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Written Answers

Volume 470: debated on Tuesday 15 January 2008

Written Answers to Questions

Tuesday 15 January 2008

Solicitor-General

Sentencing: Appeals

To ask the Solicitor-General how many appeals against all sentences on the grounds of undue leniency the Attorney-General has made in each of the last five years for which figures are available. (179353)

The Attorney-General's office publishes annual statistics on unduly lenient sentence references on its website

www.attorneygeneral.gsi.gov.uk.

The following table shows the number of offenders whose sentences were referred to the Court of Appeal as unduly lenient, the number of offenders whose references were subsequently withdrawn and the number of offenders who were therefore brought before the Court of Appeal in each of the last five years for which full statistics have been published.

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

Offenders referred to Court of Appeal

148

102

159

127

160

Withdrawn references

9

6

22

19

16

Offenders brought to the Court of Appeal

139

96

137

108

144

To ask the Solicitor-General how many appeals against the minimum tariff applied in cases of indeterminate sentences for public protection on the grounds of undue leniency the Attorney-General has made in each year since that sentence became available to the courts. (179354)

The Attorney-General's office publishes annual statistics on unduly lenient sentence references on its website

www.attorneygeneral.gsi.gov.uk.

The following table shows the number of offenders whose sentences were referred to the Court of Appeal on the basis that the minimum term attached to a sentence of imprisonment for public protection (under section 225 (3) of the Criminal Justice Act 2003) was unduly lenient in each of the years when the sentence was available to the court and for which full statistics have been published.

Offenders referred

20051

0

2006

2

1 The legislation came into force on 4 April 2005 and applies to offences committed from that date

Electoral Commission Committee

Political Parties: Finance

To ask the hon. Member for Gosport, representing the Speaker’s Committee on the Electoral Commission, what research the Electoral Commission has conducted into local spending in constituencies by party organisations with incomes of below £25,000 a year. (177636)

The Electoral Commission informs me that, in 2004 and in 2007, it canvassed all registered accounting units to inquire as to whether their total income or gross expenditure was greater than £25,000 for the prior financial year. Those that were under this threshold were asked to confirm so in writing.

The purpose of the exercise was to confirm which accounting units should be submitting accounts to the commission and which should not. The commission has conducted no research into spending by those associations under the threshold.

To ask the hon. Member for Gosport, representing the Speaker’s Committee on the Electoral Commission, pursuant to the answer of 18 December 2007, Official Report, column 1235W, on political parties: finance, what research the Electoral Commission initiated on the operation of the political levy and political funds by trade unions. (177700)

The Electoral Commission informs me that it plans to undertake research on the operation of the political levy and political funds and has arranged a meeting with the United Kingdom Certification Officer.

Transport

A21

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the answer of 25 January 2007, Official Report, column 1909W, on the A21, what stage the tendering process for the A21 Tonbridge to Pembury and A21 Kippings Cross to Lamberhurst improvement has reached; and if she will make a statement. (179362)

The tender process began in late March 2007, with invitations to tender. These were returned in early July and assessment was completed during mid-September.

The south east regional bodies have been asked to confirm their support for these schemes on the basis of the latest cost estimates. A decision regarding award of contract for the A21 Tonbridge to Pembury and A21 Kippings Cross to Lamberhurst improvement schemes will need to take this confirmation into account.

British Rail

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how much was paid in subsidy from the public purse to British Rail in each of the two years preceding privatisation; and how much subsidy for rail services has been paid from the public purse in each year since privatisation. (177164)

This information is available in National Rail Trends which is published by the Office of Rail Regulation (ORR). Copies are available in the Library of the House and on the ORR’s website at:

www.rail-reg.gov.uk

Cycling: Accidents

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many cyclists have been killed in accidents involving left-hand-drive heavy goods vehicles in each of the last three years for which figures are available. (179162)

The number of pedal cyclists killed in reported road accidents involving at least one foreign registered left-hand-drive heavy goods vehicle in Great Britain for 2005 to 2006 is shown in the following table.

Number of fatalities

Number

2005

0

2006

2

This information is not available for years prior to 2005.

Departmental Recycling

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what recycling schemes are in operation in each building operated by her Department. (176371)

The following table details the recycling schemes currently operated in DfT buildings.

Agency/office location

Recycling schemes

Comments

Driving Standards Agency (DSA)

Nottingham

Furniture, cardboard, paper, aluminium cans, printer and photocopier toners.

The agency is currently undertaking a review of waste disposal and is working to reduce waste and increase recycling in an environmentally responsible manner.

430 driving test centres

Varying occupancy agreements prevent us capturing this information so we are unable to supply accurate waste and recycling data at present although they are rolling out a process to capture this data for 2008-09.

Driver Vehicle and Licensing Agency (DVLA)

Swansea

Paper, cardboard, cans, glass, silver flake, fluorescent tubes, toner cartridges, IT equipment, kitchen oil, furniture, metal, mobile phones, compact discs, clothes, batteries, wood and wooden pallets.

In the last financial year, 2006-07 the DVLA recycled some 67 per cent. of its waste, and the emphasis now is being placed on waste minimisation.

Local offices

Paper, cardboard, IT equipment, furniture, fluorescent tubes, toner cartridges, CD's, and mobile phones.

Government Car and Despatch Agency (GCDA)

London

Paper, toners, tyres, oil, batteries and confidential waste.

This conforms to Environmental Monitoring Systems ISO1 4001:2004 which is individually assessed by British Standard Institute.

Highways Agency

All offices

Paper, CD's, fluorescent tubes, hard hats, furniture and batteries.

Bedford

Additionally, stamps, plastic milk bottle tops, mobile phones, toner cartridges, cards, laptops and cans.

Leeds

Additionally, cardboard, plastic and cans.

Manchester

Additionally, spectacles, mobile phones and toners.

Dorking

Additionally, cardboard, cans, bottles and food (wormery).

Exeter

Additionally, glass, mixed metal and plastic.

London

Additionally, toners, mobile phones and spectacles, glass and cans.

Birmingham

Additionally, cardboard, cans, toners and mobile phones.

Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA)

Headquarters, Southampton

MCA introduced a system of waste segregation at its HQ building in 2007 increasing levels of recycling from 25 per cent. to 40 per cent. based on the figures for 2005-06.

In line with the set targets the MCA is keen to increase recycling across its estate. However due to the small amounts of waste produced at the majority of sites making private commercial collections uneconomic the agency are currently limited to recycling at locations where the local authority offers this service.

Regional sites

The agency has in excess of 500 properties and are currently in the process of establishing how many of these currently take advantage of local recycling schemes; this information is expected to take several months to collate.

Vehicle Certification Agency (VGA)

Bristol and Leatherhead

Paper including confidential, cardboard, batteries, mobile phones, toner cartridges, cans and plastics.

Nuneaton

As above plus scrap metal.

Vehicle and Operator Services Agency (VOSA)

Headquarters, Bristol

Paper, cardboard, cans and plastic cups.

VOSA is now conducting a national waste audit to identify the streams and general quantities produced by each of its major sites. The results will enable VOSA to establish a centrally administered national waste management contract with the aim of recycling as much of the waste as possible.

Regional sites

Paper, card, printer cartridges, plastics and fluorescent tubes.

Core Department

London HQ

Paper, glass, cans, plastic bottles, toner, cardboard, spectacles, mobile phones, fluorescent tubes and IT equipment.

Air Accident Investigation Branch, Farnborough

Paper, cardboard, metals, glass, toner cartridges, waste fuels/oils and IT equipment.

Marine Accident Investigation Branch, Southampton

Paper, cardboard, plastic bottles, cans, glass, and toner cartridges.

Rail Accident Investigation Branch, Woking

Paper, cardboard, toner cartridges, batteries and CD/DVD.

Rail Accident Investigation Branch, Derby

Paper, cardboard, toner cartridges, cans, plastics, bottles, batteries and CD/DVD.

Driving Tests

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what changes she proposes to make to the driving test; what estimate she has made of the effect that her proposals will have on the average length of time it takes a 17-year-old person to qualify for a licence; and if she will make a statement. (178431)

In February 2007 we announced a fundamental overhaul of driver training and testing. We are working to bring proposals forward for consultation and hope to publish them in due course.

Galileo

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if she will make a statement on final operational control arrangements for the Galileo Supervisory Authority, with particular reference to the mechanism for shutdown in time of conflict. (178205)

Galileo is a European Union programme and the European GNSS Supervisory Authority (GSA) is the EU agency that will regulate and manage the system on behalf of the Community.

Galileo will not be fully operational until 2013 at the earliest, and the final operational control arrangements within the appropriate institutional framework have yet to be decided. These arrangements are likely to be progressed during discussions on access policy for the public regulated service of Galileo, on which we expect the Commission to make proposals during 2008.

The Council of Ministers has repeatedly confirmed that Galileo is a civil programme under civil control. The operation of any navigation aid, such as Galileo, can nevertheless have security implications for member states. A Council joint action of 2004 provides that any aspects of the operation of Galileo which affect member states’ security can be referred to the Council, which would take the necessary decisions—including the option of suspending normal service—by unanimity.

Metronet

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what the cost has been of running Metronet since it went into administration. (176782)

In addition to their infrastructure service charge payments, the Metronet companies receive money to cover their operating deficit. The public-private partnership administrator stated in September that the net operating deficit of Metronet while in administration was £14.4 million per week, a projection of £345.5 million for six months of administration. This net operating deficit is funded by a loan provided by Transport for London.

Much of the funding for the net operating deficit simply replaces planned Metronet borrowing which would, in due course, itself have been reflected in public accounts.

Railways

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what percentage change from a 2003 baseline she has projected for (a) rail passenger and (b) rail freight mileage by (i) 2010, (ii) 2015, (iii) 2020 and (iv) 2025. (178143)

The percentage change relative to 2003-04 for rail passenger miles on franchised services in England and Wales is forecast as follows:

Percentage growth

2010-11

26

2015-16

44

2020-21

54

2025-26

70

Rail freight is a commercial business between the freight operators and Network Rail. The Department does not make forecasts of this traffic.

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what recent assessment she has made of the effects of the business practices of the rolling stock companies on the operation of the rail network. (179137)

The Department for Transport made a submission to the Office of Rail Regulation on 28 June 2006 requesting that it refer the market to the Competition Commission for investigation under Section 131 of the Enterprise Act 2002.

On 26 April 2007 ORR referred the leasing of rolling stock for franchised passenger services and the supply of related maintenance services to the Competition Commission. The Competition Commission issued their emerging thinking on 19 December 2007.

For further details, I would refer the hon. Member to:

www.competition-commission.org.uk/inquiries/ref2007/roscos/index.htm

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what her policy is on the sale of rolling stock by rolling stock companies to overseas customers. (179139)

Rolling stock is privately owned by the rolling stock companies. Sales and rolling stock are therefore a business matter for them.

Railways: Bridges

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what weights bridges across railway lines are required to support. (177803)

The carrying capacity of public highway bridges crossing railways is a matter for agreement between the relevant highway authority and the bridge owner (which may be the highway authority itself).

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how much funding her Department has provided for the (a) maintenance, (b) repair, (c) rebuilding and (d) construction of bridges across railway lines in each year since 1997; and if she will make a statement. (177804)

The Department for Transport provides funding to Network Rail, the Highways Agency and local highway authorities to support the construction and maintenance of their networks, but does not separately identify how much of this is spent on bridges crossing railways.

Railways: Freight

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) if she will estimate the amount of carbon emissions from (a) rail and (b) road haulage in each year since 1990 (i) per mile and (ii) in total; (178132)

(2) if she will estimate the amount of carbon emissions from rail haulage in each year since 1990.

The following tables are based on data from the national atmospheric emissions inventory and Great Britain and Northern Ireland traffic censuses. It summarises carbon dioxide emissions of diesel rail haulage and heavy goods vehicles for the years requested. The tables exclude carbon dioxide emission figures for electric rail haulage and per kilometre for diesel rail haulage which are not available in the form requested.

1990

1991

1992

1993

1994

1995

1996

1997

Diesel rail freight

CO2 emissions (kilotonnes)

636

610

616

547

517

529

600

673

HGVs

CO2 emissions (kilotonnes)

22038

20943

21015

21582

23291

23971

25360

26032

HGVs

Kt of C02 /billion km

847

817

842

849

898

899

922

924

1998

1999

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

Diesel rail freight

CO2 emissions (kilotonnes)

689

724

720

772

744

752

824

824

HGVs

CO2 emissions (kilotonnes)

26245

26032

25764

25811

26732

27220

27909

28592

HGVs

Kt of C02 /billion km

898

878

862

870

883

887

889

920

Road Traffic

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what the percentage change in traffic levels (a) on English roads and (b) in each county within England was for each year since 1997, taking the 1997 levels as 100 per cent. (178130)

The change in traffic levels for England and its constituent counties can be found in the following table. The change is shown as an index based on 1997.

Index of traffic growth by English counties1 (1997 = 100)

County name

1997

1998

1999

2000

2001

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

England

100

102

104

104

106

108

109

111

111

112

Central London

100

102

102

101

98

96

95

98

98

98

Inner London excluding Central

100

100

102

102

102

102

102

101

99

101

Outer London

100

101

104

104

104

105

105

104

105

106

Avon

100

102

105

106

108

111

112

114

115

115

Bedfordshire

100

103

104

103

104

108

110

113

113

111

Berkshire

100

102

104

105

106

109

108

108

108

109

Buckinghamshire

100

102

106

109

110

111

111

110

110

111

Cambridgeshire

100

101

104

104

106

107

109

111

111

112

Cheshire

100

102

104

105

106

106

108

110

110

113

Cleveland

100

101

104

104

106

109

110

111

110

112

Cornwall

100

101

101

102

105

110

113

115

116

117

Cumbria

100

101

102

103

102

106

107

109

109

110

Derbyshire

100

102

103

100

103

104

107

109

109

110

Devon

100

102

102

103

105

109

109

112

113

114

Dorset

100

102

105

105

106

109

110

110

112

113

Durham

100

102

104

104

106

110

111

113

114

117

East Sussex

100

102

103

103

105

107

109

111

111

112

Essex

100

101

104

104

106

107

108

110

110

112

Gloucestershire

100

101

105

106

108

110

112

114

115

117

Greater Manchester

100

102

104

104

107

111

111

114

112

112

Hampshire

100

102

104

105

108

111

111

113

113

114

Hereford and Worcester

100

102

105

105

105

109

108

109

110

113

Hertfordshire

100

101

102

101

103

106

105

107

106

106

Humberside

100

101

104

103

105

109

110

113

113

114

Isle of Wight

100

100

101

103

104

108

110

111

110

114

Kent

100

102

104

106

108

111

112

114

114

115

Lancashire

100

102

104

103

105

108

108

112

112

113

Leicestershire

100

103

106

105

107

110

111

113

113

113

Lincolnshire

100

102

104

105

106

110

112

114

116

117

Merseyside

100

101

102

104

105

109

109

110

112

113

Norfolk

100

102

103

104

106

109

110

112

114

115

North Yorkshire

100

102

103

102

105

108

109

112

114

119

Northamptonshire

100

103

107

107

109

114

118

120

118

120

Northumberland

100

101

105

104

107

109

110

114

114

117

Nottinghamshire

100

101

104

103

104

107

109

111

111

114

Oxfordshire

100

102

104

105

106

110

108

110

110

111

Shropshire

100

102

103

103

106

109

109

111

112

113

Somerset

100

102

104

104

107

110

111

113

114

117

South Yorkshire

100

103

104

105

107

111

111

115

115

116

Staffordshire

100

101

103

103

105

107

109

112

115

116

Suffolk

100

101

103

103

105

107

109

110

110

111

Surrey

100

104

104

103

106

107

107

108

107

108

Tyne and Wear

100

101

103

103

105

108

109

110

110

110

Warwickshire

100

103

102

103

105

106

106

110

111

114

West Midlands

100

102

103

103

103

107

107

108

108

108

West Sussex

100

103

105

106

107

108

109

111

111

111

West Yorkshire

100

103

103

104

105

107

107

109

109

112

Wiltshire

100

103

103

103

104

107

109

109

112

113

1 The counties are based on the pre-1997 boundaries.

Roads: Accidents

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many fatalities have been caused by road traffic accidents in London in each of the last five years, broken down by London borough; and if she will make a statement. (179287)

The number of fatalities resulting from reported injury road accidents in each London borough for 2002 to 2006 is shown in the following table.

Number of fatalities

London borough

2002

2003

2004

2005

2006

Westminster

15

11

9

12

13

Camden

8

5

4

2

8

Islington

8

10

2

4

2

Hackney

10

4

8

4

7

Tower Hamlets

10

6

6

8

6

Greenwich

11

7

10

8

13

Lewisham

9

11

5

6

2

Southwark

8

4

9

7

7

Lambeth

10

13

4

8

10

Wandsworth

6

10

8

4

7

Hammersmith and Fulham

4

6

6

10

6

Kensington and Chelsea

7

9

5

10

3

Waltham Forest

6

7

1

5

1

Redbridge

11

7

9

7

5

Havering

7

17

10

7

5

Barking and Dagenham

9

6

9

6

4

Newham

6

4

4

2

3

Bexley

8

4

2

6

6

Bromley

9

13

10

9

12

Croydon

13

14

11

7

6

Sutton

6

6

3

2

2

Merton

5

6

2

1

5

Kingston-upon- Thames

4

3

4

3

3

Richmond-upon- Thames

7

2

6

2

6

Hounslow

12

9

15

14

13

Hillingdon

7

5

11

8

6

Ealing

18

18

7

9

10

Brent

5

2

6

7

10

Harrow

4

9

4

3

3

Barnet

14

20

12

12

17

Haringey

12

16

3

7

8

Enfield

9

7

8

13

21

City of London

3

1

3

1

1

London total

281

272

216

214

231

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many road accidents resulting in the death of a cyclist were recorded in each London borough (a) in total and (b) involving cyclists under the age of (i) 11 and (ii) 16 years in each year since 2000. (179344)

A table showing the number of reported personal injury road accidents resulting in at least one pedal cyclist fatality in each London borough (a) in total and (b) involving pedal cyclist fatalities under the age of (i) 11 and (ii) 16 years in each year since 2000 has been deposited in the Libraries of the House.

Roads: Tolls

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if she will ensure that people who have to travel regularly to hospital are exempted from road user charging under the provisions of the Local Transport Bill. (177670)

The Government believe that the detailed design of local road pricing schemes is best decided at local level. However, we have given guidance to local authorities that scheme design will need to identify at-risk groups and consider how any negative impacts on these groups could be minimised or mitigated.

The Secretary of State may already set national regulations on exemptions and discounts under the Transport Act 2000, so an amendment to the Local Transport Bill would not be necessary.

South West Trains

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport pursuant to the answer of 7 January 2008, Official Report, column 15W, on South West Trains, what percentage of the mainline express fleet class 442 rolling stock units represented before their withdrawal. (178977)

Twenty four Class 442 units were taken off lease before the start of the Stagecoach South Western Trains franchise that commenced in February 2007. The class 442s represented 10 per cent. of South West Trains mainline fleet in unit number terms under the previous franchise. No class 442s ran in service under Stagecoach South Western Trains.

Transport: Crime

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what estimate she has made of the cost to the economy of assaults on staff in the (a) bus and coach, (b) rail, (c) shipping and (d) transport industry in 2007-08. (179189)

The Department has not undertaken any estimation of the costs of transport staff assaults to the economy in 2007-08. However, the Department is currently undertaking research into the costs of crime committed on public transport, and the costs of staff assaults is one of the categories being investigated within this piece of research.

Transport: Schools

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what discussions she has had with the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families on encouraging alternatives to car use for taking children to school. (168681)

The Secretary of State for Transport is happy to provide reassurance that there have been no meetings to which the hon. Lady has not been invited with the shadow Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families or indeed any other of her colleagues in the shadow Cabinet. The Secretary of State for Transport has met with the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families to discuss a range of issues, including travel to school.

Travel

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how far people living in an English (a) urban and (b) rural area travelled per person on average in 2006. (178144)

The average annual distance travelled per person living in England in 2006, based on data from the national travel survey, was 6,677 miles in urban areas and 9,971 miles in rural areas.

Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Agriculture: Wastes

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) what estimate the Government have made of the costs likely to be incurred by farmers for arranging slurry storage for six months under the proposed nitrate vulnerable zones directive; (175755)

(2) what plans the Government have to compensate farmers for the extra costs incurred in storing slurry for six months under the proposed nitrate vulnerable zones directive.

[holding answer 7 January 2008]: The partial regulatory impact assessment and paper ‘G4—Assistance on the partial RIA including extended Nitrate Vulnerable Zones’, published in support of the consultation on implementation of the nitrates directive in England, provide details of my Department's assessment of the likely cost to farmers of the proposed nitrates action programme measures. Both these papers are available to view on DEFRA's website.

These assessments estimate the likely cost to farmers of meeting the proposed manure storage requirements as in the range £19 million to £24 million per year. This is assuming that the action programme is applied within proposed nitrate vulnerable zones covering 70 per cent. of England. Costs will be higher if the decision is taken to apply the action programme to the whole of England (annualised over 20 years).

My Department has also committed £98 million (under the rural development programme) to the livestock sector, to improve competitiveness, animal welfare and on-farm management of nutrients.

Animal Welfare: Finance

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what funding his Department provided local authorities in relation to stray animals in each year since 1997; and if he will make a statement. (177656)

Funding for stray dogs is one of the services supported through formula grant. Formula grant, which comprises revenue support grant, redistributed business rates and principal formula police grant, where appropriate, is an unhypothecated block grant; that is, councils are free to spend the money on any service. For this reason, and due to the method of calculation, particularly floor damping, it is not possible to say how much grant has been provided for any particular service.

From 6 April 2008, local authorities will have sole responsibility for stray dogs functions under sections 149 and 150 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990. An additional £4 million per year will be funded through the revenue support grant for local authorities in England and Wales.

Stray Animals

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what estimate he has made of the number of stray animals in each year since 1997; and if he will make a statement. (178218)

Biodiversity

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs pursuant to the answer of 17 December 2007, Official Report, columns 991-2W, on biodiversity, what the form of the socioeconomic studies is; who is undertaking them; what contribution the UK is making to them; and if he will make a statement. (177331)

There is no set form for the provision of views and case studies on the socio-economic considerations. The UK has no plans to provide a contribution and has not yet seen any contributions provided by any other parties.

Carbon Emissions

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what adjustment the Government Carbon Offsetting Fund makes for the effect of radiative forcing. (176168)

The Government Carbon Offsetting Fund (GCOF) applies a radiative forcing multiplier of two to emission calculations of medium and long-haul air travel.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how his Department plans to encourage domestic carbon offsetting and the reduction of emissions in 2008. (177642)

DEFRA is currently undertaking a range of activities to encourage individuals to reduce emissions.

Through the Act on CO2 campaign DEFRA is promoting awareness of climate change and encouraging individuals and households to take action to reduce their CO2 emissions. DEFRA continues to promote the use of the Act on CO2 carbon calculator to help raise awareness of an individual’s or household’s carbon footprint.

The Government will be publishing a voluntary Code of Best Practice for Carbon Offsetting in spring 2008. Offset providers that meet the standard set out in the code will receive accredited status.

Offsetting should be set in a hierarchy of actions. The most effective way to tackle climate change is to avoid and reduce emissions. When it is not possible to avoid or reduce emissions, consumers should consider offsetting. When carried out in this context, we support the use of offsets generated by robust and verifiable mechanisms bound by international regulation.

Carbon Emissions: Government Departments

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) what steps he has taken to meet the target of ensuring the Central Government Office Estate is carbon neutral by 2012; (175960)

(2) what steps were taken in (a) 2005-06 and (b) 2006-07 against the objective of making the Central Government Office Estate carbon neutral.

Reducing carbon emissions is the most important element of delivering carbon neutrality. Departments are currently working towards meeting the sustainable operations targets for the Government estate, which include a requirement to reduce carbon emissions from office energy use by 12.5 per cent. by 2010-11, relative to 1999-2000 levels and by 30 per cent. by 2020. Options for the offsetting scheme that will be required to meet the 2012 carbon neutrality target will be considered during 2008.

Between 2005 and 2007, the Carbon Trust has used some of the funding it receives from DEFRA to help numerous Government Departments reduce their carbon emissions, and financial support is available through Salix Finance, a revolving loan scheme that can be used to invest in cost-effective energy efficiency projects in the public sector.

DEFRA is working towards minimising carbon emissions and energy consumption in its buildings through retrofitting energy efficiency technologies and behavioural change initiatives. DEFRA’s new Alnwick office has been designed to be the first carbon neutrally operated office building on the DEFRA estate and a true benchmark for the future.

Carbon Emissions: Small Businesses

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what initiatives have been introduced since the Bali Climate Change Conference to help small businesses reduce their carbon emissions. (177643)

DEFRA is already grant funding the Carbon Trust (with around £90 million in 2007-08) to help businesses of all sizes reduce their carbon emissions. The trust provides a range of support to small businesses, which includes interest-free loans for approved energy saving projects, site surveys identifying energy-saving opportunities for companies with energy bills of more than £50,000 per annum, a free telephone helpline and a range of online tools and bespoke information for different business sectors. Over the last three years the trust has provided around £90 million of support to small- to medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) and in 2006-07 alone, SMEs comprised 40 per cent. of the trust's customer base and received two-thirds of the 5,000 on-site energy surveys conducted by, or on behalf of, the trust.

The Government are also currently developing options for implementing the Energy Services Directive which requires that all (except very small) energy suppliers must take action to supply or promote some form of energy efficiency or energy services to all sectors, including small businesses. Once implemented this will complement the range of carbon abatement services offered to this sector by the Carbon Trust.

Crabs: Conservation

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs pursuant to the answer of 5 December 2007, Official Report, column 1267W, on crabs: conservation, whether he plans to discuss (a) brown crab and (b) lobster conservation with the European Commission and his European counterparts in the next 12 months; and if he will make a statement. (177622)

DEFRA is in discussion with the devolved Administrations regarding brown crab and lobster conservation. Plans to discuss these issues with the European Commission and European counterparts in the next 12 months will be dependent upon the outcome of these talks with the devolved Administrations.

Departmental Public Expenditure

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) what assessment he has made of the effects of the change in his Department’s budget following the most recent Comprehensive Spending Review on its ability to meet its target to halt biodiversity loss by 2010; (177552)

(2) what assessment he has made of the effects of the change in his Department’s budget following the most recent Comprehensive Spending Review on Natural England’s work on (a) local biodiversity partnerships, (b) national trails, (c) bridleways, (d) areas of outstanding beauty and (e) national nature reserves;

(3) when the budget for 2008 and onwards for Natural England will be (a) decided and (b) announced.

We are currently considering allocation of the Department’s resources for 2008-09 and have started discussions with Natural England on options for its CSR budget. However, it is too early to set out what the implications will be for individual areas of work.

Securing a healthy natural environment remains a top priority and is one of my Department’s two high level goals alongside tackling climate change. Natural England will be a key contributor to this work. We expect to be in a position to confirm Natural England’s financial settlement for 2008-09 by the end of February 2008 and will then be working with Natural England to finalise its next corporate plan, which will set Natural England’s priorities and the outcomes to be achieved.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment he has made of the effects of the change in his Department’s budget following the most recent Comprehensive Spending Review on (a) staff morale, (b) staff numbers, (c) spending programmes and (d) grants to non-governmental organisations, including (i) Butterfly Conservations, (ii) The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds, (iii) the Wildlife Trusts, (iv) Plantlife and (v) the Bat Conservation Trust. (177555)

The changes to the Department’s budget following the CSR settlement in October 2007 have not yet been finalised. New budgets for the CSR period will be announced before the beginning of the next financial year and until these are decided it is not possible to make an assessment of the various issues listed. The exception being on (b), staff numbers, where there are no pre-determined targets across the CSR period. However, staffing levels will be kept under review to ensure that DEFRA maintains a flexible and efficient work force within its administration budget, which will be reduced by 5 per cent. in real terms per annum in common with other Government Departments.

Discovering Lost Ways

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if he will make a statement on the Discovering Lost Ways project. (178387)

In February 2007, Natural England approved a review of the Discovering Lost Ways project. This is a fundamental review, which is being informed by evidence collected from a series of small-scale tests and a structured programme of engagement with stakeholders. Natural England is currently finalising its advice on the way forward for the project and will report to me shortly on the outcome of its deliberations.

Dog Wardens

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what information his Department has on the number of dog wardens in each local authority in England; and if he will make a statement. (178219)

The Department does not collect statistics on the number of dog wardens that individual local authorities employ. However, each local authority is required to appoint an officer to carry out the stray dogs functions set out in section 149 of the Environmental Protection Act 1990.

Dolphins: Moray Firth

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps he is taking to protect bottlenose dolphins at the Moray Firth; and if he will make a statement. (177675)

The Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform is currently consulting on a draft Appropriate Assessment for the Moray Firth in the context of the 24th Offshore Oil and Gas Licensing Round. The draft Appropriate Assessment has been carried out under the terms of the Habitats Directive which was implemented into UK law by the Offshore Petroleum Activities (Conservation of Habitats) Regulations 2001 (as amended). Those regulations require that before granting a petroleum licence, the Secretary of State carry out an Appropriate Assessment where he considers that any activity which might be carried on pursuant to such a licence is likely to have a significant effect on any Special Area of Conservation—whether individually or in combination with other plans or projects. Subject to certain exceptions, a licence can only be granted after having ascertained through the Appropriate Assessment that such activities will not have an adverse effect on the integrity of such a SAC.

The draft Appropriate Assessment considers the impact of potential oil and gas activities on the Moray Firth SAC, which has been designated as such because it contains one of only two resident bottlenose dolphin populations in UK waters. In carrying out his assessment, the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform obtained a report from the specialist Sea Mammal Research Unit which is based at St. Andrews University in Scotland. The Secretary of State’s preliminary view—which is supported by the report from the SMRU—is that oil and gas activities which would flow from the grant of a petroleum licence in the Moray Firth would not have an adverse effect on the integrity of the Moray Firth SAC (or others).

The draft Appropriate Assessment was published on 21 December 2007 and the public consultation period on the draft runs until 14 March 2008. The Government’s statutory environmental advisers are also being consulted.

Environment Protection

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what (a) the total funding received from the business resource efficiency and waste programme and other Government sources, (b) the total landfill diverted in tonnes, (c) the total carbon dioxide saved in tonnes, (d) the amount of virgin materials saved in tonnes, (e) the amount of hazardous waste reduced in tonnes and (f) the amount of water saved in tonnes was by (i) the Carbon Trust, (ii) Envirowise, (iii) the National Industrial Symbiosis programme and (iv) WRAP in (A) 2005-06 and (B) 2006-07. (178038)

DEFRA's BREW programme is returning £284 million raised from the landfill tax escalator back to businesses between 2005 and 2008. Work is being taken forward to improve businesses' resource efficiency and to minimise waste that is unnecessarily sent to landfill. Funds are awarded to a number of regional and national BREW delivery bodies. Allocations for 2005 to 2007 are set out in the following table.

£ million

Delivery body

Budget 2005-06

Budget 2006-07

Action Sustainability

0

0.219

Carbon Trust

3

23.382

DEFRA's Waste Data Strategy

0.5

2.1

Environment Agency

2

4.454

Envirowise

12

16.772

Market Transformation Programme

2.65

2.8955

National Industrial Symbiosis Programme (NISP)

2.675

5.7

Regional Development Agencies

5

11.71

Royal Society of Wildlife Trusts— Business Reuse Fund

0

2

Technology Strategy Board

2

5.654

WRAP

2.854

6.288

Other (includes coordination, communication, pilot projects, funding for agricultural waste project and programme contingency fund)

0.321

3.24

Total

33

84.415

The BREW programme has also continued to provide funding towards other business resource efficiency and waste activities in England, as shown in the following table:

Delivery body

Activity

2006-07 funding (£ million)

Carbon Trust

Energy efficiency and carbon emission reduction activities

13.618

WRAP

Work with the construction, manufacturing, retail and recycling and reprocessing industries to reduce waste and encourage recycling

4.7

Total

18.318

In 2005-06, the delivery bodies referred to in the question achieved the short-term savings aggregated in the following table. These show the results for £18.5 million of all £33 million of projects funded from the BREW programme.

The results must be viewed with caution, since delivery bodies report according to a range of methodologies. Work is under way to improve consistency of this reporting and to apply reporting more widely. The results are only for BREW-funded activities. Some savings will result from these interventions in future years, which are not counted here.

Metric

In-year result

(1) Waste diverted from landfill

675,000 tonnes

(2) Carbon savings

320,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide

(3) Virgin raw material savings

682,000 tonnes

(4) Hazardous waste savings

120,000 tonnes

(5) Water savings

5,630,000 cubic metres

DEFRA has not yet released individual delivery body results for 2005-06. These include some selected long-term results, which are not included in this table. Similarly, work is currently under way to verify BREW programme results for 2006-07. I will deposit both sets of results in the House Library when they are ready.

In addition to funding from the BREW programme, DEFRA has provided the following funding to the delivery bodies below. NISP has not received any non-BREW funding from DEFRA.

£ million

2005-06

2006-07

Carbon Trust

57.6

41 .644

Envirowise

2.292

2.292

WRAP

67.605

51 .58

Environmental Research Institute: Finance

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) how much has been committed from the private sector to date for the Environmental Research Institute; (173153)

(2) which organisations have pledged contributions to the Environmental Research Institute.

I have been asked to reply.

In his 2006 Budget Statement, the Prime Minister announced the intention to create “a new energy and environmental research institute”. The Energy Technologies Institute was legally established on 12 December 2007 as a Limited Liability Partnership. Private-sector partners are BP, Caterpillar, EDF Energy, EON UK, Rolls-Royce and Shell, together contributing up to £300 million over 10 years. Additional private sector partners are being sought to match the Government’s commitment of up to £550 million, and to achieve a budget of up to £1.1 billion for the ETI over the next decade.

European Fisheries Fund

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs pursuant to the answer of 5 December 2007, Official Report, column 1270W, on the European Fisheries Fund, whether he submitted the UK National Strategic Plan to the European Commission by 31 December 2007; and if he will make a statement. (177688)

Fish: Conservation

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps he is taking to preserve endangered fish stocks in UK waters. (177649)

The UK Government are committed to the conservation of fish stocks. The common fisheries policy provides a framework for co-operation at European Union level. We continue to play an active role in negotiating improvements to the policy designed to provide more sustainable long-term fisheries management. We are working to ensure that depleted stocks are recovered and subsequently conserved, while at the same time delivering, in so far as we can, a viable future for the fishing industry.

Fisheries

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what estimate he has made of the value of fish caught by the 10 metre and under fleet in each year since 1997; and if he will make a statement. (176143)

The value at current prices of reported fish landings by the UK 10 metre and under fleet is provided in the following table.

Landings by the UK 10 m and under fleet

£ million

Year

Value

1997

47.0

1998

50.4

1999

48.5

2000

44.5

2001

44.8

2002

43.4

2003

46.3

2004

47.4

2005

38.1

2006

76.2

The sharp increase in value in 2006 is a result of the introduction, by UK fishery administrations, of a scheme of registration for buyers and sellers of first sale fish. This has led to improved landings information for the 10 metre and under fleet. Figures for 2006 are therefore not comparable with those from earlier years.

Fisheries: Quotas

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if he will provide a detailed breakdown of the distribution of 2008 fishing quota to (a) producer organisations, (b) the 10 metre and under fleet and (c) the non-sector; what the estimated value is of this quota; and if he will make a statement. (177617)

Work is under way to allocate UK quotas to industry sectors, but it is not yet complete. It is not possible to make the allocations until final catch data for 2007 are available in order to assess whether penalties or compensation should apply. We also need to know what quota for 2008, in addition to that allocated to the UK at the December Council, is available. Officials are working to a timetable to make provisional quota allocations by mid April, and final allocations by mid May.

It is not possible to make any estimate of the value of the quotas until the allocations are made.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether he plans to allow the 10 metre and under fleet to lease quota in 2008; and if he will make a statement. (177618)

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given on 12 December 2007, Official Report, column 703W.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether he has identified possible quota swaps to benefit the 10 metre and under fleet; and if he will make a statement. (177619)

Two international swaps have been completed with Germany and the Netherlands to acquire an additional 150 tonnes of value North Sea sole quota for inshore fishermen operating in the southern North Sea. We are continuing to explore the scope for further swaps to boost fishing opportunities in key 10 metre and under fisheries.

Fisheries: Regulation

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment he has made of the level of compliance with regulations and rules for which he is responsible within the seafood and fishing industry in (a) England, (b) Wales, (c) Scotland and (d) Northern Ireland. (177441)

It is difficult to make an accurate formal assessment of levels of compliance due to the diverse fishery activity occurring in our waters. However, during 2006, the last year for which complete figures are available, the Marine and Fisheries Agency undertook some 11,744 inspections, of which 298 revealed one or more offences (some 412 infringements). Compliance in Scotland and Northern Ireland is a devolved issue.

Fisheries: Subsidies

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) which countries have submitted their European Fisheries Fund Operational Programme to the European Commission; and if he will make a statement; (177684)

(2) which countries have had their European Fisheries Fund Operational Programme approved by the European Commission; and if he will make a statement.

Twenty five member states have formally submitted their Operational Programmes to the European Commission. Of these, 20 have been approved.

Flood Control

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if he will accept interim conclusion number IC33 of the Pitt Review and bring forward legislation to update flooding legislation. (178244)

The interim report sets out 72 interim conclusions, on which Sir Michael is seeking views before he publishes his final report. The Government will carefully consider these and respond to him, including the suggestion for legislative change. However, the Government are committed to early action on the urgent recommendations in the report—including for better identification of areas at risk from surface water and groundwater flooding. It is committed to bringing forward a complete package of measures that will ensure flood and coastal erosion risk is managed in a sustainable and holistic manner and avoiding a piecemeal approach to managing risk.

Home Energy Efficiency Scheme

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the value of excess payments requested in respect of Warm Front grants has been in (a) Shropshire, (b) west midlands and (c) England in 2007-08. (177004)

Between 1 April and 30 November 2007, the following client contributions were requested under the Warm Front scheme:

£

Area

Total value of excess requirements

Shropshire

288,347.38

West midlands

4,031,045.68

Total

23,609,213.88

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what his Department's policy is on excess payments for Warm Front scheme projects being paid (a) directly and (b) in cash by householders to contractors. (177008)

Clients are asked to pay excess payment contributions directly to the installation company in order that the work can proceed as quickly as possible, and to reduce the administrative costs of another agency handling the payment.

The preferred method of payment for both parties is a matter for the client and the contractor.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs when the White Young Green assessment of Warm Front will be made available to hon. Members and the general public. (177671)

Two recent reviews of Warm Front pricing will be made available on the DEFRA website by the end of February.

Other Warm Front quality assessment reports can be requested from my Department.

Home Energy Efficiency Scheme: Heating

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many radiators have been installed through Warm Front; and in how many homes. (177690)

Home Energy Efficiency Scheme: Hendon

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many pensioner households in Hendon have received grants under the Warm Front scheme; what the cost of those grants has been; what the average grant was; what grants are available under the scheme; and if he will make a statement. (177499)

Since the start of Warm Front, 786 pensioner households in Hendon have received grants. The total cost of these grants is £938,111.92, with the average grant being £718.31.

The Warm Front Scheme offers eligible households grants of up to £2,700, or £4,000 where an oil system is recommended. For pensioner households not eligible for a main grant, Warm Front offers a £300 voucher towards the cost of a heating measure.

Home Energy Efficiency Scheme: Iguana Services

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what proportion of Warm Front grants have been awarded to Iguana Services Limited (a) by number and (b) by value in each of the last three years. (177005)

The information requested is shown in the following tables.

Total number of heating installations under Warm Front

Total number of heating installations completed by Iguana

Percentage of installations completed by Iguana

2005-06

44,567

6,301

14.14

2006-07

86,828

25,324

29.17

2007-08

85,550

24,241

28.34

Total

216,945

55,866

26

Total value ofheating installations under Warm Front

Total value of heating installations completed by Iguana

Proportion of value of installations completed by Iguana

2005-06

75,359,434.38

5,035,666.68

6.68

2006-07

145,183,356.58

30,457,998.67

20.98

2007-08

150,377,506.58

37,044,220.00

24.63

Total

370,920,297.54

72,537,885.35

19.52

Oil: Moray Firth

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform on oil and gas exploration at the Moray Firth; and if he will make a statement. (177674)

My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Environment Food and Rural Affairs (Hilary Benn) had no recent discussions with the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform on oil and gas exploration at the Moray Firth.

Pitt Review

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs which of the 15 recommendations for urgent action made by the Pitt review he plans to act on immediately; and if he will make a statement. (178434)

The Government have said that it agrees with all 15 of the urgent recommendations in the report and we will work with all of the organisations involved to implement them.

Railways

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how much was spent by his Department on first class train tickets in the last 12 months. (171261)

From information held centrally, the core-Department spent £1,030,331 on first-class train tickets in the period October 2006 to September 2007 inclusive.

First-class travel by Ministers, by officials accompanying Ministers and by officials is undertaken in accordance with departmental guidance which encourages people to use public transport wherever possible.

Not all rail travel taken is first class.

Sea Fisheries Committees

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether he plans to increase the representation of recreational sea anglers on Sea Fisheries Committees; and if he will make a statement. (177664)

Recreational sea anglers are currently represented on each SFC. All appointments to SFCs made by my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State last for a maximum of four years and the current round of appointments will end on 30 June 2009. The Marine Bill White Paper set out proposals to reform SFCs in England, including adjustments to their membership structure to improve decision-making and local stakeholder involvement. Sea anglers will continue to be represented on reformed SFCs but I have not at this stage made any decisions regarding the future level of that representation.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many recreational sea angling representatives were on each Sea Fisheries Committee in each year since 1997. (177667)

All appointments to SFCs made by the Secretary of State last for a four year period. For the appointment periods 2001-05 and 2005-09, each SFC had the following number of appointees with a known interest in sea angling (information for 1997-2001 is not readily accessible in the format required):

SFC

2001-05

2005-09

Cornwall

1

2

Cumbria

0

1

Devon

1

2

Eastern

0

2

Isles of Scilly

1

1

Kent and Essex

1

2

Northumberland

1

2

North Eastern

3

4

North Western and North Wales

1

2

Southern

1

1

Sussex

1

2

Within the above appointment periods, the level of angler representation may have varied in some instances where vacancies have arisen due to resignations.

Members appointed by the Secretary of State are required to represent all the local fishing and marine environmental interests in the SFC district in a balanced way. Appointees are reminded that they should not regard themselves as representing any one particular interest, and may have experience across several sectors.

Appointments to South Wales SFC are a matter for the Welsh Assembly Government.

Sea Fishing: Licensing

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) whether he plans to introduce a recreational sea angling licence; what estimate he has made of the revenue that a recreational sea angling licence would raise; and if he will make a statement; (177660)

(2) pursuant to the Marine Bill White Paper and associated Regulatory Impact Assessment, what estimate he has made of the cost of administering and enforcing a recreational sea angling licence; and if he will make a statement;

(3) pursuant to the Marine Bill White Paper and associated Regulatory Impact Assessment, to what use the revenue raised from a recreational sea angling licence would be put; and if he will make a statement.

The Marine Bill White Paper published in March 2007 includes proposals to introduce a chargeable licensing scheme for recreational sea angling. The RIA accompanying the White Paper estimated that the revenue from such a scheme could generate £9 million to £12 million per annum in licence fees, depending on uptake and the rate of the charge. The RIA also estimated the one-off set-up cost to the Government could be between £0.1 million to £1.5 million, with annual running costs including enforcement between £1.2 million and £2.8 million, depending on how the scheme is implemented and the level of compliance.

The White Paper explained that the revenue raised from a recreational sea angling licence would be used to help support measures such as:

(i) improved scientific data to inform the development of management measures for stocks of specific interest to anglers;

(ii) protection and improvement of shore access and parking;

(iii) provision of more small boat launching facilities;

(iv) access to existing and new shore structures;

(v) creation of artificial inshore and offshore reefs; and

(vi) clear displays of relevant rules, codes of conduct and other useful data on the shore, at boat launch sites and aboard charter boats

The revenue would also cover the costs of administration, monitoring and inspection and evaluation of any measures introduced for the benefit of anglers.

Seas and Oceans: Legislation

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if he will make it his policy not to introduce the draft Marine Bill before the Planning and the Energy Bills receive Royal Assent; and if he will make a statement. (177440)

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given on 21 November 2007, Official Report, column 868W.

Shellfish

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether he has reached an agreed approach on (a) brown crab and (b) lobster conservation with the devolved Administrations; and if he will make a statement. (177621)

DEFRA is in discussion with the devolved Administrations to explore whether an agreed approach would be the most appropriate course of action in relation to brown crab and lobster conservation.

Stray Dogs

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the reasons were for the decision to transfer responsibility for stray dogs from the police to local authorities. (177657)

In July 2002, the Police Bureaucracy Taskforce made recommendations on the transfer of a range of ancillary tasks from the police service to other agencies in order to free up officer time to focus on core policing activities. Included in those recommendations was that responsibility for stray dogs should become the sole responsibility of local authorities. Implementation of the recommendation was agreed by the Association of Chief Police Officers and the Local Government Association. Parliamentary approval was received by enactment of section 68 of the Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act 2005 which removes any statutory responsibility on the police for stray dogs. The provision is due to be commenced on 6 April 2008.

Waste Management: Finance

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how much has been allocated to research and development on the waste management programme in each of the next three years; and from what budget these resources will be drawn. (179286)

DEFRA was allocated a total budget of about £4 billion under the comprehensive spending review for 2008-11.

No allocations have yet been determined for research and development on DEFRA's waste management programme, although the Department expects to do so before March this year.

Water Supply

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps are being taken to encourage private water boards to improve their pipe networks to prevent leaks and wastage. (177645)

The independent regulator, the Water Services Regulation Authority (Ofwat) sets leakage targets for the water companies and has regulatory powers which it can use should it consider that to be necessary. Across England and Wales leakage has been reduced by 24 per cent. overall since 1997 and most companies continue to meet the targets set by Ofwat. Ofwat has set water companies targets to reduce leakage by a further 2.9 per cent. from 2006-07 levels by 2009-10.

Water: Meters

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what plans he has to impose compulsory water meters on currently unmetered family homes. (176526)

Under the Water Industry Act 1999 water companies have powers to impose a meter on an individual household for discretionary purposes. They may also make a case that the water resources situation in their area requires compulsory metering of all properties.

Whaling

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) what discussions he has had with (a) the Prime Minister and (b) Cabinet colleagues in relation to whaling since the IWC59 meeting of the International Whaling Commission; and if he will make a statement; (177612)

(2) when he last wrote to his Cabinet colleagues about whaling; and if he will make a statement;

(3) with reference to the answer of 19 February 2007, Official Report, column 195W, on whaling, whether he has received a response to the letters sent to his Cabinet colleagues; and if he will make a statement;

(4) with reference to the answer of 19 February 2007, Official Report, column 195W, on whaling, when Cabinet colleagues have drawn to the attention of their foreign counterparts the subject of (a) whaling, (b) whale conservation and (c) the whale watching industry; and if he will make a statement.

Cabinet members, along with all hon. Members, were sent a ‘Dear Colleague’ letter sent by my predecessor in June last year, which provided a full report of the outcome of last year’s annual IWC meeting. The letter emphasised the UK’s efforts to increase the number of conservation-minded countries in the IWC. The report of the meeting made clear that the UK remains vigorously opposed to whaling and details our position on issues such as the importance of welfare considerations and whale watching.

The UK has led efforts to recruit more conservation-minded countries to the IWC through our publication ‘Protecting Whales—A Global Responsibility’. The Prime Minister emphasises the UK’s strong commitment to whale conservation in the foreword to this document stating:

“I urge Governments to join the UK, and other anti-whaling countries, in the International Whaling Commission to maintain the moratorium on commercial whaling so that our generation meets its responsibility to protect whales.”

This year, my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State is also writing to 18 countries encouraging them to join the IWC for the greater protection of whales. In the coming weeks, Foreign and Commonwealth Office posts will deliver the updated version of the leaflet ‘Protecting Whales—A Global Responsibility’ to host Governments and lobby to support the UK’s position. FCO posts are aware of the need to watch for indications that countries, including some mentioned in the answer of 19 February 2007, Official Report, column 195W, may join the IWC and adopt a pro-whaling stance. Posts in the relevant capitals are briefed, supplied with copies of our publication and engage in discussion with their counterparts on whaling at every appropriate opportunity. Such countries are left in no doubt as to the importance that the UK attaches to whale conservation.

As a result of the correspondence over lobbying mentioned by my predecessor in his answer of 19 February 2007, Official Report, column 195W prior to the 2007 Annual IWC Meeting in Anchorage, the UK and its like-minded allies managed to recruit six countries into the IWC, so that the pro-whaling majority in that organisation was overturned. In a further response to UK lobbying efforts, several other countries have indicated willingness to support our opposition to Japanese whaling and to join the IWC in time for this year’s annual meeting in Santiago, Chile in June.

Whales: Japan

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps are being taken to secure a complete ban on whaling by the Japanese Government. (177712)

The UK Government have consistently voiced its opposition to Japanese “scientific” whaling. Most recently, on 8 January, I called in the Deputy Ambassador from the Japanese Embassy in London to express the UK’s outrage, and urge Japan to end its slaughter of whales.

On 21 December 2007, the UK, along with 29 other countries, took part in a demarché to the Japanese Government calling on Japan to

“cease all its lethal scientific research on whales, and assure the immediate return of the vessels which are implementing JARPA II” (the Japanese “scientific” Research Programme in the Antarctic).

White Fish: Conservation

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs when he expects to introduce measures to improve bass conservation and bass stocks; and if he will make a statement. (177620)

Scientific advice from the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea in 2004 suggested that the bass stock is fished sustainably. Last year I announced a review of bass nursery areas and inshore netting restrictions with a view to providing additional protection for stocks of bass. The first step will be to engage with stakeholders to agree how and when to take this work forward collaboratively this year.

International Development

Afghanistan: Drugs

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what the total expenditure on promoting alternative livelihoods to the drugs trade in Afghanistan was in each year since 2001. (177538)

Prior to 2003-04 much of DFID funding in Afghanistan focused on humanitarian assistance. By March 2007 DFID had spent £91.5 million on supporting alternative livelihoods to the drugs trade since 2001.

£

Financial year

Amount in GBP

2001-02

144,079

2002-03

36,699

2003-04

5,205,33

2004-05

7,350,806

2005-06

44,072,886

2006-07

34,460,725

Afghanistan: International Assistance

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what the total expenditure on reconstruction and aid for Afghanistan was in each year since 2001. (177543)

Details of the UK's bilateral assistance and imputed multilateral assistance to Afghanistan since 2001 are laid out in the following tables.

Table 1: UK total bilateral gross public expenditure on development 2001-02 to 2006-07

£000

Afghanistan

2001-02

50,027

2002-03

76,018

2003-04

99,595

2004-05

98,959

2005-06

126,949

2006-07

123,011

Table 2: Imputed UK share of multilateral official development assistance (ODA) 2001 to 2005

£000

Afghanistan

2001

7,064

2002

23,300

2003

36,789

2004

27,676

2005

39,864

Departmental Pay

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development pursuant to the answer of 5 December 2007, Official Report, column 1255W, on departmental pay, how many of those earning over £100,000 were employed (a) as special advisers and (b) in a political role in each year since 1997. (177176)

Since 2003, the Government have published on an annual basis the number of special advisers in each pay band. For the most recent information I refer the hon. Member to the statement made by my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister on 22 November 2007, Official Report, 147-151WS.

Information on the numbers and costs of special advisers prior to 2003 was provided at regular intervals and this information will be available in the Library of the House.

Ethiopia: Foreign Exchange

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development pursuant to the answer of 11 December 2007, Official Report, columns 414-5W, on Ethiopia: foreign exchange, what the (a) exchange rate obtained, (b) value of commission paid, (c) name of the exchange institution or bank used and (d) purpose of the transaction was of DFID Ethiopia's currency exchanges of (i) 27 July 2007 and (ii) 8 October 2007. (177170)

(a) The exchange rates obtained were (i) 18.4789 Birr = £1 and (ii) 18.3706 Birr = £1 respectively.

(b) The value of commission paid was (i) £626.57 and (ii) £625.00 respectively.

(c) The transactions were made through the international banking division of the Commercial Bank of Ethiopia.

(d) Both transactions were made to fund payments in local currency.

Sudan

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development with reference to the answer of 5 March 2007, Official Report, column 1624W, on Sudan, what proportion of the grant aid given by his Department to the UN high commission for refugees was spent upon that organisation's priority areas of vaccination and veterinary care in co-operation with the Chadian government's livestock delegation and promoting the breeding of smaller animals (sheep and poultry) better suited to vulnerable refugees living in camps. (177438)

In 2007, DFID gave the Office for the United Nations High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHCR) £2 million to support their operations in Chad. Our contribution was to their overall appeal rather than to specific parts of their programme. Under the Good Humanitarian Donorship initiative, we do not require separate reporting for DFID against each activity and it is not therefore possible to determine DFID support to this particular aspect of their programme. In total, however, the livestock component of UNHCR's programme was around £400,000 in 2007.

Tanzania: Overseas Investment

To ask the Secretary of State for International Development pursuant to the answer of 9 January 2008 to question 166007, what steps he has taken, in conjunction with the Foreign and Commonwealth Office, following his briefing by the UK High Commissioner in Dar es Salaam on 26 and 27 November 2007, in relation to the case of Mr. Stewart Middleton and Ms Sarah Hermitage. (179148)

I raised the case with the President of Tanzania on 27 November 2007. Our high commissioner subsequently followed up that conversation with the Tanzanian Chief Secretary, who undertook to look into the matter with the relevant authorities. The Chief Secretary confirmed that it was his Government's intention that the issue should be justly and expeditiously resolved.

Scotland

English Language

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how much his Department has spent on English language classes for staff in the last year for which figures are available. (177485)

Fuel Poverty

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what plans his Department has to contribute to the reduction of fuel poverty in Scotland; and what account he has taken of the Scottish House Condition Survey in developing such plans. (177113)

Tackling fuel poverty is a priority for the Government, with DBERR and DEFRA taking lead responsibility. Across the UK we are taking action to ensure the energy market is working effectively, and continuing to tackle poverty through ensuring adequate levels of income. The UK Fuel Poverty Strategy, and subsequent annual progress reports, set out this work.

In Scotland initiatives relating to the promotion of energy efficiency are devolved, such as the Central Heating programme and Warm Deal. The Scottish Executive therefore contribute to monitoring progress against the UK Strategy. The 5th Annual Progress Report, published in December 2007, draws on data from the Scottish House Condition Survey.

Official Engagements

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what his official engagements were between 1 November and 21 November 2007. (169460)

My official engagements as Secretary of State for Defence and Secretary of State for Scotland, throughout the period 1 November to 21 November, included various meetings in London and Scotland, including with ministerial colleagues and officials from the MOD and Scotland Office. On Thursday 1 November and Friday 2 November I was overseas visiting service personnel serving in Iraq. On Monday 5 November I met HBOS in Scotland. On Tuesday 6 November I attended the State Opening of Parliament. On Wednesday 7 November I hosted the French Defence Minister for bilateral discussions in London. On Thursday 8 November I attended the British Torch of Remembrance ceremony at Westminster Abbey and met National Grid. On Friday 9 November I visited Diageo with my hon. Friend the Member for Ochil and South Perthshire (Gordon Banks). On Saturday 10 November I attended the Royal British Legion Festival of Remembrance 2007 event and, on Sunday 11 November, I attended the Remembrance Ceremony at the Cenotaph. On Monday 12 November I met EU ambassadors in London, hosted by the Portuguese ambassador, before attending the Defence debate in the House of Commons. On Tuesday 13 November I met separately with the National Farmers Union Scotland and Scottish Financial Enterprise. On Wednesday 14 November I attended a Sailor, Soldier, Airmen and Families Association reception. On Thursday 15 November I hosted the Romanian Defence Minister for bilateral discussions in London. On Friday 16 November I hosted a reception in Edinburgh for Polish National Day. On Sunday 18 and Monday 19 November I was in Brussels attending a meeting of EU Defence Ministers. On Tuesday 20 November I met The Crown Prince of Bahrain.

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what engagements he has had since 8 October 2007; and what the (a) date, (b) location, (c) time and (d) duration was of each engagement. (170718)

[holding answer 3 December 2007]: From Monday 8 October to Tuesday 9 October I was in London where I had various meetings, including with ministerial colleagues and officials from the Scotland Office and MOD. On Tuesday 9 October I attended Cabinet, had a telephone conversation with the First Minister of Scotland and attended the Chancellor’s statement on the comprehensive spending review. I had no Scotland Office engagements on Wednesday 10 October, Thursday 11 October or Friday 12 October.

On Saturday 13 October I attended the Scotland v. Ukraine Euro 2008 Qualifier at Hampden Park, Glasgow. On Sunday 14 October I attended the National Youth Orchestras of Scotland Futures performance at Glasgow City Halls.

From Monday 15 October to Wednesday 17 October I was in London where I had various meetings, including with ministerial colleagues and officials from the Scotland Office and MOD. On Tuesday 16 October I attended Cabinet, and answered Scottish questions at the House of Commons. That evening I attended the Border and Immigration Agency reception in Dover House. On Wednesday 17 October I met the chief executive of Ofgem and that evening I attended the Poppy Scotland reception in Dover House.

From Thursday 18 October to Saturday 20 October I had no Scotland Office engagements. From Monday 22 October to Tuesday 23 October I was in London where I had various meetings, including with ministerial colleagues and officials from the Scotland Office and MOD. On Tuesday 23 October I attended Cabinet. That afternoon I delivered a statement on the Gould report in the House of Commons. That evening I attended the CBI reception in Dover House. From Wednesday 24 October to Thursday 25 October I had no Scotland Office engagements.

On Friday 26 October I attended the Glasgow Chamber of Commerce business breakfast. That afternoon I attended the launch of Stagecoach’s bio-diesel coaches in Kilmarnock. From Saturday 27 October to Wednesday 31 October I had no Scotland Office engagements.

My official engagements as Secretary of State for Defence and Secretary of State for Scotland, throughout the period 1 November to 21 November, included various meetings in London and Scotland, including with ministerial colleagues and officials from the MOD and Scotland Office. On Thursday 1 November and Friday 2 November I was overseas visiting service personnel serving in Iraq. On Monday 5 November I met HBOS in Scotland. On Tuesday 6 November I attended the State Opening of Parliament. On Wednesday 7 November I hosted the French Defence Minister for bilateral discussions in London. On Thursday 8 November I attended the British Torch of Remembrance ceremony at Westminster Abbey and met National Grid. On Friday 9 November I visited Diageo with my hon. Friend the Member for Ochil and South Perthshire (Gordon Banks) On Saturday 10 November I attended the Royal British Legion Festival of Remembrance 2007 event and, on Sunday 11 November, I attended the Remembrance Ceremony at the Cenotaph. On Monday 12 November I met EU ambassadors in London, hosted by the Portuguese ambassador, before attending the Defence debate in the House of Commons. On Tuesday 13 November I met separately with the National Farmers Union Scotland and Scottish Financial Enterprise. On Wednesday 14 November I attended a Sailor, Soldier, Airmen and Families Association reception. On Thursday 15 November I hosted the Romanian Defence Minister for bilateral discussions in London. On Friday 16 November I hosted a reception in Edinburgh for Polish National Day. On Sunday 18 November and Monday 19 November I was in Brussels attending a meeting of EU Defence Ministers. On Tuesday 20 November I met The Crown Prince of Bahrain.

Throughout the period 22 November to 10 December, I had various meetings in London and Scotland, including with ministerial colleagues and officials from the MOD and Scotland Office. On Thursday 22 November, I had a meeting with the Columbian Defence Minister and a meeting with the Turkish Chief of Defence Staff. On Friday 23 November, I addressed the State of the City Economy Conference in Glasgow. On Wednesday 28 November, I answered oral questions for the Scotland Office in the House of Commons. On Thursday 29 November, I attended a reception to mark the homecoming of 12 Brigade from Iraq. On Saturday 1 December, I visited the Longannet Power Station in Alloa and participated in the Scottish Interfaith Week Come and Play the Diversity Game event in Edinburgh. On Monday 3 December, I answered oral Defence questions in the House of Commons. On Tuesday 4 December, I met service families about the Board of Inquiry findings into the crash of the RAF Nimrod XV230 before attending the House to make a statement about the same. On Wednesday 6 December, I gave oral evidence to the AFPRB and in the evening I attended a Sailor, Soldier, Airmen and Families Association carol service at the Guards’ Chapel, Wellington Barracks. On Thursday 8 December, I met representatives from the services charity “Forward Edge Battle Area”. Between December 7 and December 10, I was overseas visiting service personnel in Afghanistan.

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what his official engagements were from 22 November to 10 December 2007. (173736)

Throughout the period 22 November to 10 December, I had various meetings in London and Scotland, including with ministerial colleagues and officials from the MOD and Scotland Office. On Thursday 22 November, I had a meeting with the Columbian Defence Minister and a meeting with the Turkish Chief of Defence Staff. On Friday 23 November, I addressed the State of the City Economy conference in Glasgow. On Wednesday 28 November, I answered oral questions for the Scotland Office in the House of Commons. On Thursday 29 November, I attended a reception to mark the homecoming of 12 Brigade from Iraq. On Saturday 1 December, I visited the Longannet Power Station in Alloa and participated in the Scottish Interfaith Week Come and Play the Diversity Game event in Edinburgh. On Monday 3 December, I answered oral Defence questions in the House of Commons. On Tuesday 4 December, I met with service families about the Board of Inquiry findings into the crash of the RAF Nimrod XV230 before attending the House to make a statement about the same. On Wednesday 6 December, I gave oral evidence to the AFPRB and in the evening I attended a Sailor, Soldier, Airmen and Families Association carol service at the Guards’ Chapel, Wellington Barracks. On Thursday 8 December, I met representatives from the services charity “Forward Edge Battle Area”. Between December 7 and December 10, I was overseas visiting service personnel in Afghanistan.

Culture, Media and Sport

Alcoholic Drinks: Licensing

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport how many small businesses had their licences to sell alcohol revoked in 2007 where sales to underage drinkers were cited as the reason. (179361)

This information is not held centrally.

Statistical bulletins on licences to sell alcohol include the number of licences revoked, but do not indicate the reason for revocation, nor the size of premises affected. Licences may be revoked on review for one or more reasons relating to the four licensing objectives, including sales of alcohol to children.

The latest DCMS Statistical Bulletin on Alcohol, Entertainment and Late Night Refreshment, was published on 8 November 2007 and shows that, between April 2006 and March 2007, there were 695 reviews which resulted in 92 licences being revoked and 91 being suspended.

Definition of Sport

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport (1) why recreational (a) horse riding and (b) swimming were included in the new definition of sport; (177107)

(2) why recreational cycling was excluded from the new definition of sport.

The definition of sport for the local and national government measurement framework from April 2008 will be largely based on the definition of sport currently used for the Comprehensive Performance Assessment framework. This is set out in the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport’s letter to the Local Government Association of 21 December 2007, a copy of which has been placed in the House Library.

The Secretary of State has asked Sport England to develop a new strategy for how it will deliver a world class community sport infrastructure of clubs, coaches, volunteers and facilities.

This new focus will deliver the provision of excellent sport opportunities from the grassroots up, sustaining and increasing participation and allowing everyone to develop their sporting talents at every level.

Sport England’s tighter focus on sport will mean that some activities may fall outside Sport England’s remit and funding. Decisions have not yet been taken on what activities fall within or outside of Sport England’s remit.

To ensure that gaps do not appear, Her Majesty’s Treasury is leading wider cross-Government work on creating a physical strategy for all, which should be completed by the end of March 2008.

DCMS has a clear Government lead on delivering sport and believes a tighter definition of sport will ensure Lottery and Exchequer funding through Sport England will more effectively deliver an excellent sporting infrastructure. Investment in wider physical activity falls to other Government Departments and agencies who have the policy and funding lead.

Departmental Contracts

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what the (a) objective and (b) value was of each contract placed with (i) Deloitte and Touche, (ii) Ernst and Young, (iii) KPMG, (iv) PricewaterhouseCoopers and (v) PA Consulting by his Department and its agencies in each year since 2004-05. (179031)

The following contracts are those awarded over the stated time period:

Contract

Date

£

(i) Deloitte and Touche

Undertaking of sports strategy

September 2004

24,000

Undertaking of Olympic programme assurance

November 2006

50,000

Conducting ICT security compliance/review.

October 2007

58,000

(ii) Ernst and Young

Nil Return

(iii) KPMG

To provide validation of Olympic costs.

November 2005

255,000

(iv) PricewaterhouseCoopers

Review of Olympic cost validation

May 2004

114,000

Study of impact of Olympic Games

October 2004

72,000

Accountancy advice on fees to be charged through Licensing Act 2003

December 2004

29,500

Examination of Government sponsorship of British Library.

February 2005

24,000

Review of public library standards.

August 2006

99,570

Provision of economic advice for Olympics

February 2007

17,000

To ensure VAT regulations/compliance are met

April 2007

18,000

Appraisal and Evaluation of Olympic Games Legacy

October 2007

78,000

Assessment of costs/benefits of World Heritage Site

May 2007

69,000

(v) PA Consulting

Delivery of strategic framework to respond to priorities of local communities.

February 2004

151,410

Provision of advice on agency's governance arrangements

April 2006

26,000

The return includes Royal Parks Agency.

Departmental Correspondence

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport which section in his Department is responsible for answering correspondence from hon. Members and peers; and how many staff work in that section. (177237)

DCMS have a central team—the Central Information and Briefing Unit—that drafts the majority of responses to correspondence from hon. Members and peers and the general public. This team is currently staffed at just under 17 full-time equivalents (FTE), but has a variety of other non-correspondence duties. In addition, some responses (roughly a quarter of the overall volume) are drafted in full by officials working directly on the policy area in question.

DCMS aims to provide a comprehensive and responsive service to its inquiries, and the central team have contributed significantly toward this aim. From 1 January 2007 to 31 October 2007 (the last date where data is currently available) the Department responded to 74.35 per cent. of hon. Members and peers letters within 20 working days of receipt, and 90.58 per cent. of correspondence from the general public to the same timescale.

Gambling

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport whether the use of fixed odds betting terminals remains under review following publication of the British Gambling Prevalence Survey 2007; and what evidence his Department is gathering on these machines to evaluate their impact on gambling behaviour. (177058)

The 2005 Gambling Act regulates fixed odds betting terminals for the first time and allows a maximum of four machines per licensed betting premises. However, if there is evidence of harm from particular forms of gambling, including individual categories of gaming machines, the Government have the power to place further restrictions on operators.

The Gambling Commission is also planning a programme of secondary analysis of the British Gambling Prevalence Survey 2007 data which will look more closely at the risk factors associated with problem gambling. The risks associated with gaming machines will be considered within this context.

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what representations he has received from (a) the Responsibility in Gambling Trust and (b) GamCare on the impact of the Gambling Act 2005 on problem gambling. (177059)

Following the implementation of the Gambling Act 2005 on 1 September 2007, Ministers and officials continue to hold meetings with key stakeholders including the RiGT and GamCare and which have included representations on a range of issues, including problem gambling.

The Gambling Commission has also recently launched a first consultation paper on the Review of Research, Education and Treatment for problem gambling and has invited views from a broad range of stakeholders including GamCare and RiGT.

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what plans the Gambling Commission has to undertake further research into problem gambling following the publication of the British Gambling Prevalence Survey 2007, with particular reference to problem gambling associated with fixed odds betting terminals. (177060)

Following publication of the British Gambling Prevalence Survey 2007, the Gambling Commission is planning a programme of secondary research which will look at a range of risk factors associated with problem gambling. The risks associated with gaming machines will be considered within this context. The research will be commissioned shortly.

Gyms: Finance

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport how much his Department has allocated to mobile gymnasia in each year since 2005-06; and how much is likely to be allocated to such facilities in (a) 2008-09, (b) 2009-10 and (c) 2011-12. (177105)

There is no national funding programme specifically set up to support the provision of mobile gymnasia. Each Sport England region has an open application process to consider both capital and revenue projects and provides funding based on individual merit.

In the period 2005 to 2008, Sport England committed £896,007 to two mobile gymnasia projects. The first of these projects was completed in 2005 at a total cost to Sport England of £641,635. The project attracted an additional £483,906 in partnership funding. The second project was allocated funding of £254,372 to be spent over the three year period 2005 to 2008.

The allocation of funding by Sport England for the provision of mobile gymnasia in the period 2008 to 2012 will be subject to the consideration and merit of all submitted projects.

National Lottery: Community Development

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what proportion of National Lottery funding for good causes, excluding resources for the 2012 Olympic Games, will be available for community projects in each of the next 10 years. (177109)

All non-Olympic Lottery funding is essentially available to community projects in all the non-Olympic good cause sectors, namely the arts, sport, heritage and the areas supported by the Big Lottery Fund. There is no clear distinction between community projects and those with wider national or regional significance, or grants to individuals for public benefit. Decisions on which Lottery applications to support are made at arm’s length by the independent distributing bodies.

On current projections, even before these are revised to take account of likely returns under the third licence, over £5 billion of fresh Lottery income will be raised for the non-Olympic good causes in the five years from 2008-09 to 2012-13. This, together with further income raised until at least 2019, will be shared half for Big Lottery Fund causes, and a sixth each for sport, art and heritage.

Sports: National Lottery

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what account will be taken of the new definition of sport in considering national lottery funding applications for community projects. (177106)

Sport England is currently developing a new strategy to build a world class community sports infrastructure for 2008 to 2011. As part of this work, it is considering what activities should fall within its remit to fund sport.

Lottery distributing bodies operate at arm's length from Government, therefore Sport England will continue to take decisions independently on which community project applications receive lottery funding.

UK Sport: Finance

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport if he will break down the £30,000 allocated by UK Sport to the 2008 Legacy Lives Conference in Barbados by main budget heading; how many UK representatives are planned to attend the conference and at what cost per head; and how many of such representatives are expected to be UK Sport officials. (177947)

[holding answer 14 January 2008]: The £30,000 allocated by UK Sport to the 2008 Legacy Lives Conference is an award made to support the overall running costs of the event.

As the UK's lead agency for world class events, UK Sport has made this award from its international directorate budget as part of its ongoing strategy to promote greater knowledge and debate about the legacy benefits that arise from public investment in major sporting events. UK Sport aims to be a world leader in legacy benefits and its ambition is to influence event owners worldwide as to the importance of harnessing this element of major sporting events.

Two representatives will attend from the UK, both from UK Sport, following invitations to be a keynote speaker and a workshop moderator. As well as giving a keynote address, John Scott is also attending meetings in Barbados with colleagues from the Association of National Anti-Doping Organisations, of which he is vice-president.

The cost per head is approximately £1,500 and this has been met entirely from resources within the original £30,000 investment.

To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what estimate UK Sport has made of the cost of sending a British baseball team to the final 2008 Olympics qualification event in Taiwan. (177948)

[holding answer 14 January 2008]: UK Sport's current investment strategy does not provide funding to baseball and has therefore made no estimate of the cost of sending a British baseball team to the final 2008 Olympics qualification event in Taiwan.

The sport will not receive world class funding in the future as it is not on the competition programme for London 2012.

Northern Ireland

Burglary: Businesses

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many burglaries were reported in business premises and how many persons were convicted in each Police Service of Northern Ireland District Command Unit in each of the last 10 years. (174859)

Table 1 shows the number of offences of non-domestic burglary recorded from 2001-02 to 2006-07 by District Command Unit. As the DCU structure was only in place from 2001-02 figures are not provided prior to this financial year.

Non-domestic burglaries include burglaries which have occurred at locations which are not business premises, for example vacant houses, hotel rooms let out on short-stay basis, holiday homes/caravans not in use at the time, and also other buildings such as schools, halls etc. which may not be considered to be businesses. A manual trawl of each record would be required to establish whether the non-domestic burglary related to a business premises.

The number of recorded non-domestic burglaries fell by 3,296 (41.5 per cent.) between 2001-02 and 2006-07.

It is not possible to give the total number of convictions for burglary of a business as the court prosecution and conviction datasets do not contain information in relation to the type of dwelling involved. It is only possible to give the number of convictions for those offences, which refer to a non-dwelling. These are documented in Table 2.

Data are collated on the basis of principal offence; this means that only the most serious offence with which an offender is charged is included.

It is not possible routinely to reconcile recorded crime data from PSNI with prosecution and conviction data. Data from PSNI relate to the number of offences whereas data on prosecutions and convictions relate to the number of offenders brought before the courts. In addition, PSNI data denote each offence as it has been initially recorded and this may differ from the offence for which a suspect or suspects are subsequently proceeded against in the courts, therefore prosecution and conviction statistics should not be compared with the number recorded.

Table 1: Number of recorded offences of non-domestic burglary

DCU

2001-02

2002-03

2003-04

2004-05

2005-06

2006-07

Antrim

213

244

257

190

142

141

Ards

325

393

346

266

208

157

East Belfast

403

518

358

283

217

161

North Belfast

454

426

389

294

213

228

South Belfast

736

877

659

899

636

486

West Belfast

246

197

132

132

135

151

Carrickfergus

120

105

84

51

48

41

Castlereagh

275

239

235

137

106

116

Down

351

474

421

264

275

333

Lisburn

389

477

413

266

251

230

Newtownabbey

344

459

392

345

266

246

North Down

346

277

239

204

177

135

Urban Region

4,202

4,686

3,925

3,331

2,674

2,425

Armagh

199

171

179

153

151

130

Ballymena

273

322

222

183

162

145

Ballymoney

135

123

78

49

52

43

Banbridge

151

129

128

119

99

131

Coleraine

331

378

348

366

366

301

Cookstown

119

127

112

105

156

80

Craigavon

603

702

607

300

257

221

Dungannon and S Tyrone

196

191

146

125

138

137

Fermanagh

233

228

243

184

165

144

Foyle

450

339

413

291

373

195

Larne

100

134

72

82

81

64

Limavady

130

105

128

102

120

120

Magherafelt

112

88

72

47

51

32

Moyle

61

91

77

39

53

61

Newry and Mourne

329

298

344

353

401

262

Omagh

192

174

137

88

102

85

Strabane

107

123

86

48

71

54

Rural Region

3,721

3,723

3,392

2,634

2,798

2,205

Total

7,926

8,409

7,317

5,965

5,472

4,630

Table 2: Prosecutions and convictions for burglary in a non-dwelling by police district command unit 2000 to 20051, 2

2000

2001

District Command Unit

Prosecutions

Convictions

Prosecutions

Convictions

Antrim

6

6

0

0

Ards

11

11

8

5

Armagh

15

15

9

7

Banbridge

13

11

7

4

Belfast East

30

29

15

12

Belfast North

31

28

22

17

Belfast South

20

18

13

9

Belfast West

36

30

27

21

Ballymena

12

12

20

18

Ballymoney

8

8

8

8

Carrickfergus

6

4

10

9

Coleraine

9

8

14

11

Cookstown

3

3

5

3

Craigavon

12

12

12

5

Castlereagh

3

3

10

9

Dungannon and South Tyrone

13

12

15

12

Down

10

6

5

4

Fermanagh

10

7

9

5

Foyle

26

22

37

36

Larne

7

5

12

11

Limavady

4

3

5

5

Lisburn

18

16

13

10

Magherafelt

4

4

1

1

Moyle

1

1

1

1

Newtownabbey

4

3

4

4

North Down

7

7

7

7

Newry and Mourne

6

6

10

8

Omagh

6

5

6

5

Strabane

16

14

9

7

Missing

6

5

6

4

Total

353

314

320

258

20022003

District Command Unit

Prosecutions

Convictions

Prosecutions

Convictions

Antrim

4

4

5

3

Ards

9

8

5

5

Armagh

13

11

15

14

Banbridge

10

9

8

4

Belfast East

19

14

20

20

Belfast North

40

34

39

36

Belfast South

19

13

22

22

Belfast West

20

18

31

27

Ballymena

13

12

13

11

Ballymoney

8

7

3

3

Carrickfergus

6

6

1

1

Coleraine

7

7

7

7

Cookstown

2

2

6

4

Craigavon

17

15

13

8

Castlereagh

13

12

4

4

Dungannon and South Tyrone

3

3

8

7

Down

9

9

14

11

Fermanagh

6

6

5

4

Foyle

33

30

27

27

Larne

3

3

5

5

Limavady

3

3

4

2

Lisburn

17

17

18

15

Magherafelt

4

2

4

4

Moyle

3

3

2

2

Newtownabbey

4

3

7

7

North Down

15

14

8

7

Newry and Mourne

8

7

17

12

Omagh

9

9

10

7

Strabane

5

5

5

4

Missing

9

9

7

7

Total

331

295

333

290

20042005

District Command Unit

Prosecutions

Convictions

Prosecutions

Convictions

Antrim

11

11

2

2

Ards

3

3

8

4

Armagh

7

6

4

4

Banbridge

4

4

5

1

Belfast East

20

16

19

13

Belfast North

37

28

31

26

Belfast South

13

11

14

12

Belfast West

34

29

25

22

Ballymena

14

9

10

9

Ballymoney

1

1

2

2

Carrickfergus

2

1

5

3

Coleraine

14

11

14

11

Cookstown

14

11

6

6

Craigavon

31

26

11

10

Castlereagh

5

5

2

1

Dungannon and South Tyrone

6

4

5

4

Down

10

9

8

6

Fermanagh

5

5

8

8

Foyle

32

30

25

20

Larne

2

2

0

0

Limavady

6

6

2

2

Lisburn

21

18

26

22

Magherafelt

5

4

1

1

Moyle

1

1

3

1

Newtownabbey

6

6

9

7

North Down

8

7

9

6

Newry and Mourne

10

9

9

6

Omagh

6

6

5

5

Strabane

2

0

3

1

Missing

7

6

2

2

Total

337

285

273

217

1 Includes the offences of ‘burglary with intent to steal—non-dwelling’, ‘burglary and theft non-dwelling and burglary and attempted theft—non-dwelling.

2 Missing data relate to those offenders for whom police DCU information is not available.

Emergency Services: Crimes of Violence

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many people in Northern Ireland were charged with attacking emergency service workers in each of the last five years. (164446)

While there is no specific offence of attacking emergency service workers, the following tables set out the number of offences against the person and criminal damage offences recorded and cleared where:

the primary occupation of the victim is recorded as the emergency services (although it is not known whether they were on or off duty at the time of the offence) or;

the details recorded of the victim indicate “emergency services”—this denotes a general offence against an emergency service rather than a named individual (for instance an attack on a manned police vehicle or ambulance).

The term “offences against the person” covers a range of matters of varying severity, from minor incidents to more serious assaults.

Offences against the person where the victim's primary occupation is “emergency services”1

Offences cleared by means of charge/summons

2002-03

1,626

2003-04

1,748

2004-05

1,861

2005-06

2,121

2006-07

2,315

1Offences against the person include offences of assault on police.

Criminal damage where the victim is listed as “emergency services”

Offences cleared by means of charge/summons

2002-03

140

2003-04

191

2004-05

212

2005-06

211

2006-07

282

The PSNI have stressed that these figures include all the emergency services, and that they encompass many incidents which, while categorised as “offences against the person”, are relatively minor in nature. The majority relate to interactions between police and public during arrests, interventions in assaults etc. rather than deliberate premeditated attacks on police.

During recent years, as policing with the community embeds, officers are having more and closer interactions with the public during night time economy operations and therefore are more likely to intervene in tense situations.

National Identity Register

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what plans his Department has to make use of data on the National Identity Register when it is established; and what the estimated annual cost to his Department of that use is. (174032)

The Northern Ireland Office will work with the Home Office prior to the introduction of the National Identity Scheme to establish how identity information held on the proposed National Identity Register might be used to provide easier access to the Department's services.

It is too early in the process to estimate the costs of using the register within the Northern Ireland Office.

Orange Halls

To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will bring forward legislative proposals to facilitate the provision of criminal damage compensation in relation to arson attacks on Orange halls. (177313)

The Orange Order is entitled to make claims for statutory compensation in accordance with the provisions of the Criminal Damage (Compensation) (Northern Ireland) Order 1977. Following a meeting in February 2007 between the then Secretary of State and representatives of the Orange Order, Ministers have been working with the Orange Order, PSNI and the Compensation Agency to ensure the existing system operates more effectively.

Defence

Afghanistan: Armoured Fighting Vehicles

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence for what reasons he chose the Ridgeback to meet his requirement for additional specialist protected vehicles for Afghanistan. (176279)

Ridgback is the name that will be given to the vehicle that the Ministry of Defence selects to meet the requirement for additional protected patrol vehicles for Afghanistan—a requirement stated by military commanders. We are considering a number of factors, including mobility, capacity and protection as part of our assessment work. Negotiations are continuing and I am withholding further details on the likely vehicle or vehicles being considered as their release would, or would be likely to prejudice the capability, effectiveness and security of our armed forces.

Armed Forces: Deployment

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what steps the Government have taken to improve the morale of armed forces personnel on operational duty. (179179)

The MOD spends some £54 million per year on the provision of welfare services for our forces on operations. The exact provision of welfare facilities is dependent on location and the operational situation, but wherever possible personnel should receive 30 minutes of free telephone calls per week to anywhere in the world; free e-mail and internet access; a free forces aerogramme (bluey), e-bluey, fax bluey and photo bluey service; a free postal packet service; access to TVs, radios, DVD players and video gaming machines; British Forces Broadcasting Service TV and radio transmissions; books, newspapers, magazines and board games; combined services entertainment live shows and celebrity visits; rest and recuperation (R and R); the provision of basic shop facilities; a free Christmas box; the provision of financial assistance to home units to assist with families' welfare; the provision of concessionary families' travel; and post deployment leave. In both Iraq and Afghanistan, the nature of some operations means that our personnel can often be deployed from a permanent base to a forward operating base where facilities are necessarily more basic, but even in these situations we aim to provide iridium satellite telephones and Textlink e-mail/SMS messaging terminals as a minimum.

The morale of our forces personnel in operational areas is good.

Armed Forces: Pay

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence on how many occasions since 1977 the Government have not implemented in full the recommendations of the Armed Forces Pay Review Body. (178507)

Since 1977, the Government have always implemented in full the recommendations of the AFPRB. The implementation of the AFPRB's recommendations have, however, been staged on seven occasions, but where this has occurred they have always been effected within the same financial year.

Astute Class Submarines: Repairs and Maintenance

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what estimate he has made of the cost of repairing the Astute submarine damaged during routine tests. (179039)

[holding answer 14 January 2008]: Repair work is currently under way and progressing well. Costs will be agreed between the Department and BAE Systems once all repairs have been completed.

AWE Burghfield

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer of 17 December 2007, Official Report, column 1035W, on Atomic Weapons Establishment Burghfield, how many safety shortfalls (a) were identified by the Nuclear Installations Inspectorate during the risk assessment, (b) were resolved by the delayed 27 September 2007 target date, (c) will shortly be resolved and (d) will remain unresolved under the current single operation licensing regime imposed by the NII for each warhead handling operation; and if he will make a statement. (177368)

As I indicated in my answer to the hon. Member on 7 January 2008, Official Report, column 28W, the safety case issues in question were identified not by the NII, but by AWE plc in its own Periodic Review of Safety. A total of 1,000 safety shortfalls were identified and these ultimately translated into 337 improvement packages requiring further action. Of these improvement packages, 234 were completed by 27 September 2007 with a further 50 due to be completed by 31 March 2008. The remaining 53 improvement packages are due to be completed by 31 December 2008.

It is important to note that NII has made a full assessment of AWE's Periodic Review of Safety and is satisfied that appropriate progress is being made at AWE Burghfield to address the findings. It is emphasised that, if NII believed a particular operation were unsafe, it would not allow it to take place, and has appropriate regulatory powers at its disposal to cease operations.

Defence: Procurement

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the value of private sector funds pledged by contractors for each equipment acquisition programme audited by the National Audit Office and reported on in major projects reports published since 2001 is as a percentage of the contract price. (171827)

Departmental Public Buildings

To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what percentage of listed departmental buildings are in a (a) good, (b) fair, (c) poor and (d) unknown condition. (177533)

There are 782 listed buildings on the defence estate. The condition of these buildings at the end of the last financial year and at 9 January 2008 is shown in the following table:

<
CategoryAt 31 March 2007At 9 January 2008

Number

Percentage

Number

Percentage

Good

390

50

435

56

Fair

184

24

187

24

Poor

83

11