|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what research he has commissioned or supported into the effects of pesticide use upon the bee population; and whether he has given consideration to banning any pesticide that is harmful to bee colonies. 
Huw Irranca-Davies: The rigorous EU scientific process for approval of pesticide active substances and the supporting national processes for individual products protect human health and the environment, including wildlife, providing products are used in accordance with the approval and any related conditions of approval. This approval process takes account of the potential impact on bees. My Department will, of course, act immediately on any concrete evidence of adverse impacts of pesticides on bees which occurs in the UK.
As part of its pesticides research programme the Government are funding a number of projects in support of the development of this risk assessment process. A number of projects specifically relate to the potential impact of pesticides on honeybees, both from wide scale professional use and home-garden use of insecticides. These projects are still in progress.
Mr. Frank Field: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many cattle were destroyed because of contracting bovine tuberculosis in each of the last five years; and what the cost to the public purse was of paying compensation to the farmers so affected in each year. 
Jane Kennedy [holding answer 9 October 2008]: The number of animals slaughtered under bovine tuberculosis control measures in Great Britain in the last five years, and the amounts of compensation paid, are given in the following table:
|Number of animals slaughtered under bovine TB control measures||Amount of compensation paid (£ million)|
Peter Bottomley: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) what proportion of the organisations that were originally proposed to be included in the Carbon Reduction Commitment Scheme will now no longer be included as a consequence of the qualifying threshold being doubled from 3,000 to 6,000 megawatt hours of annual electricity consumption; 
The threshold for electricity consumption through half hourly meters was increased from 3,000 to 6,000 megawatt hours (MWh) per annum in order to help ensure that participants who are large energy consumers see net benefits from the scheme in reduced energy bills if they act to reduce their energy consumption.
It is estimated that the 6,000 MWh threshold will include 95 per cent. of the emissions that would be covered by the 3,000 MWh threshold. It is difficult to assess accurately the number of organisations that this relates to because of the lack of accurate energy consumption data aggregated to organisation level (for example, organisations and their subsidiaries may have several electricity suppliers). The number of organisations at a 6,000 MWh threshold may not be substantially different from that at 3,000 MWh, and is thought to be at the high end of a wide range of 2,000-5,000. The analysis demonstrating the range of estimates made can be seen in the partial regulatory impact assessment (RIA), published on 6 July 2007. This is available to view on DEFRA's website.
In general, Government Departments and their statutory delivery bodies will participate in CRC as separate entities where they meet the qualifying threshold. However, those Government sponsored bodies that do not have
separate legal status will participate under their parent Government Departmentin practice this generally means executive agencies and possibly some smaller advisory/tribunal non-departmental public bodies (NDPBs).
Gregory Barker: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what discussions he has had with the Government of Brazil on the inclusion of provisions on carbon capture and storage in the Kyoto Clean Development Mechanism; and if he will make a statement. 
The Secretary of State has not yet had any meetings with the Government of Brazil on the subject of carbon capture and storage (CCS). General discussions on the potential for CCS and possible approaches to financing, including the Clean Development Mechanism, have taken place at official level.
Mrs. Lait: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether the Carbon Trust is covered by the provisions and obligations of the Environmental Information Regulations 2004. 
Bodies specified as subject to the Freedom of Information Act (in schedule 1 to the Act) are thereby also subject to the Environmental Information Regulations (EIRs). But, this apart, there is no definitive list of organisations covered by the EIRs. All bodies which carry out functions of public administration and bodies that are under the control of a public authority and have responsibilities, exercise functions or provide public services relating to the environment are covered by the EIRs organisations must therefore come to their own view as to whether they or some of the functions they exercise are covered, seeking individual advice from DEFRA as necessary.
The Carbon Trust is not included in schedule 1 of FOIA. Moreover the Carbon Trust and DEFRAs view is that the Carbon Trust is an independent private company limited by guarantee and not a public sector organisation. The Carbon Trust does not fall within the definition of a public authority for the purposes of the Environmental Information Regulations. It is not a public authority for the purposes of the Freedom of Information Act 2000, and it does not carry out statutory or administrative functions but uses its government funding in its own programmes to achieve its mission of accelerating the move to a low carbon economy; nor is it controlled by any body which is a public authority for the purpose of the regulations.
However, the Carbon Trust has achieved ISO 14001 accreditation and publishes an annual environmental report on its own environmental impacts, together with information about its businesses and the impact of those businesses in terms of CO2 emission reductions,
in its annual report and accounts. It has obtained independent assurance of the application of its impact assessment methodology. The Carbon Trust annual report and accounts for 2007-08 was published in September.
Mr. Stewart Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what plans the Environment Agency has to draw up proposals for parts of the British coastline to be surrendered to sea erosion; in which parts of the UK; and if he will make a statement. 
Jane Kennedy: The Environment Agency already has strategic Shoreline Management Plans (SMPs) for the coastline of England and Wales. These identify the flood and coastal risk management policies around the coast in order for the coast to be managed in a sustainable way. They are a strategic, evidence based approach to planning investment and ensuring the security of as much of the coastline as possible for the next 100 years. These policies include maintaining the existing line of defence or realigning the coast either through natural or managed processes.
The Environment Agency is also developing a long-term investment strategy for flood and coastal erosion which will look at what the risk is, how to manage it and what it will cost over the next 25 years.
James Duddridge: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs pursuant to the answer to the right hon. Member for Horsham of 14 July 2008, Official Report, column 27W, on carbon emissions: Government Departments, how much air mileage incurred through departmental travel was used to calculate the departmental payment to the Government Carbon Offsetting Fund in each year that his Department has participated in the fund, broken down by (a) domestic, (b) short-haul and (c) long-haul flights. 
Huw Irranca-Davies: The air mileage used to calculate DEFRAs payment to the Government Carbon Offsetting Fund in 2005-06 was 6,043,505. This figure includes DEFRAs agencies State Veterinary Service (SVS), Government Decontamination Service (GDS), and the Marine and Fisheries Agency (MFA). Records at this time did not distinguish between domestic, short-haul and long-haul categories.
James Duddridge: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether those staff of (a) his Department and (b) its agencies who are entitled to business class or first class air travel are permitted to (i) travel in a cheaper class to the destination and (ii) benefit in monetary terms or kind from the saving. 
James Duddridge: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if he will place in the Library a copy of the names and addresses of each organisation that supplied goods and services to his Department in 2007-08, based on the purchase order data held in the Departments financial database. 
Jonathan Shaw: I will place in the Library the names of each organisation that supplied goods and services to the core-Department in 2007-08, based on the purchase order data held in the core-Departments financial database. However, these organisations comprise a mixture of companies and sole traders and it would be a disproportionate cost to separate out the addresses of companies from those of individuals sufficient and necessary to ensure DEFRA that complies with its obligations under the provisions of the Data Protection Act.
Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what research he has (a) commissioned and (b) evaluated on the annual average time taken by households to sort domestic rubbish so that it may be recycled; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Stewart Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs which local authorities (a) are considering, (b) are piloting, (c) are planning to move to and (d) have moved to household waste collections where residual rubbish is collected (i) once every three weeks and (ii) once every month, according to records held by (A) his Department and (B) the Waste and Resources Action Programme; and what guidance or support has been produced on the issue. 
Mrs. Lait: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether funding from the Waste and Resources Action Programme's local communications fund has been used to support the introduction of fortnightly rubbish collections. 
Jane Kennedy: The Waste and Resources Action Programme's Behaviour Change Local Fund (BCLF) was designed to increase public participation in recycling and composting services by supporting communications and awareness raising activities carried out by the partner local authorities. BCLF funding has been awarded to a large number of local authorities, running a variety of waste collection schemes. In each case, the purpose was to support the local authority's communication of its strategy for improving recycling rates. What this strategy was in each case, and whether or not it involved the introduction of alternate weekly collection of residual waste, was a matter for the local authority to decide.
Mr. Graham Stuart: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if he will publish the Environment Agencys review of the efficiency of its pumps; what actions were recommended in the review; what estimate has been made of the potential (a) carbon dioxide emission reductions and (b) costs arising; what progress has been made to date in implementing the reviews recommendations; and if he will make a statement. 
The Environment Agency has worked with the Carbon Trust to undertake a review of the energy efficiency of a sample of flood risk management pumping stations. A report has been published and is available on the Environment Agencys website.
The report identifies opportunities for energy reduction, quantifies the likely savings in carbon dioxide and identifies the cost of implementing various technical options. The Environment Agency will consider the report as it takes measures to further reduce energy use relating to pumping. However it will take time to assess the options, understand the costs and plan the work at all pumping sites.
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|