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Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how much was spent by Government on (a) research into and (b) grants and subsidies to promote renewable energy in each year between 1979 and 1997. 
Malcolm Wicks: It would entail disproportionate cost to identify how much was spent by Government on research, grants and subsidies to promote renewable energy in each year between 1979 and 1997. However, information on how much was spent by Government on renewable energy research, development, dissemination and demonstration, between 1989 and 1997, was published by my hon. Friend, the then Energy Minister to the hon. Member for Lewes, on 24 March 2000, Official Report, column 715 W.
The statistics indicate that investment in renewable energy remained broadly unchanged between 1989 and 1996 at under £26 million a year. This compares to Government spending of around £500 million in renewables and other low carbon technologies between 2002 and 2008. The Chancellor also recently announced in the Budget a further £50 million, on top of the £30 million that I had previously announced, for the Low Carbon Building Programme, which supports microgeneration and energy efficiency measures.
Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how much funding his Department has given to research and development via (a) grants, (b) loans and (c) incentive schemes since 1997. 
Jim Fitzpatrick: The net DTI expenditure, leaving aside the research councils, between 1997 and 2006on R and D via (a) 'grants' represents a cost of£2,490.8 million, (b) 'loans' are not currently used by the Department to fund R and D, (c) 'incentives' in the form of R and D tax credits are owned by the Treasury and as such do not represent an expense on the Department.
Source: Office for National Statistics 2004 Government survey of R and D on website:
Kerry McCarthy: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what assessment he has made of the merits of a reappraisal of the Severn barrage project as part of the Government's energy review. 
Malcolm Wicks: We are aware of the potential of a Severn barrage scheme, the most recent study of the case for a reappraisal carried out by the Severn Tidal Power Group (available at www.dti.gov.uk/energy/renewables/publications/Severnbarrage.shtml) being published in 2003.
Derek Conway: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many employment tribunal rulings on cases of constructive dismissal found in favour of the claimants where allegations of sexual harassment of a subordinate were upheld in each of the last five years. 
Jim Fitzpatrick: The Employment Tribunals Service does not record separately figures for claims which specifically relate to constructive dismissal, nor does it hold separately records of claims where allegations of sexual harassment are made.
Margaret Hodge: DTI's role is to drive up UK productivity and competitiveness. A key part of that work involves creating the conditions for the success of businesses that help to generate the UK's wealth. The support we provide enhances and encourages innovation, enterprise, best practice and investment. We assess its effectiveness in achieving our strategic goals through rigorous monitoring, analysis and evaluation.
Small local convenience stores are eligible for the same range of support measures as other small businesses. These include a range of grants, funds, loan guarantee schemes and advice available through Business Link. In addition, we ensure that representative bodies of smaller retailers are involved with our key retail fora: Retail Policy Forum (better regulation); Retail Innovation Group (identification and exploitation of good practice); and have been invited to be part of the steering group for the fledgling Regional Retail Strategy that is exploring good practice in working with retail at regional/local level. We also ensure that the main trade associations representing small shops are notified directly about relevant public consultations.
Jim Fitzpatrick: I understand from Post Office Ltd. that information on the Post Office¬(r) branch network has historically only been held at a national level. More recently records have been maintained at a Government office region and at parliamentary constituency level and this level of data commenced from the end of 2001-02.
|Number of Post Office¬(r) branches( 1)|
|(1) The network totals include 5 branches that are directly managed by Post Office Ltd.|
Malcolm Wicks: In the context of the energy review, DTI is considering a range of assessments of the future security of supply of uranium, including the recent analysis by the Sustainable Development Commission.
In addition, a comprehensive report of uranium supply and production is published by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the Nuclear Energy Agency (NEA) and the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA)"Uranium 2003: Resources, Production and Demand" (The Red Book). An updated version of this report is due for publication on 22 May 2006.
Mr. Cox: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what assessment the Government have made of the impact that their policy of encouraging drivers to renew their vehicle licensing tax by (a) telephone and (b) the internet is having on rural post offices. 
Jim Fitzpatrick: Decisions relating to vehicle licensing are the responsibility of the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA). Post Office Ltd. continues to act as an agent for the DVLA with 95 per cent. of the population within two miles of a Motor Vehicle Licence issuing office.
Government continue to broaden the way that they offer their services to reflect a changing world and to respond to the new ways that the public wish to access these services. The Post Office is one of a number of ways to deliver Government services and still has an important role to play. We want to see a Post Office network that meets the needs of today and the future and not those of 20 or 30 years ago and have made an unprecedented investment of over £2 billion in the network since 1999, including £750 million to help maintain the rural network to 2008.
Jim Cousins: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what the average traffic levels were at each interchange of the A1 Western bypass from North Gosforth to the New Tyne crossing, Newcastle in each of the last five years. 
Dr. Ladyman: The following table provides the average annual daily totals (AADT) of vehicles using the A1 between the interchange of the A1 with the
A1056, north of Gosforth, to the A1 interchange with the A694, to the south of the New Tyne crossing.
|2001 AADT||2002 AADT||2003 AADT|
|Location||NB( 1)||SB( 2)||Total||NB( 1)||SB( 2)||Total||NB( 1)||SB( 2)||Total|
|2004 AADT||2005 AADT|
|Location||NB( 1)||SB( 2)||Total||NB( 1)||SB( 2)||Total|
|(1 )NB = Northbound. (2 )SB = Southbound.|
Dr. Ladyman: The data collection phase of the DIRECTS (Demonstration of Interoperable Road user End-to-end Charging and Telematics Systems) project concluded at the end of March 2006. I expect the analysis and conclusions will be published in the 4th quarter of 2006 and a copy of the report will be made available to the Library and published in the usual way on the Department's website.
Each unit has carried out a full equal pay review for staff below the senior civil service within the last three years with further full reviews to be undertaken this year. If any disparities are identified these are to be investigated and rectified accordingly. Pay systems are reviewed on an annual basis.
David Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many people in his Department have been enabled to work from home in each of the last three years; and if he will make a statement. 
|(1) Figures unavailable.|
The figures represent those enabled to work away from the office by means of remote access IT links. This will include home working, but also working from other official locations. The Department and its agencies have a flexible approach in helping staff meet work life balance commitments. Although the Department does not have a formal home working policy, it has other policies which cover a variety of working patterns, such as flexible working hours, staggered hours, part-time working and job share. Requests to work from home on an ad hoc basis are subject to line agreement.
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