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Mr. Atkins : The cost of the radioactive waste inventory is shared between the Department of the Environment and UK Nirex Ltd. The cost to the Department of the 1994 inventory, for which contracts have recently been let, is expected to be £163,871 spread over two and a half years.
Sir Michael Neubert : To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what is the number and nature of the representations he has received (a) in favour of the proposal to abolish market franchises and (b) against it.
Mr. Mellor : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what proposals he has for revised night flying restrictions for Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted for summer 1994 ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Norris : On 10 November 1993 the Secretary of State for Transport published proposals for revised night flying restrictions at Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted for the 1994 summer season and for the arrangements to apply from winter 1994-95 until the end of the summer 1998 season. Comments on the summer 1994 proposals were invited by 31 December 1993 and on those applying for the longer term by 11 February 1994. As indicated in the consultation paper, airlines normally expect to finalise their timetables for the summer season during January. We acknowledged their need for an early decision by separating the proposals in the consultation paper to enable us to announce conclusions for the 1994 summer season in advance of those for the following years. The conclusions that I have reached relate to the 1994 summer season only and in no way prejudge the conclusions that I may reach in respect of the following four years.
On 6 July 1993, following an extensive period of consultation, the Government announced a new five-year policy for night restrictions at Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted whereby quotas, based on the noise rating of aircraft, would provide the basis of control. A quota was announced for each airport which would enable a greater number of movements at night to take place if the quieter types of aircraft were used or fewer movements if noisier types were used. Many people welcomed this approach. However, following judicial review proceedings the court ruled that section 78(3)(b) of the Civil Aviation Act 1982 requires specification of "the maximum number of occasions" on which aircraft may be permitted to take off or land in a specified period.
The proposals put out to consultation in November were that there should be a movements limit for each airport with the quota system also applying as a supplementary control. An alternative approach was also set out which would dispense with the need for quotas but impose subsidiary limits on movements by the noisier types of aircraft. The responses to the consultation have shown that there is very little support for this alternative approach. I have therefore concluded that the night restrictions for summer 1994 should be in the form of movements limits supplemented by quotas. The movements limits and quotas for each airport for the summer 1994 season will be :
|Movement|Quota |limits ------------------------------------ Heathrow |3,250 |7,000 Gatwick |7,000 |9,550 Stansted |6,500 |4,200
The figures for Heathrow and Gatwick are as proposed in the consultation paper ; the movements limit for Stansted is lower. I also confirm that the provision in place for the current winter season for end-of-season flexibility up to 10 per cent.--and with penalty for excess thereafter-- should apply, as proposed, to the movements limits as well as to the quotas for the summer season. I have given careful consideration to the responses from airlines and aviation bodies asking to be allowed more movements, particularly at Heathrow and Gatwick. I have also given careful consideration to the responses from people living around the three airports, the local authorities and other local organisations, that the proposed movements limits and quotas were too high. My aim remains, as previously, to maintain the policy of continuing to protect local communities from excessive exposure to aircraft noise while not unduly restricting those who wish to go about their business at night. I have concluded that the movements limits and quotas which I have confirmed today for all three airports should achieve this. At Stansted it remains difficult to predict the likely pattern of traffic wishing to operate at night even only a few months ahead. Although traffic is still growing, operations have not developed quite as fast as they might have and this is reflected in the lower movements limit confirmed today. The movements limit for Stansted is still higher in relation to the quota than that for other airports. This underlines our commitment to quieter aircraft. Services at Stansted are expected to expand. The numbers which I am confirming today should provide an incentive to those who operate those services to use only the quietest types of aircraft at night.
While the arrangements for reporting on movements and usage of the quota were generally welcomed, some responses raised doubts as to whether they would provide sufficient assurance that the system was being administered properly. It was suggested that the reporting arrangements should embrace "a full audit trail" to provide this assurance. I do not doubt the integrity of those operating the system at present, but it is undoubtedly complex. It is right that people should be assured that it is being operated properly. I therefore welcome the suggestion--and the fact that it has come out of the present consultation--that the reporting arrangements should cover the full audit trail. I am therefore asking the Aircraft Noise Monitoring Advisory Committee to consider how best to achieve this.
Column 627the new dedicated international passenger terminal at Waterloo will begin this year. Day and night time services will also run from regions north and west of London to Paris and Brussels. These services should begin in 1995.
BR/SNCF and SNCB have on order from a consortium led by GEC-Alsthom a fleet of high-speed trains for use on inter-capital services. BR is responsible for 11 of these Eurostar trainsets. BR is also purchasing from the consortium seven modified versions of these same trainsets to provide daytime services from north of London to Paris and Brussels.
The board has been considering the financing options for these trainsets and has concluded that leasing arrangements can give commercial and financing benefits. A number of leases have been finalised in 1993-94, through the board's subsidiary, European Passenger Services, to which I have given my approval, and more leases are expected. The Government intend to give a non-statutory guarantee to BRB in respect of its liability under the leases. The guarantee will be notified to Parliament in the usual way. A new joint venture company, European Night Services Ltd., has also been set up by BR, SNCF, German and Dutch railways to provide sleeper services through the channel tunnel. European Night Services has entered into a leasing arrangement in respect of the rolling stock which will be used for these services.
Mr. Rowe : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will publish the forecasts of the number of commuters expected (a) to use the channel tunnel rail link and (b) to leave the channel tunnel rail link at St. Pancras.
Mr. Freeman : It is too early to say. The number of commuters using the line and the St. Pancras terminus will depend, among other factors, upon the general level of commuting from Kent into London and upon the precise service pattern adopted.
Mr. Rowe : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will define the relationship which now exists between his Department and Union Railways following the final announcement of the channel tunnel rail link route.
Mr. Freeman : Union Railways continues to have operational responsibility for all aspects of the channel tunnel rail link project. Union Railways is responsible, under the overall direction of the Department of Transport, for the private aspects of the proposed hybrid Bill ; and acts, together with European Passenger Services, as project manager to the Department for the competition to transfer UR and EPS to the private sector.
Mr. Ward : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what consideration he has given to the introduction of insurance discs, similar to the tax discs already required, as an additional way of identifying those drivers who fail to insure their vehicles.
Mr. Key : As explained in the answer I gave on 23 June 1993 to my hon. Friend the Member for Rutland and Melton (Mr. Duncan), there would be some practical problems associated with a windscreen insurance disc system. However, we continue to take the problem of uninsured driving very seriously and would be willing to look again at any proposal for overcoming these drawbacks.
By port |Number -------------------------------- Aberdeen |209 Avonmouth |27 Ayr |1 Barry |8 Belfast |82 Blyth |6 Brightlingsea |1 Cardiff |239 Dundee |1 Falmouth |20 Felixstowe |1 Fowey |7 Garston |1 Glasgow |95 Goole |16 Great Yarmouth |16 Grimsby |9 Gunness |5 Harwich |3 Heysham |3 Hull |248 Immingham |22 Ipswich |6 Killingholme |2 King's Lynn |1 Leith |47 Lerwick |9 Liverpool |227 London |332 Lowestoft |1 Manchester |3 Medway Ports |1 Middlesbrough |130 Milford Haven |36 Montrose |4 Mostyn |1 Newcastle |131 Newhaven |1 Newport (IOW) |2 Newport (Wales) |14 Par |2 Peterhead |1 Plymouth |27 Poole |9 Portsmouth |4 Ramsgate |5 Seaham |4 Selby |1 Sharpness |3 Southampton |219 Stranraer |1 Sullom Voe |7 Sunderland |3 Swansea |10 Tees |1 Teignmouth |4 Weymouth |1 Whitstable |1
2. By Flag |Number ----------------------------------------- Algeria |1 Antilles (Netherlands) |27 Antigua and Barbuda |123 Austria |5 Azerbaijan |1 Bahamas |216 Bahrain |2 Bangladesh |3 Belgium |8 Belize |2 Bolivia |2 Bulgaria |13 Canada |1 China |9 Colombia |1 Croatia |1 Cyprus |168 Czechoslovakia |4 Denmark |120 Egypt |6 Estonia |10 Ethiopia |2 Faeroe Islands |2 Finland |22 France |25 Germany |137 Ghana |3 Greece |107 Honduras |23 Iceland |1 India |16 Iran |7 Ireland |77 Italy |31 Ivory Coast |2 Japan |7 Latvia |15 Lebanon |1 Liberia |79 Libya |3 Lithuania |13 Luxembourg |12 Malaysia |2 Malta |90 Marshall Islands |1 Mexico |2 Morocco |7 Myanmar |3 Netherlands |147 Nigeria |11 Norway |167 Pakistan |6 Panama |118 Philippines |10 Poland |38 Portugal |8 Quatar |2 Romania |6 Russia |135 St. Vincent and Grenadines |73 Saudi Arabia |1 Singapore |12 Spain |8 Sir Lanka |3 Sudan |2 Sweden |48 Switzerland |3 Syria |3 Taiwan |1 Thailand |2 Turkey |9 Tuvalu |2 Ukraine |18 C.E.I |11 United Arab Emirates |1 U.S.A. |10 Vanuatu |3
Mr. Cummings : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many serious accidents and deaths have occurred on the section of the A19 running through the Easington district in each year since 1991.
Year |Fatal |Serious|Slight ---------------------------------------- 1991 |2 |6 |45 1992 |1 |7 |31 <1>1993 |3 |3 |35 <1> To November.
There are no current proposals to provide highway lighting north of Passfield way.
Mr. Key : Work is expected to commence shortly on a scheme to provide emergency telephones on the A19-A168 between Dishforth and Stockton on Tees. A further scheme on the A19 between Stockton on Tees and the Tyne tunnel is planned.
The telephones will be provided in existing lay-bys at approximately one- mile intervals where possible with a direct link to the local police control room.
Mr. Norris : No ; the Nora Heeren is understood to have left United Kingdom waters on 21 January. A port state control inspection of the vessel was conducted at Middlesbrough last September and the Department has no reason to doubt the seaworthiness of the vessel.
39,310 vehicles Eastbound.
38,977 vehicles Westbound.
Flows on weekdays are generally higher than those at weekends.
Mr. Fry : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what steps his Department takes to prevent coaches registered in (a) the United Kingdom and (b) elsewhere in Europe of more than 17 tonnes gross weight from using United Kingdom roads.
Mr. Key [holding answer 31 January 1994] : Coaches using Britain's roads which are subject to a maximum permitted weight of 17 tonnes are liable to be check weighed by vehicles inspectorate examiners. Those found to be more than 17 tonnes can be prohibited from continuing their journey. Drivers and operators of overweight coaches are also subject to prosecution. If the vehicle is registered elsewhere in Europe they are also reported to their Government for appropriate action.
Mr. Channon : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will make a statement about current air services from London to Warsaw ; what was the position a year ago ; and what are the reasons for the changes that have been made.
Mr. Norris [holding answer 28 January 1994] : There are currently no direct air services between London and Warsaw. I refer my right hon. Friend to the letter I wrote to the hon. Member for Thurrock (Mr. Mackinlay) on 16 November 1993 which was deposited in the Library of the House and which explains the background to the current situation. During the winter season 1992-93 British Airways and LOT each operated a daily return service between London and Warsaw.
Mrs. Dunwoody : To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will list the numbers and grades and salary costs of staff at each Driving Standards Agency office affected by the proposed marketing test of the booking of driving tests and the processing of driving test fees.
Mr. Key : Responsibility for the subject of the question has been delegated to the Driving Standards Agency under its chief executive, Dr. Ford. I have asked him to arrange for a reply to be given. Letter from Dr. S. J. Ford to Mrs. Gwyneth Dunwoody, dated 27 January 1994 :
The Secretary of State has asked me to reply to your Question about the Market Testing of DSA's driver test booking service.
First you asked about the numbers and grades of the staff at each office affected. The staff-in-post information is in the attached schedule.
Secondly, you asked for salary costs at the Agency offices. In our 1993-94 Business Plan, which was deposited in the Library of the House in May 1993, DSA estimated its total payroll costs for 1993-94 to be £3.6 million for all regional offices and £1.8 million for the headquarters office (although not all of these staff will be affected by the market test).
Driving Standards Agency Regional staff in post as at 31 December 1993 Grade |North |North |West |<1>East |<1>East |Wales |West |South |Scotland |Metropolitan |East |West |Midlands |Nottingham |Cambridge |East ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------ SEO |1 |1 |1 |0 |1 |1 |0 |1 |1 |1 HEO |1 |1 |1 |1 |0 |1 |1 |1 |1 | 1.5 EO |4 |2 |1 |1 |1 |1 |1 |2 |1 |5 AO | 13.5 |6 |5 | 3.5 |3 | 5.4 |4 |8 |5 |18 AA | 28.5 |18 |13 |10 | 6.5 | 11.2 |6.25 | 15.5 |11 | 39.5 Typist |1 |0 |0 | 0.5 |0 |0 |0 |0 |0 | 1.5 Support |1 |0 |0 |0 |0 |0 |0 |0 |0 |3 P/keeper |0 |0 |0 |1 |0 |0 |0 |0 |0 |0 Telephonist |1 |0 |0 |0 |0 |0 |0 |0 |0 |0 | ------- | ------- | ------- | ------- | ------- | ------- |------- | ------- | ------- | ------- Total |51 |28 |21 |17 | 11.5 | 19.6 |12.25 | 27.5 |19 | 69.5 <1>A further 22 staff located in the Headquarters office in Nottingham are partially engaged in providing finance services for the Driver Test Booking Services in Nottingham and Cambridge.
Dr. Wright : To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland which of the public appointments for which he is responsible require advance notice to and consultation with the Chief Whip's office ; and which appointments made since 1979 have been so ratified and consulted upon.
Sir John Wheeler : It is not the practice of Her Majesty's Government to answer parliamentary questions about discussions and consultations between Departments and offices of Government relating to public appointments.
Mr. Tipping : To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what was (a) the maximum, (b) the minimum and (c) the average amount paid out under the arable area payments scheme in Northern Ireland in the latest available year ; and if he will make a statement.
Mr. Ancram [holding answer 28 January 1994] : Final statistics for the 1993 scheme year are not yet complete. As at 31 December 1993, 96 per cent. of claims had been paid of which : (a) the maximum amount paid out was £33,394 ; (b) the minimum amount paid was £48.03 ; and (c) the average amount paid out was £1,241 per applicant.
( |Number of|Number |employees|dismissed ---------------------------------------- 1989 |- |- 1990 |- |- 1991 |1 |1 1992 |3 |2 1993 |2 |2 Note: One employee resigned in 1992 at the time of disclosure.
Sir John Wheeler : The procedures in respect of disciplinary offences are described in the "Departmental Terms and Conditions of Service" which apply to all civil servants. The attention of all staff is drawn to these
Column 634conditions. The procedures are invoked following allegations of misconduct, including fraud. A range of penalties, including dismissal, are available to the Department.
Mr. Jack : Grant aid is available, in respect of vessels which are required by the Fishing Vessel (Safety Provisions) Rules 1975 to have a United Kingdom fishing vessel (safety) certificate, to meet the relevant safety requirements. Certification applies only to vessels of 12m or more in length. The Department of Transport is considering a House of Lords Select Committee recommendation that a more stringent statutory safety regime should be applied to vessels under 12m. Once a final decision is taken on this, Fisheries Ministers will consider what are the implications for the safety grants scheme.
Mr. Menzies Campbell : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food how many employees were judged to be guilty of fraud in her Department in each year since 1989 ; and how many were dismissed.
Mr. Llew Smith : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what matters in regard to the recently completed general agreement on tariffs and trade for EU agriculture policy were discussed at the Agriculture Council of 24-25 January.
Mr. Jack : The Agriculture Council met and concluded its agenda on Monday 24 January. It took forward the business following from the decisions at the preceding December Council. Although the GATT Uruguay round on agriculture was not itself on the agenda, its implications for future reform of the fruit and vegetable regime were noted.
Mr. Llew Smith : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if she will make a statement on the implications for (a) low-input agriculture and (b) continued protection of countryside habitats of wildlife populations of the GATT completed in December 1993.
Mr. Jack : Non-trade-distorting payments, including incentives for environmentally beneficial farming practices such as those that entail habitat protection and reduced use of fertilisers and pesticides, are classed as "green box". As a result, they are exempt from the limitations elsewhere in the agreement, including those on domestic support.
Mr. Soames : The Bovine Embryo Collection and Transfer Regulations 1993 require that embryo transfer is carried out by either a veterinary surgeon on the register of the Royal College of Veterinary Surgeons--RCVS-- or a member of an approved embryo transfer team which is under the control of a veterinary surgeon on the register. The RCVS has produced a code of practice for embryo collection and transfer in cattle. The code is published in the 1993 edition of the "Guide to Professional Conduct" which is sent to all those listed on the register. I have arranged for a copy of the code of practice to be placed in the Library of the House.
Mr. Tipping : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if she will give (a) the maximum, (b) the minimum and (c) the average amount paid out under the arable area payments scheme in England in the latest available year ; and if she will make a statement.
Mr. Jack [holding answer 28 January 1994] : Under the integrated administration and control system, a single application for arable area payments must be submitted in respect of all the land farmed by the same individual or organisation and some applications cover a significant number of separate holdings, which may be located in different parts of the United Kingdom. The maximum total payment made to date to an applicant under the 1992-93 arable area payments scheme has been of the order of £1.25 million. Claims under the simplified arrangements for small producers in 1992-93 can range from about £50 up to just over £2,000 for land situated in England. The total amounts paid to date averaged over the total number of applications submitted in England for 1992-93, would give an average payment of slightly less than £13,400. This does not include the final instalment of the area payment for oilseeds, which is due to be made early in 1994.
Mr. Morley : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food how much milk was produced and consumed in (a) the United Kingdom and (b) the European Community as a whole in each of the last five years.
Mr. Jack [holding answer 31 January 1994] : The quantity of milk produced by dairy cows and the quantity of liquid milk consumed in both the EC as a whole and in the United Kingdom are given in the table.
Production and consumption in the former GDR is excluded from the EC total for the years 1987 to 1989 inclusive. Production includes deliveries to dairies, sales direct from farms, milk consumed on farm, milk fed to stock and wastage. The drinking milk consumption figure includes whole milk, semi -skimmed milk, skimmed milk and buttermilk. It is derived as production plus imports less exports, less stock change and less wastage.
Milk production and consumption in the EC and the United Kingdom 1987-1991<4> 000s tonnes |1987<1> |1988<1> |1989<1> |1990 |1991 ------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- Dairy Cows milk production<2>: EC |112,179 |109,800 |198,248 |117,500 |114,865 of which, United Kingdom: |15,506 |15,140 |14,943 |15,251 |14,762 Drinking milk consumption<3>: EC: |28,978 |28,868 |28,781 |28,542 |28,488 of which, United Kingdom: |7,064 |7,077 |7,081 |7,043 |7,039 <1> Excludes the former GDR. <2> Gross production from the dairy herd, including milk fed to stock and wastage. <3> Consumption of whole milk, semi-skimmed milk, skimmed milk and buttermilk in product weight. Consumption is derived as production plus imports, less exports, less stock change and less wastage. <4> EC data are not available for 1992. For the United Kingdom, 1992 production was 14,702,000 tonnes and consumption was 7,072,000 tonnes.
Dr. Godman : To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what assessment she has made of the effect of the decision of the European Court of Justice in joined cases CZ67/8 (Keck), 24 November 1988, on measures by European Community member states to restrict the importation of farmed salmon and other fishery-products from Norway ; and if he will make a statement.