|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
The recent European Court of Justice ruling turned down an application by Austria for a derogation from Directive 2001/18/EC to declare the region of Upper Austria a GM-free zone. The court's ruling was based on the fact that the Austrian Government failed to prove that the region of Upper Austria had a unique ecosystem which might justify a
8 Nov 2005 : Column 321W
specific local risk assessment. Under existing EU law, in order to declare a GM-free zone, that is a region where GM crops cannot be cultivated, a member state has to prove that there are special reasons to introduce national measures.
Under current EU law, as agreed by EU member states, the only legitimate grounds for narrowing the geographical scope of an approval to prevent cultivation in a defined zone are the production of clear evidence that the GM crop involved poses a particular risk to the specific area in question. In the Austrian case, the European Court of Justice found that Austria had not demonstrated the existence of any such risks to the region of Upper Austria.
Mr. Morley: The separation distances between GM and non-GM crops used in the Farm Scale Evaluations were based on information from the National Institute of Agricultural Botany (NIAB) in 2000. We have commissioned a further report from NIAB on separation distances to inform the proposals we are developing on the co-existence of GM and non-GM crops. We will issue a consultation paper on this in due course.
Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the emissions of the Kyoto basket of gases will be between 2008 and 2012 if the trend in emissions of the last (a) five years, (b) four years, (c) three years, (d) two years and (e) one year continue; and whether the Kyoto target would be met under each projection. 
The following table shows projected UK greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions and percentage reductions during the commitment period obtained by assuming that the linear trend in emissions of the last (a) five years, (b) four years, (c) three years, (d) two years and (e) one year continue, based on the most recent published UK Greenhouse Gas Inventory data, which cover the period 1990 to 2003. The table indicates that the UK will exceed the reduction target in each projection except for case (e) where one year's difference in emissions is used to indicate the trend. Case (e) is the least robust projection as it is most susceptible to interannual variability due to fuel price relativities, external temperatures and other effects. On the basis of projections provided to the European Union in June, we expect to exceed the Kyoto commitment by about 8 percentage points, and the review of the UK Climate
8 Nov 2005 : Column 322W
Change Programme currently is assessing the actions needed to put the UK back on course to meet our domestic target of achieving a 20 per cent. reduction in carbon dioxide emissions by 2010, which would further increase the safety margin.
on trend back
Average UK GHG emission 200812 (MtC)
|Reduction from Kyoto protocol base year emissions (percentage)|
|(a) 5 years||163.5||-20.3|
|(b) 4 years||176.1||-14.2|
|(c) 3 years||176.5||-14.0|
|(d) 2 years||164.9||-19.6|
|(e) 1 year||190.9||-7.0|
Mr. Gibb: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what proportion of new recruits to her Department do not have a level 2 qualification in English and mathematics. 
Jim Knight: This information is not available. This is because Defra introduced a competence based recruitment and selection system in October 2003. Competences are individual abilities or characteristics that are key to effectiveness in work and do not rely on educational qualifications. New recruits to Defra to grades below the senior civil service will have demonstrated the particular skills and behaviours at the level required for the vacancy for which they applied. For specialist posts such as scientists, lawyers, vets and statisticians, candidates are also asked to provide further detail of their technical knowledge (including qualifications) and expertise for the posts.
Mr. Gibb: To ask the Secretary of State for 0Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what methods of assessment of (a) literacy and (b) numeracy skills are used as part of the recruitment process by employees of her Department. 
Jim Knight: Since October 2003 Defra has operated competence based recruitment and selection processes. Competences are individual abilities or characteristics that are key to effectiveness in work. The aim is to obtain precise and verifiable information about when candidates have displayed the particular behaviours at the level required for the vacancy. This is achieved generally through a structured competence based application form and assessment through interview and, where appropriate, assessment centre exercises.
Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many non-food crops are grown in England; and what the percentage produced of each sort was (a) by value and (b) by volume in 200405. 
In 2004, at least 11 crops were grown in England for non-food and energy use. The contribution of each of these in terms of production area and value is shown in the following table. Our best estimate of n on-food crop production area in 2004 is approximately 115,000 hectares, 40 per cent. of this area was represented by non-food crop production on set-aside land.
8 Nov 2005 : Column 323W
These figures do not necessarily give the whole picture: a number of crops can be used for either food or non-food uses; non-food crops may be grown on non
8 Nov 2005 : Column 324W
set-aside land or not declared under any particular scheme; and part of the crop may be used as food while co-products are used as industrial raw materials or fuel.
|Crop||Area (ha)||Area (percentage)||Tonnage (tonnes)||Estimated total|
|Total value (percentage)|
|Oilseed Rape||66,468||57.5||(3)(5508310004)199,197||27 million||56.8|
|High Erucic Acid Oilseed rape||8,430||7.3||(3)39,047||7.4 million||15.6|
|Short Rotation Coppice||1,729||1.5||(4)13,832||553,000||1.2|
|Essential Oil Crops||73||<0.1||(3)532||746,000||1.6|
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|