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4 Mar 2008 : Column 2271W—continued

Air Pollution: Hertfordshire

Anne Main: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what (a) resources and (b) advice are issued to councils to help improve air quality management areas; and what change there has been in the air quality in (a) St. Albans and (b) Hertfordshire over the last 10 years. [189483]

Jonathan Shaw: Local authorities have statutory duties for local air quality management under the Environment Act 1995. To help local authorities carry out their duties, the Department runs an air quality grant programme, which allows local authorities to bid for a share of the approximately £2.3 million available. The Department also provides statutory guidance on local air quality management, which is in the process of being revised for publication later in 2008. In addition, DEFRA funds the UK Air Quality Archive website and air quality help desks, providing specialist advice to local authorities.

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St. Albans and Hertfordshire are not on the Automatic Urban and Rural Network through which DEFRA monitors air quality. However, St. Albans district council undertakes continuous ambient air quality monitoring as part of the Hertfordshire and Bedfordshire Air Pollution Monitoring Network (

Local authorities are responsible for local air quality management under part IV of the Environment Act 1995, which includes the responsibility to report on levels of air pollution in their area assessed against the objectives contained in the Air Quality (England) Regulations 2000 (as amended).

Animal Welfare

Mr. Morley: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs which of his Department’s advisory non-departmental public bodies are concerned with animal health and welfare; whether an animal welfare specialist is on the board of each; and if he will make a statement. [189967]

Jonathan Shaw: The information requested is set out in the following table:

Non-departmental public body Animal welfare specialist?

Farm Animal Welfare Council


Animal Health and Welfare Strategy England Implementation Group (EIG)


Independent Scientific Group on TB in Cattle

No animal welfare specialist but members have related experience in differing fields including wildlife diseases/badger ecology

Spongiform Encephalopathy Advisory Committee (SEAC)

No animal welfare specialist but deputy chair is a practicing vet and a member is Head of the Department of Pathology and Infectious Diseases at the Royal Veterinary College

Veterinary Products Committee

No animal welfare specialist but members are experienced in various fields including veterinary surgeons and toxicologists

Veterinary Residues Committee

The Committee’s terms of reference do not cover animal welfare

Animal Welfare: Horses

Mr. Hancock: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many prosecutions have been initiated under section 4 of the Animal Welfare Act 2006 (a) in total and (b) in relation to alleged offences of excessive whipping of a racehorse; and if he will make a statement. [190047]

Jonathan Shaw: The Animal Welfare Act 2006 came into force in England on 6 April 2007 (and in Wales on 27 March 2007).

Court proceedings data for prosecutions under the Act for 2007 will be available this autumn. No separate record is maintained for alleged offences relating to racehorses.

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Bovine Tuberculosis: Compensation

Mr. Steen: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how much was spent by his Department on compensation to farmers whose cattle were slaughtered as inconclusive reactors to tuberculosis in each of the last three years. [190578]

Jonathan Shaw [holding answer 29 February 2008]: The following table shows the total amount of compensation paid to farmers in England, in each of the last three years, for cattle compulsorily slaughtered for bovine tuberculosis control reasons.

Compensation paid to farmers for all cattle slaughtered under bovine tuberculosis control measures( 1)
£ million







(1) The compensation payments are for England only.

The Government require the compulsory slaughter of inconclusive reactor cattle that fail to resolve after three tests. Repeat inconclusive reactors must be deemed to be reactors under EU legislation.

The way that these cattle are recorded and slaughtered means that we are unable to provide a breakdown showing the amount of compensation paid for this sub-group of cattle.

Bovine Tuberculosis: Disease Control

Mr. Steen: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what estimate he has made of the number of cattle slaughtered in (a) Devon and (b) England which had (i) tuberculosis and (ii) lesions in lymph glands and lungs in each of the last five years; and if he will make a statement. [190577]

Jonathan Shaw [holding answer 29 February 2008]: The following table shows the number of cattle slaughtered under bovine tuberculosis (TB) control measures in (a) Devon and (b) England in each of the last five years, with the number of cattle with demonstrable post-mortem evidence of infection (for instance, visible lesions of TB and/or isolation of the bovine TB bacterium on culture).

Devon England
Number of cattle slaughtered( 1) Number of “confirmed” cases Number of cattle slaughtered( 1) Number of “confirmed” cases


























(1) Includes cattle slaughtered as skin and gamma-interferon test reactors, skin test inconclusive reactors and direct contacts.
(2) 2005-07 figures are provisional, subject to change as more data become available.

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Data on the number of cattle displaying TB lesions in particular organs or parts of the carcase is not centrally collated in an electronic format.

Following a TB breakdown, we aim to carry out post-mortem inspections of all the slaughtered cattle and to take tissue samples from the reactor (or if several animals must be removed, from a representative subset of those), to attempt isolation and molecular typing of the causative organism in the laboratory. This is done to support epidemiological investigations and management of the incident, rather than to validate the ante-mortem test results.

Failure to detect lesions of TB by post-mortem examination, or to culture M. bovis in the laboratory, does not imply that a test reactor was not infected with bovine TB. In the early stages of this disease, it is not always possible to observe lesions during abattoir post-mortem examination and, due to the fastidious nature of this organism, it is very difficult to isolate it from tissue samples without visible lesions.

Meaningful “confirmation” proportions for TB test reactors cannot be provided, as substantial numbers of skin and gIFN positive animals are not subject to laboratory culture, for example, once infection has already been identified in other cattle from the same herd.

Business Resource Efficiency and Waste: Finance

Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the business resource efficiency and waste (BREW) budget is for 2008-09; and what funding has been allocated to each of the organisations within BREW. [190831]

Joan Ruddock: The business resource efficiency and waste (BREW) programme was set up to return £284 million raised from landfill tax back to businesses between 2005 and 2008 through resource efficiency and waste projects.

From 2008-09, budgets previously under the BREW programme will be amalgamated into a single, more focused approach of allocating DEFRA funding to increase resource efficiency and reduce carbon emissions.

Funding for business resource efficiency will be focused on providing the necessary evidence to encourage businesses to change behaviour, rather than funding profit-making business beyond that point. This move forms part of a purposeful strategy by DEFRA towards behaviour change for a low-carbon Britain.

Funding allocations for 2008-09 were announced by the Secretary of State on 21 February. The following table sets out DEFRA's allocations for 2008-09 for delivery bodies working on business resource efficiency. Except where indicated, the allocations in the areas listed were previously provided through the BREW programme.

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Resource and capital funding for 2008-09
Activity (1) £ million

Action Sustainability - promoting sustainable procurement amongst businesses


BREW Centre for Local Authorities (2), (3) - support for local authorities working with their local business community to become more resource efficient


Carbon Trust (4) - accelerating the move to a low carbon economy by working with organisations to reduce carbon emissions and develop commercial low carbon technologies


Centre for Remanufacture and Reuse (Oakdene Hollins) (2) - promoting remanufacture and reuse


Construction Resources and Waste Platform (AEA Technologies and the Building Research Establishment) (2) - liaison with the construction industry and filling evidence gaps on construction resource efficiency


Environment Agency - programmes on waste protocols (shared with WRAP), NetRegs and former BREW waste crime programme


Envirowise - embedding resource efficiency into business decision-making


Implementing Energy White Paper Commitments (Market Transformation Programme) - raising the efficiency of energy-using products


National Industrial Symbiosis Programme (NISP) - industrial symbiosis - value from unused resources


Business Reuse Fund (Royal Society of Wildlife Trusts -RSWT) (5) - obtaining value from unused resources


Technology Programme (6) - supporting technology and innovation


Waste Data Strategy - research and development of waste data, particularly on business waste


Waste and Resources Action Programme (WRAP) (4) - encouraging and enabling businesses and consumers to be more efficient in their use of materials and recycle more things more often


1. Also relevant is funding to the Regional Development Agencies (RDAs), which have received ringfenced BREW programme throughout the programme period, to co-ordinate business resource efficiency activities at the regional level and to conduct various regionally-specific projects. This was in addition to the DEFRA contribution to the RDA single programme ("single pot"), which gives RDAs the ability to address national priorities, on which they are tasked by Government (including activities to promote business resource efficiency), as well as regional objectives. With Government tasking and funding now fully aligned through the single pot, RDAs will no longer receive separate funding for resource efficiency activities. Total funding for RDAs from DEFRA in 2008-09 is £53 million.
2. In 2006-07, DEFRA funded nine pilot projects to conduct innovative work in the area of business resource efficiency. Seven of these activities were scaled up in 2007-08. Following a review of the activities, the three identified activities will continue to be funded by DEFRA in 2008-09, with the remaining four no longer receiving specific DEFRA funding. DEFRA is working with the latter four projects, listed , to ensure that learning is embedded in wider activity on business resource efficiency:
(i) Business Link Kent: Business Link Diagnostic Tool;
(ii) Community Recycling Network: Compost Doctors;
(iii) Environment Practice: Mentoring for Success in Construction; and
(iv) White Young Green: Sector specific environmental best practice programmes using a BS8555-phased approach.
3. The title of the BREW Centre for Local Authorities is under reconsideration, given that the BREW programme has been amalgamated into a single, more focused approach of allocating DEFRA funding to increase resource efficiency and reduce carbon emissions.
4. Activities undertaken by the waste and resource action programme (WRAP) and the Carbon Trust cover a range of areas, including but not restricted to business resource efficiency. For example, in the case of the Carbon Trust, £47.4 million is being provided from the domestic environmental transformation fund to support the development and deployment of low carbon technologies. DEFRA is in discussions with WRAP and the Carbon Trust about the appropriate spread of work between these various areas.
5. In 2006-07 and 2007-08, the Royal Society of Wildlife Trusts (RSWT) has managed the business reuse fund, which provides grant funding for activities involving the third sector to promote materials re-use among businesses. Following discussions with DEFRA, RSWT chose not to bid for future funding for the continuation of the fund.
6. The technology programme, overseen by the Technology Strategy Board, has received funding throughout the period of the BREW programme. The funds have been used to promote research and development into environmental technologies. BREW funding is additional to funds provided by the Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills (DIUS), the sponsoring department of the board. From 2008-09, DEFRA will no longer provide funding to the programme, but will work with DIUS to seek opportunities for integrating environmental sustainability considerations into the work of the programme.

Cuckmere Estuary

Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how much the Environment Agency has spent on its plans to alter the Cuckmere Estuary; and what further expenditure is expected. [190563]

Mr. Woolas: The Environment Agency has spent £527,000 on the Cuckmere Estuary Strategy, to date, and expects further expenditure of £20,000.

Departmental Co-ordination: Computers

Steve Webb: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what discussions he has had with Ministers from other Departments on the merits of virtualisation of server hardware. [187903]

Jonathan Shaw: New DEFRA transactional systems of any magnitude are now developed and deployed by IBM on server infrastructure that is based on the principles of virtualisation. DEFRA currently has over 120 separate server images mapped across approximately 12 physical servers. We adopt this approach to reduce IT costs by using resources efficiently and to reduce our carbon footprint.

Discussions on the merits and best practice in deployment of the virtualisation of server hardware are held at official level with other Government Departments through the Cabinet Office chaired Chief Technology Officers Council and with our supplier IBM.

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