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(2) if it is his intention to offset the shortfall in the FEOGA contribution towards the hill livestock compensatory allowance in 1991 ; and if he will make a statement ;
(3) what representations he has received on the future levels of hill livestock compensatory allowances ; and if he will make a statement ;
(4) when he expects to make an announcement on the hill livestock compensatory allowances ;
(5) when his Department last reviewed the level of hill livestock compensatory allowance.
Mr. Curry : A statement on the outcome of the annual review of the economic conditions in the United Kingdom's hill and upland areas, including details of the arrangements for hill livestock compensatory allowances, will be made as soon as possible.
|£ million ------------------------------ 1986 |111 1987 |113 1988 |117 1989 |<1>118 <1> Provisional.
Mr. Ron Davies : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food how many prosecutions initiated by (a) his Department and (b) local authorities resulted in convictions for breaches of the slaughterhouse regulations in each of the last five years.
Mr. Ron Davies : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will introduce an immediate scheme of slaughterhouse inspections by the state veterinary service without prior notification to the abattoir proprietors.
Mr. Maclean : No. Local authorities (district councils) are responsible for the enforcement of hygiene and welfare standards in slaughterhouses. Officers of the state veterinary service make periodic visits to all plants to give advice. It is usual, and more effective, for arrangements for these visits to be made with the local authority and the management of the plant concerned. Exceptionally, unannounced visits are made in response to reports of problems at a plant.
Mr. Dalyell : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what changes he is making in the quarantine regulations and practice in relation to the importation of rain-forest birds and parrots.
Mr. Maclean : The examination by my officials of quarantine conditions for captive birds imported into this country, referred to in the reply given to the hon. Member for Linlithgow on 20 December 1989, Official Report, column 350, continues and I am therefore not yet able to say what changes may be made.
Mr. Maclean : Information on the total amount borrowed by farmers in the United Kingdom is not available. However, figures for the total liabilities of United Kingdom agriculture which include borrowings by agricultural landlords as well as by farmers but exclude borrowing for private purposes are as follows :
|<1>£ million --------------------------------------- 1983 |7,300 1984 |7,650 1985 |8,250 1986 |8,350 1987 |8,550 1988 |9,250 <1> At 31 December.
Mr. Maclean : Policy on interest rates is a matter for my right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer. He has made plain the Government's belief that even those small businesses that are dependent on bank borrowing and are adversely affected in the short term by higher interest rates would be damaged far more by the resurgence of inflation that would otherwise occur.
Mr. Amos : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will make a statement on the current level of green pound exchange rates ; and what action he intends to take to obtain a devaluation of the green pound.
Mr. Curry : The current level of our real monetary gaps, which represent the difference between green and market exchange rates, range from 9.567 per cent. for pigs to 17.990 per cent. for sheep. The Commission has proposed green pound devaluations as part of the 1990 price review, and these are currently under discussion in the Council of Ministers.
Mr. Ieuan Wyn Jones : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food when he expects to announce the results of appeals submitted to the European Commission for the designation of less-favoured area status for land in the United Kingdom.
Column 642of the Government's expenditure plans for the years in question. Copies are available in the Library of the House. The plans show the direct expenditure on grant aid for the construction and modernisation of fishing vessels, harbour grants, decommissioning of fishing vessels, EC grant aid and expenditure on market support. There has also been substantial expenditure on research and other scientific work and on fishery protection. In 1989-90 the United Kingdom fisheries departments expect to spend £15.1 million on sea fisheries research and scientific investigation and £18.7 million on fisheries protection, including aerial surveillance.
Mr. Nicholas Bennett : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what information he has as to the number of prosecutions in each European Community country in the latest year for which figures are available for (a) fishing with incorrectly sized nets and (b) overfishing.
Mr. Curry [holding answer 19 January] : The information is not available in the form requested. However, the following tables show infringements of EC fisheries legislation which member states have reported to the Commission under regulation 3561/85 as having been brought before the relevant national courts :
Illegal catch (resulting from direct fishery or by catch) |1988 Belgium |- Denmark |77 West Germany |- France |12 Ireland |10 Netherlands |121 Portugal |- United Kingdom |13 Spain |-
Illegal catch (resulting from direct fishery or by catch) |1988 Belgium |- Denmark |77 West Germany |- France |12 Ireland |10 Netherlands |121 Portugal |- United Kingdom |13 Spain |-
It is not possible to draw conclusions from these figures which relate to information reported to the Commission rather than any comparable basis of actual infringement.
Mr. Nicholas Bennett : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what is the national fixed percentage share of fish stocks for each European Community country in (a) 1983, (b) 1986, (c) 1989 and (d) 1990.
Mr. Curry [holding answer 19 January] : Member states' fixed percentage shares of relevant total allowable catches were agreed as part of the common fisheries policy settlement in 1983. These fixed percentages have not changed since then, apart from minor adjustments to accommodate the accession of Spain and Portugal and the
Column 643recognition of Hague preference in 1989 and 1990. The percentage shares are reflected in the quotas allocated to each member state under each of the 102 TACS which the Community sets each year. The quota figures for 1988, Council regulation 3977/87 ( Official Journal 31.12.57 No. L 375), reflect the percentage allocations without any adjustment for Hague preference.
Mr. Ron Davies : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if, in the light of the Tyrell committee's report, he will now introduce random testing for bovine spongiform encephalopathy in all cattle slaughtered for human consumption.
Mr. Ron Davies : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether he has any evidence of bovine spongiform encephalopathy being caused other than by ingestion of scrapie-infected foodstuff.
Mr. Maclean : There is no evidence to suggest that BSE infection under field conditions has been caused by any means other than by the ingestion of feedstuffs containing a scrapie-like agent. However, research is in hand on the experimental transmission of BSE by inoculation and orally and to determine whether maternal transmission occurs.
Mr. Ron Davies : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether he has asked the Tyrell committee to continue its role of review and co-ordination of work into bovine spongiform encephalopathy ; and if he will make a statement on the future of the committee.
Mr. Maclean : The establishment of a small group to provide advice on BSE and the other transmissible spongiform encephalopathies is currently being considered. We hope to make an announcement shortly.
Mr. Ron Davies : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether he has reviewed the regulations governing and procedures involved in the rendering of animal waste since the outbreak of bovine spongiform encephalopathy ; and whether he proposes to modify either.
Mr. Maclean : Feeding ruminant-derived protein to ruminant animals has been prohibited since 18 July 1988. The time and temperature combinations necessary to inactivate the BSE agent with certainty have not yet been identified. It would therefore be inappropriate at this stage to consider modifying the existing regulations controlling rendering practices.
Dr. David Clark : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, further to his answer to the hon. Member for Carmarthen (Mr. Williams) on 29 November 1989, Official Report, column 307, if he will give the number of cases of cows having been certified as contracting bovine spongiform encephalopathy in 1989 up to the end of December.
Dr. David Clark : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food who receives compensation if a bovine spongiform encephalopathy infected animal is found in (a) a livestock market or (b) a slaughterhouse ; and if he will make a statement.
Sir Eldon Griffiths : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will publish a table showing the Government Departments and agencies occupying accommodation at the Brooklands avenue site in Cambridge with effect from 1 January, indicating the number of civil servants engaged in each, the area of space occupied by each such Department or agency, the approximate cost per square foot of this accommodation, broken down by Department or agency, and the overheads attributable to each.
Departments and agencies occupying accommodation at Brooklands avenue, Cambridge Department/Agency |Staff in post at |Space |Accommodation |1 January 1990 |(square feet) |charge<2> |£ -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Property Services Agency<1> |365 |80,517 |657,018 Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food |302 |91,643 |747,803 Her Majesty's Inland Revenue |244 |43,397 |354,121 Ministry of Defence Land Agents |36 |6,709 |54,747 Her Majesty's Customs and Excise |32 |6,735 |54,958 The Crown Suppliers |15 |3,139 |25,612 English Heritage |13 |1,871 |15,266 Department of Transport |4 |922 |7,527 Department of Employment |4 |2,489 |20,307 Department of Energy |3 |687 |5,604 Ordnance Survey |3 |1,061 |8,660 Soil Science Survey |3 |790 |6,447 Department of Health |2 |1,338 |10,918 Rural Development Commission |2 |1,883 |15,362 Department of Social Security |1 |3,611 |29,468 Lord Chancellor's Department (storage only)- 1,076 8,783 Total |1,029 |247,868 |2,022,601 <1>Includes 2,705 square feet vacant accommodation charged to PSA. <2>Comprises notional rent at £5.46 per square foot, maintenance at £1.60 per square foot and rates (contribution in lieu) at £1.10 per square foot. The annual cost of fuel and utilities for all Departments and Agencies is estimated at £150,000.
1990 rateable values by broad property type (£ million) |Factories |Offices |Warehouses |Shops |Other properties ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Northern |220.9 |69.5 |59.4 |268.2 |493.8 North West |503.6 |259.0 |233.7 |629.2 |839.1 Yorkshire and Humberside |412.3 |158.3 |178.4 |484.0 |714.7 East Midlands |390.4 |103.9 |177.2 |377.4 |555.8 West Midlands |475.3 |183.6 |223.0 |499.3 |662.7 East Anglia |208.8 |108.5 |115.3 |249.4 |296.3 South West |355.4 |250.0 |209.1 |612.6 |637.3 Greater London |671.8 |4,496.6 |625.3 |2,160.9 |1,986.5 Rest of South East |1,090.0 |1,154.2 |758.1 |1,516.7 |1,825.2
(2) by what percentage the rate imposed by Newark and Sherwood district council increased in each year from 1980 to date ; (3) by what percentage the rate imposed by Nottinghamshire county council increased in each year from 1980 to date.
|Bassetlaw DC|Newark and |Nottingham- |Local Rate |Sherwood DC |shire DC |Local Rate |Precept ----------------------------------------------------------------- |per cent. |per cent. |per cent. 1980-81 |+88.5 |+46.3 |+12.7 1981-82 |+176.8 |+67.7 |+29.0 1982-83 |-25.5 |+16.9 |+27.5 1983-84 |-0.2 |+0.7 |+9.7 1984-85 |-0.1 |+25.1 |+12.5 1985-86 |+23.0 |+17.2 |+8.5 1986-87 |+12.3 |+6.0 |+17.7 1987-88 |+9.8 |+0.9 |+7.8 1988-89 |+9.0 |+22.5 |+7.2 1989-90 |+7.4 |+7.9 |+3.6
Local rate is the rate charged by the district council including the average parish rate ; precept is the rate levied by the county council.
Mr. Andrew Welsh : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will list the reports on land and sea environment commissioned by his Department over the past five years ; and whether they were published.
Mr. Trippier : My Department includes a list of DOE-published pollution papers and reports in the digests of environmental protection and water statistics. This list is complemented by the list of published research reports given in the DOE biennal R and D reports. Both publications include reports on land and marine pollution and copies of both are held in the Library of the House.
Mr. Wigley : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment how many copies of the document "Sustaining our Common Future", produced by his Department have been printed ; and what attempts have been made to give the report a wide circulation.
Mr. Trippier : A total of 10,000 copies have been printed of "Sustaining our Common Future", my Department's report on the substantial progress made by the United Kingdom in following up the recommendations of the report of the World Commission on Environment and Development. The report has been very well received and copies have been sent to, among others, hon. Members, other Government Departments, non-governmental organisations, local authorities and business organisations, as well as overseas Governments and participants in a number of international conferences.
Mr. Heathcoat-Amory : My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for the Environment approved proposals for the establishment of a Thames path on 29 September 1989 and responsibility for its implementation now rests with the Countryside Commission and the relevant local authorities.
Mr. Vaz : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment how much carbon dioxide is in the atmosphere now ; at what rate carbon dioxide becomes absorbed by plants and plankton ; at what rate carbon dioxide is being discharged into the atmosphere ; what is his estimate of the amount of carbon dioxide permitted in the atmosphere before an increase in global temperature occurs ; when the atmosphere will be saturated by carbon dioxide ; and what will be the overall effect.
Mr. Trippier : The concentration of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere is currently about 350 parts per million by volume. Land and ocean-based plants are estimated to absorb some 800,000 million tonnes of carbon dioxide annually, which is approximately balanced by the natural annual discharges. Man-made emissions to atmosphere are estimated to be between 18,000 and 25,000 million tonnes of carbon dioxide annually. Any increase in atmospheric concentration of carbon dioxide would be expected to lead to some global warming. The scale of the effect is currently under review by the UNEP/WMO intergovernmental panel on climate change. The measured rise of about 0.5 deg. C in average global temperature in the past 130 years is consistent with model predictions of the increase to be expected as concentrations of carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases have risen from pre-industrial values. No projections of future man-made emissions lead to saturation of the atmosphere by carbon dioxide.
Mr. Vaz : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what gases, other than carbon dioxide, are thought to contribute to the greenhouse effect ; what is their percentage currently in the atmosphere ; and which sources, man-made and natural, are the main causes for emissions of these gases.
Mr. Trippier : Greenhouse gases, excluding carbon dioxide, their current (1988) average atmospheric concentration and the main sources believed to be responsible for their emissions are set out in the booklet "Global Climate Change" ; copies of which may be found in the House Library.
Mr. Andrew F. Bennett : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment when he expects the Ordnance Survey to publish a revised outdoor leisure map of the Conwy valley based on the second series maps ; whether the map will be printed back to back with the Snowdon sheet ; and what plans there are for new outdoor leisure maps.
Mr. Trippier : Ordnance Survey plans to publish a new edition of the outdoor leisure map of Conwy valley to second series specification during 1992. The map will be printed back to back with the Snowdon outdoor leisure sheet.
Column 648Ordnance Survey is continually reviewing its range of maps and services to ensure that the needs of the market are met within the resources available and that the required return on investment is achieved. The outdoor leisure map series is no exception to this and any change in outdoor leisure map coverage will be dictated by these marketing principles.
Mr. Trippier : The IPCC has no formal membership. Its meetings are open to member states of the United Nations, and are also attended by representatives of non-governmental, national and international environmental and energy organisations.
Mr. Ron Davies : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment whether he proposes to increase the sums available for the countryside premium on set-aside land, in terms of (a) the amount available for the scheme as a whole and (b) the premium payable per hectare.
Mr. Heathcoat-Amory : I have been delighted by the response to the countryside premium in its first year ; the Countryside Commission has drawn up agreements with farmers covering over 3,500 hectares of set-aside land, which will be managed to provide benefits for both landscape and wildlife and new areas of countryside for the public to enjoy. We need, however, to gain more experience of the operation of the scheme before taking decisions on any major changes to it.
Mr. Flynn : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what papers were presented by his Department to the Royal National Institute for International Affairs conference on the greenhouse effect at Chatham house on 4 and 5 December.
Mr. Paice : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will list in tabular form the number of sites of special scientific interest which have been (a) irreversibly damaged and (b) damaged but reversible by (i) agriculture and forestry, (ii) activities for which planning consent was obtained and (iii) other courses, together with their proportion of total designated sites for each year since 1981.
Mr. Trippier : Full information on the numbers of SSSIs damaged since 1 April 1984, and the numbers of SSSIs (re-)notified under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, is set out in the NCC's annual reports, copies of which are in the Library.
Column 649Council has to negotiate financial management agreements with owners and occupiers of sites of special scientific interest for the carrying out of operations or activities for the purposes of maintaining, enhancing or restoring the nature conservation interest of such sites ; and how many such agreements were made in each of the last five years.
Mr. Trippier : Full information on the number of management agreements reached by the NCC under section 15 of the Countryside Act 1968 is set out in the NCC's annual reports, copies of which are in the Library.
Mr. Devlin : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will institute an immediate inquiry into how three vanloads of toxic chemicals, including cyanide compounds and phosphoric acid, came to be dumped in the Bowesfield lane area of Stockton-on-Tees on 18 January ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Trippier : An inquiry is not required. This is a matter for Cleveland county council as the waste disposal authority for the area. I understand that it has taken prompt and appropriate action to take control of all the material involved and will be considering the need for further action under its powers in the Control of Pollution Act 1974.
Sir Trevor Skeet : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will give for the most recent year for which figures are available the volume of natural gas used in the production of ethanol.
Mrs. Rosie Barnes : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will list those local housing authorities which are operating approved transferable discount schemes under section 129 of the Housing Act 1988.
London Borough Councils
Hammersmith and Fulham