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5 Jul 2005 : Column 250W—continued

Foot and Mouth

Mr. Hayes: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will list occasions referred to in Commission Decision 2005/436/EC, OJL151 of 14 June, where EU states were supported by the EU in emergency foot and mouth vaccination campaigns; what the cost was; what funding procedures were used; whether such procedures remain in place; what happened to stock following vaccination; and whether this facility was available to the UK during 2001. [8984]

Mr. Bradshaw: Decision 2005/436/EC concerns the operation and European Community contributions to a Trust Fund established by the European Commission for the Control of Foot and Mouth Disease (EUFMD) aimed at emergency measures to be carried out in the Balkans, the main route of entry of FMD into Europe. EUFMD was founded under the auspices of the Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations. It has over 30 member countries some of which are member states of the European Community; some are not.

The Trust Fund has been used to support foot and mouth disease emergency vaccination campaigns in Turkey and in Transcaucasia thereby protecting areas at risk within the European Community. No member state of the European Community has received funds from the Trust Fund to support foot and mouth disease emergency vaccination campaigns and this facility was not available to the UK in 2001.


Mr. Hollobone: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how much central government financial support has been made available for private sector forestry in the East midlands region in the last 10 years; and whether her Department plans to change the allocation. [8915]

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Jim Knight: With the introduction of the Forestry Commission's English Woodland Grant Scheme later this month we will, for the first time, be allocating forestry grant funding on a regional basis. Grants under the previous Woodland Grant Scheme were funded on a national basis. The following table gives details of payments in the East midlands for each year for the last 10 years.
Forestry commission grant scheme payments

Financial year£000

(2)This figure includes estimated payments of £133,000 that were made against old grant schemes and which are not recorded on the current financial management systems.

The allocation of funds for the current financial year is £2.0 million. This is for payments due under grant schemes agreed in previous years and for new applications that will be approved this year. Future years funding will depend on national and regional priorities.

In addition much of the National Forest lies within the east midlands region. Payments under their tender scheme, which is principally funded by DEFRA, are given in the following table. This excludes the woodland grant scheme element of the scheme, which is included in the above table.
National forest company tender scheme payments

Financial year£000

There are no plans to change the funding allocated to the National Forest in the current spending review period.

Mr. Hollobone: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will increase the level of maintenance grant available for tree planting schemes. [8914]

Jim Knight: The woodland creation element of the Forestry Commission's new English Woodland Grant Scheme, which will open for applications later this month, has payment rates that are broadly comparable to those available under the previous Woodland Grant Scheme.
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The woodland creation grant provides a contribution to both the cost of woodland establishment and for maintenance in the 10 years following planting. There are no plans to change the rate of grant. However, changes may need to be made to the rate payable from 2007 onwards in order to reflect any requirements of the new Rural Development Regulation.

GM Crops (EU Environment Council)

Mr. Llwyd: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will publish the full text of contributions made by UK representatives in the EU Council of Ministers discussion on 24 June on genetically modified crops and food. [9181]

Mr. Morley: At the Environment Council the Presidency asked member states to intervene only if their voting position on the GM proposals had changed. The UK had not changed its voting position (either on the question of whether to approve the GMO MON 863, or on the dossiers relating to other member states' safeguard actions) so no intervention was necessary.

International Whaling Commission

Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will list countries eligible to vote at the International Whaling Conference in South Korea. [6824]

Mr. Bradshaw: Nine new members joined at this year's International Whaling Commission meeting, held in Ulsan, South Korea in June, bringing the total number of members to 66. However, Belize, Costa Rica, Kenya and Peru lack voting rights. Thus of the 66 member nations, only 62 contracting member governments were eligible to vote at the meeting.

These countries were Antigua and Barbuda, Argentina, Australia, Austria, Belgium, Benin, Brazil, Cameroon, Chile, People's Republic of China, Cote d'Ivoire, Czech Republic, Denmark, Dominica, Finland, France, Gabon, Gambia, Germany, Grenada, Guinea, Hungary, Iceland, India, Ireland, Italy, Japan, Kiribati, Republic of Korea, Luxembourg, Mali, Mauritania, Mexico, Monaco, Mongolia, Morocco, Nauru, Netherlands, New Zealand, Nicaragua, Norway, Oman, Republic of Palau, Panama, Portugal, Russian Federation, San Marino, St. Kitts and Nevis, St. Lucia, St. Vincent & The Grenadines, Senegal, Slovak Republic, Solomon Islands, South Africa, Spain, Surinam, Sweden, Switzerland, Togo, Tuvalu, UK, and the USA.

Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will make a statement on the latest meeting of the International Whaling Commission; and what the Government's position is on the hunting of whales. [7659]

Mr. Bradshaw: The latest meeting of the International Whaling Commission (IWC) was a successful meeting for the UK. All key UK objectives were achieved, most notably: retention of the moratorium on commercial whaling and the Southern Ocean Sanctuary; rejection of secret ballots; adoption of a Resolution, criticising Japan's plans to significantly increase its scientific
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whaling programme; and agreement by consensus to hold a Workshop on Whale Killing Methods and Associated Issues.

The UK is opposed to whaling and strongly supports the current IWC moratorium on commercial whaling. We do not believe there is any justification for whaling apart from some limited subsistence whaling by indigenous people. We believe that whaling does not serve any genuine need and involves unacceptable cruelty.

Nuclear Waste

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs pursuant to her answer of 22 June 2005, to the hon. Member for Lewes (Norman Baker), Official Report, column 1040W, what proportion of the waste relates to the Ministry of Defence. [9103]

Mr. Morley: The proportion of the wastes which relate to the Ministry of Defence is between 2 and 3 per cent. The figures are deduced from the 2001 UK Radioactive Waste Inventory. The 2004 inventory should be published this autumn.

Parish Councils

Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether the grant scheme available for parish councils to conduct consultation about parish plans extends to village residents associations in areas where there is no parish council. [8625]

Jim Knight: It is possible for parish plan grants funded by DEFRA to support the development of community plans in parts of the country where there is no parish council. Responsibility for administering the grant scheme now rests with individual Rural Community Councils.

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