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23 Jun 2010 : Column 262Wcontinued
Brandon Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what plans she has for the funding of Pathfinder projects. 
Richard Benyon: DEFRA has made £7.6 million available to 15 coastal authorities under the Pathfinder programme this year to test innovative approaches to adapting to coastal change. Future funding for projects such as this will be considered as part of the forthcoming spending review.
Brandon Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs in which areas she plans further coastal defence measures; and if she will make a statement. 
Richard Benyon: In 2010-11 the Environment Agency and coastal authorities plan to construct 41 English coastal schemes (each costing over £250,000) to address coastal flood risk or erosion. These are listed in the following table.
The total investment in these coastal schemes during 2010-11 is £70 million. Some of these will take several years to complete.
Plans for future years will depend on the Spending Review.
|Project Name||EA Region||Operating Authority|
Selsey and Wittering Beach Recharge (beneficial use of maintenance
Portsea Island - Flood Cell 4: North Portsea Island - Development
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) whether she plans to secure an extension to the competence of UK fisheries management within its territorial waters
during the forthcoming review of the Common Fisheries Policy; 
(2) if she will seek to extend the UK fisheries limits in future negotiations at EU level on common fisheries policy reform. 
Richard Benyon: In negotiations on the reform of the Common Fisheries Policy (CFP), the UK will be seeking to enable individual member states to manage marine resources more effectively through better integration of fisheries management with other marine policies. With that in mind, we will be seeking changes that enable member states to develop and implement measures to manage marine ecosystems more efficiently beyond the six mile limit. We also want to see reform of the CFP delivering a simplified and decentralised decision-making framework that allows those closest to a fishery to take decisions on appropriate management measures.
Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether she has undertaken a cost-benefit analysis of extending UK competence to manage an exclusive UK inshore fishing effort within a limit of (a) 12 and (b) 24 nautical miles. 
Richard Benyon: The UK has not undertaken a specific cost benefit analysis with respect to extending the UK competence to manage an exclusive UK inshore fishing effort. We are, however, working with others across the EU to shape the European Commission's proposals on Common Fisheries Policy reform. We will wish to examine carefully the Commission's emerging options, which we expect to see over the next few months. It is not yet clear how these will affect member states' control over inshore fishing effort but I am keen to promote decentralisation of fisheries management away from the current centralised regime. Of course, any reassessment of member state competence would need to safeguard historic access rights and the benefits of relative stability in member states' shares of fishing opportunities, including rights that UK fishers currently benefit from in other member states' territorial waters.
Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what her priorities are for the forthcoming negotiations on the review of the Common Fisheries Policy. 
Richard Benyon: We are developing the UK's negotiating priorities for reform of the common fisheries policy (CFP). We are clear that any reform should:
Devolve fisheries management away from current centralised control over detailed regulations, for example through regionalisation. We support the EU Commission's general direction in this area and will be pressing to ensure the result is a decentralised and simpler decision-making process.
Enable and encourage fishermen to better plan for their businesses for the long-term, giving them more control, incentives and responsibility for managing fish stocks and helping to tackle over-capacity where it exists.
Integrate fisheries more effectively with management and conservation of marine resources more widely. As pressures and competing demands for use of marine resources grow, it is increasingly important for fisheries management to be joined up with the management of other marine activities. We need flexible mechanisms under a reformed CFP that enable us to meet our international conservation obligations.
Ms Ritchie: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what funding has been allocated to Northern Ireland from the European Fisheries Fund; and how much matched funding from the Government such allocations have attracted. 
Richard Benyon: The EU budget for the European Fisheries Fund's programme for 2007-13 is €4.3 billion of which the UK is allocated €138m (£120 million). From this allocation, Northern Ireland receives €18m (£16 million). Matched funding for Northern Ireland is the devolved responsibility of the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development.
Toby Perkins: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the status is of each flood remediation project for the River Rother and River Hipper (a) planned, (b) approved and (c) implemented since 2007. 
Richard Benyon: The Environment Agency is currently taking forward the Avenue Coking Works Remediation Project, which incorporates a flood storage area. This will provide protection from the River Rother to more than 100 properties and businesses in Chesterfield. Further schemes to provide protection from the River Rother are being assessed.
The Environment Agency has proposed a scheme that will provide protection from the River Hipper to areas of Chesterfield. Subject to funding approval, detailed design for the scheme will begin in 2012-13, with construction planned to begin the following year.
Joan Walley: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what expenditure British Waterways has incurred on maintaining and developing waterway network infrastructure in each of the last 10 years; what proportion of such expenditure was on infrastructure not classified as a principal asset in each such year; what estimate she has made of such expenditure in each of the next three years; and if she will make a statement. 
Richard Benyon: British Waterways does not record information in the format requested.
British Waterways has spent £334 million on major infrastructure works and dredging over the last 10 years, of which £218 million (65%) relates to work on what they classify as "principal assets". In addition British Waterways has spent £347 million on third party funded restoration and regeneration projects.
The analysis of the expenditure over the last ten years which is derived from their published annual report and accounts is appended. It has only been since 2006-07 that BW have sub-analysed other operating expenditure further to disclose how much is spent directly on waterway network general maintenance and customer service activities. The analysis by year is also provided.
British Waterways is currently considering its expenditure plans for the next three years which will need to take account of the outcome of the government's forthcoming spending review and its estimates of future commercial income.
Mr Graham Stuart: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment she has made of the environmental effects of the recent reduction in funding for land drainage maintenance by the Environment Agency. 
Richard Benyon: There has not been any specific reduction in Government funding for land drainage maintenance. DEFRA provides grant in aid to the Environment Agency for flood and coastal erosion risk management, which may include land drainage maintenance, where this is the most effective means of reducing flood risk. The Environment Agency considers the environmental effects of its decisions on a case by case basis when deciding how to get best value for money from DEFRA's investment.
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