Problem communicating with remote server...
Previous Section Index Home Page

12 Jun 2006 : Column 873W—continued


There have been no cases during the past five years of disciplinary sanctions imposed, including dismissal, relating to the access via work telephone of premium rate telephone numbers.

David Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many (a) EU foreign nationals and (b) non-EU foreign nationals have been employed in his Department in each of the last five years; what vetting procedures are in place for each category of staff; and whether these include liaison with foreign law enforcement agencies. [68013]

Jim Fitzpatrick: The Department of Trade and Industry does not hold information on EU foreign nationals and non-EU foreign nationals centrally.

The Department’s recruitment procedures require all candidates for employment to comply with the civil service nationality rules.

Furthermore, all staff who require security clearance for their posts in the Department are subject to the Department’s procedures for security vetting and comply with the policy set out to Parliament by the then Prime Minister on 15 December 1994, which came into force on 1 January 1995.

Eid-Ul-Adha

David Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many staff from his Department attended the Civil Service Islamic Society Eid-Ul-Adha event in London in 2005; and what the total cost was to his Department of their attendance. [73025]

Jim Fitzpatrick: My right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster has written to the hon. Member with details of the Civil Service Islamic Society Eid-Ul-Adha event. A copy of the letter has been placed in the Library of the House.

Energy Distribution

Colin Challen: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what discussions he (a) has had and (b)
12 Jun 2006 : Column 874W
plans to have with energy distribution network operators on levels of investment in such networks. [74804]

Malcolm Wicks: I recently met the Energy Networks Association and a number of network operators were present. Discussion covered a range of topics, including the issue of investment in energy networks. Levels of investment are agreed between the Regulator (Ofgem) and the network businesses. These are called price controls and last for a period of five years. The most recent price control commenced in April 2004. Ofgem has to allow the networks sufficient revenue to ensure that they can meet licence conditions which include the requirement to run safe and efficient networks.

Energy Review

Mr. Bone: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what recent progress has been made with the energy review. [76028]

Malcolm Wicks: The Government published a consultation document on 23 January this year. The consultation document—“Our Energy Challenge, Securing clean and affordable energy for the long term”—invited responses on the important energy policy issues facing the country to be considered in the current Energy Review.

Some 5,300 responses were received from members of the public, business, academia, NGOs and others. We are assessing the enormous amount of evidence received in response to the Energy Review consultation and the review will report in the summer.

Foreign Travel

Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how much was spent on foreign travel by his Department in each of the last eight years. [76060]

Jim Fitzpatrick: The total amount spent on foreign travel by the DTI in each of the last eight years was:

Amount (£)

1998-99

5,019,971

1999-2000

5,291,063

2001-01

5,470,024

2001-02

4,912,785

2002-03

5,583,825

2003-04

4,260,257

2004-05

5,483,903

2005-06

5,601,629


Gaming Machines

Mrs. Dean: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many gaming machines manufactured in the UK were exported in each year since 2001. [77153]

Margaret Hodge: Information is not available in the form requested.


12 Jun 2006 : Column 875W

The following data give the total value of UK exports of coin or disc-operated games, other than bowling alley equipment.

£ million
Amount

2001

165.1

2002

126.5

2003

126.7

2004

131.4

2005

120.6

Source: Overseas Trade Statistics

Illegal Immigrants

Mr. Hayes: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many illegal immigrants have been discovered to be employed by his Department in each year since 2001; in what capacities they were employed; how many were discovered as part of a criminal investigation; and what the nature of the charges brought against them were. [73968]

Jim Fitzpatrick: To my knowledge, there have been no illegal immigrants discovered to be employed by the Department since 2001.

Light Fittings (Hazardous Substances)

Mr. Willis: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what advice he has issued to electrical (a) retailers and (b) wholesalers on the sale of existing stocks of non-electrical light fittings in advance of the Restriction of the Use of Certain Hazardous Substances in Electrical and Electronic Equipment Regulations 2005, S.I. 2005, No. 2748, coming into force on 1 July 2006. [76243]

Malcolm Wicks: The DTI published Government Guidance Notes on the impact of these regulations in October 2005, following their issue in draft for public consultation in July 2004.

Mr. Willis: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what representations he has received from the European Commission on the implementation of the Restriction of the Use of Certain Hazardous Substances in Electrical and Electronic Equipment Regulations 2005, S.I. 2005, No. 2748, in respect of non-electrical components of light fittings; and if he will make a statement. [76244]

Malcolm Wicks: The Department has not received any representations from the European Commission on these regulations.

Littlecombe/Dursley Hydroscheme

Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry on what grounds the South West Regional Development Authority and its developer have withdrawn the hydroscheme from the Littlecombe/Dursley site. [75984]


12 Jun 2006 : Column 876W

Margaret Hodge: The Littlecombe site at Dursley is the subject of a development agreement between the South West of England Regional Development Agency (South West RDA) and St. Modwen (the developer). The agreement requires the developer to carry out a whole series of activities in order to obtain planning permission for the regeneration scheme and deliver that scheme on the ground, either directly or through third parties (mostly residential developers). Agreement has to be reached with South West RDA on key issues.

Among other matters, St. Modwen are required to investigate and, where appropriate, incorporate various sustainability measures in their designs. In particular they are intending to reduce the CO2 impact of the scheme by 30 per cent. through the use of renewable energy sources. The scope for micro hydro-electric power generation (HEP) was considered by the developer in this context.

These investigations showed that the HEP scheme would not be economical—it would only produce enough electricity for two houses. In addition, the Environment Agency had concerns over the impact of the scheme and was not supportive. The South West RDA agreed with St. Modwen that HEP would not be pursued.

St. Modwen anticipate biomass district heating, ground heat loops and photovoltaic cells being incorporated into the scheme in order to achieve a 30 per cent. CO2 reduction.

Myalgic Encephalopathy/Encephalomyelitis

Gordon Banks: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what research he has (a) commissioned and (b) evaluated into genetic abnormalities in white blood cells of myalgic encephalopathy and encephalomyelitis sufferers; and if he will make a statement. [74418]

Jim Fitzpatrick: The Department supports medical and clinical research through the Medical Research Council (MRC), which welcomes high quality proposals in these areas.

The MRC is not currently supporting any research specifically into genetic abnormalities in the white blood cells of sufferers from either myalgic encephalopathy or encephalomyelitis.

Northern Way Initiative

Mr. Iain Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what role his Department plays in the delivery of the Northern Way initiative. [74038]

Margaret Hodge: DTI is represented on the Northern Way Strategic Policy Group which is responsible for policy development and stakeholder engagement.

The Northern Way is also identified as a key delivery vehicle for the Regional Economic Performance Public Service Agreement (REPPSA) to which DTI is a joint signatory with HM Treasury and the Department for Communities and Local Government.


12 Jun 2006 : Column 877W

Nuclear Power Stations

Mr. Wallace: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what planning permission would be required to build new nuclear power stations on existing sites in (a) England and Wales and (b) Scotland. [74599]

Malcolm Wicks [holding answer 5 June 2006]: Any new proposal over 50 MW in England and Wales would require consent under section 36 of the Electricity Act 1989 and “deemed” planning permission under section 90 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 from my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry. For Scotland, similar powers are exercised by Scottish Ministers.

Paul Flynn: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what research his Department has undertaken into the likely effects on coastally located licensed nuclear sites of (a) coastal erosion and (b) inundation due to sea-level rise. [75369]

Malcolm Wicks: The Office of Science and Technology (OST) has conducted a major study on the future of flooding and coastal erosion as part of the Foresight Programme, http://www.foresight.gov.uk/Previous_Projects/Flood_and_Coastal Defence/index. html.

Operators of nuclear sites such as British Nuclear Group and British Energy are responsible for flood defences and for protecting the site against coastal erosion. Nearly all of the sites are situated on the coast and rest behind sea defences, which are maintained to a very high standard. Reviews are made periodically to monitor long-term protection, and regional shoreline management plans have been developed on behalf of the coastal authorities.

Jenny Willott: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how many jobs the Department estimates will be created as a result of the decommissioning of and clean-up operations for Wylfa nuclear power station; and if he will make a statement. [75609]

Malcolm Wicks: The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA) has responsibility for the decommissioning and clean-up of the UK's historic nuclear legacy—including the Magnox nuclear power station at Wylfa.

The current NDA expectation is that Wylfa will close at the end of 2010. Wylfa's plans for decommissioning and clean-up are still in preparation and job requirements have not yet been finalised. But in preparation for the defuelling and decommissioning phase of care and maintenance the NDA have prepared indicative numbers (derived from Wylfa's current plans) which indicate that at the end of operations, job numbers (both staff and subcontractors) will be about 700 by 2010, reducing to 160 by 2024. In so far as is practicable, the NDA will seek to ensure that employees who wish to stay with a site through to its next phase are able to remain in employment and receive appropriate support, development and retraining. Subcontractors currently providing site support are expected to continue to do so
12 Jun 2006 : Column 878W
during the defuelling and decommissioning phases. On this basis, to be significant new opportunities for employment are unlikely.

Jenny Willott: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry which (a) nuclear power stations and (b) nuclear waste storage sites his Department assesses to be at risk from (i) sea-level rise, (ii) coastal erosion, (iii) seawater inundation and (iv) storm surges in the next (A) 10, (B) 20 and (C) 50 years; and if he will make a statement. [75614]

Malcolm Wicks: The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) license all nuclear power stations under the Nuclear Installations Act 1965. Flood risks, which are enhanced by coastal erosion, are one category of external hazards that HSE require to be addressed in safety cases for nuclear plants.

Safety cases are prepared by the plant operator. They are routinely reviewed through the Periodic Safety Review (PSR) Process, which allows for recent and future extrapolations to be reviewed. They are scrutinised and then reviewed periodically (at intervals not greater than 10 years) by HSE. This provides an opportunity to ensure that operators are updating their predictions. The cost of HSE reviewing safety cases is recovered from the industry.

The Office of Science and Technology (OST) has conducted a major study for the Foresight programme on the future of coastal erosion:

The study looked ahead into the next 30-100 years and considered the future risks from flooding and costal erosion. Future predicted erosion rates were found to be location specific, and are likely to be extremely variable.

The following coastal defence work is taking place, or is proposed, in the proximity of nuclear power plants:

The UK Atomic Energy Authority and British Energy have confirmed that there are no foreseeable risks to their nuclear power station or nuclear storage sites from sea-level rises, coastal erosion, seawater inundation and storm surges.

Jenny Willott: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what assessment has been made of the effects of future possible (a) sea-level rise and (b) coastal erosion at (i) existing and (ii) potential nuclear sites; and if he will make a statement. [75615]


Next Section Index Home Page