Piers: Redcar and Cleveland

Tom Blenkinsop: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport whether she has received any representations from (a) individuals and (b) organisations on funding for an additional traditional pier in Redcar and Cleveland. [77188]

Norman Baker: The Department for Transport has not received any representations from individuals or organisations about the funding of an additional traditional pier in Redcar and Cleveland.

Railways: Franchises

Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if she will instruct rail operating company Abellio to provide details of the company's discussions with Angel Trains on a reduction in the fleet serving the Greater Anglia rail franchise; if she will place any such information in the Library; and if she will make a statement. [80168]

Mrs Villiers: Abellio submitted a compliant bid in line with the requirements of the Invitation to Tender. Their discussions with Angel trains are a commercial issue between the two parties.

Railways: Kent

Mr Gale: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what assessment she has made of investment in selective heating of conductor rails on the rail line between Faversham and Ramsgate. [80265]

Mrs Villiers: Network Rail is rolling out an extensive programme of conductor rail heating across London and the south-east which is due to be completed by January 2012. Routes in Kent that will benefit from this investment include Ramsgate to London Charing Cross via Canterbury West, and Faversham to London Victoria via the Medway Towns. The installation of conductor rail heating between Ramsgate and Faversham should be carried out next year.

14 Nov 2011 : Column 580W

Roads: Railways

Cathy Jamieson: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what estimate she has made of the additional road and rail infrastructure required to meet demand at existing standards for the (a) upper and (b) lower limits of the projected rise in the population of the UK made by the Office for National Statistics by 2050. [80634]

Mrs Villiers: The Department collects and publishes a range of official statistics that track changes in people's travel behaviour and their use of transport infrastructure. Most of these statistics are summarised in “Transport Statistics Great Britain”, the Department's main annual statistical compendium publication.

The Department uses these statistics and long-term projections, including population estimates from the Office for National Statistics, to forecast future demand for transport.

National Policy Statements (NPS) set out the Government's assessment of the need for different types of infrastructure, including in relation to trends in population. The Department intends shortly to launch a consultation on a draft NPS for national road and rail networks.

Roads: Snow and Ice

John Woodcock: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what recent discussions she has had with local authorities on support for their winter resilience plans. [76963]

Norman Baker [holding answer 27 October 2011]: The Department for Transport works closely with the Cabinet Office Civil Contingencies Secretariat (CCS) and the Department for Communities and Local Government (DCLG) on local resilience matters.

Resilience advisers from DCLG regularly meet with local resilience forums, which comprise a number of organisations and agencies who deal with emergency planning issues, including representatives from local highway authorities, to ensure suitable preparations are being made for winter.

Transport: Capital Investment

Maria Eagle: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what work her Department has done on bringing forward infrastructure spending during the comprehensive spending review period. [78608]

Norman Baker [holding answer 7 November 2011]:The Department is contributing to the Government's growth review, and announcements will be made in due course.

Energy and Climate Change

Carbon Sequestration: Longannet

Mr David Hamilton: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change if he will publish all documents relating to the negotiations for the withdrawn carbon capture and storage project at Longannet. [79929]

14 Nov 2011 : Column 581W

Charles Hendry: Extensive information about the carbon capture and storage project at Longannet was published through release of the Scottish Power CCS Consortium Front End Engineering and Design study on the DECC website. This is available at:

http://www.decc.gov.uk/en/content/cms/emissions/ccs/demo_prog/feed/feed.aspx

Other documents relating to the negotiations remain commercially confidential.

Civil Nuclear Constabulary

Helen Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what assessment he has made of the merits of the case for amalgamating the Civil Nuclear constabulary with the Ministry of Defence police; and if he will make a statement. [80593]

Charles Hendry: The Civil Nuclear constabulary and Ministry of Defence police are already working towards closer operational interoperability and collaboration in order to enhance the effectiveness and protection of defence and civil nuclear sites. MOD and DECC Ministers have recently agreed that a scoping study should be undertaken to establish whether a merger would bring further net benefits.

Cuadrilla Resources

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change on what dates he has met representatives of Cuadrilla Resources since May 2010. [80027]

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Charles Hendry: All formal ministerial meetings with external organisations are published on a quarterly basis and can be found on the Department's website via the following link:

http://www.decc.gov.uk/en/content/cms/accesstoinform/registers/ministermtgs/ministermtgs.aspx

Since May 2010, the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, the right hon. Member for Eastleigh (Chris Huhne), has not met Cuadrilla Resources. I did however meet Cuadrilla during a drilling site visit on 11 March 2011.

Design Services

Dan Jarvis: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what contracts his Department has awarded for design services since May 2010; and what information his Department holds on the location of such companies. [80185]

Gregory Barker: The Department has not awarded any contracts specifically for design services. Our design work is either done in-house or on a project basis commissioned via the Central Office of Information (COI).

Dan Jarvis: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how much his Department has spent on design in respect of (a) logos, (b) buildings, (c) advertising, (d) stationery and (e) campaigns in the last year for which figures are available. [80202]

Gregory Barker: The information is as follows.



Cost (£) Date

Logos

Green Deal trademark design

9,588

Commissioned in October 2010

       

Buildings

 

0

 
       

Advertising

Vacancy advertisements

5,999.98

May 2010 to present

       

Stationery

 

0

 
       

Campaigns

Check, Switch, Insulate, Save

486.40

October 2011

 

Greener government cross-government campaign

510

May 2010 to March 2011

Electricity

Barry Gardiner: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what measures he is putting in place to support new entrants into the electricity market; and if he will make a statement. [79989]

Charles Hendry: Poor wholesale market liquidity is acting as a significant barrier to entry in electricity wholesale and retail markets and a key aim of Electricity Market Reform (EMR) is to encourage new entrants.

Ofgem have published their analysis on electricity market liquidity and expect to reach conclusions at the end of this year. We are working closely with Ofgem to ensure that taken together EMR and the liquidity reforms reduce barriers to entry and deliver the necessary improvements in wholesale market liquidity. We will act where necessary to introduce reforms where the structural barriers to market entry are not addressed through the actions taken by Ofgem.

In addition, we are cutting red tape for small energy suppliers by raising the customer number threshold at which Government obligations apply, to help small suppliers grow and increase competition.

Energy

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change (1) on what date (a) he and (b) Ministers in his Department last met (i) the chief executive and (ii) other representatives of (A) EDF Energy, (B) Centrica, (C) Scottish Power, (D) RWE NPower, (E) E.on and (F) Scottish and Southern Energy; [79844]

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(2) how many times he has met the chief executive of (a) EDF Energy, (b) Centrica, (c) Scottish Power, (d) RWE NPower, (e) E.on and (f) Scottish and Southern Energy since May 2010; and on what dates such meetings took place; [79845]

(3) on how many occasions he has attended a function at the invitation of (a) EDF Energy, (b) Centrica, (c) Scottish Power, (d) RWE NPower, (e) E.on and (f) Scottish and Southern Energy in an official capacity since May 2010; and on what dates any such functions took place. [79847]

Charles Hendry: Ministers meet and attend functions with energy suppliers on a regular basis to discuss a range of issues. Quarterly lists of DECC Ministers’ meetings that involve outside interested parties are published on the DECC website, available at:

http://www.decc.gov.uk/en/content/cms/accesstoinform/registers/ministermtgs/ministermtgs.aspx

Energy: Billing

Andrew Stephenson: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what progress his Department has made on improving the information provided in energy bills. [79706]

Charles Hendry: We have recently negotiated a voluntary agreement with suppliers to provide customers with a “signpost” on bills to cheaper deals this winter, and that an additional communication should be sent to their customers who pay by cash or cheque to let them know how much they could save by moving to the cheapest standard direct debit tariff. There is also a commitment from suppliers to assess the impact of the signpost on bills and improve it in the light of this evidence.

Energy suppliers have also agreed to look at ways to enable customers to compare their gas and electricity consumption in time for next winter, including the potential for a web based tool that would provide consumers with a personalised comparison with similar households in their area.

Energy: Finance

Zac Goldsmith: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what agreements were reached on energy subsidy reform at the 2011 G20 Cannes Summit. [80377]

Charles Hendry: At the G20 summit in Cannes Leaders reaffirmed their commitment to

“rationalise and phase-out over the medium term inefficient fossil fuels subsidies that encourage wasteful consumption, while providing targeted support for the poorest”.

Energy: Prices

Barry Gardiner: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change (1) what criteria will be applied to determine the low income households that will be eligible for the affordable warmth element of the Energy Company Obligation; [79983]

(2) what proportion of the overall Energy Company Obligation will be targeted at the affordable warmth element. [79984]

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Gregory Barker: We will publish and consult on our proposals for the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) very shortly. Our proposals will cover the outcomes we would require the energy companies to achieve under the affordable warmth component of the overall obligation and the associated eligibility criteria households would need to meet. The accompanying impact assessment will estimate the cost of delivery.

Energy: Unsolicited Goods and Services

Barry Gardiner: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what his policy is on ensuring that doorstep selling does not take place during smart meter installation; and if he will make a statement. [79981]

Gregory Barker: It is essential that consumers’ interests are protected during the smart meter installation process. We are currently consulting on the rules that will underpin a smart metering installation code of practice. The code will focus on the consumer experience during the installation process and set out minimum standards of services that consumers should receive. As part of that consultation, we have suggested that suppliers should only be able to conclude sales during the installation visit with the customer’s prior written consent. We will take final decisions on this and other code issues in light of responses to the consultation.

Barry Gardiner: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what discussions he has had with Ofgem on prohibiting the practice of doorstep selling by energy companies; and if he will make a statement. [79982]

Charles Hendry: DECC Ministers meet with Ofgem officials on a regular basis to discuss energy issues, including issues relating to the protection of energy consumers.

Ofgem is responsible for regulating gas and electricity supply, including the marketing activities used by suppliers. It is therefore for them to consider whether the evidence showed that a ban on doorstep sales was clearly in the consumer interests.

I note that most of the large energy suppliers have announced they will suspend or cease doorstep sales.

Fuel Poverty

Barry Gardiner: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what estimate he has made of the expenditure required on household energy efficiency in order to eradicate fuel poverty by 2016. [80003]

Gregory Barker: The Coalition Government are committed to doing all that is reasonably practicable to end fuel poverty in England by 2016 and to helping people, especially low income vulnerable households, heat their homes more affordably. There are three contributory factors to a household being in fuel poverty— the household’s income, the energy efficiency of the property and energy prices.

While we have made no assessment of the level of energy efficiency expenditure that would be required to eliminate fuel poverty by 2016, there are a number of

14 Nov 2011 : Column 585W

policies in place to improve the energy efficiency of low income and vulnerable households, including Warm Front and the Carbon Emissions Reduction Target. In the future, the Green Deal and the Energy Company Obligation will provide support with heating and energy efficiency measures to those who need it most.

In addition, the new warm home discount scheme will assist up to 2 million homes each year, helping among others, over 600,000 pensioners in receipt of pension credit guarantee credit with £120 off their energy bills this winter.

Fuel Poverty: Students

Tom Blenkinsop: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what estimate he has made of the number of (a) further education and (b) higher education students living in fuel poverty. [80763]

Charles Hendry: No estimate has been made of the number of students living in fuel poverty. Fuel poverty is measured at a household level. The English Housing survey, which provides most of the data used for modelling fuel poverty, does not record information that would accurately identify all households containing students.

Green Deal Scheme

Ian Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change when he plans to announce details of the qualifying criteria for the Green Deal. [80641]

Charles Hendry: The details of the qualifying criteria will be in the Green Deal consultation, which will be published shortly.

Luciana Berger: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change if he will place in the Library a copy of the results of his Department's stakeholder polling on the Green Deal. [80977]

Charles Hendry: The Department has not conducted any ‘stakeholder polling’ on the Green Deal. However, it has commissioned consumer research, both quantitative and qualitative. Results will be published on the DECC website alongside the Green Deal consultation document. Copies of the reports will also be placed in the Libraries of the House.

Lighting: Pollution

Gordon Henderson: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change whether he has made an assessment of the risks posed by mercury vapour released from compact fluorescent lamps when broken. [79708]

Anne Milton: I have been asked to reply.

The Health Protection Agency (HPA) has reviewed the potential health effects of mercury exposure from broken compact fluorescent lamps (CFLs). They found that the exposure was likely to be very small. A small proportion of the mercury could be released into a room if the bulb were broken, but this was most unlikely to pose a health risk to anyone immediately exposed.

14 Nov 2011 : Column 586W

The HPA has published a factsheet on mercury and CFLs. This provides precautionary guidance on how to deal with any broken bulbs. It is available on the HPA website at:

www.hpa.org.uk/webw/HPAweb&HPAwebStandard/HPAweb_C/1207293983993?p=1158313435037

Natural Gas: Exploration

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change (1) what steps his Department's chief scientific adviser (a) has taken and (b) plans to take in assessing the relationship between shale gas drilling and seismic activity in the vicinity of Cuadrilla Resources’ Preese Hall-1 well; [79927]

(2) when he expects work on shale gas exploration to resume; [79928]

(3) what assessment he has made of the report by Cuadrilla Resources on the cause of seismic activity in the vicinity of Cuadrilla Resources’ Preese Hall-1 well; and if he will make a statement; [80026]

(4) what assessment he has made of Cuadrilla Resources’ conclusions on the causes of seismic activity in the vicinity of Cuadrilla Resources’ Preese Hall-1 well; [80028]

(5) what assessment he has made of the likelihood of further seismic activity related to shale gas exploration. [80029]

Charles Hendry: A geomechanical study has been undertaken by Cuadrilla Resources, the operator carrying out shale gas exploration near Blackpool, which was submitted to the Department on 2 November 2011. It is being reviewed very carefully by DECC, in consultation with the British Geological Survey, and other independent experts. The Department's chief scientific adviser and his staff will be involved throughout.

Cuadrilla's report confirms a connection between the hydraulic fracturing at the Preese Hall-1 well and the seismic activity which took place on 1 April and 27 May 2011.

No decision on the resumption of these hydraulic fracture operations will be made until the implications of this report, and of any further analysis which may prove necessary, has been fully considered, and appropriate practical measures have been approved by Ministers to minimise the risk of such events occurring again. Other key regulators will be consulted before any such decision is taken.

Ofgem

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change (1) how many times he has met the (a) chief executive and (b) chairman of Ofgem since May 2010; and on what dates such meetings took place; [79854]

(2) on how many occasions he has attended a function at the invitation of Ofgem since May 2010; and on what dates any such functions took place. [79855]

Charles Hendry: DECC Ministers meet and attend functions with Ofgem officials on a regular basis to discuss a range of market issues.

14 Nov 2011 : Column 587W

Renewable Energy: Feed-in Tariffs

Jim Fitzpatrick: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change (1) what his policy is on provision of a higher level feed-in tariff rate for school buildings; [79057]

(2) what assessment he has made on the potential effect of his proposal to reduce the feed-in tariff on schemes providing solar energy to schools. [79058]

Gregory Barker [holding answer 10 November 2011]:Under both the current and proposed feed-in tariffs (FITs), schools would be eligible for the same level of support as other types of generator. The Department has not assessed the specific effect of the proposed new tariffs for solar photovoltaics (PV) on schools. The proposed tariffs are designed to provide a 4.5% to 5% return on capital, which is in line with the original intention of the scheme and which should still be attractive for households and communities interested in installing solar PV, particularly in the current climate of record low interest rates.

The Government's current consultation on FITs for solar PV seeks views on whether more could be done to enable genuine community projects to achieve real benefits from FITs and whether, for example, a definition of community scheme is required and, if so, how this should be defined. We will provide more detail on FITs for community-based schemes as part of phase 2 of the comprehensive review.

Jim Fitzpatrick: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what information his Department holds on feed-in tariff rates for school buildings in (a) France and (b) Italy. [79337]

Gregory Barker [holding answer 10 November 2011]: The Department does not hold any information on feed-in tariff rates for school buildings in France or Italy.

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change pursuant to the contribution by the Minister of State for Climate Change of 31 October 2011, Official Report, columns 613-14, on feed-in tariffs, what impact assessment he has made in relation to the number of community schemes that are currently in progress but will not proceed as a result of his proposals and the 12 December deadline. [79852]

Gregory Barker: The new tariffs proposed in consultation on feed-in tariffs for solar PV are intended to provide a return on capital of 4.5% to 5% for well-sited installations. These returns should still be attractive for householders and communities, particularly in the current climate of record low interest rates. The impact assessment supporting the consultation assesses the impacts of the consultation proposals and estimates that solar PV installations will continue to come forward. These installations could include community projects although the impact assessment does not provide detailed estimates on installation types.

Jo Swinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what his policy is on provision of support to businesses to meet the obligations arising from implementation of the measures in phase 1 of the comprehensive review of feed-in tariffs. [79890]

14 Nov 2011 : Column 588W

Gregory Barker [holding answer 10 November 2011]: The impact assessment accompanying the Government's consultation on feed-in tariffs (FITs) for solar photovoltaics (PV) estimates that new solar PV installations will continue to come forward under the proposed changes to FITs for solar PV. The number of installations is expected to be around 30,000 per year for the rest of the spending review period.

The proposals in the consultation are intended to support a sustainable solar PV industry while minimising the costs to consumers from excessive levels of support. The proposed energy efficiency requirement will also offer new opportunities to businesses, by driving the installation of energy efficiency measures.

The Government do not intend to provide specific financial support to help businesses meet any costs arising from the comprehensive review.

Jo Swinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what consideration he has given to potential adverse weather conditions in the implementation of the measures in phase 1 of the comprehensive review of feed-in tariffs. [79891]

Gregory Barker [holding answer 10 November 2011]: On 31 October 2011, the Government published a consultation setting out proposed new tariffs for solar photovoltaics (PV) under the feed-in tariffs scheme. The consultation proposes that new tariffs will be implemented from 1 April 2012 but will apply to all new PV installations with an eligibility date on or after a proposed “reference date” of 12 December 2011.

The consultation specifically asks for views on whether the proposed reference date should be 12 December 2011 or some other date. We will consider all representations made during the consultation in response to this and other questions, including any citing adverse weather conditions as a factor that may have prevented installations from proceeding in the period prior to the proposed reference date.

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change pursuant to the contribution by the Minister of State for Climate Change of 31 October 2011, Official Report, column 607, on feed-in tariffs, what assessment he has made of the potential savings to energy consumers as a result of the reductions in feed-in tariff subsidies; and what methodology his Department used to determine that figure. [79902]

Gregory Barker: An impact assessment has been published to support the consultation on feed-in tariffs for solar photovoltaics (PV). This includes an assessment of the impacts of the consultation proposals on domestic energy bills. Under our proposals, the impact of the feed-in tariff on annual consumer energy bills in 2020 is estimated to be around £3 per year, compared to £26 if we kept the tariffs at their current levels. The impact assessment is available at:

http://www.decc.gov.uk/assets/decc/11/consultation/fits-comp-review-p1/3416-fits-IA-solar-pv-draft.pdf

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change pursuant to the contribution by the Minister of State for Climate Change of 31 October 2011, Official Report, column 609, on feed-in tariffs,

14 Nov 2011 : Column 589W

when he last met representatives of small and medium-sized enterprises to discuss

(a)

energy and climate change policy generally and

(b)

feed-in tariffs. [79905]

Charles Hendry: Ministers meet SMEs in all relevant sectors frequently. Details of meetings held between DECC Ministers and external parties are published on the Department's website on a quarterly basis.

The Minister of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change, my hon. Friend the Member for Bexhill and Battle (Gregory Barker) recently hosted a stakeholder round-table on the FITs consultation which included representatives of SMEs.

Mr Yeo: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what information his Department holds on (a) the rates paid, (b) the length of time the scheme operated, (c) installed capacity and (d) the average change in power bills for feed-in tariff schemes in other EU member states. [80042]

Gregory Barker: The structure of support for renewable energy varies considerably across European Union (EU) member states, so the schemes cannot be compared directly with each other.

The Department collects information on the schemes in a number of member states, but not in the form requested. Tariffs have been reduced recently in Germany, France, Spain, Italy and Belgium in the face of global falling costs for solar photovoltaic (PV) technology. Our proposed tariff of 21p for domestic scale installations (=4 kW) is similar to the rate offered in Germany.

Dr Huppert: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change whether his Department plans to provide exceptions for (a) schools, (b) housing associations, (c) community centres and (d) community projects from the feed-in tariffs which are due to commence after 12 December 2011. [80314]

Gregory Barker: The Government's consultation on feed-in tariffs (FITs) for solar photovoltaics (PV) includes proposals for new tariffs that would apply from 1 April 2012 to all new PV installations which become eligible for FITs on or after 12 December 2011. We will consider all representations received in response to the consultation on these proposals.

The Government are also considering whether more could be done to enable genuine community projects to be able to fully benefit from FITs. We will provide more detail on this in a second consultation on the comprehensive review which will be published around the end of the year.

Mark Lancaster: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what savings he expects to arise from his planned changes to feed-in tariffs. [80376]

Charles Hendry: An impact assessment has been published to support the consultation on feed-in tariffs for solar photovoltaics (PV). This includes an assessment of the impacts of the consultation proposals on the subsidy costs of the FITs scheme and on annual average domestic energy bills.

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Under our proposals, the estimated subsidy costs of solar PV under FITs will be £250 million to £280 million (nominal, undiscounted) in 2014-15. This compares to an estimated cost of £1 billion (nominal, undiscounted) in 2014-15 if we did nothing. This difference in costs translates to a saving on annual average domestic energy bills in 2020 of £23 (2010 prices, undiscounted). The impact assessment is available at:

http://www.decc.gov.uk/assets/decc/11/consultation/fits-comp-review-p1/3416-fits-ia-solar-pv-draft.pdf

Renewable Energy: Heating

Barry Gardiner: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how the renewable heat premium payment is to be targeted at households living in fuel poverty. [79988]

Charles Hendry: As part of the £15 million renewable heat premium payment scheme, £3 million was set aside for registered providers of social housing to compete for funds to install renewable heating systems into homes of social tenants, particularly for those at risk of fuel poverty.

We will announce the details of the winning bidders shortly. Given the high level of interest and quality of bids received, we have increased the budget to £4 million to allow more projects to be supported. The main aim of the successful projects is the installation of renewable heat technologies to replace expensive fuel off the gas grid, helping to reduce fuel bills for the tenants, focusing on those in fuel poverty.

Scottish and Southern Energy

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change whether he has had discussions with representatives of Scottish and Southern Energy on their proposals to reform the sale of energy on the day-ahead market. [79846]

Charles Hendry: Ministers meet and attend functions with energy companies on a regular basis to discuss a range of issues. Quarterly lists of DECC Ministers' meetings that involve outside interested parties are published on the DECC website, available at:

http://www.decc.gov.uk/en/content/cms/accesstoinform/registers/ministermtgs/ministermtgs.aspx

Solar Power

Mr Iain Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change whether he has made an assessment of the solar industry survey published by the Renewable Energy Association and Solar Trade Association on 8 November 2011; and if he will ensure that the survey’s conclusions on (a) estimated employment levels in the solar industry, (b) closure of firms providing solar photovoltaic systems and (c) the effect of feed-in tariff charges on social housing tenants are incorporated into his Department’s consultation process. [80919]

Charles Hendry: I welcome the contribution that the REA and STA continue to make to FITs policy development, and I am pleased they were both able to attend the stakeholder round-table which the Minister of State for Climate Change, my hon. Friend the Member

14 Nov 2011 : Column 591W

for Bexhill and Battle (Gregory Barker), hosted on 10 November 2011. Their recent survey was discussed at this event and will be considered along with other representations received through the FITs consultation.

Luciana Berger: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what estimate his Department has made of the number of UK solar companies (a) nationally, (b) in each region and (c) in each parliamentary constituency. [80973]

Charles Hendry: The current number of solar PV installation companies certified under the microgeneration certification scheme is 3,241. The Department does not hold the information by parliamentary constituency; however, the regional breakdown is as follows:

Regions PV companies

Yorkshire Humberside

284

North East

131

North West

335

South East

687

South West

476

East Midlands

313

West Midlands

295

East England

246

London

77

Isle of Wight

7

Isle of Man

1

Scotland

162

Wales

214

Northern Ireland

12

Caroline Flint: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what meetings he has held with representatives of the UK solar industry since May 2010. [81080]

Gregory Barker: Details of meetings between DECC Ministers and external organisations are published quarterly on the DECC website.

During the development of our proposals for the feed-in tariff comprehensive review phase 1 consultation, I and other Ministers met a number of representatives of the solar power industry.

Solar Power: Feed-in Tariffs

Caroline Flint: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what modelling his Department has carried out on the effect of the proposed generation tariffs for solar photovoltaic energy on the rate of return. [79201]

Charles Hendry: The proposed tariffs are intended to provide a rate of return on capital of approximately 4.5% to 5% for well sited installations.

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change pursuant to the contribution by the Minister of State for Climate Change of 31 October 2011, Official Report, columns 609-10, on feed-in tariffs, what estimate he has made of the number of solar PV community schemes which will not go ahead as a result of reductions in the subsidy available under the feed-in-tariff scheme. [79850]

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Gregory Barker: The new tariffs proposed in consultation on feed-in tariffs for solar PV are intended to provide a return on capital of 4.5% to 5% for well-sited installations. These returns should still be attractive for householders and communities, particularly in the current climate of record low interest rates. The impact assessment supporting the consultation assesses the impacts of the consultation proposals and estimates that solar PV installations will continue to come forward. These installations could include community projects although the impact assessment does not provide detailed estimates on installation types.

Mr Yeo: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change whether he undertook an assessment of the effect on existing orders and contracts for solar photovoltaic (PV) installations when setting 12 December as the date for the introduction of the reduced solar PV feed-in tariffs. [79856]

Gregory Barker: The proposed changes will not take effect from 12 December 2011. The new tariffs will come into force from 1 April 2012 but the Government’s proposal is that they should apply from that date to all new PV installations which become eligible for FITs on or after 12 December 2011.

The principal reason for the proposed approach is the urgency of the concerns about the impact on the scheme’s budget of continuing high levels of uptake at the current tariffs. The proposals are designed to strike a balance between the need for quick action and the desire to allow people an opportunity to finish work that is well under way. The proposed six-week period will allow many prospective generators who have made a financial commitment to installing PV (for example, paying a deposit) to do this.

Mr Yeo: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change whether he undertook an assessment of the effect on investment in the solar photovoltaic (PV) industry as a result of the proposed reductions in solar PV tariffs. [79857]

Charles Hendry: An impact assessment has been published to support the consultation on feed-in tariffs for solar photovoltaics (PV). This sets out the impact on generation and employment of the changes proposed in the consultation. The impact assessment is available at:

http://www.decc.gov.uk/assets/decc/11/consultation/fits-comp-review-p1/3416-fits-ia-solar-pv-draft.pdf

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what methodology his Department used to determine the reference date of 12 December 2011 for eligibility for the feed-in tariff scheme for solar photovoltaic installations. [79901]

Charles Hendry: The Government's consultation on feed-in tariffs (FITs) for solar photovoltaics (PV) proposes that the new tariffs will come into force from 1 April 2012 but apply to all new installations which become eligible for FITs on or after a proposed “reference date” of 12 December 2011.

The principal reason for the proposed approach is the urgency of the concerns about the impact on the scheme's budget, and therefore on consumers' energy bills, of

14 Nov 2011 : Column 593W

continuing high levels of uptake at the current tariffs. The proposed reference date is six weeks after publication of the consultation and is designed to strike a balance between the need for quick action and the desire to allow people an opportunity to finish work that is well under way.

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change pursuant to the contribution by the Minister of State for Climate Change of 31 October 2011, Official Report, columns 607 and 613, on feed-in tariffs, what assessment he has made of the reduction in the cost of solar photovoltaic installations; and what methodology his Department used to determine that assessment. [79903]

Gregory Barker: The impact assessment supporting the Government's consultation on feed-in tariffs for solar photovoltaics (PV) sets out estimates of PV installation costs for different sizes of installations. They are based on a report from Cambridge Economic Policy Associates and Parsons Brinckerhoff which was published alongside the impact assessment and is available at:

http://www.decc.gov.uk/assets/decc/11/consultation/fits-comp-review-p1/3365-updates-to-fits-model-doc.pdf

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change pursuant to the contribution by the Minister of State for Climate Change of 31 October 2011, Official Report, column 608, on feed-in tariffs, what estimate he has made of the number of (a) jobs in the solar industry and (b) solar photovoltaic installations in (i) the UK and (ii) Germany. [79904]

Gregory Barker: We estimate that, based on the number of solar photovoltaic installations by the end of October 2011, around 8,000 to 14,000 gross full-time equivalent jobs have been supported by solar PV since the introduction of the feed-in tariffs (FITs) scheme. The total number of people doing some solar PV work is likely to be higher than this range because those who are involved in solar PV installations are also likely to undertake other tasks linked to their employment. We have not made any estimates of employment in the German PV sector.

Data on solar PV installations in Germany are published by the IEA. These data cover capacity only and show that at the end of 2009 9,800 MW had been installed in Germany.

Data for the UK are published monthly on the DECC website:

http://www.decc.gov.uk/en/content/cms/statistics/energy_stats/source/electricity/electricity.aspx

At the end of October 2011 329 MW of solar PV had been confirmed on to the FIT scheme. Data from the microgeneration certification scheme (MCS) register suggest that a further 96 MW of small scale (sub-50 kW) has been installed but has not yet registered for FITs. Data from the MCS should be seen as an indicator of early activity. There is no guarantee that all schemes will be confirmed onto FITs.

Barry Gardiner: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what assessment he has made of the potential effect on investment in the UK solar industry of a reduction in the feed-in tariff for solar photovoltaic installations before 31 March 2012. [79993]

14 Nov 2011 : Column 594W

Charles Hendry: An Impact Assessment has been published to support the consultation on Feed-in Tariffs for solar photovoltaics (PV). This sets out the impact in generation and employment of the changes proposed in the consultation. The Impact Assessment is available at:

http://www.decc.gov.uk/assets/decc/11/consultation/fits-comp-review-p1/3364-fits-scheme-consultation-doc.pdf

Dr Huppert: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what the estimated cost in the current comprehensive spending review period would be of moving the reference date for the new solar photovoltaic feed-in tariffs from 12 December 2011 to 1 April 2012. [80429]

Gregory Barker: The Impact Assessment published alongside the consultation on feed-in tariffs for solar PV which can be found at:

http://www.decc.gov.uk/assets/decc/11/consultation/fits-comp-review-p1/3416-fits-IA-solar-pv-draft.pdf

estimates the range of costs to consumers for a Reference Date of 12 December 2011 (Option 2) and a Reference Date of 1 April 2012 (Option 3). The difference between these two options in cost to consumers over the current comprehensive spending review period ranges from £60 million to £430 million under different uptake scenarios, with a central estimate of £190 million (costs in 2011 prices, discounted).

With no change to tariffs, under central uptake scenarios the Impact Assessment shows that FITs would increase annual household electricity bills by around £26 per year in 2020; under high growth scenarios this figure would be in the order of £55 per year in 2020.

There is considerable uncertainty around future bill impacts of FITs as solar PV costs have declined rapidly to date and hence future costs (and therefore uptake) are uncertain.

Dr Huppert: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what assessment he has made of the merits of a reduction in solar photovoltaic feed-in tariffs of (a) 10 per cent., (b) 20 per cent., (c) 30 per cent. and (d) 40 per cent.; and if he will make a statement. [80430]

Gregory Barker: The Government are currently consulting on proposals to reduce feed-in tariffs (FITs) for solar photovoltaic (PV) installations. The proposed new tariffs have been set in the light of information from the comprehensive review. This includes evidence that, since the FITs scheme started, PV costs have fallen by at least 30% and retail electricity prices have increased by 13%. In the light of this, the proposed new tariffs are intended to provide a 4.5% to 5% return on capital for a well sited installation which is similar to the target return for solar PV when the FITs were first introduced. Higher tariffs would result in higher returns than ever intended for solar PV under FITs. The Impact Assessment published alongside the consultation provides further details of how the assessment was made, which was not on the same basis as that set out in the question.

The consultation closes on 23 December 2011 and we will consider all representations received.

14 Nov 2011 : Column 595W

Dr Huppert: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what assessment he has made of the effect on the income of solar photovoltaic (PV) manufacturing and installation companies of the proposed reductions in solar PV feed-in tariffs. [80431]

Gregory Barker: The Impact Assessment accompanying the Government's consultation on feed-in tariffs (FITs) for solar photovoltaics (PV) estimates that new solar PV installations will continue to come forward under the proposed changes to FITs for solar PV. The number of installations is expected to be between 70% and 95% less for different tariff bands than under the “Do Nothing scenario”. The Impact Assessment does not estimate the specific impact of this, or the potential new business opportunities arising from the consultation proposals on energy efficiency, on the income of solar PV manufacturing and installation companies.

Dr Huppert: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what assessment he has made of the effects on future levels in investment in the solar photovoltaic (PV) industry as a result of the proposed reductions in solar PV tariffs. [80432]

Gregory Barker: An Impact Assessment has been published to support the consultation on feed-in tariffs for solar photovoltaics (PV). This sets out the expected impact on generation, and on employment, of the changes proposed in the consultation. The Impact Assessment is available at:

http://www.decc.gov.uk/assets/decc/11/consultation/fits-comp-review-p1/3416-fits-ia-solar-pv-draft.pdf

Dr Huppert: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what budget has been allocated for exemptions from the proposed implementation date for the reduced solar photovoltaic feed-in tariffs. [80433]

Gregory Barker: The consultation seeks views on the tariffs and on the proposed approach to implementing them. We will consider all representations made prior to finalising the policy.

Solar Power: Finance

Damian Hinds: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what proportion of photovoltaic installations which will benefit from payments for his Department have (a) involved no intermediary and (b) involved an intermediary company; and which 10 companies have been responsible for the greatest number of installations. [79879]

Charles Hendry: We do not hold information on intermediaries.

Information on the 10 companies responsible for the largest number of solar photovoltaic (PV) installations of up to 50kW capacity is available from the Microgeneration Certification Scheme database. Listed alphabetically, these companies are:

A Shade Greener Ltd

AVC Energy Ltd

British Gas Solar Ltd

Clear Air Solutions UK Ltd

14 Nov 2011 : Column 596W

EAGA Clean Energy Ltd (EAGA Clean Energy)

Ecosparx Ltd

House Choice Ltd

Mark Group Ltd

PV Solar UK Ltd

Solarcentury Holdings Ltd.

Solar Power: Manpower

Caroline Flint: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change (1) what recent estimate his Department has made of the number of people employed in the solar industry; [79093]

(2) whether his Department has forecast future levels of employment in the solar industry. [79094]

Charles Hendry: We estimate that, based on the number of solar photovoltaic installations by the end of October 2011, around 8,000 to 14,000 gross full-time equivalent jobs have been supported by solar PV since the introduction of the feed-in tariffs (FITs) scheme. The total number of people doing some solar PV work is likely to be higher than this range because those who are involved in solar PV installations are also likely to undertake other tasks linked to their employment.

An impact assessment has been published to support the consultation on FITs for solar PV. This includes an assessment of the economic impacts of the consultation proposals, including the impact on jobs. The impact assessment is available at:

http://www.decc.gov.uk/assets/decc/11/consultation/fits-comp-review-p1/3416-fits-ia-solar-pv-draft.pdf

Wind Power

Mark Lancaster: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how many wind turbines have been constructed in each year since 2005. [80370]

Charles Hendry: The following table shows the number of wind turbines installed and operational each year from 2005. All data are sourced from the renewable energy planning database which tracks the progress of renewable electricity projects in the United Kingdom from inception, through planning, construction and operational phases, and is updated on a monthly basis.(1,2)

(1) https://restats.decc.gov.uk/cms/planning-database/

(2) Data include resubmitted applications but exclude many small-scale, micro-generation sites, typically of less than 50 kW installed capacity.


Number of onshore Capacity of onshore (MW) Number of offshore Capacity of offshore (MW)

2005

321

428

30

90

2006

216

434

30

90

2007

290

555

27

100

2008

316

588

54

194

2009

258

422

103

353

2010

336

614

130

390

2011(1)

100

188

51

184

(1) As at end September 2011.

14 Nov 2011 : Column 597W

Wind Power: Planning Permission

Katy Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change when he plans to implement the non-domestic permitted development rights for small wind systems. [79000]

Charles Hendry: The Department for Communities and Local Government are currently reviewing the scope for permitted development rights for microgeneration installations on non domestic premises, including small wind turbines. They will announce their plans for England only, as planning is a devolved matter, in due course.

Health

Abortion: Northern Ireland

Ms Abbott: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what his policy is on access by women in Northern Ireland to NHS abortion services in the rest of the UK. [79754]

Anne Milton: Women travelling from Northern Ireland seeking an abortion in England, under the Abortion Act 1967, as amended, make their own arrangements and pay for their abortion privately.

Air Pollution

Barry Gardiner: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the cost to the national health service is of treating health conditions resulting from PM10 exceedances in London in each year since 2005. [80446]

Anne Milton: We are not aware of any estimate of treatment costs to the national health service for conditions resulting from PM10 exceedances in London in each year since 2005.

Ambulance Services: Warrington

Helen Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what assessment he has made of the effect on ambulance response times in Warrington of the transfer of emergency patients between Warrington and Chester in the event that a South Mersey vascular centre is based in Chester; [80804]

(2) what assessment he has made of the additional resources which would be required by the North West Ambulance Service NHS Trust in the event that it was required to transfer emergency patients to a vascular centre in Chester and continue to meet the required response times in Warrington; [80805]

(3) what assessment he has made of the effect on the number of deaths consequent on the loss of immediate support for iatrogenic vascular injury in other surgical procedures and specialties performing invasive procedures in Warrington Hospital in the event that the South Mersey vascular centre is located in Chester. [80806]

Mr Simon Burns: Vascular services across the national health service in England are being reviewed locally. This is in response to the growing clinical evidence base that provides a strong case for providing vascular surgery services in fewer more specialised centres or networks to achieve optimal patient outcomes.

14 Nov 2011 : Column 598W

Decisions about the provision of local health services, including vascular services, are a matter for the local NHS. As such no assessment has been made by the Department.

The Cheshire and Merseyside Vascular Review Project Board is leading a review of vascular surgery services in Cheshire and Merseyside which will be subject to public consultation in due course.

Information on the proposed changes to vascular services in Cheshire and Merseyside can be obtained from Kathy Doran, Chief Executive of the Cheshire, Warrington and Wirral Primary Care Trust cluster board.

Arthritis: Physiotherapy

Mr Sanders: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to the answer of 19 October 2011, Official Report, columns 1041-2W, on physiotherapy: arthritis, what assessment he has made of the potential effect of proposed NHS reforms on trends in patient self-referral to physiotherapy services for people with (a) rheumatoid arthritis and (b) other long-term conditions; and if he will make a statement. [79825]

Paul Burstow: It is for local national health service organisations to make their own decisions about routes of referral for physiotherapy, based on which route is clinically appropriate and of value to the health care system and local community.

Both the “Self-referral pilots to musculoskeletal physiotherapy and the implications for improving access to other AHP services” and the “Allied Health Professions Service Improvement Project” referred to in the answer of 19 October 2011, Official Report, columns 1041-42W, provide examples of the benefits of patient self-referral to physiotherapy as part of the service redesign.

Baby Care Units

Robert Flello: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many staff were employed in each neonatal unit in each of the last three years. [81057]

Mr Simon Burns: The information requested is not collected by the Department.

Robert Flello: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the mortality rates were in each neonatal unit in each of the last three years. [81058]

Anne Milton: This information is not available centrally.

Since 2009, the Neonatal Data Analysis Unit (NDAU) has published data on the number of deaths by neonatal network code. Deaths are recorded by neonatal network, rather than neonatal unit, because babies are transferred between units. Published data are set out in the following table. Note that the 2008 data (absolute numbers) are not available. The 2009 and 2010 data are not directly comparable. Data coverage for 2010 were improved, but coverage for both years is incomplete. The data are therefore not representative of the total number of deaths that occurred. From 2011 onward, NDAU plan to publish statistics by network name.

14 Nov 2011 : Column 599W

14 Nov 2011 : Column 600W

  Number of babies in neonatal care (<33 weeks gestational age) Observed deaths
Network code 2009 2010 2009 2010

100011(1)

287

267

22

28

100012

280

264

19

20

100059(2)

443

615

39

57

100070(3)

266

385

15

32

100071(3)

327

423

13

29

100078

205

288

8

20

100088(2)

261

262

11

14

100106

307

284

25

17

100107(3)

164

12

100108(3)

248

602

20

59

100109(3)

261

404

12

31

100110(2)

15

188

1

19

100111(1)

122

16

100113(1)

25

5

100115(2)

397

519

43

36

100118(3)

160

207

7

14

100142(2)

286

560

20

35

100150(1)

406

297

34

19

100162(1)

287

146

33

11

100196(3)

362

413

23

27

100208(2)

346

484

22

42

100209(1)

231

28

100210(2)

131

329

11

23

100524

412

383

40

23

(1) Not all the neonatal units within the network have provided data for 2010. (2) Not all the neonatal units within the network have provided data for 2009-10. (3) Not all the neonatal units within the network have provided data for 2009. Notes: 1. Number of neonatal deaths (<33 weeks gestation at birth) by neonatal network of booking 1 in England, 2009, 2010 2. Determined by intended place of delivery. Source: Neonatal Data Analysis Unit (NDAU), Imperial College.

Further information about the NDAU’s work can be obtained from the NDAU Division of Medicine, Imperial College London, Academic Department of Neonatal Medicine, 4(th) Floor, Chelsea and Westminster Hospital, 369 Fulham Road, London SW10 9NH.

Bell Pottinger Group

John Mann: To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether (a) Ministers, (b) officials and (c) political advisers in his Department have met representatives of (i) Bell Pottinger Group or (ii) each of its subsidiaries in the last five years; on what dates any such meetings took place; and what was discussed. [80054]

Mr Simon Burns: Details of all ministerial meetings with external parties are published quarterly in arrears on the Department’s website. Data from 1 January 2010 up to the end of March 2011 can be found at:

www.dh.gov.uk/en/Aboutus/MinistersandDepartmentLeaders/Departmentdirectors/DH_110759

No data are held prior to this date. No special advisers have met with the Bell Pottinger Group or its subsidiaries. No data are held prior to 13 May 2010. Information on whether officials have met with the Bell Pottinger Group or its subsidiaries could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust: Neurology

Nicholas Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will conduct a review of neurosurgery at the Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust; and if he will make a statement. [80587]

Mr Simon Burns: The Secretary of State for Health, my right hon. Friend the Member for South Cambridgeshire (Mr Lansley), has no plans to conduct a review of neurosurgery at Brighton and Sussex University Hospitals NHS Trust. We are aware that the trust is working to improve services for patients as part of long term plans to move neuroscience services from the Princess Royal hospital, Haywards Heath to a new purpose built site at the Royal Sussex County hospital, Brighton and that the trust has undertaken to keep the right hon. Member informed.

Cannabis: Mental Illness

Mr Charles Walker: To ask the Secretary of State for Health whether his Department has established any link between use of skunk cannabis and admissions to acute mental health services; and if he will make a statement. [80499]

Anne Milton: The Department commissioned a systematic review of studies in this area. The peer-reviewed results of this review were published in the Lancet in

14 Nov 2011 : Column 601W

July 2007 and confirmed the increased evidence of an association, possibly causal, between prior cannabis use and later development of psychosis and schizophrenia with a 40% increase in risk reported (up to 200% increase for at-risk heavy users).

With funding from DH, the Centre for Public Health and School of Pharmacy and Biomolecular Sciences at Liverpool John Moores university produced a report summarising recent research evidence on the health harms of drugs, including cannabis. The report, ‘A Summary of the Health Harms of Drugs’, was published in August 2011. This report summarises the links between cannabis and mental health problems as a small but significantly increased risk of psychotic symptoms and disorders later in life and a complex association between cannabis use and schizophrenia.

The Government's advisory committee on drugs, the Advisory Council on the Misuse of Drugs, carried out a substantial review of the harms associated with cannabis use, including the physical and psychological effects of cannabis.

Their report, ‘Cannabis: Classification and Public Health’ (2008), copies of which have already been placed in the Library, found a probable but weak causal link between psychotic illness and cannabis use.

Clinical Commissioning Groups

Andrew Gwynne: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) on what basis the budget allocations to shadow clinical commissioning groups were calculated for (a) commissioning services and (b) running costs in 2012-13; [79638]

(2) what steps he plans to take to allocate resources to shadow clinical commissioning groups for the purposes of reducing health inequalities; [79639]

(3) what plans he has for developing the weighted capitation formula for NHS commissioning. [79640]

Mr Simon Burns: Shadow allocations to clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) for 2012-13 will be published later this year. The Secretary of State for Health, my right hon. Friend the Member for South Cambridgeshire (Mr Lansley), has asked the Advisory Committee on Resource Allocation, an independent committee including general practitioners, national health service managers, public health experts and academics, to continue to advise on the distribution of NHS resources, including allocations made to CCGs.

We are currently making an assessment of the existing cost of functions undertaken by primary care trusts and strategic health authorities which will be the responsibility of CCGs in the future.

Subject to the passage of the Health and Social Care Bill, from 2013-14, the NHS Commissioning Board would be responsible for the allocation of resources to CCGs.

The Board would allocate resources to CCGs in a way that supports the principle of securing equivalent access to NHS services relative to the prospective burden of disease and disability. How these allocations are determined would be a matter for the Board, but they will have a duty to have regard to reducing inequalities in access to, and the outcomes from health care.

14 Nov 2011 : Column 602W

Andrew Gwynne: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what estimate he has made of the likely extent of (a) over- and (b) under-spending by NHS commissioners in 2011-12. [79641]

Mr Simon Burns: At the end of quarter one of 2011-12, there were three primary care trusts (PCTS) forecasting an aggregate deficit between them, of £56 million. These were Haringey PCT (£20 million), Enfield PCT (£19 million) and Barnet PCT (£17 million).

At the end of quarter one of 2011-12, there were 148 PCTs forecasting an aggregate surplus between them, of £517 million.

This means that PCTs were forecasting a net aggregate surplus of £461 million.

The Department is ensuring that the organisations forecasting a deficit have plans in place for financial recovery, while continuing to improve the quality of services to patients.

Andrew Gwynne: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what assessment he has made of the additional administrative costs for NHS commissioners in areas with poor health; [79642]

(2) what methodology his Department used in calculating the proposed running cost allocations for shadow clinical commissioning groups. [79720]

Mr Simon Burns: Shadow allocations to clinical commissioning groups (CCGs) for 2012-13 will be published later this year. The Secretary of State for Health, my right hon. Friend the Member for South Cambridgeshire (Mr Lansley), has asked the Advisory Committee on Resource Allocations, an independent committee including general practitioners, national health service managers, public health experts and academics, to continue to advise on the distribution of NHS resources, including allocations made to CCGs.

We are currently making an assessment of the existing cost of functions undertaken by primary care trusts and strategic health authorities which will be the responsibility of CCGs in the future.

Subject to the passage of the Health and Social Care Bill, from 2013-14, the NHS Commissioning Board would be responsible for the allocation of resources to CCGs.

The Board would allocate resources to CCGs in a way that supports the principle of securing equivalent access to NHS services relative to the prospective burden of disease and disability. How these allocations are determined would be a matter for the Board, but they will have a duty to have regard to reducing inequalities in access to, and the outcomes from health care.

Dental Services

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent discussions he has had with representatives of dentists on NHS dental treatment. [79871]

Mr Simon Burns: The Secretary of State for Health, my right hon. Friend the Member for South Cambridgeshire (Mr Lansley), has had no discussions with dental

14 Nov 2011 : Column 603W

representatives in the last three months. The Under-Secretary of State for Health, my noble Friend Earl Howe, who leads on dentistry within the ministerial team, has visited a dental practice, the Collins House Dental Practice in Hereford, and met with the practice dentists.

Consultants

Frank Dobson: To ask the Secretary of State for Health pursuant to the correction to the answer of 25 October 2011, Official Report, column 192-3W, on departmental management consultants, how many NHS bodies excluding foundation trusts, were counted in the expenditure on consulting in (a) 2007-08, (b) 2008-09, (c) 2009-10 and (d) 2010-11. [80907]

Mr Simon Burns: The following table shows for the financial years from 2007-08 to 2010-11, (1) the total number of NHS Bodies (excluding, foundation trusts) which existed in the years 2007-08 to 2010-11 and (2) of those organisations, how many reported spend on consultancy expenditure.


NHS bodies (excluding foundation trusts) Number of NHS bodies who provided data on consultancy expenditure

2010-11

277

275

2009-10

283

282

2008-09

311

308

2007-08

340

323

Equal Opportunities

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what recent steps his Department has taken to promote equality of opportunity for its employees. [79916]

Mr Simon Burns: The Department of Health has a number of strategies and policies in place to promote equality of opportunity. These include the Single Equality Scheme; a Diversity Delivery Plan; an equal opportunities statement; and a range of human resources and diversity-specific policies that are designed to promote and embed equality considerations in all decision-making processes and ways of working (including those covering desired behaviours).

All relevant policies and practices are assessed for the impact on equality. All strategies, policies and initiatives are communicated to staff, using a range of media, including face-to-face team briefings

Flags

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many flags his Department (a) owns and (b) maintains; and at what annual cost to the public purse. [79915]

Mr Simon Burns: The Department owns one Union flag which flies 365 days of the year, from the flagpole at its official headquarters, building, Richmond house, Whitehall. The flag is replaced depending on condition as required. The annual costs are £220.00 (excluding VAT and carriage costs).

14 Nov 2011 : Column 604W

Departmental Website

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many unique hits his Department's website received in each of the last 12 months. [79918]

Mr Simon Burns: The total number of page impressions received on the Department's website in the past 12 months is 46,728,836.

This breaks down across the past 12 months as follows:


Number

November 2010

4,317,636

December 2010

3,755,603

January 2011

4,633,141

February 2011

4,062,242

March 2011

4,571,770

April 2011

3,661,640

May 2011

4,020,920

June 2011

3,596,999

July 2011

3,380,049

August 2011

3,182,578

September 2011

3,410,391

October 2011

4,135,867

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what social media his Department uses. [79925]

Mr Simon Burns: The Department uses the following social media channels:

Twitter;

YouTube;

Flickr; and

Facebook.

Older Workers

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many people aged over (a) 55 and (b) 65 his Department employs. [79920]

Mr Simon Burns: The Department employs 344 people aged 55 years and over and, of these, 10 people are aged 65 years and over.

Press Releases

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many press releases his Department has issued in the last 12 months. [79942]

Mr Simon Burns: The Department issued 362 press releases between 1 November 2010 and 31 October 2011.

Diabetes

Mr Sanders: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make it his policy to standardise the procedure for referral to specialist care for those admitted to emergency care following episodes of hypoglycaemia. [R] [80248]

14 Nov 2011 : Column 605W

Paul Burstow: The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence Quality Standard for Diabetes, published earlier this year, specifically includes the quality statement that people with diabetes who have experienced hypoglycaemia requiring medical attention are referred to a specialist diabetes team.

The Quality Standards provide authoritative definitions of good quality care, for use by clinicians and commissioners. It is for the national health service to have regard to these Quality Standards.

Mr Sanders: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make an assessment of the level of implementation by primary care trusts of National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence guidance on the use of patient education models for diabetes. [R] [80249]

Paul Burstow: We do not collect centrally the data that would allow such an assessment of implementation to be made.

However, it is important that people with diabetes do receive structured education and support as part of their care. The NHS Operating Framework 2011-12 specifically states that primary care trusts should be commissioning the relevant structured patient education to support people newly diagnosed with diabetes and at appropriate points in their life as their condition progresses.

Mr Sanders: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps he is taking to improve access to specialist healthcare support for diabetics in care homes; and if he will make a statement. [R] [80250]

Paul Burstow: It is for local national health service organisations to commission a comprehensive service for all people with diabetes, including access to specialist health care.

Diabetes management in care homes continues to pose significant challenges to health and social care professionals in the provision of high quality, safe and effective care. We welcome work undertaken in 2010 by a Task and Finish Group of Diabetes UK, led by Professor Alan Sinclair, which produced ‘Good clinical practice guidelines for care home residents with diabetes’. The need for specialist input is an important recommendation of this national guidance.

The guidance is available on the Diabetes UK website at:

www.diabetes.org.uk/Documents/About%20Us/Our%20 views/Care%20recs/Care-homes-0110.pdf

In addition to the work listed above, the Older People's Steering Group of NHS Diabetes, chaired by Professor Sinclair, has been involved in undertaking a large diabetes audit within care homes during the previous 12 months. While this audit shows evidence of variation in the quality of care, a lack of knowledge of diabetes among care home staff, and absence of specific diabetes policies, there does appear to be enthusiasm within care homes to enhance the quality of care and to be more engaged in promoting training and education of staff. A number of initiatives are taking place to look at the risk of hypoglycaemia and medication errors in care homes, as well as developing a national course to educate care home staff in some aspects of diabetes management.

14 Nov 2011 : Column 606W

Mr Sanders: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps his Department is taking to encourage the recruitment of diabetes-specialist nurses in primary care settings. [R] [80251]

Paul Burstow: The Government consider that diabetes specialist nurses are an essential part of the diabetes specialist team and have a valuable part to play in supporting people with diabetes.

It is for local national health service organisations to commission a comprehensive service for people with diabetes, including access to specialist health care. It is local health care organisations, with their knowledge of the health care needs of their local populations, that are also best placed to determine the work force required to deliver safe patient care within their available resources.

Mr Sanders: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps his Department is taking to encourage the provision of lifestyle management techniques education to (a) those with diabetes and (b) those at risk of developing diabetes. [R] [80252]

Paul Burstow: Type 1 diabetes is not currently preventable. type 2 diabetes is closely linked to lifestyle factors such as being overweight or physical inactivity.

For those people who have been diagnosed with diabetes, guidelines issued by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) emphasise the importance of patient education. This is reflected in the NICE Quality Standard for Diabetes. The 2011-12 NHS Operating Framework also signals the need to commission patient structured education for people newly diagnosed with diabetes and at appropriate points in their life as their condition progresses.

The Government recently published “Healthy Lives, Healthy People: A call to action on obesity in England”, which sets out our commitment to key programmes such as Change4Life and the NHS Health Check.

In July 2011, the chief medical officer also published revised physical activity guidelines. The guidelines set out clear recommendations on the amount of physical activity people need to do to benefit their health, and how it can fit into their daily lives. The report includes evidence to show that there is a 30 to 40% lower risk of type 2 diabetes in at least moderately active people compared with those who are sedentary.

NICE also recently published guidance entitled “Preventing type 2 diabetes: population and community-level interventions in high-risk groups and the general population”. A second piece of guidance on type 2 diabetes, looking at interventions aimed at individuals at high risk, is due to be published in May 2012.

Diabetes: Admissions

Mr Sanders: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will make an assessment of the effect on (a) in-patient admission times and (b) costs to the NHS of introducing diabetes inpatient specialist nurse services. [R] [80230]

Paul Burstow: In October NHS Diabetes published, ‘Inpatient care for people with diabetes: the economic case for change’, which summarised evidence showing that specialist diabetes in-patient teams can improve the

14 Nov 2011 : Column 607W

quality of patient care and reduce national health service costs by lowering the incidence of adverse events, cutting lengths of stay,, reducing admission and readmission rates, and increasing day case rates.

All in-patients with diabetes should have access to diabetes specialists and receive the treatment they need to avoid longer stays and readmissions, which have significant cost implications for the NHS. Initiatives such as the National Diabetes Inpatient Audit are key to identifying areas for improvement, and developing a better understanding of the issues faced by people with diabetes while in hospital.

Mr Sanders: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what steps he is taking to ensure that secondary care staff are trained in the appropriate discharge procedures for patients with diabetes and that such procedures are applied to all patients with diabetes including cases where diabetes was not the primary cause of admission. [R] [80247]

Paul Burstow: Appropriate discharge from hospital is an important element of the care of people with diabetes and requires good communication between secondary, primary and community health care services. The 2011-12 NHS Operating Framework specifically highlights the need for National Health Service providers to consider the overall management of in-patients with diabetes. In addition the NICE (National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence) Quality Standard for Diabetes emphasises the overall importance of integrated diabetes care and specifies care for readmission prevention for patients admitted with glucose emergencies.

The content and standard of health care training is the responsibility of the independent regulatory bodies. Through their role as the custodians of quality standards in education and practice, these organisations are committed to ensuring high quality patient care delivered by high quality health professionals and that health care professionals are equipped with the knowledge, skills and behaviours required to deal with the problems and conditions they will encounter in practice.

Diabetes: Nurses

Keith Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many specialist nurses in diabetes mellitus there are; and how much was spent on their salaries and associated costs in the latest period for which figure are available. [80465]

Mr Simon Burns: The current number of diabetic specialist nurses employed by the national health service is not collected centrally. The salary costs for diabetes nurses are not available because the salary costs for nursing are not broken down into specialist nursing areas.

Drugs

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many officials in his Department have been disciplined for misconduct related to drug use in the last 12 months. [79865]

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Mr Simon Burns: No official of the Department has been managed through the disciplinary process for misconduct relating to drug use in the last 12 months.

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what his Department's policy is on mandatory drug testing of its employees. [79919]

Mr Simon Burns: The roles and functions within the Department do not require testing of this nature. In circumstances in which employees on secondment are subject to random drug testing, because they have practitioner roles in their parent organisations, these tests are carried out by that organisation.

The Department has health and well-being policies in place for those employees who need support because of substance misuse. Practical support is available in the form of an employee assistance programme and occupational health provision.

Health Services: Older People

Liz Kendall: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many unplanned hospital admissions for people aged 65 years and over there were, broken down by (a) local authority and (b) NHS commissioner in each month in (i) 2008-09, (ii) 2009-10, (iii) 2010-11 and (iv) 2011 to date. [80425]

Paul Burstow: The Department does not have data in the format requested but does have data with a count of finished admission episodes (FAEs) where the age of the patient is 65 or over; by month, primary care trust of responsibility and local authority of residence for the years 2008-09 to 2011-12. Data for 2011-12 are provisional and only for the months April to June inclusive.

It should be noted that the information on FAEs is not a count of patients as a patient may have been admitted more than once during the period stated. The footnotes contain further information which should be used when interpreting the data.

This information has been placed in the Library.

Source:

NHS Information Centre for Health and Social Care

Health Services: Overseas Visitors

Chris Skidmore: To ask the Secretary of State for Health if he will list each payment due from EU countries and Switzerland to the UK for NHS treatment for their nationals made in each financial year from 1999-2000 to 2009-10. [80220]

Anne Milton: The following table shows total payments made by member states of the European Economic Area (EEA) and Switzerland, to the United Kingdom, for health care benefits in kind under European social security regulations in the financial years 2007-08 to 2010-11. Comparable data for earlier years are not available.

EEA medical costs—Payments to UK 2007-08 to 2010-11 (1,2)
£

2007-08 2008-09 2009-10 2010-11

Austria

0

30,000

48,000

145,000

Belgium(3)

4,682,000

2,820,000

1,743,000

931,000

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Bulgaria(4)

0

0

0

0

Cyprus

0

0

0

0

Czech Republic

0

2,000

78,000

35,000

Denmark (Waiver)(5)

0

0

0

0

Estonia (Waiver)(6)

0

0

0

0

Finland (Waiver)(7)

0

0

2,000

0

France

2,164,000

5,224,000

6,545,000

1,768,000

Germany

1,120,000

94,000

546,000

2,916,000

Greece

175,000

864,000

246,000

269,000

Hungary (Waiver)(7)

11,000

8,000

38,000

0

Iceland

42,000

0

25,000

19,000

Ireland(3)

19,004,000

19,560,000

22,723,000

20,229,000

Italy(6)

4,655,000

0

672,000

19,517,000

Latvia

0

0

0

11,000

Liechtenstein

0

0

0

0

Lithuania

0

0

0

5,000

Luxembourg

0

0

0

10,000

Malta (Waiver)(8)

0

0

0

0

Netherlands(3)

0

0

6,581,000

0

Norway (Waiver)(5)

0

0

0

0

Poland

0

0

0

374,000

Portugal

29,000

18,000

152,000

39,000

Romania(4)

0

0

0

0

Slovakia

0

0

0

22,000

Slovenia

0

6,000

61,000

270,000

Spain

106,000

4,226,000

158,000

1,631,000

Sweden

951,000

280,000

865,000

3,334,000

Switzerland

9,000

0

38,000

211,000

Total

32,900,000

33,100,000

40,500,000

51,700,000

(1 )Comparable data for years prior to 2007-08 cannot be provided as it would incur disproportionate cost. (2 )Country totals are rounded to the nearest 1,000. Overall totals are rounded to the nearest 100,000. Sub-totals may not add up to totals due to rounding. (3 )Belgium, Ireland and the Netherlands. Totals includes amounts offset for the value of certain UK claims as provided for by the bilateral agreements with those countries. (4 )Bulgaria and Romania joined the European Union on 1 January 2007. Both countries have yet to produce average costs therefore there are no claims to date from either country. (5 )Denmark—Full waiver. (6 )Estonia and Norway—Waiver, excepting Article 22.1c (patient referral) and Article 55.1c (industrial injury) claims. (7 )Finland, Hungary and Malta—Waiver, excepting Article 22.1c (patient referral) claims. (8 )Italy—Totals for 2007-08 include an exchange rate currency gain arising from the payment offset provisions of the former Italy-UK bilateral agreement. That agreement terminated on 31 December 2009. No payments were received in 2008-09. Note: Payments in any one year may relate to claims for one or more previous years, and can vary significantly based on when other member states pay a claim and when the UK submits the claims. Therefore significant variations from year to year are common.

Chris Skidmore: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what the total cost to the public purse has been of interest payments owed to other European Economic Area member states and Switzerland for outstanding health care claims made in each financial year between 1997-98 and 2009-10. [80238]

Anne Milton: As the provision for interest to be charged on claims for health care benefits in kind in Regulation 987/2009 entered into force on 1 May 2010, no interest was incurred or paid in the financial years 1997-98 to 2009-10.

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Mr Brady: To ask the Secretary of State for Health what guidance his Department gives to GP practices on the registration of people who are not ordinarily resident in the UK. [80584]

Mr Simon Burns: The concept of being ordinarily resident has no bearing on a person's eligibility to receive primary care in England. It is up to the discretion of the general practitioner (GP) as to who he registers as a national health service patient, though he must have reasonable non-discriminatory grounds to refuse someone.

On 18 March 2011, the Government announced a further review regarding charging foreign nationals for NHS services. This will include consideration of whether GP services and other non-hospital NHS services should be charged for.

The review will be thorough and consultative, and will take full account of NHS values, public health needs and humanitarian obligations. We expect that developed proposals will be ready for further consultation during 2012. Following this, further guidance with regard to this issue wilt be published.