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24 Oct 2002 : Column 420Wcontinued
Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many vehicles have been converted to use liquid petroleum gas in each of the last two years. 
Mr. Wilson: The numbers of new and converted vehicles on the road using liquid petroleum gas has doubled since 1999 as confirmed by the table below:
|Vehicles on the Road||13,000||39,000||65,000||Figures available in FEB: 2003|
|Vehicles Converted||13,000||26,000||26,000||Figures available in FEB: 2003|
The figures above were from the Liquid Petroleum Gas Association website updated on 11 October 2002.
These figures compare with 3500 LPG vehicles on the road in 1998
Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (1) how many businesses in Scotland are authorised to carry out conversion of vehicles to enable them to use liquid petroleum gas; 
Mr. Wilson: The number of businesses authorised to convert vehicles for the use of liquid petroleum gas (LPG) in Scotland currently stands at twelve (12), and are located as follows:
The above information is based on data from the LPGA website which was updated on 11 October 2002.
Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what grants are available for individuals to convert vehicles to run on liquid petroleum gas. 
Mr. Wilson: The DfT sponsored PowerShift programme, administered by the Energy Saving Trust's TransportEnergy team provides grants towards the conversion of vehicles to run on LPG. These grants are available for vehicles up to five years old for which good quality LPG conversions are available.
Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what targets her Department has for the number of vehicles to be converted to run on liquid petroleum gas by the end of the current financial year. 
Mr. Wilson: The government has not set a target on the number of vehicles to be converted to use LPG. However it is working with the energy and transport industries, to promote, and raise the awareness of alternative fuelsin particular LPG.
Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what plans she has to increase the number of businesses in Scotland able to carry out conversions to allow vehicles to run on liquid petroleum gas. 
Mr. Wilson: I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave to my hon. Friend, the Member for Fife, Central (Mr. MacDougall) on 7 May 2002, Official Report, columns 67W, in which I explained the incentives and the encouragement this department is offering to retailers on the sale of LPG.
Llew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what representations have been received by HM Government in respect of safety and security concerns expressed in regard to the shipment of rejected plutonium MOX fuel from Japan to Sellafield; and what the cost is of the security provisions in place to protect the nuclear cargo. 
Mr. Wilson: Representations have been received by our Diplomatic Missions overseas and by the Department from hon. Members, their constituents, non-government organisations and others over safety and security over the return transport of MOX fuel to the UK from Takahama in Japan.
Costs of compliance with regulatory nuclear security requirements are borne by the company. Details of those costs are a matter for BNFL.
Llew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many petro-chemical and biotechnology plants in the United Kingdom have the technical capacity for dual civil/military use. 
Ms Hewitt: Petro-chemical plants in the United Kingdom are designed to process crude oil for the production of fuels, lubricants and other hydrocarbon chemicals. Although such facilities, given access to the appropriate raw materials, could potentially be used for the production of chemical weapons or their precursors, in the UK their only dual civil/military use is for the production of fuels, lubricants etc. which are required for normal military as well as civil purposes.
24 Oct 2002 : Column 421W
Biotechnology facilities in the United Kingdom having the requisite safety infrastructure, equipment and starting materials may have the technical capacity to produce biological agents and other products which have dual civil/military use. Vaccines are an example of such products. Such facilities in the United Kingdom are subject to extensive regulation and inspection.
The UK abandoned its offensive biological and chemical weapons programmes many years ago.
Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry when she expects the 5 per cent. target of renewable energy contribution to electricity supplies to be reached; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Wilson: I would refer the hon. Member to my reply on 15 October 2002, Official Report, column 672W, to the hon. Member for Ribble Valley (Mr. Evans).
Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what percentage of electricity was generated from renewable resources in 2001; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Wilson: I would refer the hon. Member to my reply on 15 October, Official Report, columns 671672W, to the hon. Member for Lewes (Norman Baker).
Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (1) what plans her Department has to include industrial kitchen equipment within the EU WEEE directives and restrictions on use of substances covering electrical and electronic equipment; and if she will make a statement; 
Mr. Wilson: The Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Directive and the Restriction on the use of certain Hazardous Substances in electrical equipment (ROHS) Directive completed the conciliation process on 11 October. Following legal checking and translation the final texts should be presented to the European Parliament and Council for approval around the end of this year.
The scope of these Directives is very wide. To fall within the scope electrical and electronic equipment must rely on either an AC current of up to 1000 volts or a DC current of up to 1500 volts to operate correctly. It must also fall within one of the ten broad categories the WEEE Directive outlines. These categories apply to equipment intended for use by the consumer or for professional use. On this basis it is likely that at least some industrial kitchen equipment will fall within the scope of the Directives. Detailed guidance on scope can start to be developed once the final text is available and we have consulted business further. The Department will also monitor closely developments in other member States to help ensure a consistent application of the Directives.
24 Oct 2002 : Column 422W
We are not aware of any other member State who has taken specific decisions on the inclusion or otherwise of industrial kitchen equipment at this time.
Mr. Blunt: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if she will list the 10 most successful commercial applications of research programmes funded by the European Union's first five framework programmes for research and development. 
Ms Hewitt: Business, large and small, competes fiercely to take part in EU Framework programmes and derive wider benefits from participation: for example in increasing research skills, helping to access international collaboration, alliances or markets, sharing project risks and costs, or helping to develop key industry standards.
However, the research carried out in the EU Framework Programmes focuses primarily on longer term pre-competitive, collaborative research rather than leading directly to commercial products.
The UK is strongly encouraging the Commission in its work to develop better ways to track and assess the impact of the Framework programmes. However, successful commercial applications often depend on bringing together a number of technological innovations from different sources (which might include, among other sources, elements drawn from the wide range of outputs from successive Framework Programmes) with the aim of meeting a particular user need. Under these circumstances, it is very difficult to compile a restrictive, ranked list of commercial successes.
Nevertheless, it is possible to give some general examples where Framework programmes have contributed significantly to subsequent successful commercial applications: for example, underpinning development of GSM telephony (mobile phones), production of new generations of microchips, competitiveness of European Aerospace industry, improved energy technologies, and a much-improved understanding of life sciences and global climate change.
The Commission provides details of all projects funded under FP4 and FP5 on its website www.CORDIS.lu together with a range of technology brokering services to assist with the further exploitation of EU funded research.
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