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Harry Cohen: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what her most recent estimate is of the debts left to the public sector following Metronets failure to fulfil its contract with London Underground; and how she expects those debts to be met. 
Ms Rosie Winterton: It is for Metronets Administrators, working with Transport for London and London Underground, to identify the best route out of Administration. In advance of their conclusions, it continues to be inappropriate to speculate on any public sector financial impacts and, therefore, how such impacts would be handled.
Mr. Stewart Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what assessment she has made of the performance of First Capital Connect services between Peterborough and London over the last five years. 
Jim Fitzpatrick: Since the commencement of the First Capital Connect (FCC) franchise on 1 April 2006, the Public Performance Measure (PPM) Moving Annual Average for the Great Northern route, which includes services between Peterborough and London, has increased from 89.56 per cent. to 92.35 per cent. in the most recent complete operating period. FCC recently achieved a period PPM of 96.09 per cent. on the GN route, which is the highest achieved since franchising in the 1990s.
Jim Fitzpatrick: The Welsh Assembly Government are responsible for the services provided within Wales and across the border by Arriva Trains Wales. Details of the number of passengers who have travelled on railway lines in Wales each year since 1992 are not held by the Department for Transport.
Statistics on numbers of passengers on the railway network are published by the Office of Rail Regulation (ORR) in the National Rail Trends Yearbook editions, which are available in the House Library or from their website: www.rail-reg.gov.uk.
Jenny Willott: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many railway carriages were used on railway lines in Wales in each year since 1992; how many seats were provided in those carriages in each of those years; and if she will make a statement. 
Jim Fitzpatrick: The Welsh Assembly Government are responsible for the services provided within Wales and across the border by Arriva Trains Wales. Details of the number of carriages that were used on railway lines in Wales in each year since 1992 and the number of seats provided in those carriages are not held by the Department.
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) which local authorities have submitted bids for funding from the congestion element of the Transport Innovation Fund in each year since its creation; and which were (a) accepted and (b) rejected; 
(2) which local authorities have applied for funding from the Transport Innovation Fund; which have been (a) accepted and (b) rejected; and what form of congestion charging, road pricing or workplace parking taxes the successful ones are proposing. 
Ms Rosie Winterton: Money from the Transport Innovation Fund (TIF) will become available from 2008-09. Ten areas have been awarded pump-priming funding to support the development of Transport Innovation Fund packages that address local congestion problems combining demand management, including road pricing, with better public transport. So far one substantive TIF bid for funding has been received. The Association of Greater Manchester Authorities (AGMA) have submitted a business case for Transport Innovation Fund funding for a package to tackle congestion by combining transport investment and road pricing. Details are available on http://www.gmfuturetransport.co.uk/. We are currently assessing the case.
Mr. Ruffley: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many road traffic (a) accidents and (b) fatalities there were on the A14 in Suffolk in each year since 1997; and how many involved drivers under the age of 21 years in each case. 
|Number of reported personal injury road accidents and fatalities on the A14 in Suffolk; 1997-2006|
|Accidents (a)||Fatalities (b)|
|Number of reported personal injury road accidents involving drivers under the age of 21 and resulting fatalities on the A14 in Suffolk:1997-2006|
|Accidents (a)||Fatalities (b)|
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what provisions control whether hackney carriages outside London may collect customers after being hailed off the street, outside a taxi rank. 
Ms Rosie Winterton: The law allows the drivers of licensed hackney carriages to accept immediate hirings from passengers either when the cabs are standing at a rank or in response to a hailing in the street. The drivers are, however, only permitted to accept such hirings while located in the area for which they are licensed. If a driver drops off a passenger outside his own licensing area he cannot respond to a street hailing (or stand at a rank) until he returns to his own licensing area.
Jim Fitzpatrick: Our latest estimate for the United Kingdom is that in 2005 there were about 2.1 million licensed vehicles being driven uninsured (about 6.5 per cent. of the UK vehicle fleet). Information is not held by area.
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs which beneficiaries of the Aggregates Levy Sustainability Fund received more than £50,000 in any one year in each year since the inception of the levy. 
Jonathan Shaw: DEFRAs Aggregates Levy Sustainability Fund database contains details of overall amounts paid out to projects from April 2004 onwards, but we do not have annual payments recorded centrally. I have arranged for a list of beneficiaries that have received over £50,000 from the Aggregates Levy Sustainability Fund, since April 2004, to be placed in the Library of the House.
Mr. Gray: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what consideration he has given to applying for EU emergency funds under Articles 87 and 88 of the EC Treaty to compensate farmers for flood damage to crops and livestock. 
Mr. Woolas: Articles 87 and 88 of the European Community Treaty do not provide access to European Union (EU) emergency funds. The categories (which also include the guidelines and regulations that have since been formulated on this issue) relate to aid, funded by individual member states rather than the EU, that we are allowed to pay in certain circumstances (state aid).
The UK has submitted an application to the EU Solidarity Fund in the wake of this summers flooding. However, the purpose of the fund is to assist member state Governments with costs that arise from the relief efforts and those of returning infrastructure to the condition it was in before the disaster occurred. It is unlikely that compensation to private business, including farmers, for losses arising from the floods would be eligible. As part of the application process, the Government will agree with the Commission how any support received from the Solidarity Fund will be used.
Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) what discussions he has had with the European Commission on the release of the report on the progress of the transition towards the ban on battery cages for egg production due to come into effect in 2012; 
(3) what assessment he has made of the state of readiness of the British egg industry to implement the Laying Hens Directive, with particular reference to the banning of battery cages for egg production from 2012. 
Jonathan Shaw: My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State (Hilary Benn) recently met with Commissioner Kyprianou and stressed the urgency of publishing the Commissions report. The report will consider the various systems for keeping laying hens, their health and environmental impact, socio-economic implications and effects on the Communitys economic partners.
A regulatory impact assessment was produced in 2002 when Council Directive 99/74/EC was transposed into domestic legislation. This will be updated in the light of the Commissions report and will consider such aspects as the impact of the 2012 conventional cage ban on the industry and trading patterns. Currently, over half of UK egg production is from caged birds although, during the last few years, there has been a shift in production methods in the UK from conventional cages to enriched cages and alternative systems.
Bill Wiggin: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how the report Badgers and Cattle TB: Final Report of the Independent Scientific Group was peer reviewed; who peer reviewed it; what feedback was received from the peer review; and if he will make a statement. 
Jonathan Shaw: The Independent Scientific Groups (ISG) Final Report as whole has not been peer-reviewed. However, most of the work has been published in leading, independently peer-reviewed scientific journals. Appendix J of the Report (available on the DEFRA website and in the Libraries of the House) summarises their published scientific papers and other important published material.
Formal independent audits of core aspects of the trial were undertaken at appropriate intervals. These included the field procedures of surveying, social group delineation and badger removal, welfare aspects of the way trapped badgers were dispatched, post-mortem protocols and bacteriological culture procedures, as well as procedures for data collection, handling and statistical analysis. Appendix E of the Report lists the programme of audits undertaken throughout the trial.
Mr. Morley: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether he has commissioned research on the carbon footprint of those on low incomes compared to those on high incomes. 
Mr. Woolas: As part of its pre-feasibility study into personal carbon trading, the Government will be looking at, among other things, carbon footprints of different groups to assess the equity impact of personal carbon trading.
This will follow initial work conducted by the Centre for Sustainable Energy (CSE) in November 2006, entitled A Rough Guide to Individual Carbon Trading. One of the findings of this report was that, in general, those on lower incomes tend to emit less carbon dioxide than average, while those on higher incomes tend to emit more carbon dioxide than average. A personal carbon trading system might have the potential to achieve emissions savings in a fairer way than a carbon tax.
A recent piece of work by the CSE, commissioned by DEFRA to help inform development of the post-2011 supplier obligation, further illustrates the correlation between income level and carbon emissions. This study also draws out important variations within income bands, showing that some low-income households have very high consumption levels and some high-income households have very low consumption levels.
Chris Huhne: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if he will make it his policy that (a) any carbon budget he sets out for 2008 to 2012 will require a lower level of emissions in that period than in the preceding five years and (b) that every future budget period will be set at a level lower than its predecessor. 
Mr. Woolas: As set out in the draft Climate Change Bill, the independent Committee on Climate Change will advise the Government on the emissions reduction pathway to achieve the 2020 and 2050 targets. The Committee will advise specifically on the level of carbon budgets, taking into account where carbon savings can be achieved across the economy and the optimum balance between domestic action and international trading in carbon allowances.
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