery providers; and if he will make a statement; (138677)

(2) what evidence his Department has considered on the percentage value of the nursery education grant which local education authorities are passing to providers; and if he will make a statement.

We do not provide guidance to local authorities on ‘topslicing’ nursery education funding. Funding for the free entitlement to early education for three and four-year-olds is provided to local authorities through the dedicated schools grant (DSG), alongside funding for all pre-16 learning. Local authorities—in consultation with their school forums—are responsible for deciding how best to apply their total school and early years funding across all age groups and between different types of provider, based on an assessment of local circumstances.

The Schools, Early Years and 14-16 Funding consultation which ends on 1 June sets out a number of proposals for changes to the way the early years funding system operates. As part of our consideration of these options and to assess their impact, the Department is developing a more comprehensive evidence base of current practice around the country. We asked all authorities to complete a questionnaire, by 18 May 2007, setting out how they allocate and distribute free entitlement funding to maintained schools and to private, voluntary and independent (PVI) providers. We are also working with authorities to produce estimates of the level of funding allocated to early years in each local authority and its distribution between the PVI and maintained sectors in 2005-06 and 2006-07.

We intend to collate and publish both the questionnaire responses and the levels of funding in each local authority so that authorities can benchmark their approaches to funding the free entitlement.

Schools: Health

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills (1) if he will place in the Library a copy of the PA Consulting review of the Healthy Schools programme; (138848)

(2) what estimate his Department has made of the (a) number and (b) percentage of schools which are participating in the National Healthy Schools programme; what proportion of them have achieved National Healthy School status; and if he will make a statement.

The PA Consulting review of the National Healthy Schools programme was a short exercise conducted for internal purposes, and to help steer our planned three-year research into the impact of the programme on promoting healthier lifestyle in schools. We do plan to place a copy of the review in the House of Commons Library in the coming month.

From September 2005, we had incorporated a more rigorous approach to the National Healthy Schools programme. Schools will have to meet criteria in all four core themes to satisfy the requirements of National Healthy Schools Status.

As at 21 May 2007, 20,256 (88.8 per cent.) schools are participating in the programme with 7,307 (32.3 per cent.) schools having achieved National Healthy schools status.

Science: Higher Education

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many pupils from the maintained sector applied to study (a) physics, (b) chemistry, (c) biochemistry, (d) psychology and (e) sports sciences at (i) a Russell Group university and (ii) other universities in each of the last five years. (138117)

The available information is shown in the table. The figures are taken from data collected by the Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS) which are limited to students who apply to full-time undergraduate courses via the UCAS application system. The figures do not therefore cover part-time students, nor those full-time students who apply directly to Higher Education Institutions.

Applications from1 UK domiciled pupils at maintained2 sector Institutions to Russell Group and non-Russell Group3 Institutions in the UK by subject of study year of entry 2002 to 2006

Year of Entry

Applications for :

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

Physics

at Russell Group Institutions

7,096

7,069

6,439

7,028

7,664

Non-Russell Group Institutions3

5,746

5,929

5,024

5,765

5,681

Total

72,842

72,998

11,463

72,793

73,345

Chemistry

at Russell Group Institutions

5,621

5,641

5,762

7,149

7,813

Non-Russell Group Institutions3

7,302

6,898

7,361

7,153

7,353

Total

72,923

72,539

73,723

74,302

75,766

MolecularBiology, Biophysics and Biochemistry4

at Russell Group Institutions

4,823

4,711

4,465

4,658

4,109

Non-Russell Group Institutions3

3,758

3,810

3,987

4,197

4,039

Total

8,587

8,527

8,452

8,855

8,748

Psychology

at Russell Group Institutions

15,392

16,641

15,535

15,540

14,937

Non-Russell Group Institutions3

39,898

45,181

44,170

49,562

48,490

Total

55,290

67,822

59,705

65,702

63,427

Sports Science

at Russell Group Institutions

843

1,441

1,404

1,497

1,434

Non-Russell Group Institutions3

29,795

32,367

32,542

36,174

39,626

Total

30,638

33,808

33,946

37,677

47,060

1 Applicants to UCAS can submit up to six applications, in this table students have been counted once for each application they submit.

2 Maintained sector institutions are Comprehensive Schools, Further/Higher Education Institutions, Grammar Schools, Sixth Form Centres, Sixth Form Colleges, Other Maintained Institutions and Other Institutions.

3 Includes all other HE and FE institutions covered by the UCAS application system, other than Russell-Group institutions.

4 Subject figures for Biochemistry can only be displayed as the overall group Molecular Biology, Biophysics and Biochemistry.

Source:

Universities and Colleges Admissions Service (UCAS)

Train to Gain Programme: Copeland

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many businesses in Copeland have accessed the Train to Gain service since its launch. (133482)

Train to Gain is an ongoing service and as such performance is updated on a regular basis. Detailed operational information is not held centrally by the Department but is collected by the Learning and Skills Council (LSC); Mark Haysom as the LSC chief executive has written directly to my hon. Friend. A copy of his reply has been placed in the House Library.

Letter from Mark Haysom, dated 15 May 2007

I am writing in response to your recent parliamentary question about how many businesses in Copeland have accessed the Train to Gain service since its launch.

There have been 25 businesses that have accessed the Skills Brokerage Service in and around Copeland. These contacts are sorted by postcode and the 25 is made up of

CA12 = 7

CA13 = 5

CA14 = 10

CA28 = 3

I hope this response is helpful to you.

Unemployment: Young People

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what proportion of 16 to 18-year-olds were not in education, employment and training in each year since the establishment of the Connexions service. (138163)

The following table gives the proportion of 16 to 18-year-olds not in education, employment or training (NEET) in England in each year since the Connexions service was established in 2001 where figures are available.

Proportion of 16 to 18-year-olds not in education, employment or training (NEET)

End of calendar year

Percentage

2001

10

2002

10

2003

10

2004

10

2005 (provisional)

11

To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many young people in London are not in education, employment or training; what steps are being taken to reduce this number; and if he will make a statement. (110609)

I have been asked to reply.

There were 1,076,350 people of working age who were not in employment, education or training in the London Government office region in October to December 2006. The total number of people on out of work benefits in London has fallen by 106,300 since 1997.

Some of these people will have chosen not to be in employment or education. However, for the rest, we have a range of policies on employment and education to provide them with opportunities.

To help us achieve our aim of reaching an 80 per cent. employment rate, we have set ourselves the aspiration of a million fewer people on incapacity benefits in a decade. The Welfare Reform Bill enabling us to achieve this has just passed through Parliament.

We will be rolling out our successful Pathways to Work across the capital in 2008, and will also shortly begin testing our new City Strategy which will focus on those areas where benefit receipt, social exclusion and poverty are most concentrated. Two of the pathfinder areas for the strategy are in London.

International Development

Africa: Electricity

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what projects the UK is involved in to develop the electricity supply in Africa; and what studies he has (a) commissioned and (b) evaluated on carbon emissions from increasing electricity use in Africa. (138863)

At the Gleneagles summit in 2005, the UK secured G8 agreement that the World Bank should lead on establishing a new clean energy investment framework (CEIF), which would operate as part of the international financing system. The aim of this framework is to increase public and private sector investment in cleaner energy in developing countries.

The World Bank’s action plan for the CEIF has three main parts, one of which is to increase energy access in Africa. This includes giving greater attention to Africa’s need for increased electricity generation, transmission and household electrification.

The World Bank is starting discussions with some African governments about how the action plan can be implemented, aimed at improving access by households to modern energy services.

The UK has committed over £15 million to the CEIF so far, including £3 million for technical support in developing the CEIF and supporting discussions in developing countries. We will consider with the World Bank what additional support may be needed in particular countries.

Africa’s energy-related carbon emissions are very small compared to industrialised regions and likely to remain so in the foreseeable future. We have not commissioned or evaluated the carbon emissions from increasing electricity use in Africa, although some data and predictions are compiled by the International Energy Agency.

Africa: Teachers and Doctors

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what the average cost is of training (a) local and (b) UK-based (i) teachers and (ii) doctors to work in developing African countries. (138940)

[holding answer 23 May 2007]: The average costs for training doctors and teachers in Africa are not collected by the main international databases (e.g. UNESCO Education for All Global Monitoring report) due to the difficulty in tracking the wide variety of different training programmes and initiatives across Africa as well as poor data quality.

However, the World Health Organization estimated in 2006 that globally, health budgets will have to increase by at least US$10 per person per year by 2025, to educate and pay the salaries of the four million health workers needed in the 57 countries with severe shortages. Most of these countries are in Sub-Saharan Africa.

According to the UK Department for Health, the cost of training a doctor to full registration including the first year of working in the NHS is between £200,000 and £250,000. This does not include costs of postgraduate training as this is far highly variable and it is difficult to arrive at a meaningful average.

According to the UK Department for Education and Skills—Training and Development Agency (TDA) the cost of training a teacher in the UK can range from £4,500 to £19,000 with an average cost of approximately £12,000. It should be noted that this average uses the total funds paid by the TDA for an academic year and the total number of registered teachers. The figure is therefore only indicative as there are numerous different routes into teaching within the UK.

Burma: Overseas Aid

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much aid was allocated to Burma in (a) 2005-06 and (b) 2006-07, broken down by main budget heading; and what conditions were attached to such aid. (138509)

In 2005-06 DFID aid to Burma was £6.4 million, of which:

£4.5 million was on HIV/AIDS, Communicable Diseases and Basic Health Care;

£0.6 million was for Food Security and Rural Livelihoods;

£1.0 million was for Internally Displaced People and Refugees;

£60,000 was for Democracy and Human Rights.

2006-07 official figures are not yet available. The budget for DFID aid to Burma was £8.0 million, of which:

£4.3 million was on HIV/AIDS, Communicable Diseases and Basic Health Care;

£1.2 million was for Food Security and Rural Livelihoods;

£1.1 million was for Internally Displaced People and Refugees;

£1.4 million was on Education;

£70,000 was for Democracy and Human Rights.

DFID has recently approved a programme of £3 million over three years specifically to support work on democratic change at the local level. The programme will start during 2007-08.

The conditions which European Union member states have agreed to apply to their aid is defined by the European Union Common Position, Article 3, which states that:

“Non-humanitarian aid or development programmes shall be suspended. Exceptions shall be made for projects and programmes in support of:

(a) human rights, democracy, good governance, conflict prevention and building the capacity of civil society;

(b) health and education, poverty alleviation and in particular the provision of basic needs and livelihoods for the poorest and most vulnerable populations;

(c) environmental protection and, in particular, programmes addressing the problem of non-sustainable, excessive logging resulting in deforestation.

The projects and programmes should be implemented through UN agencies, non-governmental organisations, and through decentralised cooperation with local civilian administrations. In this context, the European Union will continue to engage with the government of Burma over its responsibility to make greater efforts to attain the UN millennium development goals.

Projects and programmes should, as far as possible, be defined, monitored, run and evaluated in consultation with civil society and all democratic groups, including the National League for Democracy.”

Democratic Republic of the Congo: Overseas Aid

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much aid the Government gave directly to the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo in each of the last 10 years. (138910)

The Government provided debt relief to the Government of the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) every year between 1996-97 and 2005-06, as shown in the following table.

Debt relief from the British Government to the Government of the DRC

£

1996-97

1,106,000

1997-98

1,089,000

1998-99

994,000

1999-2000

810,000

2000-01

3,656,000

2001-02

4,704,000

2002-03

2,715,000

2003-04

131,550,976

2004-05

7,377,490

2005-06

390,866

In the financial years 2004-05 and 2005-06, the Department for International Development (DFID) provided financial aid of £500,000 per year to the DRC Ministry of Plan for the preparation of the Government of the DRC’s poverty reduction strategy. In 2006-07, DFID committed £324,225 of financial aid to the DRC Ministry of Plan to enable it to carry out a demographic and health survey.

This aid provided by DFID directly to the Government of the DRC represents a very small fraction of DFID’s total bilateral aid to the DRC, which totalled £29.2 million in 2004-05 and £58.8 million in 2005-06.

Democratic Republic of the Congo: Tree Felling

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what recent discussions he has had with his counterparts in (a) Portugal, (b) Germany and (c) Belgium on logging concessions in the Democratic Republic of the Congo held by companies with headquarters based in those countries. (138866)

I have not held specific discussions with my counterparts in Portugal, Germany and Belgium on logging concessions in the Democratic Republic of the Congo (DRC) held by companies with headquarters in those countries. However, DFID is working closely with international partners—including Germany and Belgium—to promote sustainable forest use and reduce deforestation in countries like the DRC.

The German Government have put the reduction of deforestation, to curb carbon emissions, conserve biodiversity, and promote sustainable forest management, on the agenda for the forthcoming G8 summit. The UK strongly supports this initiative and will play a constructive role in agreeing outcomes at the summit. Earlier this year, the Belgian Government, in collaboration with the UK and other partners, hosted an international conference on the sustainable management of forests in the DRC. At this conference, the UK announced a $500,000 contribution to a Multi-Donor Trust Fund to improve forest governance and help promote sustainable forest management in the DRC.

The UK supports the maintenance of the moratorium on the allocation of new logging concessions in the DRC and the review that is currently being carried out of the legality of existing concessions. When I met the President of the DRC, Joseph Kabila, in Kinshasa in April 2007, I stressed the importance of forests as a resource for the people of the DRC. I asked whether logging concessions found to be illegal by the Legal Review would be revoked, and President Kabila confirmed that they would.

Departments: Consultants

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if he will list the outside (a) agencies and (b) consultancies which are undertaking work commissioned by his Department; and what the (i) purpose and (ii) cost is of each commission. (138455)

A copy of the document entitled “Current Contracts as at May 2007”, which gives details of the agencies and consultants and the current values of contracts issued by the Department for International Development (DFID), has been placed in the Libraries of the House. Details of contracts awarded are published on the DFID website. The contract titles on the report reflect the type of activity carried out. The report does not include low value contracts issued by DFID’s overseas offices, of which there are no consolidated central records. To produce a list of these contracts would incur disproportionate cost.

Developing Countries: Sanitation

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assessment he has made of the appropriateness of developing water and sanitation projects in developing countries through the privatisation of those systems. (138544)

DFID has funded a number of studies into how private sector participation might support poor people and help them access basic services, all of which draw on extensive external research. These include the study by WELL, the network of resource centres at Loughborough university, into private sector participation and its impact in improving affordable access to water and sanitation for the poor in developing countries.

The track record of the private sector in delivering water in developing countries has been mixed—and it is important that lessons are learnt along the way. In Cochabamba, Bolivia, the failure of private sector water provision led to rioting and the cancellation of the contract with the private provider. In Mozambique, on the other hand, reforms which began in 1994 have ushered in a new era with the introduction of private sector management, cost recovery tariffs and better regulation. A new public-private partnership, whereby assets remain state owned but operations are privately managed, has helped about 70 per cent. of the urban population of Mozambique benefit from better water supply and improved sanitation.

In Senegal, private sector involvement since 1995 has helped about 1.6 million people living in Dakar and secondary cities to gain access to safe water. An innovative public-private partnership has helped make over 140,000 new connections for poor families at subsidized rates, and household water connections reached 76 per cent. of the population by 2006. Senegal’s level of connection to urban water services is now the highest in sub-Saharan Africa. Sanitation also improved in urban areas, with 830,000 people getting access to sewerage connections or new toilets and latrines. Our conclusion is to support what works—and what works varies from country to country and region to region.

Through our support of the multi-donor Public Private Initiative Advisory Facility (PPIAF), we helped fund the publication of “Improving Urban Water Supply and Sanitation Utilities in Developing Countries: Drawing the Lessons of the Last Decade of Private Sector Participation and Expanding its Scope”. This draws on lessons from a decade of water projects with private participation. It consolidates the wealth of material available into a comprehensive paper, and provides a basis for building consensus with stakeholders.

However, we agree with the conclusions of the United Nations' recent Human Development Report that the criterion for assessing policy should not be whether it is public or private but what its effect is on the poor. These studies are vitally important, but a blanket approach applied to all assessments does not work because circumstances vary greatly from region to region and country to country and we have to respond to the specifics of each request.

The public sector continues to play the leading role in providing water and sanitation throughout the world. Most of DFID's aid—about 95 per cent. of our bilateral country programme expenditure on water and sanitation—supports the delivery of water and sanitation through governments, and not-for-profit or humanitarian agencies.

Our bilateral support for international private sector participation in the water and sanitation sector has been limited, often focused on helping developing country governments improve regulation for the benefit of poor people. One example where we were asked to help was in Ghana, where we supported a national assessment to examine the regulation of the sector and make recommendations about how services can work better for poor people.

EC Aid

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how the effectiveness of money spent through the European Communities Development Programme is (a) monitored and (b) audited; and if he will make a statement. (138928)

The EC development programme includes funding through the European Development Fund, the Development Co-operation Instrument and the European Neighbourhood Instrument. The effectiveness of the development programme is assessed at many levels.

There are four main opportunities to monitor and/or audit the funds:

(a) Management Committees—Management Committees exist for all of the main development instruments. They provide member states with oversight and approval of major spending decisions, including country strategy papers and associated annual action plans. Evaluation reports, including on the mid-term and end of term reviews of country programmes, are presented to member states at these committees for discussion and approval. These documents are also shared with the European Parliament.

(b) Results orientated monitoring—the Commission has developed a results orientated monitoring (ROM) process. This system is based on regular onsite assessments by independent experts of ongoing projects and programmes. The projects/ programmes evaluated are assessed against criteria of relevance, efficiency, effectiveness, impact and sustainability.

(c) Annual report on the European Community's Development Policy and Implementation of External Assistance—this is published by the Commission in the summer of each year. It includes the results of the ROM process as well as detail on the breakdown of financial assistance by sector, region and type of aid (for example, project or budgetary support). It also provides information on commitment and disbursement levels. The annual report is presented to EU member states and the European Parliament for discussion and adoption.

(d) Annual auditing of EU Budget—The EU’s annual accounts and resource management are overseen by its external auditor, the European Court of Auditors. The Court of Auditors prepares an annual report for the Council and the European Parliament. The court’s main task is to conduct an external, independent audit of the European Communities’ annual accounts, including those of the development co-operation programme. Finally, the Court prepares ‘special reports’ which provide the findings of audits covering specific areas of EC work, such as that on the Environment in Development Co-operation in 2006.

World Bank

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development if the UK Government will nominate a candidate for the World Bank Presidency; and if he will make a statement. (139040)

The Government will work with other member countries of the World Bank to identify and select the best candidate for the job.

Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Animals: Imports

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether ruminants arrived in Dover by ferry from Calais on 5 May 2007. (138303)

Animal Health have found no record of ruminant animals being imported from Calais via Dover on 5 May 2007.

Cattle: Exports

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what recent meetings he has held with (a) animal welfare organisations and (b) the agricultural industry on the export of live young calves. (138782)

So far this year, I have met representatives of both Compassion in World Farming and Kent Action Against Live Exports. My officials continue to communicate with welfare and industry bodies through meetings, correspondence and telephone calls on a regular basis.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what recent research he has (a) commissioned and (b) evaluated on the conditions experienced by live young calves which are exported; and if he will make a statement. (138785)

The following table shows the research recently commissioned by DEFRA on the conditions experienced by live calves (and other animals) during transport.

Research

Timescale

Long distance road transport of farm animals

1 April 1997 to 1 March 2002

Study to investigate the space above the head and shoulders of pigs and cattle when standing during transport

1 May to 1 October 2003

To understand and alleviate physiological stress during transportation of livestock (this project is specific to calves)

1 April 1997 to 1 March 2002

Development of telemetry systems for the remote monitoring of physiological signals in livestock

1 October 1999 to 1 September 2002

Road transport of farm animals in hot climates

1 April 2003 to 31 March 2005

Human factors affecting the welfare of animals during transport

1 April 2002 to 31 August 2005

Effect of driver behaviour on the behaviour of cattle and pigs in transit

1 April 2005 to 30 May 2007

Animal welfare in livestock trailers and optimisation of ventilation

1 May 2004 to 30 September 2007

DEFRA continually reviews and appraises its research programme. Evaluation takes place before, during and at the end of each research project. In addition, a review of research and development programmes is undertaken every five years with interested parties, including welfare groups, industry and consumer groups. A review of the Animal Welfare at Transport and Markets programme was held at the end of 2006. The output from this review will be made available on the DEFRA website soon. Our research findings help to provide a sound scientific basis on which to formulate our policy on the transport of live animals.

Climate Change: Electricity Generation

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what contribution United Kingdom officials or scientists made to the ad hoc working group on Mitigation potentials of policies, measures and technologies of the Conference of Parties of the United Nations Framework Convention of Climate Change, held in Bonn on 15 to 18 May; and whether any specific electricity generation technology was promoted by the United Kingdom. (138434)

[holding answer 21 May 2007]: UK officials played an active part in the European Union’s (EU) preparations for the Bonn United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC) Ad-hoc Working Group meeting. During the meeting, the EU presented information on the mitigation potential of the EU as a whole and not as individual member states. In the preparations, the UK did not promote any specific electricity generation technology. The EU’s submissions and presentations can be found on the UNFCCC website at:

www.unfccc.int.

Climate Change: International Cooperation

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what progress he is making in involving (a) G8 countries, (b) EU countries and (c) other major developing countries in talks on tackling the effects of climate change. (137649)

[holding answer 18 May 2007]: We are making progress, but there is still a long way to go. The spring European Council showed significant developments at the European level and real leadership by the EU. The EU committed to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 30 per cent. below 1990 levels by 2020 as part of an international agreement and agreed an independent commitment to cut emissions by at least 20 per cent.

In the G8, we are continuing to work with the German presidency to achieve our climate change objectives, which we began to set out at Gleneagles in 2005. We are aiming for the Heiligendamm summit in June to send a clear signal to the UN climate change conference in Bali in December on the need to launch negotiations on a global and comprehensive post-2012 agreement, to be completed by 2009.

In parallel, we are working, both bilaterally and through the United Nations Framework Convention on climate change (UNFCCC), to engage countries in order to raise the level of global ambition to respond to the threat of global warming, as set out in the recent findings of the Intergovernmental Panel on climate change. For example, we are working with South Africa to explore what a post-2012 agreement could look like.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs in what joint projects his Department is involved with its Chinese counterpart in the area of climate change mitigation and sustainable development. (138506)

A key international objective for the UK is to ensure that Chinese engagement helps enhance efforts towards making the transition to a sustainable low carbon economy globally as well as shaping an effective international regime to tackle climate change.

In order to do this we are engaged with China through a number of channels including:

(i) The sustainable development dialogue(SDD). Examples of joint working, include a workshop on sustainable consumption and production, establishment of a joint working group on sustainable forestry, discussions with the Chinese Ministry of Construction on sustainable urban development and a project at provincial level to share the UK’s experience on waste management and resource efficiency.

(ii) The UK-China working group on climate change. This is helping by feeding into discussions and activities under the Gleneagles Dialogue, the EU-China Partnership on climate change and the United Nations framework convention on climate change.

(iii) The near-zero emissions coal (nZEC) project which aims to demonstrate coal fired power generation with carbon dioxide capture and storage technology in China by 2020.

(iv) The UK is working with China on a bilateral project on climate change impacts. It has already gone some way towards revealing the effect of climate change on Chinese agriculture;

(v) The Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency Partnership (REEEP), a multi-country initiative that covers China, India, the whole G7, Australia, Brazil, Mexico and South Africa. REEEP delivers projects on the ground that demonstrate the potential for reform of energy policy and financing frameworks in a sustainable way.

Construction: Sustainable Development

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what discussions he has had with (a) the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry, (b) the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government and (c) the Director of the Office of Government Commerce on sustainable procurement in the building construction sector. (136407)

My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State and DEFRA Ministers have held discussions with many colleagues from other Departments, including DTI, CLG and OGC, on topics such as sustainable procurement in the building construction sector, as part of the wider discussions on combating climate change.

Desalination

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many water desalination plants are (a) in operation, (b) under construction and (c) planned in England; and what the (i) location and (ii) company involved is in each case. (137848)

I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave him on 13 July 2006, Official Report, column 1959W. Thames Water’s appeal against refusal of planning permission for a proposed desalination plant in the Thames estuary was the subject of a public inquiry in 2006 and the decision on the appeal is currently before the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs and the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government. After piloting a desalination plant, South East Water has decided not to pursue desalination yet as a solution for delivering extra water at peak times.

Drinking Water Inspectorate: Prosecutions

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) how many prosecutions brought by the Drinking Water Inspectorate resulted in (a) convictions and (b) custodial sentences in each year since 1995; (137874)

(2) how many (a) prosecutions, (b) cautions and (c) enforcement notices were brought by the Drinking Water Inspectorate (i) in total and (ii) in each region in each year since 1995.

Prosecutions are initiated against a company, not an individual. Convictions arise when a company is found guilty of the criminal offence of supplying water unfit for human consumption.

The following table shows the number of prosecutions and cautions of water companies brought by the Drinking Water Inspectorate (DWI) between 1995 and 2006. The sum total is 38 prosecutions and 23 cautions of companies supplying water in England and Wales.

Prosecutions

Cautions

1995

2

1

1996

1

0

1997

4

0

1998

9

2

1999

9

8

2000

5

3

2001

3

2

2002

1

2

2003

0

2

2004

1

1

2005

0

2

2006

3

0

The legal enforcement process is initiated by the DWI with the issue of a “minded to enforce” notice to which the water company responds. The response often involves the provision of a legally binding undertaking to carry out work to remedy the matter, thereby staying the requirement for an enforcement order to be issued.

Since 1995, this process has been used on over 3,000 occasions. Details of the companies involved are provided in the Chief Inspector’s annual Drinking Water reports.

Drinking Water: Chemicals

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) how much was spent on removing (a) pesticides and (b) nitrates from drinking water supplies in each of the last five years; (137862)

(2) what estimate he has made of the cost of removing (a) pesticides and (b) nitrates from drinking water supplies in each year since 2000.

Ofwat is the economic regulator of the water and sewerage industry in England and Wales. Companies report to Ofwat each year in their June return on their expenditure in various categories.

Over the five years to 2005-06, companies reported additional capital expenditure of £49 million on reducing pesticides levels and £75 million on reducing nitrate levels in the public water supply (in 2005-06 prices inflated using the retail price index). This is shown for each year since 2000 in the following table.

£ million

Pesticides

Nitrates

2001-02

8

6

2002-03

6

13

2003-04

3

17

2004-05

1

4

2005-06

31

35

This is the additional capital expenditure on new assets. As part of their base expenditure, companies also maintain the assets installed previously to reduce pesticides and nitrates levels, and also incur the costs of operating these water treatment plants. Ofwat does not collect this information separately.

Ofwat publishes a summary of its assumptions when setting price limits for each investment period. For 2000-05, the assumed need for capital investment to address exceptional problems of deteriorating raw water quality, the majority of which was for reducing pesticides and nitrate level, was £200 million (in 2005-06 prices, inflated using the construction outputs price index). There were changes agreed to this programme with the Drinking Water Inspectorate during the investment period to reflect changes in the risks of failure to meet drinking water standards.

For 2005-10, Ofwat assumed additional capital expenditure for reducing pesticides levels of £86 million and nitrate levels of £340 million (2005-06 prices, inflated using the construction outputs price index) along with associated operating costs of £8 million each year. These are the additional costs of new treatment or blending plant. The maintenance and operating costs of existing treatment plant are included in the base service provided by the water companies.

EC Environmental Policy

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs which European Environmental Directives have been (a) agreed and (b) published since 1 January 2006; and what the date or planned date of transposition is of each. (137863)

Between 1 January 2006 and 30 April 2007, 10 European Union (EU) directives for which my Department has responsibility for implementation were adopted. These are shown in the following table.

Directive number

Directive name

Date UK transposition completed/or expected to be completed

2006/007/EC

Bathing water quality

March 2008

2006/011/EC

Pollution caused by dangerous substances discharged into the aquatic environment of the community (codified version)

n/a

2006/012/EC

Waste (codified version)

n/a

2006/032/EC

Energy end-use efficiency and energy services

May 2008

2006/044/EC

Quality of Fresh Waters Needing Protection or Improvement In Order to Support Fish Life (codified version)

n/a

2006/113/EC

Quality required of shellfish waters (codified version)

n/a

2006/118/EC

On the protection of groundwater against pollution and deterioration

January 2009

2006/122/EC

Relating to restrictions on the marketing and use of certain dangerous substances and preparations (perfluorooctane sulfonates)

December 2007

2006/139/EC

Restrictions on the marketing and use of arsenic compounds

June 2007

2007/002/EC

Establishing an Infrastructure for Spatial Information in the European Community (INSPIRE)

May 2009

I am placing in the Library of the House a list which itemises the directives adopted together with:

(a) the EU deadline for transposition into domestic legislation.

(b) where, appropriate, the final or expected United Kingdom transposition date.

Details of all Directives in force can be found on the Eur-Lex database available on the EU’s website.

EU Emissions Trading Scheme

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what estimate he has made of the extent of the reduction in (a) UK and (b) EU emissions which will result from the first phase of the European Union’s Emissions Trading Scheme. (137524)

The approved UK National Allocation Plan (NAP) for Phase I (2005-07) of the EU Emissions Trading Scheme is set to deliver carbon dioxide emissions savings of around 65 million tonnes (roughly 8 per cent.) below the projected business-as-usual emissions of the installations covered by the scheme during phase I. The rationale behind emission trading is to ensure that the emission reductions take place where the cost of the reduction is lowest, thus lowering the overall costs of tackling climate change. The aforementioned emission reductions referred to may not, therefore, all take place in the UK.

As phase I has not yet finished, it is difficult to quantify what the overall emission reductions will be across the EU. A study by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and others has suggested that emission reductions (abatement) across the EU resulting from the implementation of EU ETS in 2005 could be somewhere in the region of 50MtCO2 to 200MtCO2. A survey by Point Carbon showed that about two-thirds of the 800 or so EU ETS participants who responded stated they had initiated internal abatement projects as a result of the EU ETS. Another survey for the European Commission conducted by McKinsey and Ecofys also found that the EU ETS is impacting on corporate behaviour. Based on this scheme, CO2 involves a real cost. About half the companies already ‘price in’ the value of CO2 allowances and over 70 per cent. intend to do so in the future.

Floods

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what recent discussions his Department has had with the Survey Association on flood prevention. (138691)

My Department has not held discussions with the Survey Association on flood prevention to date.

Fly-tipping: Databases

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many fly-tipping incidents were reported through the Flycapture database by each local authority in their most recent returns. (138255)

As it is quite lengthy, I am arranging for copies of the information requested to be placed in the Library of the House.

Data for 2006-2007 have not yet been finalised, but will be available in the summer.

Data reflect the particular circumstances of the local authority area. As a result of Best Value Performance Indicator 199d on fly-tipping, local authorities are now being monitored for their performance in reducing overall incident numbers and increasing the amount of enforcement activity, year on year. Flycapture was always intended to be used as a management information tool to help target action, rather than to produce ‘league tables’.

Grazing Land: Fences

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what responsibilities farmers have to ensure that livestock are controlled with stockproof fences around their land. (138412)

Farmers have a duty of care to protect the welfare of their livestock under the Animal Welfare Act 2006. Additionally, there is legislation requiring farmers to control their animals. Section 155 of the Highways Act 1980 provides that where livestock are found straying or lying on or at the side of the highway, the owner is guilty of an offence and is liable for expenses incurred in any subsequent transportation and care for the livestock.

Section 4 of the Animals Act 1971 provides that where livestock stray onto private land, the owner of the livestock will be liable for any damage done by the livestock to the land or property, including expenses incurred if the owner of the land detains the livestock. In some circumstances the livestock may also be sold to cover such costs.

Mineral Waters

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what his estimate is of the number of litres of bottled (a) sparkling and (b) still water consumed in the UK in each year since 2002; and what percentage was supplied in (i) plastic, (ii) glass and (iii) other materials. (137609)

The following table shows the estimated number of litres of mineral water consumed in the UK in each year since 2002.

April to March each year

Total UK consumption of mineral water (million litres)

2001-02

747

2002-03

793

2003-04

875

2004-05

950

2005-06

965

DEFRA does not collect statistics which distinguish between sparkling and still water or the way water is packaged.

Nitrate Vulnerable Zones

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs when he expects the review of nitrate vulnerable zone designations to be completed; and if he will make a statement. (137859)

A review of Nitrate Vulnerable Zone (NVZ) designations in England is nearly complete. It is our intention to publish national-level maps illustrating the conclusions of the review in the forthcoming consultation on amendments to the NVZ Action Programme.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many farms there are in nitrate vulnerable zones in England, broken down by region; and what the (a) size and (b) location is of each farm. (137860)

The Nitrate Vulnerable Zones (NVZs) designated in 1996 and 2002 cover approximately 55 per cent. of England’s land area. An estimate of the number of holdings located within these NVZs, broken down by region and size, is provided in the following table.

It is not possible to provide personal data (i.e. the size or location of each farm) due to issues of confidentiality.

Size of holding (total farmed area in hectares)

Region

0

>0to <5

5 to <20

20 to <50

50 to <100

100+

Total

North East

118

270

164

144

163

243

1,102

North West

1,321

2,390

1,636

1,298

1,092

660

8,397

Yorkshire and Humber

1,434

3,561

2,239

1,471

1,368

1,919

11,992

East Midlands

2,531

4,607

3,389

2,538

2,056

3,271

18,392

West Midlands

2,605

4,905

3,673

2,493

1,920

1,795

17,391

Eastern

2,184

5,473

3,250

2,043

1,762

3,607

18,319

London

17

43

38

23

16

9

146

South East

1,556

3,311

2,675

1,611

1,054

1,912

12,119

South West

2,206

3,710

2,874

1,988

1,602

1,929

14,309

Total

13,972

28,270

19,938

13,609

11,033

15,345

102,167

It should be noted that the figures contained in the aforementioned table are estimates based upon the June Agricultural Census 2005 (DEFRA), which only seeks data from a proportion of holdings each year. In the Agricultural Census data the location of each holding is represented by a single point. If that point falls within the current NVZ boundary the area of the entire holding is included in these figures. If the point is outside the boundary no land is included.

Nitrous Oxide

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what monitoring the Government undertake of nitrous oxide levels in water supplies in England; and if he will make a statement. (137858)

Nitrous oxide is a gas, and as such it is not monitored for in drinking water. Water companies are required by law to test for nitrate and nitrite. The Drinking Water Inspectorate publishes the results of these tests annually.

Poultry: Animal Welfare

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment he has made of the likely effect on the retail price of chicken meat products of the introduction of the EU chicken welfare rules in 2010; and if he will make a statement. (138927)

It is not easy to forecast what proportion of industry costs may be passed on to consumers, as this partly depends on market conditions. However, this issue will be considered as part of a final regulatory impact assessment.

Reservoirs

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if he will list the water reservoirs which (a) have become operational in each year since 1990 and (b) are planned; and who the operating company is in each case. (137612)

The only major public water supply reservoir, owned by a water company, to become operational since 1990 is Severn Trent Water’s Carsington reservoir in 1992.

Water companies identified the need for five new and three extended reservoirs in their 25-year water resource management plans prepared in 2004. Details are provided in the following tables.

New reservoirs

Company

Scheme

Year

Southern, Mid Kent

Broad Oak

2019

Folkestone and Dover South East Water

Clay Hill

2015

Portsmouth

Havant Thicket

2020

Thames

Abingdon

2020

Severn Trent

Lower Severn

2022

Extended reservoirs

Company

Scheme

Year

Southern, Mid Kent

Raise Bewl

2015

South East Water

Bray Enlargement

2008

Essex and Suffolk Water

Abberton

2014

Sewage: Rivers

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what information (a) his Department and (b) the Environment Agency collects on discharges of sewage into rivers; which rivers are monitored; and what data are collected in each case. (137861)

DEFRA does not collect this information. In 2006, the Environment Agency monitored 10,258 sewage discharges to receiving waters in England and Wales. Biological Oxygen Demand (BOD), ammonia, suspended solids and pH were monitored routinely, along with other parameters presenting a risk to the environment.

The Environment Agency also monitored 6,180 river sites for water chemistry and 5,982 river sites for biology in 2006. This covered approximately 40,000 kilometres of river length in England and Wales. Monitoring at these sites included macro-invertebrates, dissolved oxygen, BOD, ammonia and nitrate.

Water Charges

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the average monthly cost to consumers was of (a) water services and (b) sewerage services in each water supply area in 2005-06 (i) in total and (ii) for those who were (A) metered and (B) unmetered. (137896)

Ofwat is the economic regulator for the water and sewerage industry in England and Wales. In December 2004 it set price limits for the period 2005-10.

The information requested can be found in Ofwat’s ‘Water and sewerage charges 2006-07 report’. Copies have been placed in the Library of the House.

Water Supply

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if his Department will introduce a requirement on water companies to submit an application for water scarcity status before seeking permission for any new reservoir capacity. (137610)

No. In their 25-year water resource management plans, water companies are expected to follow the twin-track approach of considering the need for new resources, such as reservoirs, in parallel with the full range of options for reducing demand. New resources should be developed only where the scope for managing demand is clearly insufficient or unjustified in terms of cost.

An application for water scarcity status would have to demonstrate that the measures proposed by the company, taking into account the water resources that are or could be made available, would be insufficient to address the deficiency of water resources.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what recent assessment his Department has made of the (a) merits, (b) practicality and (c) costs of constructing a water grid to enable the transportation of large volumes of water over long distances. (137611)

I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave on 16 October 2006, Official Report, column 900W. The situation has not changed since then.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what volume of water in each region was supplied from (a) watercourses, (b) aquifers, (c) reservoirs and (d) other sources in the last period for which figures are available; what change each figure represents from the previous period for which figures are available; and how demand is expected to change in future years. (138622)

The data in the following table are taken from the e-Digest of Environmental Statistics, published on the Department's website, and shows an average for the whole year of estimated abstractions expressed in daily amounts (mega litres per day). The data originate from the Environment Agency. Estimated actual abstractions differ from the maximum abstraction permissible under the terms of individual abstraction licences. The level of future abstractions will depend on the extent to which abstractors use their licensed capacity together with that abstracted under new licences granted.

Region

2003

2004

Percentage change

North West

Non-tidal surface water

2794

2898

+3.7

Groundwater

342

315

-8.6

Tidal waters

6443

5792

-11 .2

North East

Non-tidal surface water

5857

6215

+6.1

Groundwater

471

490

+4.0

Tidal waters

71

74

+4.2

Midlands

Non-tidal surface water

4850

4664

-4.0

Groundwater

1119

1047

-6.9

Tidal waters

984

1092

+11.0

Anglian

Non-tidal surface water

1558

1546

-0.8

Groundwater

1031

995

-3.6

Tidal waters

5249

5729

+9.1

Thames

Non-tidal surface water

3225

3180

-1.4

Groundwater

1631

1562

-4.4

Tidal waters

1208

1208

0.0

Southern

Non-tidal surface water

1440

1401

-2.8

Ground water

1316

1260

-4.4

Tidal waters

5078

5453

+7.4

South West

Non-tidal surface water

2859

3345

+17.0

Groundwater

565

559

-1.1

Tidal waters

2121

1643

-29.1

Non-tidal surface water includes reservoirs and river abstractions (watercourses).