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Alan Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the (a) relevant underlying agreements and (b) qualitative requirements set for the facilities are of those sector associations party to a Climate Change Levy umbrella agreement which have supplied her with information specified in part 2 of Schedule 3 of those agreements. 
Mr. Meacher: No information has yet been supplied to the Secretary of State. Schedule 3 of the underlying agreements contain the qualitative requirements, and these are the same for all facilities. The framework underlying agreement can be seen on the Defra website.
Alan Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs which targets under climate change levy umbrella agreements and underlying agreements have not been met; of those, in respect of which targets she is considering whether they so appear; and if she will conduct a public consultation in advance of making a decision on such progress. 
Mr. Meacher: Since no information has yet been supplied, the Secretary of State has no information on whether targets have been met. The circumstances under which progress made towards meeting the targets set for a facility is to be taken as being satisfactory are set out in clauses 7.2 to 7.6 of the umbrella agreements. The Secretary of State does not intend to hold public consultations in advance of making decisions as to whether the requirements of those clauses have been satisfied.
Mr. Meacher [holding answer 27 November 2002]: Under clause 6.5 of the umbrella agreements, sector associations are not required to submit information specified in Schedule 3 for the first target period until 31
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January 2003, extended by agreement to 17 February. The Secretary of State has no information at present on whether targets have been met.
Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) which sector associations and operators have served a notice on her under climate change levy agreements in response to a notice served by her relating to variations to sector targets she proposes should be made, and on what dates; and if she will place copies of each such notice in the Library; 
(3) what notices she has served on sector associations and operators relating to variations to sector targets under climate change levy agreements she proposes should be made, and on what dates; and if she will place copies of each such notice in the Library; 
(4) what agreements have been made between her and sector associations under climate change levy umbrella agreements on a variation of sector targets, and on what date; and if she will place copies of each such agreement in the Library. 
Mr. Meacher [holding answer 27 November 2002]: The procedure for varying sector targets as provided for in Schedule 6 to the umbrella agreements is triggered by the submission of information as required under Schedule 3 to the agreements. Since no data have yet been supplied, no notices relating to the variation of sector targets have yet been served, and therefore, there have been no agreements or disputes concerning failure to reach agreement.
Mr. Gerry Steinberg: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will estimate the proportion of her administration budget in the current financial year which is allocated to matters formerly within the responsibility of the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food. 
Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will place in the Library a copy of the agreements reached between her predecessor and the largest 10 energy using sectors in December 1999 relating to the climate change levy. 
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agreement on a Memorandum of Understanding with each of the 10 largest energy using sectors relating to the climate change levy. These were not published. These have been replaced by Climate Change Agreements with the sector associations, and copies of each of these agreements have been placed in the Library.
Mr. Meacher [holding answer 27 November 2002]: Information about the overall state of play on FTSE 350 companies' progress in reporting their environmental performance, was placed in the Library in July this year. The reports which companies produce are publicly available in various formatsfor example, as free-standing documents, or contained within annual reports and accounts, or on corporate web-tes. Requests for up-to-date information and documentation should be made direct to the companies concerned.
Mr. Lidington: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how frequently her Department checks the number and visibility of signs at ports and airports warning against the import of meat. 
Margaret Beckett: New posters were produced and displayed in February. During the summer we conducted one general exercise to assess the number and visibility of the posters. Since then we have conducted a number of follow-up reviews of sites where posters were allegedly not displayed. Priority is given to checking those ports and airports which handle the greatest number of international passengers.
A further review will be initiated when the penalty posters and information leaflets are redesigned to reflect the new EU rules restricting imports of meat and dairy products from outside the EU from January 2003.
Mr. Lidington: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what plans she has to amend the law on the penalties available to the courts for the illegal import of meat and meat products. 
Margaret Beckett: The Products of Animal Origin (Third Country Imports) (England) Regulations 2002 already allow for a penalty of a £5000 fine per offence and/or three months imprisonment on summary conviction or an unlimited fine and/or up to two years imprisonment on conviction on indictment.
The Government's Action Plan commitment on deterrence will be reviewed taking into account the results of the risk assessment that the Government have commissioned into the risk of disease in imported meat affecting livestock. This review may include the introduction of fixed penalty notices.
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Alun Michael: It is difficult to provide figures in precisely the form requested, since some staff in Government Offices will be undertaking DEFRA related work while other DEFRA staff may have applied for and been appointed to posts not related to DEFRA activities but would be identified as having DEFRA as their Xparent Department". That explains the number of staff in the Government Office for London and the high number in the East of England. The only Government Office with any significant agricultural structural funds work is the Government Office for the South West where they administer the objective 1 agriculture programme in Cornwall. This explains the high number of staff in the South West.
|East of England||24|
|Yorkshire and Humberside||8|
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An action group met on 22 August to discuss how we can utilise amnesty bins in our bid to reduce the risk of disease entering the country through illegal imports of meat, fish, plants and their products. Work will be taken forward in the light of my statement to the House on 6 November, that the lead responsibility for anti-smuggling measures will be transferred to Her Majesty's Customs and Excise.
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