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14 July 2008 : Column 68Wcontinued
A copy of this is also available from the House of Commons Library.
(b) Regional energy price differentials for industrial consumers are not collected. Industrial prices tend to be driven by tariff negotiations between energy suppliers and individual companies rather than by regional differences.
UK prices for industrial consumers are published in table 3.1.1 of Quarterly Energy Prices.
Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform pursuant to the answer of 2 July 2008, Official Report, column 949W, on energy disconnections, if he will provide a breakdown of the disconnections data given by constituency. 
Malcolm Wicks [holding answer 10 July 2008]: The Office of Gas and Electricity Markets (Ofgem) does not collect data about gas and electricity disconnections by constituency. The disconnection data are collected into a separate region for England, Scotland and Wales, or, by individual energy supplier. Data by supplier were included in the answer of 2 July. In the eight quarters to quarter 3 2007, the last period for which data have been published, the number of disconnections by region were:
|Q4 2005||Q1 2006||Q2 2006||Q3 2006||Q4 2006||Q1 2007||Q2 2007||Q3 2007|
|Q4 2005||Q1 2006||Q2 2006||Q3 2006||Q4 2006||Q1 2007||Q2 2007||Q3 2007|
Mr. Todd: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what funding he has allocated for provision of information to domestic consumers on purchasing their energy supply in 2008-09. 
Malcolm Wicks: The Department does not provide funding for the provision of information to domestic customers on purchasing energy supply. Domestic customers can obtain details of price and level of service offered by energy suppliers from Energywatch, the statutory gas and electricity consumer body, from its website at:
Mr. Dai Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what matters were (a) discussed and (b) decided at the EU Energy Council meeting on 4 and 5 July; and if he will publish on his Departmental website copies of the documents submitted to the meeting. 
Malcolm Wicks: I represented the UK at the informal EU Energy Council on 4-5 July organised by the French presidency. The main discussion was on the renewable energy directive, with the debate focused on the sustainability of biofuels and flexibilities required for the EU to achieve the 20 per cent. renewable energy target in a cost-effective way. There was also an exchange of national best practice on energy efficiency and a presentation on energy security in advance of the 2nd Strategic Energy Review, expected to be published later this year. This was an informal meeting, so no formal decisions were made nor conclusions reached and the Government submitted no documents to the meeting. A post-council written ministerial statement was published in Hansard on 10 July 2008, Official Report, column 79WS.
Danny Alexander: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what estimate he has made of the number and percentage of (a) heating oil and (b) other fuel users living in fuel poverty. 
Malcolm Wicks: The latest available data are for 2005:
|Millions of households fuel poor||Percentage of group fuel poor|
Further details of fuel poverty my main heating fuel are contained in the Fuel Poverty Detailed Tables published as an annex to the Fuel Poverty Strategy Report online at:
Danny Alexander: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform how many and what percentage of (a) heating oil and (b) other fuel users lived in fuel poverty in each of the last 10 years. 
Malcolm Wicks: Splits of fuel poverty in England by use of heating oil and other fuels are only available for the years listed as follows. The data are derived from the English House Conditions Survey in each year.
|Heating oil||Other fuel||All households|
Variation in heating oil fuel poverty levels can be attributable to real changes but will also be effected by the small sample size in the EHCS and the volatility of heating oil prices.
Danny Alexander: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what targets his Department has set on assisting heating oil users in fuel poverty. 
Malcolm Wicks: The Department has joint responsibility with DEFRA to eradicate as far as reasonably practicable fuel poverty in vulnerable households by 2010 in England and in all households by 2016, whatever form of heating they use.
John Battle: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what grant funding is available to businesses in Leeds under the Low Carbon Buildings Programme in 2008-09; and if he will make a statement. 
Malcolm Wicks: The Low Carbon Building programme, with a budget of £86 million, has allocated £30 million to 6,300 projects, including £6.5 million to 154 projects in the private sector. However, funding streams for business are now closed to new applicants. As a result of projects supported under previous funding rounds, we are working closely with the Carbon Trust on a number of private sector projects to raise awareness of the potential for combining microgeneration with energy efficiency to develop low carbon buildings.
By opting to generate their own renewable and low carbon energy businesses can help tackle climate change by moving from being passive users of energy to active production. This can increase self-sufficiency and security of supply in the face of great uncertainty over energy prices. We are looking again at what incentives we can offer to businesses who wish to generate their own renewable energy in the Renewable Energy Strategy Consultation document published in June details of which can be found at:
Wider Government activities to support businesses with an interest in low carbon technologies, include for example, the renewables obligation and the Carbon Trust provides site surveys to organisations looking to reduce their energy demand. Further details are available at:
Lembit Öpik: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform how much his Department has allocated to fund the microgeneration element of (a) the green homes project and (b) the Act on CO2 advice line for 2008-09. 
Malcolm Wicks: The Energy White Paper and recent Renewable Energy Strategy consultation stress the importance of providing advice on distributed energy including microgeneration. I look forward to the responses to the consultation on this issue.
We work closely with Energy Saving Trust, who run the green homes project and Act on CO2 advice line, and manage the Low Carbon Buildings Programme Phase One on our behalf. We are supportive of the green homes project and Act on CO2 advice lines but have not allocated funding specifically for it.
David Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what consideration he has given in the last year to the proposal that the Government serve as a guarantor of the financial bonds the European Commission requires from the Mines Rescue Service Limited for its participation in the research programme of the Research Fund for Coal and Steel; and if he will make a statement. 
Malcolm Wicks [holding answer 2 June 2008]: Over the past year the Coal Forum, which we established in 2006, has considered various aspects of the statutory mines rescue scheme and the company which provides that service (Mines Rescue Service Ltd.), including issues of funding. I am conscious of the position as regards bonds and will continue to explore options which might assist in managing the cash flow implications of the current requirement.
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