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26 Nov 2008 : Column 2142W—continued

Departmental Internet

Mrs. May: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change for which Government websites his Department is responsible; how many visitors each has received since his Department's creation; and what the cost of maintaining each site was in that period. [235043]

Mr. Mike O'Brien: The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC), which was formed on 3 October 2008. Negotiations with BERR and DEFRA on the machinery of government changes are ongoing. Website arrangements for DECC functions will be determined once negotiations are complete. In the interim, the DECC website (www.decc.gov.uk) is currently hosted on the DEFRA internet platform. Websites for Energy and Climate Change issues continue, for the present, to be hosted on the BERR and DEFRA internet platforms respectively, as they were prior to the formation of DECC. As such, DECC has not incurred any costs, separate from those incurred by BERR and DEFRA, for site maintenance. It has not been possible to separate the number of visitors to the DECC website from the total number of visitors to websites on the DEFRA internet platform.

Departmental Ministerial Policy Advisers

Gregory Barker: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change whether he plans to appoint a Departmental Chief Scientific Adviser. [236493]

Mr. Mike O'Brien: Given the significant role of science in our work on energy and climate change, the Department will be appointing a dedicated Chief Scientific Adviser. We will be running an open application process for the post to allow all interested candidates to apply in due course.

Mr. Philip Hammond: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how many full-time equivalent staff in his Department assist special advisers; and what the cost of employing such staff has been since his Department's creation. [237318]

Mr. Mike O'Brien: The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) has one full-time equivalent member of staff engaged in assisting special advisers. It is not possible to provide information on the cost of this staff member as to reveal the cost could identify an individual’s salary, which is confidential between the individual and the employer.

Departmental Personnel

Greg Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how many permanent staff in (a) his Department and (b) its agencies are classified as (i) staff without posts and (ii) part of a people action team. [236735]


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Mr. Mike O'Brien: The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC), which was formed on 3 October 2008, will consist of posts taken from the existing Departments for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR) and for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, (DEFRA). The detail is still being worked on, but approximately 500 staff will come to DECC from Energy Group in BERR and 400 from Climate Change Group in DEFRA. It is not possible to answer this question until the detail of the staff transfers has been agreed.

Departmental Postal Services

Daniel Kawczynski: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change whether his Department uses the Royal Mail as the primary company for sending its post, parcels and packages. [238123]

Mr. Mike O'Brien: The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) was formed on 3 October 2008. Negotiations with BERR and DEFRA on the Machinery of Government changes are ongoing. Provision of mail services for DECC will be determined once negotiations are complete. DECC staff in 3-8 Whitehall Place, Atholl House and temporary accommodation in 1 Victoria Street and Ergon House at present make use of the BERR and DEFRA mail services, both of whom currently use the Royal Mail as their primary provider of mail services.

Departmental Procurement

Greg Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change if he will publish a list of names and addresses of each organisation that supplied goods or services to his Department since its creation. [236785]

Mr. Mike O'Brien: The information requested can be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Mr. Philip Hammond: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change whether there has been any nugatory cost to his Department and its agencies relating to tendered procurement where the tender process has been cancelled prior to the award of the contract. [239647]

Mr. Mike O'Brien: I know of none since the formation of the Department for Energy and Climate Change (DECC).

Departmental Public Bodies

Greg Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change pursuant to the Answer of 4 November 2008, Official Report, column 455W, on public bodies, by what date he expects the negotiations to determine which regulators, inspectorates, executive agencies and non-departmental public bodies are to become the responsibility of his Department to be completed. [236583]

Mr. Mike O'Brien: Negotiations on the machinery of government changes, as they affect the Department of Energy and Climate Change, are continuing. These negotiations should be completed in time to allow the spring supplementary estimates to be finalised early in 2009.


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Departmental Public Service Agreements

Gregory Barker: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change for what Public Service Agreements his Department is (a) a formal delivery partner and (b) a contributor. [236599]

Mr. Mike O'Brien: The Cabinet Office Paper in the House Library “Machinery of Government: economy, business, climate change, energy and environment” sets out much of this information. The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) took on responsibility for the public service agreement (PSA) to lead the global effort to avoid dangerous climate change. This PSA was transferred to DECC on its formation on 3 October 2008. Negotiations on the machinery of government changes, as they affect DECC and its PSAs, are continuing.

Departmental Recruitment

Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change whether he plans to recruit staff from the private energy sector. [230621]

Mr. Mike O'Brien: The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC), which was formed on 3 October 2008, will consist of posts taken from the existing Departments for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (BERR) and for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, (DEFRA). The detail is still being worked on, but once this has been agreed, it will be possible to determine DECC’s recruitment requirements and policy.

Departmental Special Advisers

Mr. Vara: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change pursuant to the answer of 23 October 2008, Official Report, columns 553-554W, on departmental special advisers, from which department's budget the Special Representative on Energy Issues will draw expenses. [232349]

Mr. Mike O'Brien: The Special Representative of the Prime Minister on International Energy Issues will be entitled to claim reasonable travel and subsistence expenses incurred as part of his work. These expenses will normally be drawn from the Department of Energy and Climate Change and paid in accordance with existing departmental guidelines on allowances and subsistence.

Departmental Written Questions

Mr. Gibb: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how many questions for written answer have been tabled to his Department since its creation; and how many have been (a) answered substantively and (b) not answered on grounds of disproportionate cost. [235396]

Mr. Mike O'Brien: The information, which is available on the Parliamentary Information Management System, was, at 24 November 2008, as follows:-

None of the questions answered received a reply citing disproportionate costs.


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Energy

Adam Price: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what progress has been made on the package of energy measures announced by the Prime Minister on 11 September 2008. [232854]

Joan Ruddock: The Government have made good progress with the various elements of the package announced by the Prime Minister.

A key aspect of the announcement was a 20 per cent. uplift to the Carbon Emissions Reduction Target. This is estimated to lever an additional £560 million of energy supplier investment in the energy efficiency of housing stock in Great Britain to 2011. We will consult shortly on the legislative changes needed to enact this. In the meantime, we have been working closely with energy suppliers and the insulation industry to maximise action this winter—meaning that insulation activity is some 70 per cent. higher than for the same period last year.

As part of the package the Government also announced an additional £74 million for the Warm Front scheme. The scheme managers are carrying out household surveys and we estimate that the additional investment will deliver up to 9,000 central heating systems and 5,000 insulation measures by Christmas.

We have launched a major communications campaign: “Save Money, Save Energy, Act on CO2”, with an intensive first stage running from 17 September to the end of November. This includes adverts on TV, online, radio and in national newspapers encouraging people to save money on their fuel bills by becoming more energy efficient. It also encourages people to call the Government-funded Act on CO2 helpline, run by the Energy Saving Trust (EST). Following the announcement, the EST took 89,000 calls in September (against 27,000 in September 2007), and 92,000 calls in October (against 33,000 in October 2007).

The amendments to primary legislation needed to take forward the new Community Energy Savings Programme have been included in the Climate Change Bill.

And, as a result of the individual voluntary agreements negotiated between the Government and the energy suppliers under which they are providing increased social assistance to their vulnerable customers, over 770,000 customer accounts have already been put onto a discounted tariff—roughly double the number since this time last year.

Jobcentre Plus is on course to launch the first stage of the Energy Efficiency Employment Initiative at the end of November. It will provide access to information and training that will help more people to secure insulation related jobs. Similar routes are being developed to improve access to other energy related jobs.

Energy Saving Week

Mr. Dai Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change if he will set out the programme of events which his Department has organised or participated in during Energy Saving Week; what resources were committed to this
26 Nov 2008 : Column 2146W
programme; and what plans he has to evaluate the effectiveness of the campaign. [230017]

Joan Ruddock: This year's Energy Saving Trust (EST) Energy Saving Week took place from 20 to 26 October.

DECC grant funds the Energy Saving Trust year-on-year, supporting the valuable work it undertakes to tackle climate change through the reduction of household carbon dioxide emissions, which includes their awareness-raising work in Energy Saving Week. DECC's participation in the events of the week included a visit to the Department from EST's Home Energy Doctor. Representatives provided a plasma screen presentation in the Nobel House foyer and spent the day talking with staff from DECC and DEFRA, advising them how they could save money by making their homes and lifestyles more energy efficient.

In addition, I have been writing an Energy Saving Week diary on the EST website. The diary is updated daily and is very informative, providing a personal account of how I balance energy saving around my life and busy work schedule.

EST operates a continuing evaluation programme to monitor the effectiveness of its activities, including this campaign.

Ed Miliband contributed a quote to the Energy Savings Trust national press release.

Energy Technologies Institute

Greg Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change if he will place in the Library a copy of (a) the Heads of Agreement for the Energy Technologies Institute and (b) any contracts the Government has with the Institute. [234570]

Mr. Simon: I have been asked to reply.

I do not propose to place these documents in the Library. The documents are confidential to members of the partnership.

Energy: Conservation

Mr. David Anderson: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change if he will take steps to promote as an energy-saving measure the (a) development and (b) use of washing powder that utilises cold water. [235818]

Jane Kennedy: I have been asked to reply.

The Government are firmly committed to improving energy efficiency in the UK and DEFRA’s Market Transformation Programme (MTP) works to bring forward products that use less energy, water and other resources.

The Government are aware that detergents have been developed in recent years that are effective at lower temperatures and MTP has conducted initial investigations into the energy saving potential from using 30° C washes. While there will be further energy savings to be made from washes at even lower temperatures, further research is required to compare these to the embedded CO2 from the manufacture and disposal of detergents.

Further research would also be required to assess the capacity of washing machines to wash at cold temperatures and to ascertain whether there could be any other unintended consequences.


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Energy: Departmental Responsibilities

Gregory Barker: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what work is expected to be carried out by the Special Representative of the Prime Minister on International Energy Issues; and if he will make a statement. [231592]

Mr. Mike O'Brien: The Special Representative of the Prime Minister on International Energy Issues will work with me to analyse global trends in energy supply and demand and energy security and their implications for UK, European and global policy.

Energy: Fees and Charges

Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how many social tariff accounts were available to consumers of each energy supply company in each of the last three years; and how many customers of each company were on social tariffs. [235322]

Mr. Mike O'Brien: Ofgem published its first review of suppliers “Voluntary Initiative to Help Vulnerable Customers” on 6 August 2007, which covered the period to July 2007. Ofgem updated this report in October 2007. Both reports can be found online at:

The October update report shows that the number of gas and electricity customer accounts on suppliers’ social tariffs per suppliers was around:

Supplier Number (as at 31 August 2007)

British Gas

280,000

EDF Energy

59,979

Npower

2,457

Powergen

10,373

Scottish Power

0

SSE

12,521

Total

365,330


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