Chris Huhne: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what estimate he has made of British Energys future clean-up costs; and what proportion of the cost he expects to be met through public expenditure. 
Malcolm Wicks: British Energy is responsible for estimating its future clean up costs. These estimates are subject to review and approval by the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority. The NDA has approved the most recent estimates relating to British Energys Advanced Gas Cooled Reactors and to longer term waste management and is in the process of reviewing the estimates for Sizewell B.
As a result of the restructuring of the company, Government will underwrite the Nuclear Liabilities Fund, British Energys segregated decommissioning fund, to the extent that its liabilities exceed its assets. This fund, into which BE makes certain contributions, covers the costs of decommissioning British Energys nuclear power stations as well as certain other liabilities relating to waste management. In its annual accounts, the Department records a contingent liability or asset in relation to this undertaking. As at 31 March 2006, the Department recorded a contingent asset of £4.1 billion. This contingent asset is the net of the forecast decommissioning, spent fuel and waste management liabilities to be borne by the Nuclear Liabilities Fund, offset against the value of the assets (largely linked to British Energys future performance) held by the Nuclear Liabilities Fund to meet these liabilities.
Mr. Oaten: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what support his Department expects to provide towards travel costs for UK experts attending international healthcare standards meetings in 2007-08. 
Malcolm Wicks: The Department of Trade and Industry contributes toward the travel cost of UK experts attending international meetings. However, budget allocations for 2007-08 and the schedule for healthcare standards meetings have yet to be confirmed so I am unable to provide information regarding the exact expenditure.
To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what contribution his Department has made to the Gender Equality Steering Group against
domestic violence, as referred to on page 54 of his Departments annual report; and at what cost. 
Jim Fitzpatrick: We have no representation on the Gender Equality Steering Group, nor do we contribute directly to the sub-target on domestic violence. The responsibility for these areas lies with the Women and Equality Unit, which transferred to the Department for Communities and Local Government under a machinery of Government reorganisation in 2006.
Margaret Hodge: The Government remain fully committed to raising product standards and encouraging consumers to use the most energy efficient domestic appliances available. In this, the Government support the Energy Saving Trusts activities to provide advice to consumers about the energy efficiency of the products they use. The Government also support the trusts work in endorsing and vigorously promoting the most energy efficient products under its energy efficiency recommended scheme.
The Governments Market Transformation programme (MTP) supports measures such as the mandatory EU energy labelling scheme which, for a range of appliances, has been mandatory since 1 January 2001. Energy labels provide clear and easily recognisable information about the energy consumption and performance of domestic products on a seven-point scale ranging from A (most efficient) to G (least efficient), thus enabling consumers to make a considered choice when purchasing energy consuming products. Furthermore, minimum energy performance standards have resulted in the removal of the most inefficient appliances from the market.
Take up of the most energy efficient products has also been encouraged through the Energy Efficiency Commitment (EEC)an obligation on energy suppliers to promote improvements in household energy efficiency. The first phase (to 2005) generated £600 million worth of investment in household energy efficiency measures. Suppliers targets were doubled in the second phase (2005-08) and is now generating £400 million of investment in energy efficiency measures each year. The commitment has succeeded in transforming the market for wet and refrigeration appliances and led to significant increases in sales of efficient condensing boilers. The 2006 climate change programme signalled our intention to seek a further increase of 50-100 per cent. in the target for the next phase of EEC in 2008 to 2010.
Recent revisions to building regulations have also helped drive the deployment of energy efficiency measures such as glazing, light fittings and condensing boilers, with revisions to standards in 2002 and 2006 improving energy efficiency standards by 40 per cent.
1. GWhGiga Watt hours; bcm = billion cubic meters.
2. The data are from National Grids planning archives and derived from numerous sources (e.g. tendered projects and storage operators data). Storage space can be assessed in numerous ways (energy, volume, cushion gas determination, liquefied natural gas (LNG) heel etc.), so may differ from other published data.
3. The reduction in 2004-05 was due to Isle of Grain being converted from an LNG storage facility to an LNG import facility.
Malcolm Wicks: There are currently no applications for gas storage facilities awaiting a ministerial decision under either the Gas Act 1965 or the Town and Country Planning Act 1990. However, a public inquiry has been held into a planning application appeal for a gas storage facility with a potential capacity of 1.7bcm (billion standard cubic metres) in underground salt caverns in Fleetwood, Lancashire, and the inspector is currently writing his report. A public inquiry into a gas storage facility with a potential capacity of 212mcm (million standard cubic metres) at Caythorpe gas field, in the East Riding of Yorkshire, is due to commence on 24 April 2007.
Alan Duncan: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what progress has been made towards setting up a Whitehall Group as recommended by the Government's Cross Cutting Review of Government Services for Small Business. 
Following the Cross Cutting Review of Government Services for Small Business, the Whitehall Group of Departments and agencieswho met during the Reviewwere formally re-constituted in meetings of senior officials jointly chaired by the Small Business Service and HM Treasury. In the autumn of 2005 the work of the Group was refocused to concentrate solely on the business support simplification programme. The Group now meets a minimum of every six weeks and includes
representatives from departments, regional development agencies, Government offices, local government, the CBI and business.
Mr. Hayes: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what contribution his Department has made to the appointment of women to the judiciary, as referred to on page 55 of his Departments annual report; and at what cost. 
Jim Fitzpatrick: The responsibility for this areas lies with the Women and Equality Unit, which transferred to the Department for Communities and Local Government under a machinery of Government reorganisation in 2006.
Malcolm Wicks: The low carbon buildings programme is divided into two phases. Phase 1, with a total budget of £28.5 million aims to demonstrate how energy efficiency and microgeneration technologies can be combined to create low carbon buildings. Phase 2, with a total budget of £50 million aims to drive down costs, making the market for microgeneration technologies more sustainable in the longer term.
We announced on 25 October 2006 that we would be re-allocating £6.2 million of the total £28.5 million funding for Phase 1 to householders, giving a total household pot of £12.7 million. On projected demand levels this should allow householder funding to continue until June 2008. By this time, some of our wider measures to promote microgeneration should be taking hold, and we believe the sector may have matured to a point where householder grants are no longer necessary.
Malcolm Wicks: The low carbon buildings programme phase 1 was launched in April 2006 with a budget of £30 million available for allocation over three years. The low carbon buildings programme phase 2 was launched in December 2006 with a budget of £50 million, and we expect to commit the bulk of the funding by March 2008. There are currently no plans to allocate additional funding to the programme.
Geraldine Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry whether Lancaster and Morecambe Vision applied for funding from the North West Regional Development Agency in the last six months. 
Margaret Hodge: Lancaster and Morecambe Vision Board has submitted through Lancaster city council an economic development strategy and investment plan that identifies the North West Development Agency as a potential funding partner. As part of that, the city council has requested pre-development funding of £95,000 for 2007-08. The agency is currently considering this request.
Geraldine Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry how much the North West Regional Development Agency spent on (a) staffing and (b) administration in the 2005-06 financial year. 
Geraldine Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry what the (a) staffing and (b) administration costs were for the North West Regional Development Agency in 2005-06; and what they are expected to be in 2006-07. 
Margaret Hodge [holding answer 15 January 2007]: The staffing and administration costs for the North West Regional Development Agency in 2005-06 and expected costs for 2006-07 are detailed in the following table:
|Total cost (£m)||Cost as percentage of total expenditure||Total expected cost (£m)||Cost as percentage of total expenditure|
Mr. Hoban: To ask the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry which statistics are used to determine whether his Departments Public Service Agreement (PSA) targets have been met, broken down by PSA target; and which of these are classified as national statistics. 
Jim Fitzpatrick [holding answer 15 January 2007]: The Department of Trade and Industrys Public Service Agreement incorporates technical notes which contain information about the statistics used to monitor progress towards meeting the Departments PSA targets. The agreement can be accessed using the following URL:
A report by the independent Statistics Commission entitled PSA Targets: the Devil in the Detail, which
was published on 20 March 2006, contains an independent analysis of each Departments PSA targets. Copies of that report are available in the Libraries of the House and can also be accessed using the following URL:
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