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Carbon Emissions: New Forest

Volume 483: debated on Tuesday 18 November 2008

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs pursuant to the Answer of 10 November 2008, Official Report, columns 769-70W, on carbon emissions: New Forest, (1) what the effect of the technical constraints is on the policy of whether traffic on the A31 trunk road should be included in the carbon footprint of the New Forest National Park Authority; (236526)

(2) what carbon footprint figures are available for the A31 trunk road;

(3) whether carbon footprint figures are available for any parts of (a) the New Forest National Park, (b) the New Forest District Council area and (c) the Hampshire County Council area;

(4) what the technical hurdles referred to are; and when they were first identified.

[holding answer 17 November 2008]: The technical hurdles to producing carbon dioxide emissions figures for the New Forest National Park concern aggregation of available spatially disaggregated data to the boundaries of the park, and merging data for emissions and removals due to land use with other emissions. These issues have been known generically for a long time and apply in general to producing geographically disaggregated estimates. My Department routinely produces estimates for local authority areas, but not national park boundaries. I anticipate that the technical constraints will not prevent inclusion of emission from the A31 Trunk Road in the carbon footprint of the national park, and it should be possible to produce emissions estimates for other sections of the A31. My response later in the year, promised in my previous answer of 10 November 2008, Official Report, columns 769-70W, will set out these issues in more detail.