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Departmental Aviation

Volume 488: debated on Wednesday 25 February 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many flights each Minister in his Department has made in each of the last five years; how many miles each Minister has flown in each of those years; how much in carbon dioxide emissions is attributable to these flights; and what the cost of the flights has been. (258162)

The detailed information requested is not held centrally, and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost. Since 1999 the Government have published a list of Cabinet Ministers' overseas travel over £500 along with the total cost for all ministerial travel. The list for 2007-08 includes a list of overseas travel over £500 undertaken by all Ministers. Information for the last financial year was published on 22 July 2008, Official Report, column 102WS. Copies of previous lists are available in the Libraries of the House. All ministerial travel is undertaken in accordance with the Ministerial Code.

All central Government ministerial and official air travel has been offset from 1 April 2006. Most Departments calculate their aviation emissions on an annual basis and subsequently offset through payments to a central fund. The fund purchases UN-approved certified emissions reductions credits from energy efficiency and renewable energy projects with sustainable development benefits, located in developing countries.

A list of Government Carbon Offsetting Fund members, their emission figures and what activities they have offset through the fund is available online at:

http://www.defra.gov.uk/environment/climatechange/uk/carbonoffset/govt-list.htm