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22 Oct 2002 : Column 153Wcontinued
Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will list the website links associated with his Department, including sites now dormant or closed, and indicating whether they are live, dormant or closed; what the start up costs were for each site listed; what the operating costs were in each year since start up for each site; which company hosted each site; what assessment takes place for each site; which company does the assessment; if he will place the assessment reports in the Library; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Jamieson: My Department has a number of web sites in addition to the Department for Transport web site (www.dft.gov.uk). It is not possible to state the start up costs as the site has been created out of the former DTLR (and before that, DETR) web site. The annual cost of running the web site is currently #85,000 (excluding staff costs). The web hosting company is EduServ, who are based in Bath. There has been no assessment of the DfT web site, as it has only existed since the creation of the Department earlier this year.
Because not all sites are managed centrally, information about every web site could only be provided at disproportionate cost. However, the following are primary sites listed on our main web site and are live unless specified:
|Air Accident Investigation Branch||www.aaib.gov.uk|
|Bad Jobs (transport publicity spoof site)||www.badjobs.co.uk|
|Campaign for Integrated Transport||www.cfit.gov.uk|
|Civil Aviation Authority||www.caa.co.uk|
|Department for Transport, Local||www.dtlr.gov.uk|
|Government and the Regions (dormant)|
|Disabled Persons Transport Advisory Committee||www.dptac.gov.uk|
|Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency||www.dvla.gov.uk|
|Driving Standards Agency||www.dsa.gov.uk|
|Hedgehogs child road safety||www.hedgehogs.gov.uk|
|In Town Without My Car (dormant)||www.itwmc.gov.uk|
|Maritime Accident Investigation Branch||www.maib.gov.uk|
|Maritime and Coastguard Agency||www.mcagency.gov.uk|
|Northern Lighthouse Board||www.nlb.org.uk|
|Strategic Rail Authority||www.sra.gov.uk|
|Traffic Area Network||www.tan.gov.uk|
|Transport for London||www.londontransport.co.uk|
|Trinity House Lighthouse Service||www.trinityhouse.co.uk|
|Vehicle Certification Agency||www.vca.gov.uk|
22 Oct 2002 : Column 154W
Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many people are employed by (a) the Health and Safety Commission, (b) the Disabled Persons Transport Advisory Council and (c) the Rail Passengers Council; what the annual budget of each has been for each year since 199798 and its projected budget for the next financial year; and if he will make a statement on the role and terms of reference of each. 
Mr. Jamieson: The Disabled Persons Transport Advisory Committee (DPTAC) are statutory advisers to the Department for Transport on the transport and mobility needs of disabled people. The Committee was set up under S.125 of the Transport Act 1985 and it is also recognised in a number of other Acts including the Railways Act 1993 and the Transport Act 2000.
DPTAC does not employ staff direct. The Department for Transport supports the Secretariat and administrative functions of the Committee and staff from the Department are appointed to those posts. Until the 200001 Financial Year the Committee's costs were not separately identified, but the cost to the Department since then has been: #215K (0001) and #265K (0102). The budget for this year is #289K and this is likely to remain the same for the following Financial Year.
The Rail Passengers Council (RPC) was set up in its current form by the Railways Act 1993, with its powers and name amended by the Transport Act 2000. The Council along with the Rail Passengers Committeeswhose work it co-ordinatesis the statutory watchdog protecting and promoting the interests of rail passengers. Its statutory duties are set out in sections 76 and 77 of the Railways Act 1993, as amended by the Transport Act 2000.
At present the Council employs 21 permanent and fixed term staff. It is currently sponsored by the Strategic Rail Authority (SRA) and the details of the overall annual budgets for the Council and Committees are as follows:
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Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what research has been conducted and is planned by and for his Department into the (a) environmental and (b) economic benefits of the use of water-diesel emulsion fuels in public transport vehicles; and if he will place copies in the Library. 
Mr. Jamieson: Following discussions with a producer of water-diesel emulsion fuel, some limited testing of their fuel was carried out as part of a much wider particulate research programme commissioned by this Department in partnership with the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) and the Oil Companies European Organisation for Environmental Health and Safety (CONCAWE). The results of those tests are included in an Annex to the report on the Particulate Research Programme 19982001 which was published in May 2001. I am arranging for copies of the Summary Report, including the full report on CD, and the relevant Annex from the full report to be placed in the Libraries of the House.
Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what representations have been received from, and what discussions have been had with, (a) the bus industry, (b) local authorities, (c) Transport for London, (d) passenger transport executives and (e) the Treasury on the role of water-diesel emulsion fuels in public transport vehicles. 
Mr. Jamieson: The Department has had discussions with Transport for London and has received enquiries from other bus operators about the use of water-diesel emulsion fuels in public transport vehicles. The Department is aware that diesel emulsions can deliver some environmental benefits, in particular through reduced NOx and emissions of particulate mass but there is evidence of increased hydrocarbons and ultra-fine particle emissions. There is an emerging view among medical experts that, potentially, ultra-fine particles may have a significant effect on human health. Therefore, until the health effects are clearer, the Department has some reservations about the wider use of these fuels.
22 Oct 2002 : Column 156W
likely effects of the forthcoming Enterprise Bill upon the railway industry; and what plans there are to respond to them. 
Mr. Jamieson: I am not aware of any likely effects unique to the railway industry. The particular circumstances of the industry were taken into account in the preparation of the legislation. Both the Department and the Strategic Rail Authority have been consulted during the passage of the Bill.
Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what his Department projects the level of rail passenger (a) journeys, (b) kilometres and (c) passengers in the United Kingdom will be by 200405; and how these figures were calculated. 
Mr. Jamieson: The targets for national rail set out in the Ten Year Plan include increasing rail use (measured in passenger kilometres) from 2000 levels by 50 per cent. by 2010. The latest official forecasts for rail passenger kilometres growth to 2010 were set out in the Ten Year Plan, with detail on the method of their calculation in ''Transport 2010The Background Analysis'', copies of which are in the Library. There are no official forecasts to 2005.
Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what assessment has been made of the performance of the (a) Rail Passengers Council and (b) the Disabled Persons Transport Advisory Council; and what reports are published on their performance. 
Mr. Jamieson: Sponsorship and external assessment of the work of the Rail Passengers Council are matters for the Strategic Rail Authority (SRA). The Council is finalising a new mission statement and long-term goals, on which it will be consulting later in the year.
The Disabled Persons Transport Advisory Committee produces an annual report covering the work they do and copies of those reports are placed in the Library. In addition, in accordance with Cabinet Office guidance on reviewing non-departmental public bodies, a formal review of the DPTAC is being carried out this autumn.
Mr. Don Foster: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many people are employed by (a) the Rail Passengers' committees and (b) the Traffic Commissioners; what their role and terms of reference are; what their annual budgets were for each year since 199798; and what their projected budgets are for 200304. 
Mr. Jamieson: (a) The Rail Passengers Committees have 45 permanent and fixed term staff. The work of Rail Passengers Committees are co-ordinated by the Rail Passengers Council. The Council and Committees are the statutory watchdog protecting and promoting the interests of rail passengers. Their statutory duties are set out in sections 76 and 77 of the Railways Act 1993, as amended by the Transport Act 2000.
22 Oct 2002 : Column 157W
The Council and Committees mission statements and aims are set out in their annual reports. Copies of the annual reports for the Council and the Committees for Scotland and Wales are available in the House Libraries, as required by legislation. I will arrange for the annual reports of the remaining committees to henceforth also be made available through the House Libraries.
The costs of the Committees are not separately identified in the overall annual budgets set for the Rail Passengers Council. For the overall annual budget for the Council and Committees I refer the hon. Member to my reply of 22 October 2002 .
(b) The Traffic Commissioners do not employ staff. The Secretary of State provides administrative support for them through the Traffic Area Network. Traffic Commissioners are licensing authorities for operators of heavy goods vehicles and public service vehicles under the Goods Vehicles (Licensing Operators) Act 1995 and the Public Passenger Vehicles Act 1981 respectively. Budgets were:
The budget for 2003/4 is not yet known.
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