|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) what recent meetings has he held with (a) National Energy Action, (b) Energywatch and (c) others to discuss the extension of eligibility for the winter fuel payment; 
James Purnell: There have been no recent meetings with National Energy Action or Energywatch. The Department for Work and Pensions holds a wide range of meeting with stakeholders; and these have covered fuel poverty.
Winter fuel payments are made to most people aged 60 or over who are ordinarily resident in Great Britain. Older people are particularly vulnerable to the effects of cold weather during the winter months. We have no plans to extend the winter fuel payment to other groups who are eligible for cold weather payments.
Mrs. Iris Robinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will estimate the number of deaths in the Province resulting from air pollution in each of the last 20 years; and what steps have been taken to reduce the number of such deaths. 
Calculations are carried out by the National Environment and Technology Centre (Netcen), who act as air quality consultants to Defra and the devolved administrations. Netcen carry out a range of assessments and provide statistics on deaths brought forward due to air pollution in the UK using Committee of Medical Effects of Air Pollutants (COMEAP) methodology.
This information is not readily available and figures would only extend back to 1996 for a range of technical reasons. I will write to the hon. Lady when figures are available and place a copy of the figures in the Library.
Mr. Hanson: The following table gives the number of deaths registered in Northern Ireland in each year between 1986 and 2005 where the underlying cause of death was recorded as mesothelioma(1) or asbestosis(2).
(1 )International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision code C45 for years 2001-2004 and Ninth Revision codes 158.9 or 163.9 for year 1985-2000.
(2 )International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision codes J61 and J92.0 for years 2001-2004 and Ninth Revision code 501 for year 1985-2000.
|Number of registered deaths by year in Northern Ireland resulting from asbestos related illnesses (mesothelioma and asbestosis)|
|(1 )Provisional data|
Mrs. Iris Robinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many deaths were registered in Northern Ireland where the underlying cause was recorded as mesothelioma in each year between 2000 and 2005. 
(1 )International Classification of Diseases, Tenth Revision code C45 for years 2001-2005 and Ninth Revision codes 158.9 or 163.9 for year 2000.
|Registration year||Number of deaths resulting from mesothelioma|
|(1) Provisional Data|
Mr. Donaldson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what the timetable is for the introduction of changes to legislation to provide police officers with the power of arrest in respect of individuals involved in unlawful activity associated with badger baiting in Northern Ireland. 
David Cairns: It is an offence under the Welfare of Animals Act (Northern Ireland) 1972 to cause unnecessary suffering to any animal by causing, procuring or assisting at the fighting or baiting of that animal. A review of the legislation is currently out to public consultation, with a closing date of 5( )December 2006. The review examines the need for increased enforcement powers under the Act.
It is also an offence under the Wildlife (Northern Ireland) Order 1985 to take, kill, injure or be in possession or control of a badger or to disturb a badger while it is occupying a place or structure for shelter or protection, or to damage, destroy or obstruct access to that place or structure. None of the offences are subject to arrest and there are currently no proposals to change the legislation in this respect. However, subject to the outcome of a public consultation exercise on the review of the 1985 Order planned for December 2006, further changes may be proposed.
Mark Durkan: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many bankruptcy orders were made on behalf of the Department of Finance and Personnel of the Rate Collection Agency in (a) 2003, (b) 2004 and (c) 2005; and how many have been made in 2006. 
Mrs. Iris Robinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what funding the Government have provided for biodiversity education (a) overall in the Province and (b) at Oxford Island Nature Reserve in each of the last five years. 
David Cairns: The majority of government funding on biodiversity education is contributed through the Department of the Environments Environment and Heritage Service (EHS). EHS provides funding in the form of grant aid to district councils, schools, community groups and environmental non-government organisations. EHS also provides direct environmental education to schools and the wider public.
|Direct spend||Grant aid||Total|
Following the publication of the Northern Ireland Biodiversity Strategy in 2002 the spend has increased substantially and the total annual spend on biodiversity education in the last three years has averaged over £l million per annum.
During the past five years EHS has supported either a conservation officer or a local biodiversity action plan officer within Craigavon borough council to a total of £91,000 over five years. The officer is based at Oxford Island and part of their role has included support for the interpretation of biodiversity within the Oxford Island National Nature Reserve.
|Conservation officer||Local biodiversity officer||Total|
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|