|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
Mr. Hoban: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer which projects his Department has commissioned from (a) think tanks and (b) charities in each of the last two years for which figures are available; what the aim of each project was; which think tank or charity was commissioned; and how much was paid. 
Angela Eagle: As there is no clear definition of what constitutes a "think tank" it is not possible to answer the first part of the hon. Gentleman's question. Information relating to project work done by charities could be provided only at disproportionate cost.
Mrs. Villiers: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer when each of his Department's and its agencies' green transport plans were introduced; and if he will place in the Library a copy of each such plan. 
HMRC's green travel strategy is contained within the Department's Sustainable Development Action Plan, which was published in 2007. HMRC also encourages the development of regional green travel plans that are administered on a local level and can be tailored to suit local staff and business needs. HMRC is in the process
of updating its plan to reflect revised baselines and new actions in support of Sir Gus O'Donnell's recent response to feedback from the Sustainable Development Commission. I am willing to place a copy of this revised plan in the Library.
The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) does not have a separate transport plan. The VOA is included in HMRC's Sustainable Development Action Plan (SDAP), which includes a green transport strategy, published in 2007.
Angela Eagle: In 2007-08, overseas travel and subsistence costs for the Treasury were £1,420,000. In respect of total cost for earlier years, I refer to the answer given to the right hon. Member for Maidenhead (Mrs. May) on 25 July 2007, Official Report, column 1186W.
Mr. Love: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how much his Department spent on tax relief under the Mortgage Interest Relief at Source scheme in each of the last 20 years; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Drew: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will develop policies to assist rural motorists who have no alternative to car transport in areas where petrol prices are particularly high. 
Angela Eagle: The Government recognise the pressure that record high fuel prices are placing on motorists, particularly those in rural areas. It is for this reason that the UK continues to lead international efforts to address inefficiencies in the international oil market and increase oil price stability.
In addition, it is for this reason that the Chancellor has announced that the planned 2p per litre increase in fuel duty has been postponed for this year. Fuel duty therefore remains at 50.35p per litre, 17 per cent., lower in real terms than in 1999, when the fuel duty escalator was abolished.
As National Statistician, I have been asked to reply to your recent parliamentary question concerning the annual cost to the Exchequer of calculating the UK's Gross Domestic Product. (220692)
GDP is just one output of the process to compile UK National Accounts, and is based on a large number of data sources. It is compiled according to three approachesthe production, income and expenditure measureseach of which uses different methods and sources. The three approaches are balanced, so that a single estimate of GDP is published in both cash (current prices) and real (constant prices) terms. It is difficult, therefore, to estimate the cost of producing GDP figures alone, but, including the cost of its component sources, we estimate that GDP costs ONS around £10 million to produce.
Details of the full ONS operating costs are available in our annual report.
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer pursuant to the answer of 14 May 2008, Official Report, columns 1625-6W, on stamp duties, (1) whether an energy performance certificate can be used to indicate compliance with zero-carbon status for stamp duty purposes; 
Kitty Ussher: Between October 2007 and June 2008 a total of 13 dwellings have claimed the stamp duty relief for a new zero carbon home. The purpose of the tax relief is to provide more new energy efficient technologies in homes. The Government expect the numbers of qualifying homes to be low in the first few years, but to rise as more properties eligible to claim the relief are developed.
The Energy Performance Certificates (EPC) level 6 and zero carbon home standards are related but not identical. Therefore, while an EPC itself does not specify whether or not the home meets the standard for a zero carbon home, in many cases the information it contains may be sufficient to demonstrate that the zero carbon homes standard has been met. In this case a further inspection of the building is not required for the purpose of the zero carbon home certification.
Alan Duncan: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what revenue accrued to his Department from (a) climate change levy receipts, (b) the non-fossil fuel obligation, (c) the auction of EU Emissions Trading Scheme allowances, (d) transport fuel duty, (e) the fuel duty escalator, (f) increased airport passenger duty and (g) other financial measures designed to effect a reduction in carbon dioxide emissions in (i) 2006 and (ii) 2007. 
Angela Eagle: The Treasury routinely publishes the details of current receipts in successive pre-Budget and Budget reports. The latest information can be found in Table C6 of the 2008 Budget report at:
Angela Eagle: The Government's economic objective is to build a strong economy and a fair society, where there is opportunity and security for all. Since 1997 the Government have introduced a series of reforms, which have had a significant impact in tackling unemployment. As a result, the majority of JSA claimants move into work quicklyaround three-quarters move off benefit within six months. For those who remain on JSA, the flexible New Deal will be introduced from October 2009, replacing the existing New Deal programmes with earlier, more intensive and personalised support.
Matthew Taylor: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what estimate he has made of the number of birds which have died from avian influenza in (a) Cornwall, (b) each constituency in Cornwall, (c) the South West region and (d) England in the last two years. 
Jonathan Shaw: I assume the hon. Member means both wild birds and commercial poultry. It is extremely difficult to give an accurate estimate of birds that have died as a result of avian influenza infection. Although some birds tested positive for avian influenza by laboratory tests, they may not have died as a result of the disease (e.g. wild birds may have died as a result of predation, cold weather or a number of other natural causes).
The following table shows the number of commercial poultry, by species, that were culled as a result of DEFRA's disease control policy, or, wild birds that were submitted as part of the Avian Influenza surveillance programme and that were positive for AI by laboratory
testing. In both cases, not all birds would have died from AI infection. Many of the commercial poultry that were culled would have been infected but alive and many not infected at the time of culling, but killed to manage the risk of disease spread because they were part of the same epidemiological unit and had been clearly exposed to infection. Many wild bird and water fowl species may act as carriers for the virus but do not show clinical signs of illness so it is not possible to provide or estimate the number which may be killed by the virus in the wild.
This information is based on the number of commercial poultry culled during outbreaks of Avian Influenza since July 2006 and the number of AI-positive wild birds submitted to the Veterinary Laboratories Agency for testing as part of the on-going AI surveillance programme.
|Location||Number of wild birds||Number of poultry|
Although the data in this table give an indication of the number of birds killed by AI in the last two years, this number represents a relatively low proportion of the commercial poultry industry. Due to the current high level of vigilance in the poultry industry, suspect Avian Influenza cases are notified very quickly, enabling a rapid response by DEFRA and Animal Health, so we have been able to control this disease quickly and effectively where it is identified in commercial poultry flocks.
Jonathan Shaw: My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State has discussed the content of the recent bovine tuberculosis announcement with Commissioner Vasilliou. DEFRA officials also engage with the Commission regularly in discussions about control of the disease.
Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of the pilot badger cull in combating bovine tuberculosis; and if he will make a statement. 
Jonathan Shaw: The ministerial decision in Wales allows Welsh Assembly officials to consider all the options for culling badgers as part of an intensive action area. Final decisions on what this will involve are not expected before the end of the year. No discussions have been held.
Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what recent discussions he has had with the First Minister in Wales on the effectiveness of the pilot badger cull in combating bovine tuberculosis; and if he will make a statement. 
Jonathan Shaw: The Minister of Rural Affairs in Wales' decision allows the Welsh Assembly to consider all the options for culling badgers as part of an 'intensive action area'. Final decisions on what this will involve are not expected before the end of the year. No discussions have yet been held.
In addition, directives 77/391, (as amended by directive 82/400), and 78/52, set out the requirements for member states in relation to eradication plans for a number of endemic diseases, including bovine TB.
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what representations he has received from Sir David King on his policy on bovine TB; and if he will make a statement. 
Jonathan Shaw: Sir David King has not made any representations to the Secretary of Sate since the latest TB announcement. However, the Secretary of State met with him as part of the decision-making process leading up to the announcement.
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|