Mr. Kirkwood : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) if he will publish in the Official Report the road routes chosen to convey nuclear waste between Torness and Sellafield which pass through the Borders regional council area ;
(2) what extra steps have been taken to ensure that nuclear waste being transported by road through the Borders region will not endanger public safety during transit.
Mr. Atkins [holding answer 19 October 1989] : The choice of route is a matter for the carrier. All radioactive materials must be carried in compliance with national and international regulations which require proper safety levels for both normal and accident conditions to be built into the container used for transport.
Mr. Chris Smith : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what are the terms of reference given to the consultants drawing up proposals for the King's Cross gyratory road system ; when he expects this study to be completed ; and if he intends to publish it in full as soon as it is finished.
Mr. Atkins : Possible improvements to roads in the King's Cross area are being considered as part of the east London assessment study. The terms of reference were published in July 1987. The study consultants have also been asked to advise on improvements of the King's Cross junctions that would be needed to cope with the extra traffic which would be generated by the proposed King's Cross railway land development. The results of this work will form the Department's comments to the London borough of Camden on the planning application.
Sir John Stanley : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport whether he has given the necessary expenditure approval to enable British Rail to deposit a Private Bill to construct the Channel tunnel rail link.
Mr. Portillo : Under section 17(1) of the Transport Act 1962, British Rail requires the formal consent of the Secretary of State to promote a Private Bill, but it does not require formal investment authority at that stage, and the deposit of a Bill by British Rail does not imply Government endorsement of any particular level of expenditure. The Secretary of State's consent for the Bill in question has not yet been sought.
Mr. Portillo : British Rail's proposals to provide facilities to deal with international rail traffic when the tunnel opens in 1993 include financial estimates which meet the Government's 8 per cent. required rate of return.
British Rail is currently discussing proposals with the private sector to build a new line to meet the anticipated growth in international traffic after the opening of the tunnel with a view to securing private investment in the scheme. If this were a public sector investment it would still be required to meet the Government's 8 per cent. return.
Mr. Carrington : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he is yet in a position to respond to the Civil Aviation Authority's advice in CAP 559 on traffic distribution policy for airports serving the London area.
Mr. Parkinson : I have today written to Mr. Christopher Tugendhat, chairman of the Civil Aviation Authority, responding to the authority's advice in CAP 559. Copies of my letter have been placed in the Library.
I think it important to place this in the context of the strong growth in traffic at the regional airports. Developments like the new domestic module and terminal 2 at Manchester airport, Birmingham's new terminal, and an ongoing programme of improvements at other regional airports, are all evidence of the readiness and ability of the airports outside the south- east to take action to meet the growing demand. Expenditure at regional airports over the past decade has exceeded £300 million, and in the years immediately ahead can confidently be expected to increase by at least this much again. At the same time, there is much activity in the south- east. The new terminal at Stansted and the redevelopment of Heathrow's terminal 3 are notable, but small airports are also investing : Manston for example, and, on the business aviation front, significant advances are being made at Farnborough and Biggin Hill.
It is equally important to view CAP 559 in the light of the wider-ranging work on which the authority will be reporting to me next summer. This includes examining the role of airports outside the south-east, the possible need for and location of a new south-east runway, and the potential for introducing a more market-oriented means of dealing with the capacity problems at Heathrow and Gatwick. Against this background, I have accepted the authority's principal recommendation that no new traffic distribution rules should be made for the London area airports. I have also accepted the authority's recommendation that I should formally set aside the two "deferred rules"--concerning priority at Gatwick for scheduled traffic, and limits on service frequencies at Heathrow--which the then Secretary of State said in 1986 he would be prepared to make when advised of the need.
I have decided not to make the two modifications to the present rules which the authority suggested. While I recognise that permitting series charter flights at Heathrow on a limited basis could be regarded as an easing of regulation, it would not significantly affect the overall
Column 259balance of supply and demand for runway capacity in the London area. I wish to consider this suggestion further when I have seen the outcome of the CAA's wider-ranging work next year.
I am of course anxious to encourage the important business aviation sector, and I recognise the difficulties it has in the London area. But the second proposed modification, that business and corporate aviation should take precedence over other general aviation, would introduce a new restriction on a new class of traffic. Because other general aviation movements are very few at Heathrow and Gatwick, it would in practice provide no real benefit. In these circumstances I do not consider the case for change sufficiently compelling to justify the introduction of further regulation.
The authority suggested a modest relaxation in the noise restrictions at Heathrow and Gatwick. Noise is always a sensitive issue. I believe that the Government struck a reasonable balance in the night noise regime which was introduced last year, and which was to run until 1992-93.
I remain committed to improving the night noise climate around Heathrow and Gatwick, and to reducing aircraft noise generally, whilst recognising that undue burdens must not be imposed on the aviation industry.
Whilst I have considered the authority's argument for a relaxation in the night restrictions, I recognise that respondents were divided in their views. I take the view that the present night noise arrangements should remain unchanged.
Mr. Heddle : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will make an interim statement of the discussions taking place between the local authority associations and his Department on the impact which an increase in the maximum permitted weight of heavy goods vehicles to 40 tonnes will have on highway and bridge structures and in particular the funding of any enhancement to take account of heavier vehicles.
Mr. Robert Atkins : Irrespective of the increase in weight limits to apply from 1 January 1999, a substantial amount of work is needed to ensure that road bridges can continue to carry modern heavy lorries. My Department is having discussions with representatives of the local authority associations and other bodies on various aspects of this work, including the effects of the weight increase and funding arrangements.
From the start of the current year we increased the local authority highway maintenance baseline by £27 million, specifically to enable local authorities to start their programmes of assessment and strengthening of older bridges. We are considering the local authority associations' request to reclassify this expenditure as capital and to make it eligible for transport supplementary grant.
Column 260number of employees becoming or remaining members of occupational pension schemes in the public and private sectors, respectively.
Mrs. Gillian Shephard : Some independent bodies have published the results of their own sample of surveys into the effect of the 1986 Social Security Act changes on membership of occupational pension schemes. The information obtained has related to companies in the public and private sectors.
Dr. Thomas : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what policy initiatives have been taken since August by the European Commission towards the tackling of hazardous, toxic and domestic waste handling and disposal in the European Community.
Mr. Allen McKay : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment how payment is to be made to water undertakers for water taken from a public hydrant or from domestic premises for fire fighting purposes.
Mr. Howard : Section 81 of the Water Act 1989 prohibits water undertakers from charging for water taken for fire fighting purposes. The cost of such water is recovered by water undertakers through charges to customers generally.
Mr. Flynn : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will make it his policy to introduce legislation covering the requirements to disclose information on difficult, hazardous, special and controlled toxic wastes by private waste treatment companies, which includes the same criteria for disclosure as are included in the United States Superfund Amendments and Re-authorization Act legislation.
Mrs. Virginia Bottomley : The Government accept the recommendation of the Royal Commission on Environmental Pollution that there should be a presumption in favour of unrestricted access for the public to information which the pollution control authorities obtain or receive by virtue of their statutory powers, with provision for secrecy only in those circumstances where a genuine case for it can be substantiated. It is already a duty of waste disposal to maintain a public register of waste
Column 261disposal licences issued by them. We propose to extend the scope of these registers to include information on the monitoring of the facility by the authority, including details of enforcement notices served and prosecutions taken. We are consulting on public access to information on the processes to be scheduled under integrated pollution control. The disclosure criteria incorporated in the United States SARA legislation are tailored to the pollution control regime in that country and not all are applicable here.
Mr. Hardy : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment how many sites of special scientific interest were damaged or destroyed in the last 12 months ; and what is his estimate of the number damaged or destroyed in the last five years.
The information requested in respect of 1988-89 will be set out in the NCC's 15th annual report to be published on 22 November.
Mr. Hardy : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what information he has as to the date on which a shipment containing toxic waste arrived at Wath upon Dearne near Rotherham ; and when the South Yorkshire hazardous waste unit, the Health and Safety Executive and Her Majesty's inspectorate of pollution became aware of the problem.
Mrs. Virginia Bottomley : Shipments of contaminated material were delivered to Wath Recycling Ltd. at Wath upon Dearne during the week commencing 12 June. Authorities became aware of the problem on 19 June (South Yorkshire joint hazardous waste unit), 24 July (Health and Safety Executive) and 29 June (Her Majesty's inspectorate of pollution).
Mr. Howard : On 4 October the Government sent to the Commission of the European Communities details of investment programmes designed to facilitate compliance by the United Kingdom with its obligations under the bathing water directive. Overall, around £1.1 billion will be spent improving bathing waters over the next 10 years. Summary details of the investment programme are given in the following table. A list of individual schemes has been placed in the Library. Many of the schemes are at an early stage of development and are therefore subject to modification in the light of further assessment. For the same reason the estimated costs and completion dates are subject to change. Nevertheless by the mid-1990s we expect around 95 per cent. of our bathing waters to meet the directives standards and the full compliance programmes should be completed within 10 years.
Investment Programme to Achieve Compliance with Bathing Water Directive |£ million ------------------------------------------- Northumbrian Water plc |86.2 Yorkshire Water plc |28.9 Anglian Water plc |150.1 Southern Water plc |216.7 Wessex Water plc |23.6 South West Water plc |312.5 Welsh Water plc |96.8 North West Water plc |147.2 Scotland |45.7 Northern Ireland |7.0 United Kingdom |1,114.7
Mr. Ron Davies : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment pursuant to his answer to the hon. Member for Bury St. Edmunds (Sir E. Griffiths) of 8 May Official Report, column 349, if the report on research commissioned by his Department on reductions in shore width is yet available ; and if he will place copies in the Library.
Mr. Winnick : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment whether he will consider introducing legislation concerning the ownership of rottweiler and similar breeds of dogs in the light of recent deaths ; and if he will make a statement.
Mrs. Virginia Bottomley [holding answer 19 October 1989] : Measures have been taken in the Dangerous Dogs Act 1989 to strengthen existing legislation on the control of dangerous dogs. We issued a consultation paper on 10 August which outlined further measures we propose on dog control. We are at present considering the responses to this consultation paper.
Dr. Thomas : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what information he has on the microbial destruction method for polychlorinated biphenyls developed by the Canadian National Institute of Scientific Research, at Pointe Claire, Montreal in Canada ; and what are the implications of this development for future import of Canadian origin PCB wastes for incineration in the United Kingdom.
Mrs. Virginia Bottomley [holding answer 19 October 1989] : This process is one of several under development for the biological treatment of dilute halogenated organics including PCBs. It is not an alternative to high temperature incineration of concentrated PCBs.
Column 263about the basis on which we propose transitional relief should be given. Copies of the letter and papers have been placed in the Libraries of both Houses of Parliament.
|£ million ------------------------------ 1989-90 |34.965 1990-91 |35.055 1991-92 |36.618
The balance of expenditure between capital and recurrent costs will depend on a number of factors, including the nature and condition of premises acquired and the speed with which sponsors' plans are implemented.
Mr. Grocott : To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science how much of the capital expenditure for each of (i) Solihull city technology college, (ii) Nottingham city technology college and (iii) Middlesbrough city technology college came from (a) private sources and (b) public funds.
|Total |Public funding |Private sources -------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Solihull |4.986 |3.986 |1.000 Nottingham |8.105 |7.414 |0.691 Middlesbrough |6.2555 |4.8723 |1.383
Considerable further capital expenditure is planned at Solihull and at Nottingham, and the total contribution from private sources will amount to at least 20 per cent. in the former and at least 17 per cent. in the latter.
Mr. Grocott : To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science (1) how much of the capital expenditure is coming from (a) private sources and (b) public funds in respect of (i) Bradford, (ii) Dartford, (iii) Gateshead, (iv) Croydon, Sylvan and (v) Croydon city technology colleges ;
(2) what proportion of the capital expenditure will come from (a) private sources and (b) public funds in respect of (i) Lewisham, (ii) Southwark and (iii) Brighton city technology colleges.
Mrs. Rumbold : In the case of the CTCs at Bradford, Dartford, Gateshead, Sylvan, Croydon, Southwark and Brighton the funding regime for capital expenditure will be 80 per cent. public and 20 per cent. private. In the case of the Croydon city college for the technology of the arts the regime will be 60 per cent. public and 40 per cent. private. For Lewisham, we have made clear that, subject to further
Column 264feasibility work, the public sector investment will be at least £4 million. We expect that the contribution from the private sector for acquiring the site and establishing a CTC will amount to about 50 per cent. of initial capital expenditure.
Mr. Grocott : To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science how much of the funds so far allocated towards the capital expenditure on city technology colleges has come from (a) private sources and (b) public funds.
|Total |Public funds |Private sources |£ million |£ million |£ million --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Solihull CTC |4.986 |3.986 |1.000 Nottingham CTC |8.105 |7.414 |0.691 Teesside CTC |6.2555 |4.8725 |1.383 Tyneside CTC |0.880 |0.880 |0.000 Bradford CTC |1.8495 |1.4795 |0.370 Croydon City College for the Technology of the Arts |0.195 |0.195 |0.000 Dartford CTC |2.907 |2.907 |0.000 Brighton CTC |2.500 |2.500 |0.000 Croydon, Sylvan CTC |0.400 |0.400 |0.000 Bacon's CTC |0.000 |0.000 |0.000 Haberdashers' Aske's CTC |0.000 |0.000 |0.000
Mr. Grocott : To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Science what is the estimated annual revenue cost in each of the next three years of (a) Solihull, (b) Nottingham, (c) Middlesbrough, (d) Bradford, (e) Dartford, (f) Gateshead, (g) Croydon, Sylvan and (h) Croydon City technology colleges.
|£ ---------------------------------- Solihull |1,036,000 Nottingham |1,116,000 Middlesbrough |1,024,000
Figures for the other colleges, and for the three colleges in subsequent years, are not yet finally determined.
These recurrent costs include : a per capita grant, based upon spending in a comparable local education authority school ; a temporary allowance for the diseconomies of operating schools which are not yet at their full capacity ; and earmarked grant, for spending on specific purposes, namely : initial purchases of consumables, school meal subsidies, teacher training, information technology, and pupil support. With the exception of the information technology grant, all of them are calculated by reference to LEA norms.
Column 265will soon begin at Doncaster, Everthorpe and Ashford. Further plans cannot be announced until the final outcome of several outstanding applications for planning permission is known.
Mr. Cryer : To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he will issue a code of practice covering the use of video cameras for surveillance purposes to combat crimes and installed in public places by either police authorities, local authorities or private security firms ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. John Patten : The Home Office issued guidelines in 1984 for the police on the use of surveillance equipment. These guidelines make it clear that CCTV devices should be used by the police only where they are necessary for the efficient conduct of police operations and with due regard for the intrusion of privacy that may result in particular circumstances.
Mr. McNamara : To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what is the total amount of compensation paid for (a) deaths and (b) injuries inflicted by (i) rubber bullets and (ii) plastic bullets in Northern Ireland 1969 to the present.
Mr. Cope : Between 1982 and 1989 (to 13 October) the total amount of damages paid as a result of claims made under the Police Act (Northern Ireland) 1970 against the Chief Constable of the Royal Ulster Constabulary for deaths and injuries resulting from the use of baton rounds is as follows :
|£ --------------------------------- Death |66,000.00 Injury |562,156.53
Information relating to those claims before 1982 and claims made against the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland under criminal injuries legislation could be provided only at disproportionate cost.
Compensation paid out in respect of injuries allegedly inflicted by baton rounds fired by the Army is the responsibility of my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Defence.
Mr. McNamara : To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland when he will receive a reply to his letters of September concerning the disposal of the Lear Fan factory and its acquisition by Iraqi interests.
Mr. John Marshall : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations have been made to the Russian authorities about their continued failure to grant an exit visa to Vladimir and Karmela Raiz of Vilnius.
Mr. Waldegrave : We take every opportunity to press the Soviet authorities about Vladimir and Karmela Raiz. My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs raised this case most recently when he met Mr. Shevardnadze in New York on 29 September. We shall maintain our pressure until this case is satisfactorily resolved.
Mr. John Marshall : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations the Government have made to the Russian authorities about their failure to grant an exit visa to George Belitsky of Vilnius whose wife and sons have been living in Israel since 1987.
Mr. Waldegrave : We take every opportunity to press the Soviet authorities on individual refusenik cases such as George Belitsky. My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs raised this case most recently when he met Mr. Shevardnadze in New York on 29 September. We shall maintain our pressure until this case is satisfactorily resolved.
Mr. Dalyell : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on his response to the latest representations of the Argentine Government regarding the future of the Falkland Islands.
Mr. David Howell : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will make a statement on the outcome of the recent talks in Madrid between British and Argentinian representatives.
Mr. Sainsbury : The talks which concluded yesterday have enabled us to resolve a number of practical issues without prejudicing the sovereignty of the Falkland islands and represent a significant step towards the normalisation of relations between the United Kingdom and Argentina. I am arranging for a copy of the communique to be placed in the Library of the House.
In addition, the British representative made a statement announcing our intention to extend the breadth of the territorial sea around certain dependent territories which included the Falkland Islands, South Georgia and the South Sandwich Islands.
Column 267--A Force for Peaceful Change and Development" to ensure that the Cabinet Office guidelines stating that Government publicity should not be personalised were observed.
Mr. Grocott : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what was the cost of producing and distributing the booklet "Britain in Southern Africa--A Force for Peaceful Change and Development".
Mr. Sainsbury : The total cost of production was £18,708 and 13,000 copies have been printed, of which 8,000 have so far been distributed overseas. The Central Office of Information distributed the booklet to diplomatic missions overseas as part of its regular distribution of information material. Distribution costs are not therefore separately identifiable.
Mr. Flynn : To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will set out those initiatives introduced by Her Majesty's Government before the most recent general assembly of the United Nations held in September.
Mr. Sainsbury : In his speech at the United Nations general assembly on 27 September, my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs set out our position on a wide range of the most important current international issues. He also took the opportunity to propose that the Geneva negotiations on chemical weapons should be conducted on a year round basis, announce the Helen Suzman scholarships for black South Africans and announce our package of assistance to the Colombian Government to pursue their anti-drugs campaign.