Mr. Alton : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy what is his Department's estimate as to the tonnage of limestone required per year if the limestone-gypsum process of flue gas desulphurisation were to be used on 12,000 MW of electricity generating capacity.
Mr. Baldry : I am advised by the CEGB that the estimated annual limestone requirement for a 2,000 MW power station is 300,000 tonnes. On this basis a 12,000 MW programme would be likely to require the purchase of around 1,800,000 tonnes of limestone annually.
Mr. Alton : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy what percentage of the annual output of sulphur dioxide would be stopped from being discharged if 12,000 MW of generating capacity were fitted with flue gas desulphurisation equipment.
Mr. Baldry : Flue gas desulphurisation equipment can remove up to 90 per cent. of a power station's annual emissions of sulphur dioxide. The actual percentage of overall annual output abated would depend on the operating characteristics of the stations to which the equipment was fitted, including the sulphur content of the coal burnt.
Mr. Doran : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy (1) how many installations on the United Kingdom continental shelf use triethylene glycol as a part of the process of water removal from natural gas ; and how many of these installations use cold vent stripper gas ; (2) how many offshore installations on the United Kingdom continental shelf use the DRIZO process of water removal from natural gas ; and what other methods of water removal are currently in use on offshore installations.
Mr. Peter Morrison : This information is not held within the Department. I will write to the hon. Member as soon as possible.
Mr. Doran : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy what steps have been taken by his Department, under its obligations under the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974, to monitor the effect of triethylene glycol in water removal processes from natural gas.
Mr. Peter Morrison : Primary responsibility for safety of persons on offshore installations rests with the operator. My inspectors, in carrying out inspections of installations, monitor all aspects of safety including employers' responsibilities under the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act 1974 and the Mineral Workings (Offshore Installations) Act 1971.
Mr. Doran : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy how many prosecutions under the Health and Safety at Work etc. Act he has initiated against operators of offshore installations on the United Kingdom continental shelf for the discharge of unsafe quantities of benzene and toluene into the atmosphere.
Mr. Doran : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy (1) what studies have been undertaken by him into the exposure of offshore workers to benzene and toluene, the effects on the health of workers of such exposure, and into the present and future hazard such exposure presents to the health of offshore workers ;
(2) whether he has made any assessment of the carcinogenic properties of benzene and toluene ; and what steps he has taken to prevent the release of benzene and toluene into the atmosphere on oil and gas installations on the United Kingdom continental shelf.
Mr. Peter Morrison : It is the responsibility of the operator to ensure that all reasonably practicable precautions have been taken against any danger to which persons on an offshore installation may be exposed by the use of any dangerous substance.
There is a wide range of information available on these matters, which are not exclusive to the offshore industry. In particular, the Health and Safety Commission's Advisory Committee on Toxic Substances has considered the effects of both benzene and toluene on workers generally. Additionally, a study has been undertaken by this Department of the hazards of contaminants in diving breathing gases and in decompression systems. A follow-up study set out safe exposure limits for divers in decompression on a wide range of contaminants, including benzene and toluene. A survey has been undertaken of methods of accurately sampling gas contaminants in hyperbaric chambers.
Mr. Mullin : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy if he will call for a report from the Central Electricity Generating Board as to how much it has paid British Nuclear Fuels plc for (a) reprocessing and (b) decommissioning for each year from 1985 to 1989.
Mr. Baldry : This is a commercial matter for the CEGB. I have therefore asked the chairman to reply direct to the hon. Member.
Mr. Mullin : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy if he will provide a breakdown of his current assessment of total fuel cycle cost for nuclear power per kilowatt hour including the cost of uranium, reprocessing, enrichment, where applicable, and waste disposal.
Mr. Baldry : This is a commercial matter for the nuclear industry.
Mr. Dobson : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy what assessments he made of the effect of methane leakages associated with gas- fired power stations, before consents were granted for the projects listed in his answer of 8 January, Official Report, column 475.
Mr. Wakeham : Environmental considerations are taken into account when considering gas burn consent proposals. Our assessment in general is that methane leakages from the high pressure distribution system are very low ; and new gas-fired generation plant is not expected to add to the overall emissions of methane from the United Kingdom system.
Mr. Frank Dobson : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy, what is his estimate of the current maximum electricity generating capacity in England and Wales in the public and private sectors, respectively ; and what is his estimate for each year up to 1995-96.
Mr. Wakeham : The declared net capacity of (commissioned) generating plant in England and Wales is 55.1 GW in the public sector ; private generating capacity for Great Britain as a whole is 3.7 GW. Capacity in subsequent years is a matter for future electricity generating companies.
Mr. Dobson : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy if he will give the closure dates of Danygraid mine, Nant Medlyn mine, Darren mine (West Glamorgan), Hall of Auchinross mine (Ayrshire), Wrytree drift mine and Robin Rock mine (Northumberland).
Mr. Wakeham : The Department does not have this information. I have therefore asked the chairman of British Coal to write to the hon. Member.
Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for Energy (1) what National Health Service ambulance staff based in South Yorkshire have participated in any exercises of local emergency plans at nuclear installations ; from which stations staff came ; and what was the exercise location in each case ;
(2) what specialist equipment, including personal dosimeters, radial survey meters and decontamination meters are available for National Health Service ambulance staff in South Yorkshire ; and what specialist training they have received.
Mr. Freeman : I have been asked to reply.
Equipment for Health Service staff and emergency planning is a matter for health authorities. I suggest the hon. Member contacts the chairman of Trent regional health authority for the information he seeks.
Mr. Rogers : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many medical laboratory scientific officers have been newly appointed to each health authority in Wales in each year since 1982.
Mr. Grist : Information on the number of newly appointed medical laboratory scientific officers is not available centrally. However, information on staff in post is shown in the following table :
Medical laboratory scientific officers in post as at 30 September (whole-time equivalents) |1982 |1983 |1984 |1985 |1986 |1987 |1988 |<1>1989 ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Clwyd |88.8 |90.9 |87.1 |97.8 |96.6 |99.5 |103.6 |94.1 East Dyfed |76.6 |79.1 |77.8 |77.0 |80.5 |81.4 |82.2 |70.4 Gwent |106.2 |110.9 |109.7 |112.8 |110.2 |118.1 |113.4 |111.5 Gwynedd |47.0 |54.0 |61.0 |62.0 |64.9 |62.0 |58.0 |59.0 Mid Glamorgan |138.1 |141.5 |138.0 |154.5 |155.7 |159.0 |159.2 |141.2 Pembrokeshire |30.1 |30.7 |30.8 |32.5 |31.0 |31.0 |30.9 |28.6 Powys |- |- |- |- |- |- |- |- South Glamorgan |275.9 |281.0 |279.5 |283.0 |280.0 |290.7 |293.6 |271.9 West Glamorgan |97.0 |97.0 |95.0 |102.8 |105.5 |108.1 |103.7 |104.9 <1> Those staff previously graded as junior medical laboratory scientific officers who were not following a course of training leading to state registration have been regraded to the appropriate laboratory support grade and have not been included in these figures.
Mr. Dykes : To ask the Lord President of the Council what information he possesses on comparable parliamentary salaries, exclusive of allowances in (a) the United Kingdom, (b) France, (c) Germany, (d) Australia and (e) the United States of America, for the latest published figures available.
Sir Geoffrey Howe : The information requested is as follows :
Country |Salary (per annum) --------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- United Kingdom Member of the House of Commons |£26,701. All Taxable France |FFr 424,111 (£44,776) of which Deputy in the National |45 per cent., FFr 190,850 Assembly |(£20,149), is tax-free Federal German Republic |DM 110,652 (£39,693). All Member of the Bundestag |taxable Australia Federal Member of the House |A$ 55,000 (£25,439). All of Representatives |taxable United States of America Member of the House of |<1>US$ 89,500 (£54,039). All Representatives |taxable <1>Congressmen's salaries have not been increased since 1988. Note: The sterling figures calculated using rates of exchange at the close of business on 24 January 1990.
Mr. Macdonald : To ask the Lord President of the Council how many personal offices are available and assigned to hon. Members of Parliament (a) within the Houses of Parliament, (b) within the Norman Shaw building and (c) elsewhere.
Sir Geoffrey Howe : Rooms are available and allocated for right hon. and hon. Members' personal use as follows :
|Number ----------------------------------------------------------------- (a) Palace of Westminster |163 (b) Norman Shaw North and Norman Shaw South |129 (c) St. Stephens House, 3 Dean's Yard, 2 The Abbey |42 Garden and 7 Old Palace Yard
Mr. Macdonald : To ask the Lord President of the Council what is the level of secretarial and research allowance available to a Member of (i) the United Kingdom Parliament, (ii) the United States Congress and (iii) the Federal Republic of Germany Bundestag.
Sir Geoffrey Howe : Members of the House of Commons are eligible to claim the office costs allowance for general office expenses and secretarial and research assistance up to a maximum of £24,903 per annum, with an additional maximum of £2,490 (10 per cent.) provided for employer pension contributions of any staff employed. I will provide the additional information requested as soon as possible.
Mr. Marlow : To ask the Lord President of the Council, pursuant to his answer to the hon. Member for Northampton, North, of 25 January, Official Report, column 1054, if he will give the Hansard reference for the answer to which he referred.
Sir Geoffrey Howe : The clarity and distinction to which I intended to refer was of course that of my right hon. Friend the Foreign Secretary on 17 January at columns 291-304.
Mr. Page : To ask the Lord President of the Council what consideration the Select Committee on Televising of Proceedings of the House has given to changes in the rules of coverage for the televising experiment.
Sir Geoffrey Howe : At its meeting on 29 January, the Select Committee on Televising of Proceedings of the House considered a number of representations from the broadcasters for experimental modifications to the rules of coverage (the guidelines to the television director as to the
Column 182types of shots which may or may not be used). On this basis, the following changes to the rules set out in the Committee's first report of Session 1988-89 have been approved.
1. Reaction Shots
The rule which permits a reaction shot of a Member who has been referred to will be interpreted less strictly so that a specific mention of the Member's constituency, or in the case of a Minister, his office, will not be necessary ; so long as it is clear to the director which member is being referred to, a reaction shot will be permitted. As under the existing rules, this change will not apply at Question Time or during ministerial statements and subsequent questioning.
2. Group Shots
A group shot--mid way between the standard head and shoulders shot and the wide-angle shot--will be permitted ; such shots may be used either for the purposes of showing the reaction of a group of Members or in order to establish the geography of a particular part of the Chamber. This shot will be available to the director at any time, including Question Time and during ministerial statements and subsequent questioning.
3. Second Feed of Wide-Angle Shot
A second feed, showing a continuous single wide-angle shot from the end of the Chamber, will be provided as soon as the necessary technical facilities are available. This feed may be used only for editing purposes ; it may not be used for separate live transmission, or for mixing electronically with the main feed for live transmission. The second feed will be time-coded, and extracts from it may only be employed in their correct chronological sequence within the proceedings of the House.
4. Zoom Shots
The Committee has also decided that the director should be encouraged to make appropriate use of his ability, under the existing rules, to zoom in on a Member speaking or to zoom out to show the same Member in relation to colleagues in his or her vicinity. All these changes, including the supply of the second feed, will be subject to the existing rules relating to the coverage of incidents of disorder. During such periods when the director is required to focus on Mr. Speaker, the second feed will be withdrawn.
In deciding to approve all these changes, the Committee has been particularly swayed by the argument that the House has agreed to an experiment and that the only way of establishing whether certain shots are appropriate is to see them in operation. The House will, of course, be the final judge when it considers the Committee's detailed Report on the outcome of the experiment.
It is hoped that these revised guidelines for the television director will be brought into effect on Thursday 1 February. Although no time limit has been set at this stage on the duration of the changes, the Select Committee will monitor very closely their impact on the way in which the House's proceedings are covered and will review their operation as the experiment continues. As the Committee's report made clear, further modifications
Column 183during the course of the experiment, whether in the direction of greater latitude or increased strictness, cannot be ruled out. The report also stipulated that the rules of coverage for the Chamber (and, by implication, any changes in the rules)
"should apply mutatis mutandis to Committees".
I should stress, however, that there is no question at this stage of a second feed from Committees.
Mr. Dykes : To ask the hon. Member for Berwick-upon-Tweed, as representing the House of Commons Commission, if he will give figures, grades, titles and ranks for all officers of the House whose salaries are (a) higher and (b) lower than those of hon. Members.
Mr. Beith : I refer the hon. Member to the reply I gave to my hon. Friend the Member for Hampstead and Highgate (Sir. G. Finsberg) on 16 November 1989 at columns 374-77.
Mr. Macdonald : To ask the hon. Member for Berwick-upon-Tweed, as representing the House of Commons Commission, how many professional librarians in the Library are (a) full-time and (b) part-time.
Mr. Beith : Of the 32 professional librarian posts in the Library, 30 are filled by full-time staff. Four part-time staff share the remaining two posts.
Mr. Macdonald : To ask the hon. Member for Berwick-upon-Tweed, as representing the House of Commons Commission, how many researchers in the Library are (a) full-time and (b) part-time.
Mr. Beith : There are 27 research posts in the Library. Of these, 24 are filled by full-time staff. Six part-time staff share the remaining three posts.
Mr. Macdonald : To ask the hon. Member for Berwick-upon-Tweed, as representing the House of Commons Commission, how many researchers in the Library are currently working in the fields of defence and foreign affairs.
Mr. Beith : Four full-time research staff (one of whom specialises in defence matters) currently work in these areas. Certain aspects of defence and foreign affairs--for example, those inquiries involving statistical and economic expertise--are handled by research staff in other sections of the Library.
Mr. Macdonald : To ask the hon. Member for Berwick-upon-Tweed, as representing the House of Commons Commission, what is the current annual budget of the Library ; and how much is allocated to (a) research activities and (b) librarian activities.
Mr. Beith : The current annual budget of the Library Department, which includes the Vote Office as well as the parliamentary and research divisions, stands at £3,241,000. This figure covers staff costs, the cost of purchase, binding and repair of books, and other Library services. The Library runs an integrated service, and it is therefore not practicable to separate the costs of research activities from those of librarian activities.
Mr. Rogers : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many staff midwives were in post on 30 September in each health authority in Wales in 1985, 1986, 1987 and 1988.
Mr. Grist : Information is available centrally only on the total staff in post for all nursing and midwifery staff. Currently, breakdowns of these figures into occupation category are not considered reliable.
Mr. Rogers : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what were the number of medical and dental staff whole-time equivalents in Wales in each year between 1978 and the latest available year, by health authority.
Mr. Grist : The information requested is shown in the following table :
Medical and Dental Staff (W.T.E.) |1978 |1979 |1980 |1981 |1982 |1983 |1984 |1985 |1986 |1987 |1988 -------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Clwyd |244 |246 |258 |268 |273 |283 |277 |286 |287 |275 |283 East Dyfed |199 |216 |222 |225 |173 |179 |186 |191 |197 |196 |201 Pembrokeshire |60 |71 |66 |73 |70 |69 |75 Gwent |298 |318 |321 |330 |338 |342 |340 |340 |345 |360 |365 Gwynedd |123 |133 |139 |147 |152 |151 |164 |164 |165 |162 |161 Mid Glamorgan 324 343 368 373 379 379 392 384 392 403 420 Powys |34 |34 |35 |34 |33 |35 |34 |35 |32 |33 |37 South Glamorgan 588 603 599 634 644 660 653 675 674 648 682 West Glamorgan 283 288 292 297 301 304 308 317 308 325 321
Mr. Anderson : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales (1) if he will make a statement on the availability of coronary bypass surgery facilities in West Glamorgan ;
(2) whether he will initiate policies to improve the development of cardiac surgery services in south-west Wales.
Mr. Grist : Cardiac surgery facilities are presently available to patients from West Glamorgan at the regional cardiac unit at the University hospital of Wales, Cardiff. Our policies for the improvement of cardiac services, based on the report of the cardiology committee of the Royal College of Physicians, were announced in July 1989. They include the development of the regional unit, which is presently in hand, and the appraisal of options for a second unit in south Wales, which will commence shortly.
Mr. Redmond : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales whether creche facilities are provided for working mothers employed in his Department ; in what locations ; and if they have to make a contribution to this service.
Mr. Grist : The Department does not currently provide creche facilities for its staff. It is looking at the possibility in conjunction with other Government Departments in Cardiff.
Mr. Barry Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales, pursuant to his letter of 12 January 1990 to the hon. Member for Alyn and Deeside on employment in Wales, if he will state in the Official Report (a) total civilian work force in employment in Wales, and sub-divided by males and females, in (i) March 1979, (ii) June 1979, (iii) September 1979 and (iv) December 1979 ; (b) the actual and percentage quarterly changes for each in (a) ; the actual and percentage quarterly change between March 1980 and June 1980 and (d) the actual and percentage annual change for each in (a).
Mr. Peter Walker : The information requested is shown in the following tables :
Table 1 Civilian Workforce in Employment in Wales Thousands, Unadjusted |Males |Females|Total ----------------------------------------------- March 1979 |710.9 |429.3 |1.140.2 June 1979 |716.2 |440.7 |1,156.9 September 1979 |719.9 |439.7 |1,159.6 December 1979 |712.0 |442.8 |1,154.8
Table 2 Civilian Workforce in Employment in Wales Quarterly Changes, Thousands, Unadjusted |Actual |per cent.|Actual |per cent.|Actual |per cent. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ March 1979 |-2.7 |-0.4 |-3.6 |-0.8 |-6.3 |-0.5 June 1979 |5.3 |0.7 |11.4 |2.7 |16.7 |1.5 September 1979 |3.7 |0.5 |-1.0 |-0.2 |2.7 |0.2 December 1979 |-7.9 |-1.1 |3.1 |0.7 |-4.8 |-0.4 Change between March 1980 and June 1980 |-10.0 |-1.4 |2.0 |0.5 |-8.0 |-0.7
Table 3 Civilian Workforce in Employment in Wales Annual Changes, Thousands, Unadjusted Males Females Total |Actual |per cent.|Actual |per cent.|Actual |per cent. ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- March 1979 Data not available June 1979 |0.7 |0.1 |14.5 |3.4 |15.3 |1.3 September 1979 |2.8 |0.4 |9.9 |2.3 |12.7 |1.1 December 1979 |-1.6 |-0.2 |9.9 |2.3 |8.3 |0.7
Mr. Barry Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales if he proposes to make special financial allocations to Welsh local authorities to assist them in tackling the storm damage of 25 January ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Wyn Roberts : I announced on Friday 26 January that special financial assistance under the Bellwin scheme would be available to local authorities in Wales which would otherwise suffer an undue financial burden because of the effects of the severe weather on 25 January. The Welsh Office will shortly be writing to all local authorities with full details of how the scheme will apply in Wales.
Mr. Barry Jones : To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what is the estimated extent of damage in Wales concerning the 25 January storm ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Wyn Roberts : It is still too early to quantify the cost of damage for Wales as a whole.
Mr. John Morris : To ask the Attorney-General whether he will make a statement on the discontinuance of the trial against Mr. Kevin Taylor.
Mr. Vaz : To ask the Attorney-General how many Queen's counsel there are at the English Bar ; and, of these, how many are (a) men, (b) women, (c) black and (d) Asian.
The Attorney-General : As at 1 October 1989, there were 640 Queen's counsel at the English Bar, of whom 610 were men and 30 were women. Neither the Bar Council nor the Lord Chancellor's Department keeps records of the ethnic origin of Queen's counsel, but it is understood that there are three black and three Asian silks.
Mr. Wilshire : To ask the Attorney-General whether he proposes any changes to the Serious Fraud Office's cash and running cost limits for 1989 -90.
The Attorney-General : Subject to parliamentary approval of the necessary Supplementary Estimate, the cash limit for class XI, vote 12 will be increased by £50,000 from £5,764,000 to £5,814,000. Within this total the running costs limit of the Department will increase by £50,000 from £5,372,000 to £5,422,000. This increase will enable the Serious Fraud Office to meet extra costs arising from its casework. The increase will be charged to the reserve.
Mr. Andrew Smith : To ask the Attorney-General (1) if he will list any research reports or policy analyses received from outside management consultants after January 1985, but commissioned by his Department before that date, and the date of completion and cost of each contract ;
(2) if he will list the contracts his Department has given to outside management consultants in policy areas concerning his Department since January 1985, and the date of completion and cost of each contract.