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13 Mar 2003 : Column 374W—continued

Non-Bovine Carcases

Mr. Oaten: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what plans he has to support farmers with the cost of collection of non-bovine animal carcases from 1 April. [101768]

Mr. Morley [holding answer 7 March 2003]: The Government are already voluntarily contributing nearly £30 million annually for the collection and disposal of fallen stock for TSE testing purposes. The Government have been discussing with the livestock industry how we can build on the arrangements that are already in place to develop a wider service for collecting fallen stock when the new animal by-products regulation banning burial comes into force from 1 May. Any further progress is dependent upon the willingness of the livestock industry to make a financial contribution to a national scheme.


Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many pesticides are (a) approved for use in the UK, (b) approved for use in the UK but not for use in the European Union and (c) manufactured in the UK and approved for use in third countries but not in the UK or the EU; and when each was approved for use in (i) the UK, (ii) the EU and (iii) third countries. [101270]

Mr. Morley: At present there are approvals for 4,112 individual pesticide products in the UK. The number of active substances for which there are one or more approved products is currently 336.

There are two active substances that are approved for agricultural use in the UK but not for use in other member states. Differences in approvals between countries can arise because different approval conditions are applied or because commercial approvals are not sought in all countries. A spreadsheet (named the 'Indicative list') giving details of pesticides approved in each member state can be found on the Commission's website at: ps/pro/eva/existinq/index en.htm

The Government do not hold this information, as the UK's pesticide legislation does not extend to the manufacture of pesticides or to those pesticides intended solely for exportation from the UK. Neither do the Government have information on the details of pesticides approved for use in the third countries or information on when each pesticide was approved for use in the EU and third countries. Within the UK pesticides have been approved for use under the Control of Pesticides Regulations (COPR) since October 1986.

Raptor Protection

Mr. Dismore: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what plans she has to deregulate raptor protection. [99616]

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Mr. Morley: There are no plans to deregulate raptor protection. All wild birds, including raptors are protected under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981. However, I recognise the problems presented by birds of prey to game bird managers and pigeon fanciers, and believe the recommendations from the Raptor Working Group's final report, published in 2000, will provide an integrated solution to the problems presented by birds of prey in these particular sectors.

Work is already being taken forward by the country conservation agencies, and other organisations, and includes research in Scotland examining levels of pigeon predation, at lofts and release sites and during races, and testing the feasibility of using radio tags to follow pigeons when training or racing. I look forward to hearing the results. In addition, English Nature has signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Moorland Association on addressing the issue of raptor predation in the uplands.

Implementation of the Working Group's report's recommendations in Scotland and Wales is of course a matter for the devolved Administrations. Nevertheless, I have asked the Joint Nature Conservation Committee to report generally on progress.

Copies of the Raptor Working Group report are available from the Library of the House.

Regional Government

Mr. Edward Davey: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the administrative cost of the Countryside Agency to each Government Office of the Region was in (a) 1999–2000, (b) 2000–01, (c) 2001–02 and (d) 2002–03. [103016]

Alun Michael: The Countryside Agency is a Non-Departmental Public Body funded directly by Defra and it does not impose any costs on the Government Offices.


Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs pursuant to her Written Ministerial Statement on 3 March 2003, Official Report, column 71WS, how much additional money she will be spending on future research work into the ruddy and white-headed duck populations. [101381]

Mr. Morley [holding answer 10 March 2003]: The Department has completed the ruddy duck control trial and will spend an additional £100,000 this financial year on research work into refining control methods for the ruddy duck. Further research will be undertaken in 2003–04. Final decisions have not yet been taken on the allocation of the research budget, but the expected expenditure is around £250,000. We also propose to participate in a white-headed duck workshop to be held later this year in Morocco. The workshop will consider various control methods used on ruddy ducks throughout Europe and North Africa.

Illegal Meat Imports

Tim Loughton: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many sniffer dogs are being used to detect illegal meat imports at UK airports and ports; and where they are used. [102157]

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Mr. Morley: We are running a six-month pilot with two detector dogs, based at Heathrow airport. They are working in baggage, cargo and mail areas, and have been tested in a number of locations.

Noise Mapping Project

Sue Doughty: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether the national noise mapping project, launched on 12 December 2002, will include the regular sounding of horns by trains at particular points on rail lines. [102530]

Alun Michael: The information being collected for the noise mapping project considers the level of noise on the basis of the 16 hour day, 4 hour evening and 8 hour night period, when averaged over a year.

The initial stage of the project does not consider short-term noise events such as the regular sounding of horns by trains.

Train drivers are required to sound their horns at level crossings and on the approaches to tunnels to give extra warning of the approach of trains to those who may wish to cross or are working on the track. This is done on the grounds of safety.


Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what plans she has to increase plantation of trees to boost the supply of wood available as fuel in the UK; and if she will make a statement. [101291]

Mr. Morley: Forestry is a devolved matter, and the policies for tree planting in Scotland and Wales are therefore the responsibility of the Scottish Executive and the Welsh Assembly Government respectively.

We are committed to increasing the use of renewable energy. This includes the use of woodfuel from both traditional woodland and short rotation coppice. There is already considerable scope for increased sustainable harvesting for woodfuel in existing woodland in England, and we also expect the area of woodland to continue to increase at its current rate of around 5,000 hectares per year. Support for woodland creation is provided by the Woodland Grant Scheme and Farm Woodland Premium Scheme, while the Energy Crops Scheme offers financial incentives for the establishment of short rotation coppice as woodfuel. A review of the support for woodland creation has been carried out, and the results will be published in the spring.

Turkey Meat

Mr. Todd: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what research her Department has commissioned in the last two years into the UK turkey meat market. [101570]

Mr. Morley: None. However, digests summarising technical research in the poultry sector were published by ADAS in November 2001 and April 2002. The aim of the review was to publish poultry research findings of interest to the poultry industry. The reports cover turkey production, marketing, nutrition, welfare and

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meat quality, and are available on the Defra website at:

Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive

Mr. Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what representations she has received regarding the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Directive. [101975]

Mr. Meacher: We have received representations from numerous stakeholders including local authorities, dismantlers, retailers, manufacturers and small businesses.

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