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26 July 2007 : Column 1256Wcontinued
|Table 3: employment by sex; Yorkshire and the Humber|
|12 months ending||Level( 1)||Rate( 2) (percentage)||Level( 1)||Rate( 2) (percentage)||Level( 1)||Rate( 2) (percentage)|
|(1) Persons aged 16 and over.|
(2) Persons of working agemales aged 16 to 64 and females aged 16 to 59.
Estimates are subject to sampling variability. Changes in the estimates over time should be treated with particular caution.
Annual local area Labour Force Survey; Annual Population Survey
Mary Creagh: To ask the Secretary of State for Innovation, Universities and Skills what discussions he has had with ministerial colleagues on the provision of youth training opportunities in the public sector. 
Mr. Lammy: Around a third of the current total of 250,000 apprenticeships are being delivered in the public sector. We want to expand apprenticeships to meet Lord Leitchs ambition for 500,000 apprentices in learning in the UK (400,000 in England) by 2020. I will be speaking to my ministerial colleagues about this over the coming weeks.
Norman Baker: To ask the Prime Minister what criteria apply in deciding which ordinary written parliamentary questions of which no previous notice has been given shall be answered on the next day. 
Helen Goodman: I have been asked to reply.
All Ministers aim to answer all parliamentary questions as soon as possible.
Mr. Touhig: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what discussions he has held with Welsh ministers on the possible devolution of responsibility for criminal justice to the National Assembly for Wales. 
Mr. Carmichael: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how many receptions were held at Gwydyr House in each of the last five years. 
Mr. Hain: The following is a breakdown of the number of receptions hosted year on year in Gwydyr House.
Mr. Carmichael: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how much his Department spent on stationery in each of the last five years. 
Mr. Hain: Stationery is supplied under a general office supplies contract, and its cost within the total is not identified separately.
Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales when he expects the draft National Assembly for Wales (Legislative Competence) Order 2007 to be laid before the House. 
Mr. Hain: The proposed draft order was placed in the Vote Office and Library of the House today, 26 July 2007. Copies can also be downloaded via the Wales Office website.
Andrew George: To ask the hon. Member for North Devon, representing the House of Commons Commission, what estimate he has made of the amount of paper required to distribute copies of the Official Report to all right hon. and hon. Members' Westminster and constituency offices during a sitting week. 
Nick Harvey: Copies of the daily part of the Official Report are not distributed to all right hon. and hon. Members' offices, but 252 copies are distributed to the offices or other addresses of Members who have specifically requested such a distribution by completing a sessional demand form.
In all an average of 1,758 copies of the Official Report are produced daily. The total amount of paper, including run-up, waste and trimmings, used in the production of the daily part of the Official Report during a typical sitting week of four sitting days is approximately 3 tonnes. The 252 copies distributed on request to the Members' offices equate to an amount of paper of just under 450 kg.
Mark Pritchard: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform if he will undertake research on the sulphur content of coal mined in the United Kingdom. 
Malcolm Wicks: Information about the typical sulphur content of UK coal reserves is readily available in a range of technical publications. In addition, integrated pollution prevention and control regulations require regular sampling and analysis of the sulphur content of coal being used in processes within their scope, such as electricity generation, with the amalgamated reported data being published by the Environment Agency. This is in addition to any sampling carried out by UK producers and their customers to ensure that shipments comply with contract terms.
Mike Wood: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what representations his Department has made to electricity providers on disruptions to the electricity supply in the last three years. 
Electrical inspectors in my Department receive reports of significant interruptions to electricity supply and investigate incidents if the circumstances are warranted. For example inspectors looked into the interruptions at Hurst, London, in October 2006 (National Gridtransformer failure); Carnaby Street, London, in July 2006 (EDFtransformer and underground cable failure); in southern Scotland in March 2006 (storm
impact); at Bournemouth in November 2005 (Southern Electricityfire affecting overhead power line); at Carlisle in January 2005 (United Utilitiessubstation flooded); and at Birmingham in February 2004 (Aquila now Central Networksfire in cable tunnel).
Inspectors also look into circumstances of specific localised power failures affecting individual customers, if problems remain unresolved.
My officials also liaise closely with electricity companies on an ongoing basis to ensure arrangements are in place to handle large-scale emergency situations.
Mike Wood: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what records his Department keeps of disruptions to the electricity supply. 
Malcolm Wicks: My Department maintains records of significant interruptions to electricity supply in GB.
These are reported to the Department in accordance with regulation 32 of the Electricity Safety, Quality and Continuity Regulations 2002 as amended. Electricity transmission and distribution companies are required to report incidents affecting 20 MW of demand or more for more than three minutes, or 5 MW of demand or more for more than one hour, or 5,000 customers or more for more than one hour.
Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform if he will have a meeting with the gas and electricity suppliers, smart meter manufacturers and environmental stakeholders including Energywatch and the Carbon Trust to discuss the Governments plans for smart meters. 
Malcolm Wicks: My Department has had and will continue to have further discussion on its proposals for smart meters with a range of interested parties, including energy suppliers, metering manufacturers and environmental stakeholders. The Government have also indicated that they will consult on the implementation of proposals in the context of their ambition to see a roll-out of smart meters within 10 years.
Chris Huhne: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what steps his Department has taken to raise awareness with the public and business of obligations and responsibilities relating to the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Directive. 
Malcolm Wicks: The WEEE regulations place a number of obligations on producers and retailers of Electrical and Electronic Equipment (EEE) to provide information to consumers as to how best they can dispose of their WEEE to help protect the environment. From 1 July consumers are receiving information from retailers when they buy a new item of electrical equipment on how they can do this.
A number of trade associations have been helping to raise awareness among their members. The Department
has organised roadshows, seminars and mailouts as well as press and publicity in national, regional and trade publications. Further briefing events will be taking place in September across the UK for small businesses.
Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (1) what measures are in place in the Energy Development Unit to govern gifts and hospitality provided by energy companies; and if he will make a statement; 
(2) what the total value is of gifts and hospitality received by the Energy Development Unit from energy companies in each year since 1997. 
Malcolm Wicks: All civil servants in the Department are required to follow the Department's guidance on the acceptance of hospitality and gifts, set out in the staff handbook.
The guidance recognises that, in the business world, hospitality is a common and well established means of maintaining working relationships and conducting business and that, in these circumstances, civil servants may accept it when the issues of propriety and possible conflicts of interest have been properly considered.
Under this guidance, a gifts and hospitality register was established in 1998, on which is registered all gifts over £10 in value and all material hospitality accepted.
The register was not set up to record the estimated value of gifts or hospitality until 2001 and the guidance does not require estimates to be entered when they may not be known or meaningful, for instance in the case of lunches or dinners. The following table shows the total of the values recorded between 2001 and 22 July 2007, and the percentage of entries where no value was given.
|Value of gifts and hospitality received from energy companies: 2001-07|
|Year||Value recorded (£)||Percentage that were not given a value|
|(1) To 22 July|
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