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|RDA expenditure on external consultants|
|(1) Increased consultancy fees can be explained through a need to quickly ramp up capacity alongside increased agency spending levels. This particularly applies to the Olympic Bid, Olympic Land Assembly and on other major capital projects such as Wembley Stadium.|
(2) LDA had different financial recording systems in 2002 and 2003. To provide expenditure on external consultants for these years would incur disproportionate cost.
|RDA expenditure on private contractors|
|(1) This expenditure figure relates to activity on the agency's land and property portfolio.|
(2) LDA had different financial recording systems in 2002 and 2003. To provide expenditure figures on private contractors for these years would incur disproportionate cost.
(3) Expenditure on private contractors rose from 2002-03 to 2004-05 in line with an increase in agency responsibilities. Since 2004-05, the agency's delivery mechanism has moved away from direct development and more towards grant funding partners to deliver projects. Spend with private contractors has therefore fallen, but grant expenditure has risen accordingly.
Ben Chapman: To ask the Minister of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform if his Department will bring forward proposals for subsidising renewable electricity generators in circumstances of rising prices for fossil fuels. 
Mr. Mike O'Brien [holding answer 15 September 2008]: We already support renewable electricity generation through the renewables obligation. But given the challenges of security of energy supply, climate change and rises in fossil fuel prices we want to do more, not only on renewable electricity but also on renewable heat and transport fuels. We are currently consulting on potential measures designed to increase the use of renewable energy to around 15 per cent. of total energy by 2020 (depending on the final target to be agreed in the proposed EU renewable energy directive). The consultation document can be found at
As regards support for renewable electricity, possibilities include further amendments to the renewables obligation (on top of the changes in the Energy Bill) and further support for microgeneration and small scale renewable electricity, possibly in the form of feed-in tariffs.
Ben Chapman: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what estimate he has made of the economic rent paid to renewable electricity generators in consumer subsidy; and what steps he is taking to minimise such costs. 
Renewable electricity generators income is derived from the sale of electricity, renewables obligation certificates and levy exemption certificates. The value they can derive from these is a matter for commercial negotiation in the market. The Government commissioned estimates of the costs of electricity generation from renewable sources and how much in practice the operators of such generating stations receive from the sale of the electricity, renewables obligation certificates and levy exemption certificates from Ernst and Young LLP. Their report Impact of banding the Renewables Obligation - Costs of electricity production (URN 07/948) was published by DTI in 2007 and copies were placed in both Libraries of the House.
Our proposed reforms of the renewables obligation are designed to increase both the effectiveness and the value for money of the instrument. These issues are discussed in the impact assessment that accompanies the Energy Bill that is currently being considered by Parliament. Our estimates in this impact assessment suggest that under our preferred option, rents could be reduced by £1.9 billion over the lifetime.
Our work on the renewable energy strategy includes further considerations on the efficiency of the renewables obligation, see section 3.8 of the consultation document. Potential measures include reviewing the bands of the renewables obligation, increasing the stability of the ROC price, and considering linking compensation under the renewables obligation to changes in electricity wholesale prices. A copy of the consultation document can be found in both Libraries of the House.
Mr. Timpson: To ask the Minister of State, Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform if he will place in the Library a copy of Mr. Richard Hoopers report on the future of the Royal Mail. 
Mr. Bradshaw: Through the Ambulance Radio Programme it is planned that all NHS Ambulance Trusts in England will have a full Airwave service by the end of 2009. The following national health service bodies are already using terminals as part of the programmes roll-out:
East of England Ambulance Service NHS Trust
East Midlands Ambulance NHS Trust
Isle of Wight NHS Primary Care Trust
North East Ambulance Service NHS Trust
North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust
South East Coast Ambulance Service NHS Trust
West Midlands Ambulance Service NHS Trust
Yorkshire Ambulance Service NHS Trust
London Ambulance NHS Trust
As part of the Alcohol Strategy published in June 2007, the Home Office (and Department of Health) is currently highlighting the issue of our drinking culture through its national marketing campaign Know Your Limits. This campaign aims to change the attitudes of 18 to 24s over the long term by increasing awareness of the problems and by highlighting the consequences of irresponsible drinking. We are doing this in a number of ways which include advertising and also through public relations. Our public relations work includes media advocacy and liaising with news media and also script writers to inform them about our policies and
communications and to hold a mirror up to the way they portray alcohol. The aim of this work is to try and influence more positive associations with alcohol to create a culture where it is socially acceptable for young people to choose not to drink and, if they do start drinking, to do so later and more safely.
The Home Secretary announced in her speech on 6 February 2008 that a number of new measures and possible steps would be taken to crack down on crime and antisocial behaviour which is fuelled by alcohol. This includes highlighting the message that it is not acceptable for young people to drink in public places.
The Home Secretary also said that she is considering a number of options including making the possession of alcohol by a young person an offence or possibly involving the parents if alcohol is confiscated from a child. We are currently considering the effectiveness of the current powers and what can be done to help the police use them more effectively.
Additionally, the Culture Secretary, the right hon. Andy Burnham, said in his statement of 4 March 2008, that the offence of persistently selling alcohol to children would be changed from three strikes to two strikes in three months. The Government will legislate to increase the maximum fine for not obeying an instruction to stop drinking in a designated public place from £500 to £2,500. Other issues which may not require legislation include making it easier for the police to disperse antisocial drinkers and we will extend the alcohol arrest referral pilots so that under 18s may also benefit from a brief intervention from a trained worker.
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