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Mr. Hollobone: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will review the local wholesaling arrangements by publishers for the supply and distribution of newspapers and magazines. 
Mr. Sutcliffe [holding answer 24 October 2005]: None. Following a request from members of the publishing industry, the Office of Fair Trading (OFT) is considering the compatibility with competition law of distribution arrangements for newspapers and magazines, including the issue of wholesalers being allocated exclusive geographical distribution territories. The OFT published a provisional opinion on this matter on 19 May 2005 and has since received further representations from across the newspaper and magazine supply chain. The new chief executive of the OFT, John Fingleton, is taking a fresh look at the opinion.
Peter Law: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will list the nuclear installations in the United Kingdom where nuclear materials accounting operates on a near real time basis. 
Malcolm Wicks: Nuclear materials accountancy is used at UK nuclear sites to help meet statutory domestic regulations and international safeguards requirements. International safeguards requirements include the timely detection of diversion of civil nuclear material. This timeliness is a function of material type and form. Some nuclear installations therefore operate near real time materials accountancy" to meet this safeguards requirement. Such accountancy systems are not designed for process control and are distinct from systems for monitoring the safety and security at the installation. Parts of the Sellafield MOX Plant (SMP) and THORP reprocessing plant at Sellafield operate near real time materials accountancy".
Malcolm Wicks: None. The Government have stated that before any decision to proceed with the building of new nuclear power stations, there would need to be the fullest public consultation and the publication of a White Paper setting out the Government's proposals.
Norman Lamb: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry whether he plans to publish a White Paper setting out the Government's proposals on whether to build new nuclear power stations. 
Malcolm Wicks: My right hon. Friend the Prime Minister recently announced that the Government would bring forward proposals on energy policy next year. The analysis of options will include an assessment of civil nuclear power.
The Government have stated that before any decision to proceed with the building of new nuclear power stations, there would need to be the fullest public consultation and the publication of a White Paper setting out the Government's proposals.
Malcolm Wicks: I have issued no guidance. Location is a matter for the developer to consider and substantiate in putting forward his application. That application will be considered against the environmental implications of the location chosen.
Mr. Hollobone: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry when he expects the Office of Fair Trading to rule on the suitability and fairness of the standard contract offered by Post Office Ltd. to members of the Association of Convenience Stores; and if he will make a statement. 
John Hemming: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what assessment has been made of the possible implications for the operation of medical equipment of a cut in mains voltage during a one in 50 cold winter. 
In NHS hospitals, where the supply voltage falls to a value likely to give rise to danger or equipment failure, then automatic systems disconnect the network supply and revert to a stand-by generator supply until the network is restored to a sustained normal value.
Mr. Hollobone: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry whether he plans to implement (a) the method of determination and (b) the level of charging by local authorities for property searches in response to the conclusions of the Office of Fair Trading report into property searches published in September. 
Mr. Sutcliffe: The Government are considering the recommendations made by the Office of Fair Trading in their market study on property searches. We welcome the publication of this report and are discussing the recommendation with stakeholders. The response will be published within 90 days of the publication date of the report.
|Higher Level Waste (HLW)||764|
|Intermediate Level Waste (ILW)||74,466|
|Low Level Waste (LLW)||15,674|
Malcolm Wicks: Biomass to hydrogen has been identified as one of six hydrogen energy chains, which could offer cost-competitive CO 2 reductions and increased energy security for the UK by 2030. Further details are in the Strategic Framework for Hydrogen Energy in the UK (http://www.dti.gov.uk/energy/sepn/hydrogen_framework_full.pdf). My Department is currently developing a £15 million demonstration programme for hydrogen and fuel cells and we are committed to establishing a Hydrogen Coordination Unit.
A £312,000 grant has recently been offered to the PERA Group to support a £596,000 project to develop a process for the production of hydrogen from biomass and wastes using supercritical water gasification.
Prior to this, the DTI commissioned a study from Imperial College to assess the options for the production of transport fuels from renewable sources. This study included hydrogen production from biomass. The final report from this work is available on the DTI website (http://www.dti.gov.uk) URN 03/982.
Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how much has been spent (a) within the EU and (b) within the UK on (i) nuclear fusion and fission research and (ii) renewable energy research in each year from 1980 to date. 
Malcolm Wicks: It has not been possible to collate all public expenditure and other Government support since 1980 for energy technologies in the time available at proportionate cost. However it is possible to detail direct DTI and Research Council expenditure on new and renewables, clean fossil fuels and nuclear for the years 1990 onwards. These are set out in the following tables.
In addition to this both DEFRA and the Scottish Executive provide funding to the Carbon Trust which conducts research into low carbon energy activities among other activities. DEFRA also funds research into combined heat and power, which is also detailed in the following tables.
|Rounded to nearest £000|
|GeothermalHot Dry Rocks||2,579,000||1,567,000||1,088,000||989,000||245,000||0||0||0|
|GeothermalHot Dry Rocks||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||6,468,000|
|Biomass (DTI and Lottery spend)||||10,000||1,913,000||1,923,000|
|Offshore Wind Capital Grants||||0||15,000,000||15,000,000|
|Clear Skies Community Renewables||200,000||1,387,000||2,413,000||3,800,000|
|Major PV Demo Programme||960,000||2,880,000||6,450,000||9,330,000|
|CO 2 sequestration||0||0||0||22,544||41,589|
|Wave and tidal||0||157,000||175,000||300,599||605,693|
|Energy Efficiency and Low Carbon Innovation||1,732,072||1,854,776||1,693,629||1,400,400||1,671,465|
|Other and General||0||13,000||303,000||670,000||602,000|
|CO 2 sequestration||77,787||30,323||42,461||214,704|
|Wave and tidal||616,694||830,226||1,050,253||3,735,465|
|Energy Efficiency and Low Carbon Innovation||1,979,554||1,211,881||2,914,276||14,458,053|
|Other and General||665,000||762,000||1,944,000||4,959,000|
Norman Lamb: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how much his Department spent on research into renewable energy technologies in (a) 2005 and (b) each of the previous five years. 
|rounded to nearest £000|
|Geothermalhot dry rocks||0||0||0||0||0||0||0|
|DTI capital grant programmes||200203||20034||20045||Total|
|Biomass (DTI and lottery spend)||||10,000||1,913,000||1,923,000|
|Offshore wind capital grants||||0||15,000,000||15,000,000|
|Clear skies community renewables||200,000||1,387,000||2,413,000||3,800,000|
|Major PV demo programme||960,000||2,880,000||6,450,000||9,330,000|
Malcolm Wicks: The Government's main support mechanism for renewables is the Renewables Obligation (RO), which was introduced in April 2002. It is a market-based mechanism, designed primarily to support technologies that are close to the market and it will remain in place until 2027. Electricity supply companies are required to source an increasing percentage of their electricity sales from eligible renewable sources. The obligation for 200506 is 5.5 per cent. rising to 15.4 per cent. by 2015. The Government have also allocated around £500 million of support for research, development and demonstration into renewable technologies between 200208.
Industry-led collaborative R and D delivered through the Technology Programme. Renewable technologies have featured in all calls since the programme's inception, though technologies supported in each call are prioritised by the independent Technology Strategy Board. The programme will support a range of projects in renewables in 2006.
The DTI has extended the Major Photovoltaics Demonstration Programme (PV MDP) with £31 million worth of capital grants available from 2002 to 2006. Continued support for PV will be directed through the low carbon buildings programme due to be implemented in financial year 200607. The programme is currently under development after consultation.
Extended Major Photovoltaics Demonstration Programme (PV MDP) with £31 million worth of capital grants available from 2002 to 2006. Continued support for PV will be directed through the low carbon buildings programme due to be implemented in financial year 200607. The programme is currently under development after consultation.
Ministerial initiatives to encourage UK and foreign companies to invest in PV cell, module and system component manufacture in the UK, resulting in Romag and Sharp announcements in October 2003, and launch of integrated products such as the Marley Solar Tile and Solar Century's C21 PV root tile.
The DTI funded Clear Skies Programme provides grants for householders and community/not-for-profit organisations for the installation of solar hot water heating systems, www.clear-skies.org. This programme was extended to run until March 2006 and will also be superseded by the new low carbon buildings programme.
Mr. Jenkin: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry if he will list the (a) grants and (b) amounts available for the installation of domestic (i) solar-thermal panels, (ii) photovoltaics, (iii) wind micro-generators and (iv) other small-scale greenhouse gas emission-saving devices; and what grants have been available in each of the past five years. 
Malcolm Wicks: For the installation of domestic scale photovoltaics, grants have been available since 2002 under the DTI's Photovoltaics Demonstration Programme, for up to 50 per cent. of installation costs up to a maximum installation of 5kw. www.solarpvgrants.co.uk. The following caps for cost per kWp installed were introduced during the programme:
|From June 2003:|
|From 19 July 2004:|
|From 1 March 2005:|
The most recent call for proposals under the Technology Programme was in April 2005 when a total of eight proposals for wave technology research were received and evaluated. Wave technology will also be a priority area in the next call of the Technology Programme.
Mr. Pelling: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what the projected maximum practicable percentage contribution is to United Kingdom's energy needs that can be provided by wind farms. 
Malcolm Wicks: The UK has among the very best wind resources in Europe. Our view is that wind, both onshore and offshore, could easily contribute more that 10 per cent. of our electricity needs. Work undertaken by NGC indicates that 10 per cent. wind could be accommodated on the UK's transmission system with little additional cost or difficulty. Beyond that, NGC's work also indicates that 20 per cent. wind could be manageable. A view that is reinforced by experience in Denmark where wind already contributes more than 20 per cent. of electricity generation.
However, our renewable policies remain technology neutral. Our aspiration is to supply 20 per cent. of electricity needs from renewable sources by 2020. By that time we would expect other renewable technologies,
25 Oct 2005 : Column 305W
such as biomass and wave and tidal, to come to the fore particularly as the balancing and wider system costs associated with wind are likely to increase as connected wind generation is increased.
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