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14 Jan 2004 : Column 730Wcontinued
Dr. Whitehead: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs when she expects to publish the results of her Department's investigation of the feasibility of variable charging for domestic waste collection. 
Mr. Morley: In its response to the Strategy Unit report, "Waste Not, Want Not", the Government undertook to carry out further work before a decision is taken on whether to enable local authorities to implement direct or variable charging for waste. This work, which is looking at the practicalities of operating schemes, how potential disadvantages could be overcome and is analysing international experience of such schemes, is under way. The Government will consider the results of this work during 2004.
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Dr. Gibson: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the outcome was of the Environmental Council on 22 December 2003; what the Government's stance was on the discussion on the EU Chemical Regulation; and if she will make a statement. 
The Council adopted a Regulation establishing a transitional points system applicable to heavy goods vehicles travelling through Austria for 2004 (known as 'Ecopoints'), a matter previously dealt with by Transport ministers. Agreement had been reached between the Council and the European Parliament through the conciliation process, but there was a discussion in Council as Austria was unable to support the outcome. Council approved the result of the conciliation committee, with Austria voting against.
We held a short discussion on the proposed revision of the Directive on the management of bathing water. A compromise text prepared by the Presidency was unacceptable to the Commission and to a number of member states, including Germany, Greece and Spain, who believed it would produce an insufficiently demanding new Directive. The Secretary of State made it clear that the UK would be unable to agree to the legally binding targets to be reached by 2015, on which the Commission wished to insist. It was evident that there was no realistic prospect of reaching political agreement at this meeting, and the Italian Presidency decided to leave further negotiations to the forthcoming Irish Presidency.
We debated the Commission's proposals concerning the Kyoto Protocol's project mechanisms in relation to the EU scheme for greenhouse gas emissions trading. Ministers expressed their views on a number of questions posed by the Presidency. Most supported early linking to the Clean Development Mechanism, although views were divided on whether such linking could be made available prior to the Kyoto Protocol coming into force. There was also a range of views on the question of qualitative standards for projects, and on the use of sinks. The Secretary of State spoke in support of quantitative limits on the use of credits.
We agreed three sets of Council Conclusions: supporting the preparation of an EU strategy to reduce atmospheric emissions from seagoing ships; agreeing the EU's position for the 7th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Biodiversity, to be held in Kuala Lumpur in February; and noting the Commission's 2003 environment policy review.
The Commission presented its recently-published proposal for a Regulation on the registration, evaluation and authorisation of chemicals ('REACH'), urging the Council to make rapid progress and to maintain the integrity of the Commission's proposal. There were comments from several member states concerning the significance of this dossier, and the need for appropriate input from both the Environment and Competitiveness formations of the Council. Ireland
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confirmed that this dossier would be a priority during their Presidency, and that they would continue to involve both industry and environment ministers. There was no UK intervention.
There was an exchange of views on the Commission's proposal for a Regulation to extend the Financial Instrument for the Environment (LIFE) until 2006. Portugal, Spain, Finland, France, Greece and Poland all expressed support for early agreement, and a wish to see LIFE continue beyond 2006. Germany and Sweden were also supportive but emphasised the need for the extension to take place within the existing financial perspective.
Over lunch we discussed the outcome of the 9th Conference of the Parties to the Convention on Climate Change, and heard from Borge Brende, the Norwegian environment minister, who is to chair the 12th session of the UN Commission on Sustainable Development (CSD12) in April. He informed the ministers present that he has asked the Secretary of State to chair the UNECE Regional Implementation Forum in Geneva on 1516 January, which will help prepare for CSD12.
Mr. Bradshaw: The type of trawl used for survey work varies according to target species and area. In the fisheries of interest to UK fishermen, the main trawls used for surveying bottom living fish are the GOV and the beam trawl.
The GOV is a general purpose bottom trawl with a high headline and is used for scientific surveys where the target species are the main commercially important whitefish including cod, haddock, whiting, pout and saithe. The net also samples some of the main shoaling or pelagic species including herring and mackerel. The design and operation of the GOV trawl is co-ordinated by the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea, and all countries involved in the International Bottom Trawl surveys in the North Sea use the GOV trawl with an internationally-agreed specification. In addition to the North Sea, the GOV is used in surveys in the west of Scotland and the eastern English Channel, and has recently been adopted as the main trawl for surveys in the Irish Sea and Celtic Sea.
For flatfish species such as plaice and sole, the main gear used is the beam trawl. Scientific surveys in the North Sea, eastern and western English Channel, the Irish Sea and Bristol Channel are again co-ordinated through ICES. The survey trawls are based on the beam trawls used commercially but vary slightly in size and specification between areas.
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Mr. Whittingdale: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether the Government will pay transitional aid to fishing vessels in England adversely affected by effort controls resulting from the Cod Recovery Programme on the same basis as proposed for fishing vessels in Scotland and Northern Ireland. 
Mr. Morley [holding answer 8 January 2004]: As you know Defra approved the Environment Agency's proposed Silk Stream flood defence scheme in March 2003, subject to satisfactory resolution of negotiations with landowners. I understand that design and land negotiations are proceeding largely to plan, although having to deal with a variety of estates departments has resulted in some delay.
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Mr. Morley: Draft new Hazardous Waste Regulations will be published when Defra goes out to consultation on the Regulations in early 2004. After a 12 week consultation period, new Regulations should be laid before Parliament in spring 2004.
Sue Doughty: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what mass of hazardous waste was produced in the UK for each of the last five years, broken down by category of hazardous waste. 
Mr. Morley: The Environment Agency has provided the following data for England and Wales to show types of hazardous waste produced each year broken down by European Waste Catalogue (EWC) category. The Environment Agency moved from financial year to calendar year reporting in 2000, and only data for complete years is shown.
|EWC Code||Broad Category||199899||2000||2001||2002|
|01||Wastes from Mining and Minerals||13||13||7||9|
|02||Waste from Agricultural and Food Production||6||9||6||4|
|03||Wastes from Wood and Paper Production||3||7||5||3|
|04||Wastes from Leather and Textile Production||2||3||3||4|
|05||Wastes from Petrol, Gas and Coal Refining/ Treatment||259||88||126||68|
|06||Wastes from Inorganic Chemical Processes||366||295||225||224|
|07||Wastes from Organic Chemical Processes||573||591||613||593|
|08||Wastes from Manufacture, Formulation, Supply and Use of Paints, Varnish, Adhesive and Inks||145||141||132||115|
|09||Wastes from the Photographic Industry||13||22||42||40|
|10||Wastes from Thermal Processes (inorganic)||113||176||215||191|
|11||Wastes from Metal Treatment and Coating Processes||146||120||127||115|
|12||Wastes from Shaping/Treatment of Metals and Plastics||151||96||96||94|
|15||Waste Packaging, Cloths, Filter Materials||48||65||69||52|
|16||Wastes Not Otherwise Specified||484||753||584||672|
|17||Construction and Demolition Wastes and Asbestos||1,008||1,064||1,385||1,243|
|18||Waste from Healthcare||17||17||21||20|
|19||Wastes from Waste/Water Treatment and Water Industry||235||306||278||346|
|20||Municipal arid Similar Commercial Wastes||86||129||49||98|
|Total all classes||4,910||5,196||5,213||5,058|
Sue Doughty: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will list the hazardous waste landfill sites identified by the Environment Agency that will remain as hazardous waste landfills following reclassification in July 2004; if she will identify for each site the types of hazardous waste that the site can dispose of; and whether each site is for private use. 
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Mr. Morley: The information requested, as at 16 December 2003 is set out in a table which has been placed in the Library. Under the new regulations, former sites can continue to accept hazardous waste if it is contained within a separate disposal cell. This is likely to lead to additional sites as well as these dedicated sites.
Mr. Swayne: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment has been made of (a) the lead content in glass television screens and (b) lead glass in crystal for household use, with respect to the disposal of hazardous waste; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Morley: A draft study currently being finalised for Defra shows that lead oxide accounts for approximately 9 per cent. by mass of the cathode ray tube in television sets with screens of 19 inches and over. Lead bound up within the glass of the cathode ray tube does not leach very readily. No formal assessment of lead glass in crystal for household use has been carried out as such material when discarded is not on the hazardous waste list.
Mr. Morley: The decision to delay the implementation of the landfill allowance trading scheme until 2005 which was announced by the Minister of State for Local and Regional Government on 19 November 2003, was made as part of Defra's contribution to helping to reduce spending pressures on local government in 200405. We expect local authorities to be able to save up to £10 million as a result. (On 6 January 2004 we announced that Defra will also provide a targeted grant of £20 million to local authorities in 200405 to help address the spending pressures arising from their statutory recycling targets).
The decision reflects the views of local authorities which we received through our consultation on the implementation of the landfill allowance trading scheme, that they needed more time to prepare for this new scheme which is a significant departure from their normal operations. The delay in starting the scheme will mean that waste disposal authorities will have to make steeper annual reductions in the amount of biodegradable waste they landfill in order to meet the first target year of 2010 but they will have more time to plan how to do this.
Mr. Bill O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment she has made of the impact of delaying the introduction of the landfill allowance trading scheme on achieving the UK's compliance with the landfill directive; and if she will make a statement. 
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in 2010, 2013 and 2020. The delay is intended to give local authorities more time to decide how, and over what time period, to invest in alternative waste management options to landfill.
Sue Doughty: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) whether her Department has received requests from waste disposal authorities for the start of the landfill allowance trading scheme to be delayed; 
Mr. Morley [holding answer 9 December 2003]:Yes. During regional consultation meetings on the implementation of theLandfill Allowance Trading Scheme held in September 2003, local authorities commented that they would find it difficult to operate the scheme in 200405. This view has been reinforced by the written responses to the consultation that have been analysed to date. Local Authorities generally feel that they need more time to prepare for a trading scheme that is a completely new departure from their normal operations. It has already been announced that the start date will be delayed by one year.
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