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Bill Wiggin: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how much his Department paid to the company Accenture in each year since 2002; and what sums his Department owes the company. 
|Financial year||Amount (£ million)|
As at 16 June 2006, the sum of £2,301,976 had not been paid to Accenture and this figure represented invoices received since 5 June 2006 which were in the process of being released for payment within the Departments agreed payment terms window.
Mr. Hayes: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what advertising campaigns his Department has run since July 2004; and what the (a) date and (b) cost was of each. 
|Campaign||Objective||Timing||Media spend (£)|
To raise awareness of the biosecurity measures poultry keepers should follow in light of the international avian flu outbreaks. To encourage poultry keepers with more than 50 birds to sign up to the Poultry Register as part of the GBs avian flu contingency plans.
The Department also undertakes a wide range of recruitment, statutory notice and one-off advertising activities which accounts for the balance in spending. Information on advertising campaigns by non-departmental public bodies, executive agencies, independent statutory bodies and other DEFRA-funded bodies is not held centrally and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.
Mr. O'Hara: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the total budget is in 2006-07 for agricultural support in England; and what the administrative cost is of distributing it. 
Ian Pearson: The amount forecast for agricultural support in England in 2006-07 is approximately £1.6 billion. This will be administered by the Rural Payments Agency (RPA), whose administrative costs are budgeted at £197.1 million in 2006-07.
Chris Huhne: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what information his Department collects on the number of homes in the United Kingdom which have domestic air conditioning installed. 
However, the Governments Market Transformation Programme (MTP) has collected estimates of the amount of energy consumed by air conditioning units in the UK that are subject to the Energy Information (Household Air Conditioners) No.2 Regulations 2005 (that is, units which consume less than 12 kilowatts). The 2005 Regulatory Impact Assessment for those regulations indicates that
these appliances, which are used in both domestic and commercial premises, consume about 5.6 terawatt hours of electricity per year. This is equivalent to approximately 672,000 tonnes of carbon. The report is available on the DEFRA website:
Ms Angela C. Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether badger body snares had been used by the Central Science Laboratory for (a) ecological and (b) other research work before 2006. 
Mr. Bradshaw: Surveys of badger populations in Great Britain were undertaken in the mid-1980s and mid-1990s. In the mid-1980s the badger population was estimated to be 250,000 and in the mid-1990s a survey estimated that the population had increased by 77 per cent.
Mr. Paice: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many cattle slaughtered under the TB eradication scheme in each of the last three years were subsequently found on post mortem not to be infected and their carcasses sold into the food chain; and what the financial proceeds were of those sales in each year. 
|Total number of cattle slaughtered under TB control measures in GB( 1)||Number of confirmed reactors||Number of unconfirmed cases|
|(1) Reactors, inconclusive reactors and direct contacts.|
Failure to confirm the disease by post-mortem examination at the slaughterhouse, or by culturing Mycobacterium bovis in the laboratory, does not mean that the disease was not present in the animal, or that the animal had not been in contact with bovine TB. In the early stages of the disease, it is not always possible to see lesions with the naked eye, and, owing to the fastidious nature of the organism, it is not possible to culture from samples in every case.
Carcasses and their associated offal are inspected by the Meat Hygiene Service at slaughter and those with signs of generalised infection are fully condemned and declared unfit for human consumption. When localised TB lesions are found in more than one organ or area of a carcass the whole carcass is condemned. Those carcasses with lesions in a single organ or part of the carcass and associated lymph nodes are only passed fit for human consumption once the affected part of the carcass has been cut out and condemned. If no TB lesions are found, the carcass is passed fit for human consumption. If any M. bovis organisms remain these will be killed by thorough cooking of the meat.
Figures for financial proceeds are not available for unconfirmed cattle. However, figures for the financial proceeds from all cattle slaughtered under bovine tuberculosis control measures are set out in the following table:
|Financial proceeds from all cattle slaughtered under bovine tuberculosis control measures|
Daniel Kawczynski: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether an assessment was made of the merits of using weight charts rather than an estimate by the Department or an auctioneer when the system by which farmers are compensated for a cow with bovine TB was changed. 
We are working with stakeholders through the Cattle Compensation Advisory Group, which was set up to monitor the introduction of the new system, to consider whether (and what) system enhancements might be needed.
Mr. Bradshaw: There were 1,562 new herd TB incidents between January and May 2006(1). This indicates a real and substantial reduction in the number of new incidents when compared to the same period in 2005 (1,959).
Given the cyclical nature of the disease, it is too early to draw any conclusions about whether the decrease is a temporary or a more sustained reduction. However, we consider the decrease to be an important and welcome development, and we are working hard to determine its cause. It is likely to be the result of a complex combination of factors, which may take some time to analyse.
(1) Data from DEFRAs Animal Health Database (Vetnet). Provisional statistics, subject to change as more data becomes available.
Ian Stewart: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps he is taking to ensure that the Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) regulations will operate effectively alongside the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH) regulations; and if he will undertake an assessment of the risks of REACH undermining COSHH. 
Ian Pearson [holding answer 10 July 2006]: DEFRA is involved in ongoing discussions on the implementation of the new Registration, Evaluation, Authorisation and Restriction of Chemicals (REACH) regulations with the agencies involved in the regulation of chemicals, and with the devolved administrations. The Health and Safety Executive, which acts as the competent authority for the Control of Substances Hazardous to Health (COSHH), has been fully involved throughout this process.
Mr. Wills: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what his most recent estimate is of the cost per person per week of the common agricultural policy in the United Kingdom. 
Ian Pearson: The common agricultural policy (CAP) generates costs to both consumers and taxpayers. Consumers costs arise because of the higher prices that prevail under the CAP. Taxpayers fund both direct subsidies to producers and the cost of operating the market management instruments of the CAP. However, the UK does not contribute to individual EU budget categories; it contributes to the entire EU budget. Therefore, in order to provide an indication of the cost to UK taxpayers we have calculated a notional UK contribution to expenditure on the CAP.
Mr. Heath: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how much and what proportion of the Departments budget was spent directly on environmental regulation in each year since 2000-01, broken down by region. 
Ian Pearson: The Department does not maintain a separate record of expenditure on environmental regulation, which is included in the overall administration costs. This information could be provided only at disproportionate cost.
Ian Pearson: The Department for Culture, Media and Sport issues the guidance for flying flags on Government buildings. This includes flying the St. Georges flag on St. Georges day, 23 April, and the European flag on Europe day, 9 May, on buildings with two or more flag poles provided they are flown alongside the Union flag with the Union flag in the superior position.
The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs only has one flag pole, and therefore does not fly the St. Georges flag or the European flag. On that basis, the St. Georges flag has not knowingly been flown from any buildings on the DEFRA estate.
Ian Pearson: The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs follows the rules and guidance on flag flying issued by the Department for Culture, Media and Sport. These rules are approved by the Queen on advice from the Department. There are no plans at present to change the number of days on which flags can be flown from Government buildings.
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