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Chris Huhne: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the percentage tree cover in each EU member state was on the latest date for which figures are available. [84120]

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Barry Gardiner: Based on a 2005 report by the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organisation, forest as a percentage of land area is given in the following table:

Country Forest as percentage of land cover







Czech Republic










































United Kingdom


Leader of the House

EU Legislative Proposals

Mr. Brady: To ask the Leader of the House what mechanisms he proposes to put in place for the House to review and comment on EU legislative proposals. [91071]

Mr. Straw: Possible reform of the system for scrutiny by the House of Commons of European legislative proposals and other documents, including the Government’s response to the report of the Modernisation Committee last year on this subject, remains under review. I will be discussing these matters with, among others, the European Scrutiny Committee.

I would be happy to meet with the hon. Member to discuss the matter.

Prime Minister

Intelligence and Security Committee

Lynne Jones: To ask the Prime Minister pursuant to the answer of 24 July 2006, Official Report, column 865W, on the Intelligence and Security Committee, how the challenge function within the assessments staff has been strengthened. [91032]

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The Prime Minister: The challenge function within the assessments staff has been strengthened through the creation of a dedicated challenge team, which, inter alia, assists in testing alternative hypotheses, and reviewing past judgments.

Travel Restrictions (Russia)

Mr. Brady: To ask the Prime Minister what representations he has received regarding restrictions on travel to Russia placed on William Browder, Chief Executive of Hermitage Capital Management (UK) Ltd. by the Russian Government; and whether he raised this case in his meetings with President Putin during the recent G8 summit. [91069]

The Prime Minister: I have received a number of representations regarding Mr. Browder's case. We have raised it on a number of occasions with members of the Russian Government. It is not the practice of the Government to make public details of all discussions with foreign Governments.


New Deal

Jo Swinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how many young people not in education or employment or training have participated in the new deal in each year from 2001; and how many of these have subsequently gained employment. [91066]

David Cairns: This information is in the public domain and is available from the DWP website at:



Peter Bottomley: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what plans he has for significant improvements to the A27 in West Sussex. [90966]

Dr. Ladyman: Proposals for improvements to the A27 Chichester are being developed for Worthing and Arundel. At Chichester and Worthing these are part of a package of transport measures developed together with West Sussex county council. These schemes have not been prioritised by the region for start before 2011; the region is expected to report back later in the year on priorities for transport schemes to be delivered in the period 2011-16, and we will take a view then.


Mr. Leech: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what estimate he has made of the likely overall change in cost to the British Aviation Industry as a result of increased charges by the European Aviation Safety Agency. [90619]

Gillian Merron: The Commission Regulation setting out the European Aviation Safety Agency's charges was amended in late May 2006 as part of a package of emergency measures to meet a predicted shortfall in the Agency's 2006 budget. Other measures included a substantial increase in funding from the European Community budget and savings in Agency expenditure.

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Increases in tariffs were limited to the very largest manufacturers in the Community. At the same time some fees for small enterprises were reduced and procedural changes made which eased the administrative burdens on all industry.

Given the varying effects of these changes and their emergency and temporary nature no estimate has been made of the overall effect on costs to the UK industry. A few of the largest manufacturers will be subject to the increased tariffs, but the overall package of measures has ensured that the Agency is now able to meet the current certification needs of UK industry as a whole without costly delay.

The Agency has taken steps to put future budgeting on a firmer footing, including the identification of long term amendments to its fee structure to be put in place next year. The UK Civil Aviation Authority has seconded an expert to support the Agency's work in this area.

Bembridge Harbour

Mr. Andrew Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport on what date the audited accounts from the Bembridge Harbour Improvement Company for each of the last 10 financial years were received by his Department in accordance with the Bembridge Harbour Acts. [91034]

Dr. Ladyman: The audited annual accounts for the year ending 31 March 2005 for the Bembridge Harbour Improvement Company were received on 25 August 2006. The Department has no record of receipt of accounts from Bembridge in the previous nine years.

Bus Regulations

Mr. Grogan: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what the (a) scope and (b) timetable is for the review of bus regulations being undertaken by his Department; and if he will make a statement. [90745]

Gillian Merron: As announced to the Transport Select Committee on 28 June, I am taking a long, hard look at bus policy with the aim of taking decisions in the autumn on whether or not changes need to be made. I am looking at a whole range of issues surrounding bus services, discussing them with stakeholders and will be considering any recommendations from the Committee.

Carbon Emissions

Mr. Hollobone: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what the Department's working assumption is of the amount of carbon dioxide emissions from a passenger mile for (a) trains and (b) cars. [91023]

Mr. Tom Harris: The Department estimates that, based on average passenger loadings, a typical car emits 114 grammes of carbon dioxide per passenger kilometre and a typical train 49 grammes of carbon dioxide per passenger kilometre. The Department keeps both sets of figures under review to take account of changes to the car and train fleet and average passenger loadings.

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Concessionary Fares

Mr. Bone: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what the Government's policy is on the provision of concessionary bus passes for people aged over 60. [90594]

Gillian Merron: Currently, persons aged 60 and over and disabled people are entitled to free off-peak bus travel within their local authority area. Local authorities can at their discretion offer enhancements to the statutory minimum entitlement, such as peak bus travel, concessions on other modes, and travel into neighbouring authorities. The entitlement will be extended from April 2008 to allow eligible people to travel off-peak on any local bus service in the country for free.

Galileo Satellite Project

Stephen Hammond: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what assessment he has made of the economic impact of the UK not making the next payment due in relation to the Galileo Satellite Project; [90695]

(2) how much is required by 24 August from the UK Government to meet their commitment in relation to the Galileo Satellite Project; [90696]

(3) how much the UK has spent on its stake in the Galileo Satellite Project; [90697]

(4) what plans he has to make the payments necessary to fulfil the UK's commitment to the Galileo Satellite Project by 24 August; [90698]

(5) what assessment he has made of the implications for the UK's stake in the Galileo Satellite Project if the further payments of funding are (a) made and (b) not made. [90699]

Dr. Ladyman: Member states of the European Space Agency were invited earlier this year to provide further funding to meet the increased requirements of the development phase of the Galileo satellite navigation programme. Ministers have considered collectively the issue of making a further subscription to the Agency for Galileo. Following this my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry asked his officials to inform the Agency that the UK would be contributing an additional €31 million. This decision was notified to the Agency within the agreed subscription period that expired on 24 August. Previous contributions from the UK to the Agency for this programme have been €15.3 million (at 1998 prices) for the definition phase and €95.7 million (at 2001 prices) towards the development and validation phase.

Marine Environment

Chris Huhne: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many enforcement actions there were related to Coastguard and other agencies' marine protection powers in each of the last five years; and how many (a) prosecutions were brought and (b) convictions were obtained in each year. [91088]

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Dr. Ladyman: Figures recorded by the Maritime and Coastguard Agency are as follows:

Investigations Prosecutions Convictions





















It should be noted that these figures relate to pollution from ships into the sea. They do not relate to pollution into harbour authority areas, for which harbour authorities keep separate records. They also do not relate to pollution from land into the sea for which the Environment Agency keeps records.

Rail Infrastructure

Mark Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what research his Department has (a) commissioned and (b) evaluated on the effects of climate change on rail infrastructure. [90725]

Dr. Ladyman: In 2004, the Department for Transport commissioned a study into the impact of climate change across all transport modes(1) including rail. This work was informed by a climate adaptation study sponsored by the Rail Safety and Standards Board in 2003(2). More recently, DEFRA published a case study considering the potential impact of climate change on the rail sector(3).

In addition to these studies, the Department maintains a close dialogue with Network Rail and other rail industry stakeholders in order to develop a better understanding of climate change risks and mitigation opportunities.

The Department will use this work and other climate change research to inform the development of its long term rail strategy, which will be published in summer 2007.

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