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8 Mar 2007 : Column 2170Wcontinued
|Table 2: UK CO 2 emissions between 1990 and 2005|
|UK CO 2 emissions/million tonnes of CO 2 (MtCO 2 )||Percentage change since 1990||UKCO 2 emissions including UK international shipping and aviation bunkers/MtCO 2||Percentage change in CO 2 emissions since 1990, including international bunkers|
|(1) Taking into account the impact of the EU ETS.|
Sir Peter Soulsby: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what guidance his Department is proposing to publish on the offsetting of carbon emissions. 
Ian Pearson: The Government launched a consultation on establishing a code of best practice for carbon offsetting on 18 January and this runs until 13 April. We plan to support the code by providing guidance on offsetting to consumers, to help them make informed decisions about their actions.
Mr. Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what efforts are being made to encourage local authorities to take action against chewing gum litter. 
Mr. Bradshaw: Last week, the DEFRA-funded chewing gum Action group invited local authorities to apply for paid for advertising funds to tackle this issue. This follows the 2006 campaigns which saw reductions in gum litter of up to 72 per cent.
Guidance on how to run a local campaign on this issue was issued to interested local authorities in January 2006. This included elements on:
(ii) partnership working with businesses and schools
(iii) working with local media; and
(iv) monitoring gum deposition.
The Clean Neighbourhoods and Environment Act provided local authorities with greater enforcement powers to tackle this issue. Fixed penalty notices of up to £80 can be issued for dropping litter, as an alternative to prosecution. Statutory guidance on these powers was issued to all local authorities in April 2006, and further guidance on fixed penalty notices and enforcement will be distributed soon.
Janet Anderson: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps he is taking to maintain a majority in the International Whaling Commission for ensuring that the moratorium on commercial whaling is upheld. 
Mr. Bradshaw: The Secretary of State and the Foreign Secretary have recently jointly written to a dozen EU and accession states encouraging them to join the International Whaling Commission. A new publication, endorsed by the Prime Minister and Sir David Attenborough, has been sent to 57 countries and UK embassies and Ministers across Government have been urged to lobby on this issue.
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many independent bodies existed to hear appeals on decisions made by his Department and its executive agencies in (a) 1997-98, (b) 2001-02 and (c) 2005-06; and how many there have been in 2006-07 to date. 
Ian Pearson: Since the creation of DEFRA the numbers of such independent bodies in 2001-02, 2005-06 and in 2006-07 to date were two, three and three respectively.
The Veterinary Products Committee considers appeals on decisions relating to the issue, variation or withdrawal of marketing authorisation for veterinary medicines. The Plant Variety and Seeds Tribunal considers appeals against decisions on plant variety and seeds issues. The Independent Agricultural Appeals Panel considers appeals against decisions by the Rural Payments Agency. This last one was set up from April 2002.
In general four other mechanisms exist for appeals against decisions by the Department and its executive agencies, the Ombudsman through an MP, the courts through judicial review, and the Civil Service Appeals Board and employment tribunals in the case of employment matters.
Mr. Hoban: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs which external consultants were used by (a) his Department and (b) each of its agencies in relation to private finance initiatives in 2005-06; and what the (i) nature and (ii) cost of the work was in each case. 
Ian Pearson: I refer the hon. Member to the answer given on 4 December 2006, Official Report, columns 32-33W, to the hon. Member for Eastleigh (Chris Huhne).
Mr. Clegg: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what databases are controlled by his Department and its agencies; and what percentage of the data in each database he estimates is inaccurate or out of date. 
Ian Pearson: Defra controls hundreds of applications, many of which can be defined as a database. To provide an answer to this question would require an interrogation of each application, and to do so would incur a disproportionate cost to the Department.
Mr. Hayes: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many (a) decisions, (b) notifications, (c) communications, (d) directives, (e) ECJ court rulings and (f) other EU activities with legal impact his Department received in the last month. 
Ian Pearson: Details of all EU legislation in force, as well as legislative proposals, are available on the European Commissions website.
Between 1 and 24 February 2007 the following legislative measures of relevance to DEFRA were published in the Official Journal of the European Union:
7 Council Regulations
89 Commission Regulations
1 Council Directive
3 Commission Directives
3 Council Decisions
29 Commission Decisions
Between 1 and 24 February 2007 the Commission published two communications of relevance to DEFRA.
The European Court of Justice has not issued any rulings of relevance to DEFRA in the past month.
Joan Ruddock: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether his Department has (a) a gender strategy and (b) a gender equality action plan in place. 
Ian Pearson [holding answer 2 March 2007]: Defra has established policies to address unlawful discrimination, bullying and harassment within the Department together with an equal opportunities policy that covers actions to promote equality between men and women.
The Department has developed a joint equality scheme to address equalities legislation. Defra's current scheme which addresses both disability and race legislation will incorporate the Department's plans for implementation of the new gender equality duty. Actions in relation to gender equality will be included within the joint equality scheme action plan.
Chris Huhne: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what change there was in (a) value and (b) percentage in the capital budgets of each of his Departments executive agencies following his Departments budget review in 2006, as referred to in the answer of 24 October 2006, Official Report, columns 1723-24W, on Executive Agencies. 
Ian Pearson: Information about changes in (a) value and (b) percentage in the capital budgets of each of DEFRAs executive agencies for 2006-07 following the budget review in 2006 is set out in the following table. As part of this review, RPAs capital budget was increased by £19.2 million to provide for additional investment in improving the Agencys payment systems and £3 million was transferred from the resource to the capital budget of the State Veterinary Service, to provide for the Agency's Business Reform programme. The capital budgets of DEFRA's other Executive Agencies remain unchanged as the result of the budget review in 2006.
|DEFRA's Executive Agencies||Capital budget allocation (before the 2006 budget review) (£ million)||Capital budget allocation (after the 2006 budget review) (£ million)||Percentage change|
Centre for Environment, Fisheries and Aquaculture Science (CEFAS)
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