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Volume 479: debated on Monday 1 September 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) how many meetings he and his officials have had with representatives of (a) the nuclear energy and nuclear waste industry and (b) the combined heat and power industry since January 2007; who attended each meeting; when each such meeting was held; and what matters were discussed; (220583)

(2) what research his Department has commissioned on (a) nuclear energy and nuclear waste and (b) combined heat and power in the last two years for which figures are available; and what the budget was for each piece of research.

[holding answer 21 July 2008]: DEFRA Ministers and officials regularly meet representatives of the nuclear waste and nuclear energy industry, including the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA), its site operating companies and British Energy to discuss issues including radioactive waste management, radioactive discharges, legislation and regulation.

DEFRA Ministers and officials also regularly meet with representatives of the combined heat and power (CHP) industry, including the Combined Heat and Power Association (CHPA), to discuss a range of issues.

DEFRA has not commissioned any specific research on nuclear energy and nuclear waste in the last two years. We recently published the 2007 “UK Radioactive Waste Inventory” with the NDA and this was commissioned in 2005. The inventory is available on the NDA's website.

In the last two years DEFRA has commissioned five research studies on CHP, copies of which are available on the DEFRA website.