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The latest figures on early education places for three and four-year-olds in England were published in Statistical First Release 19/2007 Provision for children under five years of age in EnglandJanuary 2007 in May, which is available on my Departments website:
(1) The 2007 information was collected from early years providers as part of the Early Years Census (EYC) data collection exercise and is based on 19,892 out of the expected 20,432 returns.
(1) Data source: Training and Development Agency for Schools.
|Annual average daily traffic (AADT)( 1)|
|County||A11 section description||September 2002-August 2003||September 2003-August 2004||September 2004-August 2005||September 2005-August 2006||September 2006-August 2007|
|(1)Annual average daily traffic flows (AADT), is defined as the average of flows for all days within the year.|
Andrew Mackinlay: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if she will place in the Library documents or information which her Department, or the Civil Aviation Authority, has in respect of the claim by Flybe's cabin crews that poisonous fumes have been leaking into the cabins of Flybe's fleet of BAE 146 aircraft; and if she will make a statement. 
Jim Fitzpatrick: The Department has received no documents specifically from Flybe cabin crews although we are, of course, aware of concerns about cabin air and have had contact with Flybe management about our plans for research.
The CAA's mandatory occurrence report scheme (MORs) database contains reports of smoke/fume events submitted by UK operators of BAE 146 aircraft. In accordance with the CAA's regulatory practice these reports do not identify operators or aircraft registration numbers. I am arranging for the papers to be placed in the Libraries of the House.
In January 2004 the Air Accidents Investigation Branch (AAIB) reported on fume events involving BAE 146 and other types of aircraft. Please see the link below. The AAIB will continue to investigate reports of all serious incidents.
Andrew Mackinlay: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport whether the Air Accidents Investigations branch plans to investigate claims that (a) poisonous fumes and (b) bleed air including toxic particles have been sucked into the cabins of Flybe's fleet of BAE 146 aircraft; and if she will make a statement. 
Jim Fitzpatrick: In January 2004 the AAIB published a comprehensive report of an inspector's investigation into a cabin fumes' related incident occurring to a BAe 146 aircraft (registration G-JEAK) during its descent into Birmingham airport on 5 November 2000. The scope of the investigation however was widened considerably when further similar incidents, some involving other aircraft types, were reported. The report made five safety recommendations, to both the CAA and the FAA, concerning preventative measures and future research. Tests and research are continuing at the present time.
The AAIB investigate all accidents and incidents falling within the Civil Aviation (Investigation of Air Accidents and Incidents) Regulations 1996. Occurrences falling outside of these regulations are reported using the mandatory occurrence report (MOR) scheme to the Civil Aviation Authority.
Jim Fitzpatrick: Measures to improve road safety for cyclists include providing better infrastructure, promoting cycle training, improved training and testing for motorists and encouraging cyclists to protect themselves, by making themselves conspicuous and by wearing a safety helmet.
The new edition of the Highway Code, published in September 2007, includes enhanced advice to all road users to look out for and be aware of vulnerable road users, including cyclists. To make drivers more aware of cyclists the theory test question bank contains a large number of questions about vulnerable road users. The screen-based theory test allows the use of digitised video clips to help test hazard perception with moving images, which include cyclists. The practical driving test has been lengthened, providing a greater opportunity for encountering cyclists.
We concentrate our cycle safety publicity on teenagers and younger children, as these are the most vulnerable groups. We have run various cycle safety campaigns over the last 10 years. Currently, cycling safety messages for younger children are included on the Hedgehogs website including advice and games. Last year we produced an online advertisement for children called No helmet, no ride, which encourages children to wear a cycle helmet, which last ran in the summer of this year.
There is also the cyclesense website aimed at teenage cyclists, giving advice and tips of cycling safety. This year in an MTV/THINK! competition teenagers were asked to come up with ideas for TV commercials about road safety, including cycling, aimed at their peers. This activity ran over five months and the three best ideas were produced as TV commercials and teens voted for their favourite ad online. Invisible, about being seen when out cycling and wearing a helmet, came second.
The Departments leaflet Drive Safe Cycle Safe also encourages drivers and cyclists to share the road safely. The Department has grant funded a number of projects to improve road safety for cyclists including a RoSPA produced DVD on safety for cyclists and lorries.
A commitment was reached at the EU-US summit in April this year, for the EU and US to work together to develop a set of compatible specifications for pure biofuels, taking into account existing standards; work to promote strategies for sustainable biomass cultivation, including standards as appropriate; establish a roadmap for developing compatible standards for biofuels; continue analysis of biofuel resource assessment; and exchange information on the respective EU-US research agendas on second generation biofuel sources. In addition, the EU and US affirmed their commitment to reach agreement on transatlantic research cooperation under the bilateral EU-US science and technology agreement, which will focus on the development of second generation biofuels.
Jim Fitzpatrick: I announced during the debate on the RTFO Order in the Seventh Delegated Legislation Committee on 23 October that the Government would commission an independent review of the likely impacts of the Renewable Transport Fuel Obligation (RTFO) on the other UK industries that use tallow as a feedstock.
The Government will be finalising the scope of, and terms of reference for the review, over the coming weeks. The review will cover the wider environmental advantages and disadvantages, as well as the economic impacts, of using tallow as a biodiesel feedstock. It will be informed by stakeholders from the relevant industries, including the biodiesel, oleochemicals, soap and cleaning products industries, and by other relevant stakeholders. I intend that it should report by April 2008.
Bill Wiggin: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what discussions she has had with her counterpart in the Welsh Assembly Government on the funding of British Waterways; and if she will make a statement; 
Bill Wiggin: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport whether her Department plans to make a financial contribution to British Waterways; whether she has had discussions with British Waterways on funding; and if she will make a statement. 
Jim Fitzpatrick: Defra is the single Government sponsor of British Waterways (BW) in England and Wales. It provides core funding towards the upkeep of its waterways. Other Government Departments have the flexibility to fund the inland waterways direct where they can deliver specific policy requirements, eg through grants for regeneration and freight projects where funds are provided to reflect the contribution of inland waterways to departmental objectives.
Earlier this year, the Department provided BW with Freight Facility Grant (FFG) funding of £1.37m towards the cost of constructing the lock in the Prescott Channel. When complete, the lock will enable the transport of construction materials by water to the Olympic site. BW has also applied for an additional £0.5 million relating to the transport of materials by water to the Stratford City development site. A decision on whether to agree to this additional funding has not yet been made.
The Department has had no other discussions with BW on funding. However, I understand that Defra and BW were working closely together on planning for the CSR07 period in the context of the Department's overall priorities and financial pressures. Defra is also working with BW on a new long term strategy for a sustainable network that delivers wider government priorities including regeneration, protection of historic and natural environment, well-being and freight.
Before the creation of the Department for Environment , Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA) and Department for Transport (DfT) in 2001, policy for transport and sponsorship of British Waterways (BW) rested with the Department for the Environment, Transport and the Regions (DETR). DETR funding provided to BW between 1997 and 2001 is set out as follows:
|Amount (£ million)|
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