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Mr. Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the average dairy farm income was for each of the last 10 years in (a) the parliamentary constituency of the Ribble Valley, (b) Lancashire, (c) the North West of England and (d) England. 
|Average net farm income (£ per farm)|
Source: Farm Business Survey
1 This information is not available for the North West of England, for Lancashire nor for the parliamentary constituency of the Ribble Valley.
Job No: CW0126 Folios: 000-000Operator: Operator Number 3. Date: 11/04/02rjk
Mr. Barker: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what average payments per hectare from the Common Agricultural Policy's production subsidies are received by (a) non-organic farmers and (b) organic farmers. 
Mr. Morley: Subsidies to production are available, either as direct payments per hectare or per head of livestock, or as support to prices through market support mechanisms. No distinction is made between organic and non-organic production for determining the eligibility of these subsidies.
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Malcolm Bruce: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what role her Department has played in discussions relating to (a) the Meeting of the Parties to the Convention on Environment Impact Assessment in a Transboundary Context and (b) the Kiev Ministerial Conference in 2003; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Meacher: Responsibility for matters relating to the UNECE Convention on Environmental Impact Assessment in a Transboundary Context (The "Espoo" Convention) rests with the Department of Transport, Local Government and the Regions. The Department has participated in two preparatory meetings for the Kiev Environment for Europe conference where discussion has focussed on the identification of possible themes and the likely agenda. This includes the possibility of reaching agreement on several protocols under discussion by their respective Conventions, one of which is the proposed protocol on strategic environmental assessment currently being negotiated under Espoo.
Malcolm Bruce: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what role her Department has played in developing and implementing (a) the United Nations Secretary-General's Global Compact Initiative, (b) the UNEP Global reporting Initiative and (c) the OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises. 
Mr. Meacher: (a) The Global Compact was a special initiative by the Secretary-General which is implemented directly with companies. However, officials from my Department remain in touch with the Compact Secretariat in New York.
(b) The Global Reporting Initiative (GRI) was launched by the Coalition of Environmentally Responsible Economies (CERES). It is now affiliated to the Global Compact. The GRI is a welcome initiative but is most suited to larger companies already experienced in environmental reporting. My Department has, therefore, developed and published jointly with the Department for Trade and Industry simpler guidance which is very similar to the environmental elements of the GRI. These guidelines should help any business to report on their environmental impacts, and have been endorsed by the CBI, which has sent copies to all of its members including all of the FTSE 350 leading companies.
(c) The Department played a full role in formulating the UK position during negotiations on the revised OECD Guidelines for Multinational Enterprises which were concluded in June 2000. Since then officials from my Department have worked with the UK National Contact Point for the OECD Guidelines, based in the Department of Trade and Industry, to help ensure that the Guidelines are taken into account in relevant parts of my Department's work, for example the promotion
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of the Guidelines to the UK water industry and in preparations for the World Summit on Sustainable Development.
Malcolm Bruce: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps her Department has taken in response to the UNEP Governing Council Decision 21/21; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Meacher: Decision 21/21 of the UNEP Governing Council in February 2001 established a Working Group to review international environmental governance. The UK funded a meeting of international experts in Cambridge in May 2001 to contribute to the debate. I represented the UK at two meetings of the working Group, and the other three were attended by DEFRA senior officials, I chaired the contact group which agreed the final report of the working group at the Global Ministerial Environment Forum in Cartagena in February.
Malcolm Bruce: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what recent steps have been taken to strengthen UK commitments to multilateral environmental agreements; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Meacher: Along with other EU Member States the UK is committed to early ratification of international instruments on climate change, biosafety, persistent organic pollutants and prior informed consent. The UK is fully committed to meeting its global environmental responsibilities.
Malcolm Bruce: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what recent steps have been taken to (a) promote sustainable management and (b) strengthen conservation of use of forests. 
Mr. Morley: The sustainable management of forests, including conservation, is a cornerstone of our forestry policy, and it was then the main issue discussed at the United Nations Forum on Forests which I attended in New York last month. This event provided an international stage to promote sustainable forest management, and in my speech to the Forum I highlighted the lead being taken by the UK, including our joint work with industry and NGOs, the development of a forest business sectoral sustainability strategy, and the introduction of a UK Standard for independent certification of forests.
It was, of course, this work on certification which led to the Forestry Commission recently being awarded the World Wide Fund for Nature's Gift to the Earth Award. The UK is, in fact, the only country where the entire state forest area has achieved creditable certification to an independent Standard recognised by the Forestry Stewardship Council. Many private owners are now following suit.
Sustainable forest management will feature prominently at the World Summit for Sustainable Development later this year in Johannesburg. We are currently working in partnership between government, business and NGOs in the forestry sector to ensure that
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we demonstrate the progress being made in this country and also press for more action to be taken globally. As part of our preparations for the Summit, we will be publishing a new Statement on Sustainable Forestry. This will be one part of our National Forest Programme, drawing together the actions we have taken since Rio and addressing the challenges for Johannesburg and the future.
Malcolm Bruce: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps have been taken by the Government since the Rio Earth Summit in 1992 to (a) set goals on environmental protection and (b) improve eco-efficiency and resource productivity relating to forestry issues; and what these (i) goals and (ii) improvements have been. 
Mr. Meacher: The management, conservation and sustainable development of forests was one of the key issues at the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio. The main outcome for forests was the adoption of a Statement of Forest Principles which included a commitment by countries to publish national forest programmes. In 1994 the UK set out its aims for forestry in Sustainable Forestrythe UK Programme. In 1999, we published our strategy for sustainable development for the UK, A Better Quality of Life. This includes a section on forests and woodlands setting out the contribution that forestry can make to meeting sustainable management of forests in the UK. We also facilitated the development of the UK Woodland Assurance Standard for forest certification and environmental labelling of wood products. About 40 per cent. of the UK's woodlands have now been certified, including the entire public forest estate.
The UK has made considerable progress on forestry issues by increasing timber production and the environmental and social outputs from forests. These outputs are reported in British Timber Statistics and Forestry Commission Facts and Figures, which are in the Library of the House. Following consultation with stakeholder groups and the public, the Forestry Commission will be publishing a new set of indicators of sustainable forestry in the UK. These will make an important contribution to the monitoring processes set out in A Better Quality of Life and the UK Forestry Standard.
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