|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
Mr. Burns: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what steps his Department is taking to develop viable alternative fuels; and if he will make a statement. 
Malcolm Wicks [holding answer 16 June 2008]: The UK needs a diverse mix of low-carbon energy sources to contribute to our energy and climate change goals. The Energy White Paper set out the Government's policy to tackling our key challenges and the guiding principle of market access to all the options available so we can have a diverse and increasingly low carbon energy mix, enabling us to respond to the rapidly changing challenges we will face in the future.
The challenge of moving towards a lower carbon economy requires us to develop a portfolio of low carbon energy technologies such as carbon abatement technologies, hydrogen and fuel cells, nuclear power and renewables. On 19 November 2007, the Prime Minister announced the launch of the Government competition for a full scale demonstration of carbon, capture and storage technologies on a coal fired power plant and on 10 January my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State invited companies to bring forward proposals to build
new nuclear power stations. In the summer the Government will launch a consultation on what more we should do to increase renewable energy use to meet our share of the EU 2020 renewables target.
Public sector funding for low carbon technology innovation is being delivered through the Research Councils, the Technology Strategy Board, Energy Technologies Institute and the Environmental Transformation Fund. These bodies work closely together to ensure that funding activities are complementary and together effectively supports a portfolio of technologies.
Malcolm Wicks [holding answer 16 June 2008]: The Department and Research Council expenditure on research into alternative energies since 1996-97 is set out as follows. The technologies included are bioenergy, hydrogen, solar/PV, wave and tidal and wind.
|BERR Alternative Energy research spend|
|The Research Council spend, which includes fusion|
In addition, the Research Councils have supported further research relating to energy in the work of the Tyndall Centre for Climate Change Research, which has some £15.6 million funding from Research Councils over 2000 to 2009, and in the work of the UK Energy Research Centre which commenced operation in 2004, with a budget of £13.9 million for 2004 to 2009.
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what
proportion of the UK's renewable energy generation target is planned to be met from generation in Scotland; and what recent discussions he has had with the Scottish Executive on the matter. 
Malcolm Wicks [holding answer 20 June 2008]: The European Commission's proposed target of 15 per cent. renewable energy in the UK by 2020 does not specify where in the UK renewables should be located. The Government will consult over the summer on what more we should do to increase renewable energy use to meet the UK's share of the target.
Gregory Barker: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what assessment his Department has made of the potential of solar (a) hot water and (b) photovoltaics to contribute to the UK's share of the EUs 2020 renewable energy target; and if he will make a statement. 
Malcolm Wicks: We will be assessing the contribution that different technologies, including solar thermal hot water and solar photovoltaics, can make to meeting the 2020 renewable energy targets through our renewable energy strategy consultation document that will be published in the summer.
John Penrose: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform when he plans to publish the strategic environmental assessment of sites for tidal stream generation in English and Welsh waters. 
Malcolm Wicks: A strategic environmental assessment (SEA) is a requirement for all offshore commercial projects that form part of a plan or programme e.g. offshore wind farms. However, in order to design a suitable SEA for commercial marine renewable, adequate knowledge of pre-commercial marine renewables needs to be acquired. There are insufficient data available at present to test different scenarios under an SEA. Therefore, an SEA would be unlikely to provide much helpful information at this stage as it would be very difficult to predict impacts of marine renewable technologies prior to their deployment for demonstration. This position is set out in our Guidance on Consenting Arrangements in England and Wales for a Pre-Commercial Demonstration Phase for Wave and Tidal Stream Energy Devices (Marine Renewables) http://www.berr.gov.uk/files/filel5470.pdf . Once sufficient data becomes available from demonstration projects we will review the need to publish an SEA of sites for tidal stream generation. Completion of an SEA will be a pre-condition for the start of any plan or programme for a commercial phase and will be subject to full public consultation.
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform if he will make a statement on the procurement procedures
followed by UKTI in respect of the contract recently awarded to Greater London Enterprise Ltd. 
Mr. Thomas: UKTI's South East team awarded a grant, not a contract for services, to GLE Ltd. It was awarded following the publication of a bidding opportunity entitled "Offer of Grant Funding to Deliver UKTI Trade Services in the South East" issued 4 September 2007. All relevant procedures were correctly followed.
Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what has been the cost to the public purse recently for the decision by UKTI to tender the contract hitherto held by WSX and subsequently awarded to Greater London Enterprise (GLE) Ltd, broken down by (a) the costs of the tender exercise itself and (b) changes to the annual costs resulting from the decision to award the contract to GLE Ltd. 
Mr. Thomas: We do not separately identify non-direct costs associated with the award of grant. The value of grant offer for 2008-09 was £6,000 less than the value of the grant offer originally issued to WSX for the 2007-08 financial year.
Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform for what reason the contract let by UKTI to Greater London Enterprise Ltd was signed while the internal appeal lodged by WSX was outstanding. 
Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform on what date discussions first took place between UKTI and Greater London Enterprise (GLE) Ltd on the contract subsequently awarded to GLE Ltd; and on what date WSX was notified that the contract they held would be put out to tender. 
Mr. Thomas: All registered bidders were given the opportunity to talk to UKTIs South East team to discuss the offer of grant funding. The first contact with GLE Ltd. was on 12 September 2007. WSX were notified about UKTIs intention to competitively bid the offer of grant funding on or before 6 July 2007.
Mr. Clifton-Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform how many UK Trade and Investment staff are employed (a) in each region in the UK and (b) in each country outside the UK. 
Mr. Thomas: UK Trade and Investment is not an employer in its own right. For the majority of its human resource requirements it draws on civil service staff employed by one or other of its two parent Departments, BERR and the FCO. Overseas, most of the people working for UKTI are from the FCO; in the UK regional network people are mainly international trade advisers, drawn from the Government office network or people with business experience working for delivery partners to deliver UKTI services.
The following table shows the number of UKTI staff employed by each country, and are based on the latest consolidated and agreed figures with the FCO (including the transfer of Defence and Security organisation posts from MoD to the FCO). Full-time equivalents (FTEs) are rounded to nearest tenth.
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|