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Written Answers to Questions

Tuesday 17 July 2012

Energy and Climate Change

Carbon Sequestration

Julian Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change with reference to his Department's Carbon Capture and Storage Roadmap, what the timetable is for the development of a strategy for carbon capture and storage outside the power sector. [117664]

Charles Hendry: The CCS Roadmap, which was published on 3 April, explored the long-term development of CCS for both power and energy intensive industries. The CCS Commercialisation programme, which was launched alongside the Roadmap, makes available £1 billion in capital grant funding to support projects to develop CCS. Following closure of bids on 3 July, decisions on which projects to support will be made in the autumn following an assessment and evaluation process.

Julian Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what assessment he has made of the role of clusters of power stations when considering the location of carbon capture and storage projects. [117665]

Charles Hendry: I have made no such assessment. However, the Government has supported directly and indirectly a number of studies into CCS cluster development. Under the CCS Commercialisation programme, which closed to bids on 3 July, all bidders were required to include an assessment on clustering potential.

Energy: Infrastructure

Nic Dakin: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what estimate he has made of the cost of energy infrastructure needed if generation capacity has (a) at least to double and (b) potentially to triple, as envisaged in paragraph 3.3.14 of the Revised Draft Overarching National Policy Statement for Energy, October 2010. [117657]

Charles Hendry: In the Carbon Plan(1), the Department explored four scenarios which are consistent with its target to cut green house gas emissions by 80% by 2050. In these pathways, electricity generation capacity increases from 77 GW in 2007 to 89-162 GW in 2050.

The Department's 2050 Calculator(2) estimates the costs of these pathways. The annual total cost of the energy system (including everything from power stations and industrial processes, cars, planes and trains and the fuel they use, gas boilers and cavity wall insulation) ranges from £330 billion to £370 billion in the period to 2050(3). Of this, annual total electricity infrastructure capital and operating costs are estimated to vary between £17.9 billion and £29.7 billion. This includes the following technologies: Conventional thermal plant, Combustion + CCS, Nuclear power, Onshore wind, Offshore wind,

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Hydroelectric, Wave and Tidal, Geothermal, Distributed solar PV. Networks, Storage, demand shifting and backup. Note that these infrastructure costs exclude the cost of fossil fuels used in electricity generation.

In one of these pathways, “higher renewables, more energy efficiency”, electricity generation capacity doubles by 2050 (from 77 GW in 2007 to 162 GW in 2050). In this pathway, the annual total electricity infrastructure and operating cost is £29.7 billion in the period to 2050. The total annual energy system cost is £359 billion in the period to 2050.

If we do not tackle climate change, electricity generation capacity may rise to 96 GW by 2050. The total annual electricity infrastructure and operating cost is estimated at £12.8 billion and the total energy system cost could be £333 billion in the period to 2050.

The development of the 2050 Calculator's cost methodology was open to the public and scrutinised by experts across the energy field. However, given the long time frame involved, there are still considerable uncertainties around the estimates.

(1) As published in December 2011. See:

http://www.decc.gov.uk/en/content/cms/tackling/carbon_plan/carbon_plan.aspx

(2)Note:

http://www.decc.gov.uk/en/content/cms/tackling/2050/2050.aspx

Results taken from version published in July 2012.

(3) Annual average in the period to 2050.

Energy: Prices

Nic Dakin: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what estimate he has made of the proportion of households likely to be net (a) gainers and (b) losers under current energy policies in 2020. [117653]

Charles Hendry: DECC is transparent about the cost and expected impact of its policies on households. All policies are subject to Impact Assessments which are publicly available on the DECC website. DECC also publishes analysis of the estimated cumulative impact of policies on household energy bills each year alongside the Annual Energy Statement. The estimated impacts of energy and climate change policies on energy prices and bills was last published in November 2011. This analysis includes information on the distributional bill impacts of policies across the household distribution.

Some policies—like those requiring products to be more efficient—are likely to bring benefits to the vast majority of households over the next decade.

By 2020, DECC also estimates that around 35% of households will benefit from one or more of the following: an insulation measure (partly or fully subsidised), small-scale renewable electricity measure in receipt of tariff payments or the warm home discount.

Policies such as cold weather payments and winter fuel allowance provide income benefits which are not reflected in bills and therefore additional to these.

The Government's energy policies also deliver important benefits to households through increased comfort, emissions reductions and benefits of security of energy supply, which cannot be captured in estimates which look only at bills.

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Nic Dakin: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what estimate he has made of the cost of domestic fuel bills at constant prices in (a) 2012, (b) 2013, (c) 2014, (d) 2015 and (e) 2016. [117654]

Charles Hendry: DECC published estimates of average annual household energy (gas and electricity) bills in 2011, 2020 and 2030 alongside the Annual Energy Statement (AES) in November 2011. This analysis is available online at:

http://www.decc.gov.uk/en/content/cms/meeting_energy/aes/impacts/impacts.aspx

DECC has committed to updating these estimates annually as part of the AES.

The main driver of movements in energy bills over the next few years is likely to remain fossil fuel prices, which are volatile. The estimated changes in energy bills over time presented in this report are a reasonable assessment of the trends over the period given the assumptions about future fossil fuel prices and the estimated impact of climate change and energy policies on prices and consumption. In reality, however, other factors will also drive changes in energy bills (largely through consumption), most notably annual changes in weather and consumer tastes. For the purpose of this analysis, the impacts of these other factors have not been captured in our energy bills estimates.

The following table presents a time series of estimated average household energy bills (in real 2010 prices) in each year from 2012 to 2016 consistent with the published analysis and based on DECC's central scenario for fossil fuel prices. These figures also include the estimated impact of Government policies consistent with this scenario:

Estimated average household energy (gas and electricity) bills (real 2010 prices)
 Average household energy (gas + electricity) bills (real 2010 prices) (£)

2012

1,320

2013

1,363

2014

1,408

2015

1,402

2016

1,402

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what estimate he has made of the number of small businesses which have been subject to back-billing for energy supplies of (a) one to two, (b) two to three, (c) three to four, (d) four to five and (e) five to six years in (i) 2010-11, (ii) 2011-12 and (iii) 2012-13 to date. [117920]

Gregory Barker: DECC does not hold the information requested.

Ofgem is responsible for the regulation of gas and electricity supply, including to the non-domestic sector. Ofgem has been working with industry and consumer groups to assess the financial impact of backbilling on small businesses and energy suppliers. This has led to the introduction of a new set of voluntary standards for the treatment of micro-businesses. Some suppliers have made further commitments on the time limit on backbilling, and Ofgem is continuing to monitor this issue.

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Steve Rotheram: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what plans he has to reform the differential cost of electricity rates between English regions; and if he will make a statement. [117922]

Charles Hendry: Several factors drive the differential cost of electricity rates between English regions. The most significant is the different levels of investment in, and operation, of the local distribution and high voltage transmission networks in each region which can affect costs and hence network charges.

Network charges are a matter for Ofgem as the independent regulator of the gas and electricity markets. All network companies are incentivised by Ofgem to operate efficiently. These incentives and the performance of network companies against them are regularly monitored by Ofgem.

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what estimate he has made of the number of small business customers who have been subject to automatic rollover of their electricity and gas supply contracts in the latest period for which figures are available. [117924]

Gregory Barker: DECC does not hold the information requested.

Ofgem is responsible for the regulation of gas and electricity supply, including supply to the non-domestic sector. If a non-domestic customer does not notify their existing supplier that they wish to agree a new contract or switch to another supplier within the time limit set out in the terms of the contract, the supplier will roll over the contract for a further 12 months. This ensures that the non-domestic customer continues to receive their energy supply.

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what assessment he has made of bringing small business contracts into alignment with the code of practice for accurate bills which applies to domestic supply agreements. [117925]

Gregory Barker: It is for Ofgem, as the independent regulator for gas and electricity markets, to consider whether further regulatory protection is required in the non-domestic supply sector.

Micro-businesses—those that consume less than 200,000 kWh gas per year or 55,000 kWh electricity per year, or have a turnover/balance sheet of less than €2 million, or fewer than 10 full-time employees—may ask the Ombudsman Service to investigate complaints about their energy supply if their energy providers are unable to resolve the disputes. Larger business can address issues through the legal system, as they would with disputes with suppliers of other goods and services.

Environment Protection: Employment

Laura Sandys: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what estimate he has made of the likely change in the number of jobs in the UK renewable energy sector up to 2015. [115944]

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Gregory Barker: DECC has not made an estimate of the likely change in the number of jobs in the UK renewable energy sector up to 2015.

We are also aware of a number of other reports which show the potential future benefits from renewables. For example, in its “Renewable Energy: Made in Britain” report, published in April, the Renewable Energy Association (REA) estimates that over 400,000 jobs would be needed to deliver the UK's renewable energy target by 2020. The turnover associated with this rate of growth would be approaching £50 billion.

In addition, implementing our electricity market reforms will require a significant increase in skilled professionals and will support the creation of jobs in the sector. Initial estimates suggest that the infrastructure investment enabled by our electricity market reforms could lead to as many as 250,000 more people being employed in the low-carbon energy sector by 2030.

Fuel Poverty

Alex Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what progress his Department has made towards its statutory obligation to eliminate fuel poverty by 2016. [117955]

Gregory Barker: The coalition Government is committed to doing all that is reasonably practicable to end fuel poverty in England by 2016 and to supporting low income vulnerable households heat their homes at an affordable cost.

A household is said to be fuel poor if it needs to spend more than 10% of its income on fuel to maintain an adequate level of warmth. Fuel poverty is therefore based on modelled spending on energy rather than actual spending. In 2010, the latest year for which data are available, the number of households in fuel poverty was estimated to be 3.5 million in England, which is a reduction of 0.5 million since 2009.

Although the number of households in fuel poverty reduced between 2009 and 2010, fuel poverty remains a huge challenge. The Government has a range of policies to address the contributing factors of fuel poverty, including Warm Front, carbon emissions reduction target, warm home discount, winter fuel payments and cold weather payments. In the future, the new Green Deal and Energy Company Obligation will be our flagship policy for improving the energy efficiency of the nation's housing stock.

Alex Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change whether his Department has conducted an impact assessment of the installation of smart meters on people in fuel poverty. [117956]

Gregory Barker: The programme has assessed the impact of smart meters on those that are considered to be in fuel poverty. The EDRP trials suggest that consumers in areas with a higher proportion of fuel poverty saved at least as much as those in other areas. An end to estimated billing will reduce the debt risk for lower income households.

Pre-payment customers often are disproportionately on lower incomes and are expected to benefit significantly from installation of smart meters. Installation will make it easier to top up and switch between payment methods while also permitting ‘friendly credit' arrangements which

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prevent customers losing supply if they run out of credit overnight or when shops are closed. The costs associated with this payment method will reduce and we expect the premium historically paid by pre-payment customers to end.

Alex Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change if he will estimate the number of households that have entered fuel poverty in (a) England, (b) Scotland, (c) Wales and (d) Northern Ireland since May 2010. [117957]

Gregory Barker: The latest year for which data are available is 2010. The following table shows the number of households in fuel poverty in England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland in 2010. Fuel poverty is a devolved measurement and each country of the UK is responsible for measuring the number of fuel poor households in their own country.

Fuel poor households
 Number of households in fuel poverty (thousand)

England

3,536

Scotland

658

Wales

(1)332

Northern Ireland

(1)297

(1) Estimate.

The latest annual fuel poverty statistics report projects that the number of households in fuel poverty in England will remain around 3.5 million in 2011 and increase to 3.9 million in 2012. This information is available only for England.

Alex Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what estimate he has made of the proportion of people (a) under and (b) over 65 years who are currently living in fuel poverty. [117958]

Gregory Barker: Fuel poverty is measured at household level, and fuel poverty among over 65s can be estimated by looking at households whose oldest member is over 65. In 2010, the latest year for which data are available, the proportion of households containing no one over 65 in England in fuel poverty was estimated to be 13%. The proportion of households where the oldest person was aged 65 or over estimated to be in fuel poverty in England was 26%.

Natural Gas: Exploration

Caroline Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change if he will take into account in the formulation of his gas strategy the findings of (a) the review by the Royal Society and the Royal Academy of Engineering of hydraulic fracturing published on 29 June 2012, (b) the International Energy Agency report on shale gas published on 29 May 2012 and (c) Chapter two of the Committee on Climate Change’s 2012 progress report to Parliament published on 29 June 2012; and if he will make a statement. [117073]

Charles Hendry: The Gas Generation Strategy will be published in autumn 2012 looking at the role of gas in the UK electricity market. It will clearly need to do so with reference to the gas supply outlook. It will consider these reports among others.

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Nuclear Power

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what advice his Department has commissioned from UK-based financial firms on the strike price for nuclear power; and what the total cost to the public purse was. [116557]

Charles Hendry: The Department plans to make use of advice from financial firms to inform its discussions with developers on enabling early investment decisions ahead of electricity market reform, and any subsequent decision on strike prices. Such advice is in the process of being commissioned and the costs will be published in due course in line with the Government's policy on publishing spending data.

Departmental Pay

Caroline Flint: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how many staff of his Department received bonuses in (a) 2010 and (b) 2011. [116748]

Gregory Barker [holding answer 13 July 2012]: The Department of Energy and Climate Change currently awards both non-consolidated end-of-year performance awards and in-year special awards.

The Department uses non-consolidated performance related payments to help drive high performance as they:

encourage continuous high attainment because the payments are dependent upon continuing strong performance;

prevent a permanent rise in salary and an increase in pension on the basis of one-off performances while still allowing good performance to be rewarded;

have no long-term costs, in particular it does not increase future pension payments;

focus the work of employees more directly on the priority goals of the organisation;

motivate employees by linking an element of compensation to the achievement of objectives rather than offering payment for time served;

target money at those who make the biggest contribution.

End-of-year non-consolidated performance awards are used to reward the Department’s highest performers as assessed in their end of year appraisal reports.

Non-consolidated in-year special awards are used to recognise performance or behaviours which might not be fully reflected in an end of year performance appraisal. These may be used to reward staff for exceptional pieces of work or taking on additional responsibilities.

The number of staff who have received these awards in 2010 and 2011 is as follows:

January to DecemberNumber of staff

2010

573

2011

735

Publications

Jonathan Ashworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change pursuant to the answers of 11 June 2012, Official Report, column 75W and 28 June

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2012,

Official Report,

column 343W, on publications, how much his Department has spent on

(a)

circulars,

(b)

consultation documents and

(c)

publications since May 2010. [117826]

Gregory Barker: With reference to my previous response on 11 June, a central record of the spend involved in publishing documents is not kept centrally and therefore would incur disproportionate cost to provide. The list of the documents referred to in my response of 28 June is available electronically but the cost of any hard copies produced is again not held centrally and would also incur disproportionate cost to provide.

Renewable Energy: Feed-in Tariffs

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change when he plans to undertake a revised impact assessment for the operation of a multi-party counterparty for Contracts for Difference. [117921]

Charles Hendry: The impact assessment published alongside the Energy White Paper and the modelling underpinning it are based on there being a credible counterparty that would ensure low risk.

While we consider that the model proposed in the draft Bill provides that, I recognise the concerns that have been raised by industry and we have therefore been assessing the viability of alternative models, including those based on a single counter-party. Both models would be supported by a robust legal framework established by Government in legislation.

Since both models are based on there being a credible counterparty, we do not consider that the impact assessment needs revision. An updated summary impact assessment reflecting revised assumptions and modelling enhancements, as noted in the summary impact assessment accompanying the draft Energy Bill, will be published alongside the Energy Bill on introduction.

I await the outcome of the Energy and Climate Change Committee's pre-legislative scrutiny before making a decision on whether to make any changes in the Bill.

Windows: Energy

Meg Munn: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what estimate he has made of the proportion of windows in the UK that are rated C or below for energy efficiency. [117744]

Gregory Barker: Information on the rating of windows is not collected by DECC. DECC uses the English housing survey and Scottish and Welsh equivalents to estimate the potential for energy efficient measures in the housing stock. The rating of windows is not collected in these surveys. Building regulations have required replacement glazing and glazing in newly built homes to be of at least C-rating since 2010.

Meg Munn: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what estimate he has made of the number of replacement windows that could be eligible for funding under the energy company obligation. [117745]

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Gregory Barker: Any replacement window could be eligible for funding through the energy company obligation (ECO) providing it exceeds current building regulation standards, subject to the other rules of the ECO scheme, which will allow for their inclusion in certain circumstances.

Culture, Media and Sport

Football

Alison McGovern: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what recent meetings he has had with David Bernstein on the Culture, Media and Sport select committee's report on football governance, and the FA's response to that report. [117736]

Hugh Robertson: Neither the Secretary of State nor I have met formally with the football authorities to discuss football governance since they published their response.

I am pleased that the football authorities have responded positively to the challenges set by the Government and the Culture, Media and Sport Select Committee, and have proposed improvements to the way the sport is governed. However, before we engage further, the Select Committee must conclude its deliberations and provide a formal response to these proposals.

Mobile Phones: Radio Frequencies

Mr Streeter: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport when he expects a decision to be made on the spectrum liberalisation request by Everything Everywhere. [117635]

Mr Vaizey: Ofcom, the independent spectrum regulator, has undertaken a consultation on whether to permit a variation to Everything Everywhere’s licence at 1800 MHz to allow 4G services. This consultation closed on 8 May 2012. Ofcom have received a number of responses, including from the other mobile operators and these responses raise a number of detailed issues that Ofcom must now consider carefully before issuing a statement.

Alun Cairns: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what steps his Department is taking to ensure that deployment of 4G/LTE mobile services takes place as soon as possible. [117670]

Mr Vaizey: Ofcom are currently considering the responses received as a result of their recent consultation on the auction of spectrum suitable for 4G services, which closed on 22 March, and are expected to make a statement in the summer.

Ofcom remain on schedule for the UK auction process to start by the end of 2012. This is compatible with the spectrum becoming available to allow successful bidders to start rolling out 4G services in these bands in 2013.

Ofcom are also currently considering a request from Everything Everywhere to allow them to use their existing spectrum to roll-out out 4G services.

Chi Onwurah: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport when Ofcom plans to respond to the proposal for liberalisation of the 1800 band to enable 4G services; and what assessment he has made of the likelihood of 4G services being available in the UK before the end of 2012. [117723]

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Mr Vaizey: Ofcom has undertaken a consultation on whether to permit a variation to Everything Everywhere’s licence at 1800 MHz to allow 4G services. This consultation closed on 8 May 2012. Ofcom have received a number of responses, including from the other mobile operators, and these responses raise a number of detailed issues that Ofcom must now consider carefully before issuing a statement.

I have made no assessment regarding how quickly after liberalisation Everything Everywhere could roll out 4G services.

Chi Onwurah: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what assessment he has made of the contribution to the economy of having 4G services widely available before the end of 2012. [117724]

Mr Vaizey: I have made no such assessment. Any consideration of the benefits to consumers of the introduction of 4G/LTE services, including liberalisation of 1800 MHz would normally fall to Ofcom. The benefits to consumers and the effect of a delay to liberalisation were considered in Ofcom’s March consultation on liberalising the 1800 MHz spectrum.

Odyssey Marine Exploration

Dan Jarvis: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport how many times he has met representatives of Odyssey Marine Exploration Inc. [117716]

John Penrose: The Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport, my right hon. Friend the Member for South West Surrey (Mr Hunt), has had no meetings with representatives of Odyssey Marine Exploration.

Olympic Games 2012

Jonathan Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what assessment he has made of the economic effect of the London 2012 Olympics on towns and cities outside London which are hosting events; and if he will make a statement. [117573]

Hugh Robertson: The Department has not made a specific assessment of the economic effect of the London 2012 Games on host towns and cities outside of London. However, the Department has commissioned a meta-evaluation of the impacts and legacy of the London 2012 Games. The meta-evaluation will estimate the impact of the 2012 Games on GVA and employment in the nations and regions, and in London. The initial report will be published in the autumn and a further report in summer 2013. The Prime Minister recently announced that the Games are expected to bring £13 billion of benefits to the UK over the next four years via inward investment, which amounts to a strong economic legacy from the Games right across the UK.

The whole of the UK stands to gain from the wide range of opportunities created by the Games. The new £130 million tourism campaign to showcase Great Britain in 2012 aims to deliver an additional 4.6 million visitors, £2.7 billion of extra spend and the creation of about

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60,000 job opportunities across the UK. In addition, VisitEngland has launched a new domestic tourism campaign aimed at boosting tourism throughout the UK, maximising the economic legacy of the Games for the whole country and making the most of the Torch Relay and the Cultural Olympiad to showcase the whole nation. The campaign is expected to deliver £500 million in extra visitor spend over four years.

The UK is already benefiting from the Games. To date, the ODA has directly awarded contracts worth £6 billion to over 1,500 suppliers, 50% of which are based outside London. Many more companies have won work within the supply chains.

Olympic Games 2012: Tickets

Mr Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport (1) how many tickets for the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics have been allocated to (a) Coca Cola, (b) Acer, (c) Atos, (d) Dow, (e) GE, (f) McDonalds, (g) Omega, (h) Panasonic, (i) P & G, (j) Samsung and (k) Visa; what restrictions are placed on these tickets; what the average price is of each ticket; for what sport each is; and if he will make a statement; [117626]

(2) how many tickets for the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics have been allocated to (a) Addidas, (b) BMW, (c) BP, (d) British Airways, (e) BT, (f) EDF and (g) Lloyds TSB; what restrictions are placed on these tickets; what the average price is of each ticket; for what sport each is; and if he will make a statement; [117627]

(3) how many tickets for the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics have been (a) allocated to and (b) taken up by (i) worldwide Olympic partners, (ii) London 2012 Olympic partners and (iii) London 2012 providers and suppliers; what the retail value is of each ticket allocated; for what sport each is; what restrictions are placed on these tickets; and if he will make a statement; [117628]

(4) whether London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics tickets allocated to (a) worldwide Olympic partners, (b) London 2012 Olympic partners and (c) London 2012 providers and suppliers may be resold; and if he will make a statement. [117629]

Hugh Robertson: Ticketing is a matter for the London 2012 Organising Committee (LOCOG), which is a private company operating independently of Government. LOCOG must raise its revenues to stage the Games through sponsorship, ticketing, media rights and merchandise. A total of 11 million Olympic and Paralympic tickets are available for London's Games, of which 8% are allocated for purchase by sponsors and stakeholders (global and domestic). These are separate from the 75% of tickets available for the UK public. Tickets purchased by sponsors are across a range of prices and sports. They cannot be re-sold but are being used for a variety of purposes including promotions to the UK public, staff, community groups, and customers.

Mr Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport (1) how many tickets for the London 2012 Olympics and Paralympics are available; for what sports; what recent discussions he has had with the London Organising Committee of the

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Olympic and Paralympic Games on distribution of these tickets; what response he received; and if he will make a statement; [117630]

(2) what recent discussions he has had with the London Organising Committee of the Olympic and Paralympic Games on the allocation of tickets to the London 2012 Olympics to (a) worldwide Olympic partners, (b) London 2012 Olympic partners and (c) London 2012 providers and suppliers; and if he will make a statement. [117683]

Hugh Robertson: Ticketing is a matter for the London 2012 Organising Committee (LOCOG), which is a private company operating independently of Government. A total of 11 million Olympic and Paralympic tickets are available for London's games. Ministers at the Department for Culture, Media and Sport regularly hold discussions with representatives of LOCOG about various London 2012 matters including ticketing. LOCOG has promised to provide a comprehensive break-down of ticket distribution after sales have been completed. Until all the tickets have been sold it would be misleading to provide incomplete information that would be instantly out-of-date.

Royal Archives

Mr Watson: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport when he last visited the Royal Archives in an official capacity; and if he will make a statement. [117779]

Mr Vaizey: The Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport has not visited the Royal Archives in an official capacity.

Telephone Services: Unsolicited Goods and Services

Mr Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport what (a) investigations his Department has undertaken into and (b) discussions he has had on cold-calling and unwanted sales calls to households. [117181]

Mr Vaizey: The Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations 2003 (PECR) provides protection for consumers from receiving unwanted telephone marketing calls by enabling them to register their number with the Telephone Preference Service (TPS), which is a free service. Consumers are also protected under PECR if they have previously advised the caller that they do not wish to receive such calls. The PECR regulations are not enforced by the Department for Culture Media and Sport (DCMS), but by the Information Commissioner's Office (ICO), which is independent from Government. The ICO has powers to take formal action against those who wilfully or negligently continue to make calls despite having been informed of their obligations not to do so and can issue a fine of up to £500,000 for the most serious breaches.

I have met with Office of Communications (Ofcom), TPS and the ICO, to see how consumers can be better protected and what improvements can be made. DCMS is also seeking views on how the current consumer protections can be improved as part of the Communications Review.

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Mr Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport whether he has any plans to introduce further protection for the public from unwanted telephone marketing calls. [117182]

Mr Vaizey: Under the Privacy and Electronic Communications Regulations 2003 (PECR) consumers are protected from receiving unwanted telephone marketing calls by registering their number with the Telephone Preference Service (TPS), which is a free service, or if they have previously advised the caller that they do not wish to receive such calls. Companies within the UK, or from outside the UK on behalf of UK companies, are required not to call a number that is registered with the TPS.

The Department for Culture Media and Sport (DCMS) is currently exploring possible improvements to the TPS with key stakeholders including the Office of Communications (Ofcom), TPS and the Information Commissioners Office (ICO), which will help to ensure that the protections provided under PECR remain effectively implemented. DCMS is also seeking views on how the current consumer protections can be improved as part of the Communications Review.

Attorney-General

Steroid Drugs: Prosecutions

Jo Swinson: To ask the Attorney-General how many prosecutions there have been under the Misuse of Drugs Regulations for supplying anabolic steroids in each of the last 10 years. [117851]

The Solicitor-General: For the last seven complete financial years for which CPS offence data are held, the following number of prosecutions and charges for supplying anabolic steroids were as follows:

 Number of prosecutionsNumber of offences charged

2005-06

1

1

2006-07

1

1

2007-08

1

1

2008-09

0

0

2009-10

0

0

2010-11

2

6

2011-12

0

0

Prime Minister

G8

Hugh Bayley: To ask the Prime Minister pursuant to the answer of 11 July 2012, Official Report, column 274W, on G8, if he will ensure that the agenda for the UK presidency of the G8 Summit in 2013 will include consideration of development, trade and security concerns in Africa. [117804]

The Prime Minister: I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave to him on 11 July 2012, Official Report, column 247W.

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United Nations: European Union

Mr Jim Cunningham: To ask the Prime Minister which representatives of the business sector he has met to discuss the UN's relationship with the EU. [117818]

The Prime Minister: I and officials have meetings with a wide range of organisations and individuals on a range of subjects. I refer the hon. Member to the list of my official meetings with external organisations. This is available on the Cabinet Office website:

http://www.cabinetoffice.gov.uk/resource-library/ministerial-gifts-hospitality-travel-and-meetings-external-organisations

Leader of the House

LIBOR

Roberta Blackman-Woods: To ask the Leader of the House if he will make it his policy that the Parliamentary Commission on Banking Standards should examine the effect of LIBOR manipulation on the sale of interest rate swap products to small and medium-size enterprises. [117942]

Sir George Young: The House resolved on 16 July to establish a Parliamentary Commission for Banking Standards, and its terms of reference were included within that resolution.

Northern Ireland

Assisted Areas

Dr Alasdair McDonnell: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland (1) what discussions he has had with (a) the Minister for Finance in the Northern Ireland Executive, (b) the Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Investment in the Northern Ireland Executive, (c) the Chancellor of the Exchequer and (d) the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills on the future of Northern Ireland's assisted area status; [117872]

(2) what assessment he has made of the effect on the Northern Ireland economy of the proposal to remove automatic assisted area status in 2014. [117873]

Mr Paterson: I have discussed these matters with both the Chancellor of the Exchequer, my right hon. Friend the Member for Tatton (Mr Osborne) and the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, the right hon. Member for Twickenham (Vince Cable). The Minister of State, Northern Ireland Office, my right hon. Friend the Member for East Devon (Mr Swire) has held discussions on this issue with both the Northern Ireland Minister for Enterprise, Trade and Investment and the Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills, my hon. Friend the Member for Hertford and Stortford (Mr Prisk).

I have stressed the need to take account of factors particular to Northern Ireland in taking forward proposals to draw up the new UK assisted areas map for 2014-20. We are seeking to ensure that assisted area status is focused on the areas of greatest need where it can make the greatest impact on promoting economic development across the UK.

17 July 2012 : Column 619W

Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency

Dr Alasdair McDonnell: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Transport on the effects on Northern Ireland of the proposal to centralise the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency in 2013. [117874]

Mr Paterson: I discussed this matter with the Secretary of State for Transport, my right hon. Friend the Member for Putney (Justine Greening), on 10 July following a meeting I had with the Northern Ireland Minister of the Environment the previous day.

Parades Commission

Mr Gregory Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what representations he has made to the Parades Commission on July 2012 parades and protests against them. [117385]

Mr Paterson: The Parades Commission is an independent body. I have therefore not made any representations.

Publications

Jonathan Ashworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland pursuant to the answer of 3 July 2012, Official Report, column 539W, on publications, how much his Department has spent on (a) circulars, (b) consultation documents and (c) publications since May 2010. [117913]

Mr Paterson: The majority of circulars, consultation documents and publications produced by my Department are issued via the internet. Some publications may incur a cost, though the expense of obtaining this information at this stage would be disproportionate.

Ulster Bank

Vernon Coaker: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what the outcome was of his discussions with Sir Philip Hampton on 9 July 2012 on resolving the problems at Ulster Bank; and if he will make a statement. [117811]

Mr Paterson: I refer the hon. Member to the reply I gave to the hon. Member for South Down (Ms Ritchie), on 9 July 2012, Official Report, columns 21-22W, which reports on the discussions of the Minister of State, Northern Ireland Office, my right hon. Friend the Member for East Devon (Mr Swire), with the chief executive of RBS and the continued efforts the bank has undertaken to make in order to overcome the difficulties suffered by its customers.

Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

A3

Damian Hinds: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs when she expects to (a) complete and (b) publish results from the 2012 round of noise mapping for the A3 in East Hampshire. [117314]

17 July 2012 : Column 620W

Richard Benyon: The 2012 round of road traffic noise mapping is being undertaken as one integrated task for the whole of England. Consequently, it is not possible to say precisely when the noise mapping for the A3 in East Hampshire will be completed. We anticipate publishing the results next summer, once the various outputs have been assimilated and the quality assurance processes completed.

Animal Welfare: Circuses

Naomi Long: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the (a) names and (b) qualifications are of the inspectors involved in her Department's research on the use of wild animals in circuses. [117599]

Mr Paice: DEFRA has not and does not plan to commission research on the use of wild animals in circuses. We accept the findings of the 2007 Radford Report, including the conclusion that, due to the relatively small number of animals involved, the results of any further research would not be sufficiently meaningful or robust enough to better inform the debate.

Cattle: Mastitis

Huw Irranca-Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) what assessment her Department has made of the effect of mastitis in cow herds; [115479]

(2) what advice her Department is providing to farmers on tackling mastitis in cow herds. [115480]

Mr Paice: Mastitis is the most common disease of dairy cows and involuntary culling due to mastitis is a major cost to the dairy industry, as was highlighted in the Farm Animal Welfare Council's 2009 Opinion on the Welfare of the Dairy Cow.

The dairy industry has established the Cattle Health and Welfare Group, which includes representatives from DEFRA and the Animal Health and Veterinary Laboratories Agency (AHVLA). The Group has four key priorities, one of which is the dairy cow welfare strategy which was launched in August 2010 with support of the whole dairy supply chain. The strategy is aiming to improve recognition, treatment, prevention and control of mastitis and expand the excellent work of DairyCo and its Mastitis Control Initiative to reduce levels of mastitis. The strategy's first progress report published in September last year reported the incidence rate of cows affected by clinical mastitis (expressed as the proportion of cows affected) reduced by 7.8% over the 12 months to June 2011. The AHVLA provides a diagnostic service for diseases, including mastitis and maintains a database of submissions and diagnosis as part of its surveillance remit. A summary of its analysis is published annually.

DEFRA's cattle welfare code provides farmers with good husbandry advice based on best practice and includes guidance on mastitis. Over a number of years ADAS, on behalf of DEFRA, has provided comprehensive welfare advice through a variety of media for farmers around the country to encourage good welfare, in an effort to reduce the incidence of mastitis in cow herds. The programme has included advice on ‘Reducing injuries

17 July 2012 : Column 621W

to Dairy Cows', ‘Milking Management and the Mastitis Management Action Plan' and more recently ‘Breeding Dairy cows for Longevity'.

Farmers: Graduates

Huw Irranca-Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what advice her Department provides to graduates on employment in the farming sector. [115478]

Mr Paice: Advice on employment is industry led and DEFRA is supportive of the industry in its work to promote the opportunities available. Lantra, the sector skills council for agriculture that is awarded its funding from the UK Commission for Employment and Skills (UKCES), provides information and advice to graduates on employment in the farming sector.

Food: Labelling

Mark Lancaster: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what plans she has to change the rules on (a) use by, (b) best before and (c) sell by dates on packaged food. [116966]

Mr Paice: The Food Labelling Regulations in the UK only cover requirements for the two legally required forms of date mark: ‘use by'; and ‘best before'. Other forms of date mark, including the 'sell by' date, can be provided by businesses on a voluntary basis so long as they are not misleading.

DEFRA issued guidance on the application of date marking to food businesses in September 2011 to help them improve the consistency of the use of the ‘best before' and ‘use by' date marks to prevent food being needlessly thrown away. There are no current plans to change either the legislation or the guidance.

Greenhouse Gas Emissions

Teresa Pearce: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment she has made of the impact of each of the four options proposed in her Department's consultation on greenhouse gas emissions in terms of (a) the cost of compliance, (b) the emissions saved, (c) the wider benefits of emissions reporting and (d) the expected contribution to the UK's emission reduction targets. [116041]

Richard Benyon [holding answer 9 July 2012]:The final Impact Assessment of options for company greenhouse gas (GHG) reporting, which is available on DEFRA's website, shows cost of compliance, emissions saved, and financial savings from reduced fuel use for the four options. This information is presented in the following table. The range of GHG emissions savings provides an indication of the expected contribution of each policy option to the UK's emission reduction targets over the next 10 years:

17 July 2012 : Column 622W

 Cost of compliance over next 10 years (£ million)GHG emissions saved in the UK over next 10 yearsFinancial savings over next 10 years (£ million)

Voluntary reporting

6.3

Up to 0.6MtCO2e

Up to 58

Quoted companies

28

Up to 4.8MtCO2e

Up to 460

Large companies

903

Up to 13.8MtCO2e

Up to 1,017

Energy use criteria

145

Up to 4.2MtCO2e

Up to 383

In addition, the value of air quality savings are quantified in the Impact Assessment.

The wider benefits that have not been monetised in the Impact Assessment are: process emissions, other transport emissions, intangible benefits, reputation and branding benefits, and reduced investment risk. (Section 9 of the Impact Assessment gives further details.) In addition, the costs and benefits associated with reporting international emissions have not been included in the headline estimates in the Impact Assessment. This is because of the larger uncertainties around measuring these impacts; however a range of these potential international impacts has been included in Section 10 of the Impact Assessment.

Waste

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps she is taking to reduce waste within her Department. [112105]

Richard Benyon: Core DEFRA strives to reduce waste within the Department, including both operational inefficiency and the waste generated by operations and procurement:

Operational efficiency:

DEFRA's Business Plan for 2012 to 2015(1) outlines the actions the Department is taking to improve operational efficiency, including measures to reduce spend on estates, procurement, HR, IT and corporate services.

A summary of DEFRA's financial performance in 2010-11 will be included in the Department's Annual Report and Accounts, which was laid before Parliament on 12 July 2012. This will shortly be available in the House Library.

Generated waste:

New commitments for greening Government operations and procurement(2) were published in February 2011, including pan-Government targets to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, waste and water use by 2015.

Core DEFRA has implemented a number of initiatives to reduce waste generation and increase recycling. For example, core DEFRA has achieved a 23% reduction in paper use in 2011-12, in part through changes to printing facilities. Core DEFRA's IT contractors reuse or recycle 98% of our redundant IT equipment.

An overview of performance on sustainability in 2010-11 will be included in the Department's Annual Report and Accounts. DEFRA will also contribute to a pan- Government report on performance in 2011-12 against the Greening Government Commitments. This is due to be published in November.

(1)( )http://www.number10.gov.uk/wp-content/uploads/2012/05/DEFRA -2012-Business-Plan.pdf

(2 )http://sd.defra.gov.uk/gov/green-government/commitments

17 July 2012 : Column 623W

Waste: Exports

David Mowat: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what (a) volume and (b) proportion of waste that would be otherwise have gone to landfill was exported in each of the last five years. [117738]

Richard Benyon: Under the UK Plan for Shipments of Waste, exports of waste for disposal, which includes landfill, are prohibited with very few exceptions. Therefore, waste that is only fit for landfill cannot be exported. No exports for landfill are recorded.

Animal Welfare: Circuses

Naomi Long: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether her Department differentiates between performing and non-performing wild animals travelling with circuses in its proposals for a ban on wild animals in circuses and for interim regulations. [117115]

Mr Paice: The Welfare of Wild Animals in Travelling Circuses (England) Regulations 2012 were laid before Parliament on 12 July. The Regulations cover any wild animal which is kept or introduced in a travelling circus whether for the purpose of performance, display or otherwise. Our proposals for an ethics based ban on the use of wild animals in travelling circuses will require primary legislation. We expect to publish draft legislation for pre-legislative scrutiny later this session. It will ultimately be for Parliament to determine which wild animals will be covered by the ban.

Wales

Lost Working Days

Mr Ruffley: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what the average number of working days lost per person was in her Department in each of the last three years. [116423]

Mr David Jones: The numbers of average working days lost (AWDL) due to sickness absence is shown in the following table:

 AWDL

2009

(1)

2010

4.9

2011

7.1

(1) Wales Office figures formed part of the Ministry of Justice figures at this time. However, a local report shows that the AWDL as at 31 March 2010 was 5.11.

Personal Income

Owen Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales pursuant to the answer of 4 July 2012, Official Report, columns 650-1W, on taxation, what assessment she has made of the net effect of changes to taxation and benefits on an average family in Wales. [117791]

Mrs Gillan: HM Treasury and HM Revenue and Customs make assessments of this nature.

17 July 2012 : Column 624W

As noted in my response to the hon. Gentlemen on 6 July 2012, Official Report, column 863W, the HM Revenue and Customs assessment of the impact of Budget 2012 measures on individuals and households can be found online at:

http://www.hmrc.gov.uk/budget2012/ootlar.htm

Police

Owen Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales pursuant to the answer of 3 July 2012, Official Report, columns 531-2W, on police, and with reference to the report by HM Inspectorate of Constabulary, “Policing in Austerity: one year on”, what assessment she has made of the likely trends in the number of frontline officers in the next three years. [117739]

Mrs Gillan: Individual forces and police authorities determine where best to deploy their resources taking into account the challenges they face and the benefits to be gained. The effectiveness of a police force depends, not on overall numbers, but on how it deploys its resources. HMIC's latest report makes clear the frontline of policing is being protected overall and service to the public has largely been maintained.

Scotland

Maritime and Coastguard Agency

Mr Donohoe: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what progress has been made on identifying a long-term solution for provision of Maritime and Coastguard Agency duties around the Western Isles and West Highlands, including work between operators, vessel owners and the Maritime and Coastguard Agency on working practices and protocols covering the arrangements. [116960]

David Mundell: Following the recent Government decision to provide renewed funding for a single emergency towing vessel to operate around the waters of Northern Scotland, the Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) has procured a suitable vessel, the Herakles, which has arrived on station.

The Herakles will commence operations shortly and will undertake directed operations under the MCA's control, within a designated area covering both the Northern and Western Isles.

The Government are continuing to explore options with the oil and gas industry to secure a commercial call-out arrangement, using an industry vessel, for the Northern Isles. I remain grateful to the efforts of the companies participating in this work and to Oil and Gas UK for their facilitation.

Work Experience

Katy Clark: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how many interns work in his Department's press office. [117677]

David Mundell: No interns work in the Scotland Office's press office. However, the Office currently has one intern on the Civil Service Fast Stream Summer Diversity Internship programme.

17 July 2012 : Column 625W

House of Commons Commission

Members: ICT

Alun Cairns: To ask the hon. Member for Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross, representing the House of Commons Commission, whether a business impact level assessment was conducted before iPads were provided to hon. Members. [116978]

John Thurso: Assessments of the business use, and ICT security, aspects of iPad deployment were conducted before iPads were provided to hon. Members.

The Administration Committee agreed to pilot the use of iPads in the summer of 2011 and conclusions were drawn in January 2012. The Administration Committee found the use of iPads and electronic papers beneficial to the Committee's working. In addition to the pilot, a security assessment of the use of iPads was undertaken with external expert advice. The conclusion was that with the configuration and software deployed by Parliament iPads were safe to use for standard parliamentary material.

The Commission's decision to loan iPads to Members in specific circumstances was taken in the context of a wider strategic desire to enhance significantly the range and quality of digital information on parliamentary proceedings and to provide these services to Members and the public more efficiently. In doing so, the Commission is responding to a well-established trend that has seen demand upon the House Administration for digital services increase dramatically in recent years, and especially since the 2010 election. The Print to Web Strand of the Savings Programme has demonstrated that exploiting and stimulating further the shift in Members' and others' preferences towards electronic provision of information can result in both aims being achieved simultaneously.

Work is under way to improve the electronic presentation of information, starting with the House's key business papers, such as the Order Paper and Select Committee evidence, to make it easier to find, search and use on the internet and on mobile devices. Those select committees that opt for paperless working will have their papers delivered smartly to their iPads, reducing expenditure on reprographics and contributing to environmental objectives. At the same time, the Commission is conscious that iPads may open up new and more effective ways of working for Members and for the House service in other areas. It has therefore requested examination of the potential to deliver a wider range of information and services to Members through iPads where to do so will achieve further improvements in service quality and reductions in administrative expenditure. The Commission will review the outcomes of this investigation later this year.

Switchboard Staff: Relocation

Kate Hoey: To ask the hon. Member for Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross, representing the House of Commons Commission, (1) what estimate the Commission has made of the risks involved in the move of switchboard staff to a centre in Southampton; and what steps are being taken to mitigate them; [117719]

(2) what consideration the Commission has given to longstanding contracted-out staff in Parliament being moved out of London; [117720]

17 July 2012 : Column 626W

(3) what discussions the Commission has had with Capita on their plans to relocate the longstanding switchboard staff to Southampton. [117721]

John Thurso: The Operator Bureau is an outsourced service. Following a procurement exercise, a new third party service provider took over the contract and the existing staff in May 2012 from the previous contracted supplier. The Commission cannot comment on the future location of the Operator Bureau since this is subject to consultation between the supplier and its staff; however, the procurement process explored the issues that relocating the service might present, including matters relating to security, IT systems, and service continuity, and the Commission is satisfied that the proposals that have been made are low risk given the approach that is being taken.

The management of the staff concerned is a matter for the third party service provider. The Commission has been reassured by the provider that the staff will be formally consulted on any changes that are made and that they will be supported throughout. The House authorities hold regular meetings with the service provider to review the contract and its management. This includes plans for the future and the management and support offered to their staff.

Women and Equalities

Females: Victim Support Schemes

Tom Blenkinsop: To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities what discussions she has had with the (a) Ministers in the Home Department, (b) the Secretary of State for Justice and (c) the Secretary of State for Health on the adoption of national minimum standards for the commissioning of services for women survivors of violence. [117388]

Lynne Featherstone: No discussions have taken place between myself and the (a) Ministers in the Home Department, (b) the Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice, the right hon. and learned Member for Rushcliffe (Mr Clarke), and (c) the Secretary of State for Health, the right hon. Member for South Cambridgeshire (Mr Lansley), in relation to the adoption of national minimum standards for the commissioning of services for women survivors of violence.

In response to the Ministry of Justice “Getting it Right for Victims and Witnesses” consultation, only certain victim services will be nationally commissioned, this will include Rape Support Centres. Following their election, the commissioning of victim support services will be devolved to Police and Crime Commissioners who will be best placed to determine the commissioning of services for all victims in accordance with local needs.

Transport

Airports: Transport

Mr Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what estimate she has made of the number of passengers from overseas transiting via (a) Heathrow, (b) Gatwick and (c) Stansted whose destination is another airport within the UK; and to which airports such passengers travel. [117947]

17 July 2012 : Column 627W

Mrs Villiers: Estimated number of passengers from overseas transferring via Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted whose destination is another airport in the UK in 2011 is given in the following table. The estimates are based upon the Civil Aviation Authority's passenger survey; sample sizes from this survey are too small to show to which airports such passengers travel subsequently travel to.

 Passengers from overseas transferring at Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted whose destination is another airport in the UK, 2011 (thousand)

Heathrow

2,487

Gatwick

836

Stansted

104

Aviation

Mr Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what steps she is taking to develop cross-departmental consensus on the development of the aviation industry; [117618]

(2) what discussions her Department has had with industry on the development of aviation policy. [117619]

Mrs Villiers: On 12 July, the Department for Transport published a draft Aviation Policy Framework which sets out the importance of aviation to the UK economy and the Government's proposals on how aviation can support economic growth while meeting its noise and climate change obligations. We intend to adopt the final Aviation Policy Framework in spring 2013.

We have worked closely with colleagues in other Government Departments and with a wide range of stakeholders, including the aviation industry in developing this draft Framework and we will continue to do so.

Mr Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport pursuant to the written ministerial statement of 12 July 2012, on Aviation Policy Framework, which projects are in receipt of the £1.4 billion investment in rail and road schemes referred to; and what the projected direct or indirect benefit is on each airport. [117784]

Mrs Villiers: The details of the road and rail investment schemes referred to in the written ministerial statement of 12 July 2012, Official Report, column 59WS, by the Secretary of State for Transport, my right hon. Friend the Member for Putney (Justine Greening), are listed in the following table. Schemes are expected to improve the passenger experience of travelling to the relevant airports either through journey time savings or upgraded services. Those schemes offering direct benefits to airports are also expected to improve connectivity with towns and/or business centres; thereby offering economic benefits.

Road and rail investments referred to in 12 July WMS
SchemeAirportDirect/indirect benefitActual or estimated cost/investment (in £000s)

Gatwick electric trains

Gatwick

Indirect

(1)53,000

M3 J2 to J4a Managed Motorway

Heathrow

Indirect

250,000

Luton-Dunstable Busway rapid transit scheme

Luton

Direct

80,300

17 July 2012 : Column 628W

Gateway link road construction to enhance links between Sheffield and airport

Robin Hood

Direct

18,000

A45 Corridor improvement to enable runway extension

Birmingham.

Direct

15,700

M1 J19/M6 Improvement

Birmingham

Indirect

229,000

M4 J19 to J20 and M5 J15 to J17 Managed Motorway

Bristol

Indirect

89,000

A556 Knutsford to Bowdon Improvement

Manchester

Indirect

175,000

M62 J18 to J20 Managed Motorway

Manchester

Indirect

103,500

A453 widening

East Midlands

Indirect

168,000

M62 J25 to J30 Managed Motorway

Leeds Bradford

Indirect

150,000

M5 J29 Improvement

Exeter

Indirect

10,427

Norwich Northern Distributor Road

Norwich

Direct

86,500

    

Total investment

  

1,428,427

(1) 8,000 provided by Gatwick Airport.

Mr Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport for what reasons proposals to liberalise the UK aviation market to encourage foreign airlines to develop new routes by permitting foreign airlines to pick up passengers when flying to other destinations only apply to Gatwick and Stansted. [117785]

Mrs Villiers: There has been a long standing policy presumption in favour of open fifth freedom rights for all of the UK outside of South East England. In the draft Aviation Policy Framework we are consulting on a proposal to extend that liberal policy to Gatwick, Luton and Stansted airports—that is, to all UK airports with the exception of Heathrow. The relevant section of the draft Aviation Policy Framework is paragraphs 2.45 to 2.48:

http://www.dft.gov.uk/consultations/dft-2012-35

We are also considering whether further liberalisation, going beyond fifth freedom rights might be suitable for airports outside the South East.

Mr Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what the smaller planes are in respect of which her forthcoming proposals will seek to restrict access at the busiest airports; and from which airports such flights most frequently originate. [117786]

Mrs Villiers: The type of smaller aircraft and extent to which their access might be restricted at our busiest airports is ultimately a matter for the relevant airport operator, who would need to work with their stakeholders to implement any such proposals.

As stated in our draft Aviation Policy Framework, the Government supports in principle any reasonable, non-discriminatory steps that airport operators may wish to take to limit access to smaller aircraft to make the best use of existing capacity, where appropriate.

All responses to the consultation on aviation policy will be considered on this proposal, along with the other ideas in the draft framework.

17 July 2012 : Column 629W

bmibaby: Redundancy

Mr Jim Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport whether she has had discussions with her Ministerial colleagues on the position of pilots who will be made redundant by the closure of the airline bmibaby. [117817]

Mrs Villiers: The Secretary of State for Transport, my right hon. Friend the Member for Putney (Justine Greening), has not had discussions with ministerial colleagues about potential pilot redundancies as a result of the closure of bmibaby Ltd. While any staff redundancies are regrettable, these are commercial matters for bmibaby's new owner International Airlines Group and British Airways to consider in consultation with staff and the relevant trade unions.

Driving: Licensing

Esther McVey: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many people in the UK held a full driving licence at the age of 17 years in the period (a) 1980-89, (b) 1990-99, (c) 2000-09 and (d) 2010 to date. [117940]

Mike Penning: According to data held by the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) there were 68,852 people aged 17 who held a full driving licence in Great Britain as at 1 June 2012. This is approximately 9% of the estimated total population aged 17. Data are not held centrally for the UK as a whole, as driver licensing is administered separately in Northern Ireland.

Comparable historical data are not available from this source. However, the National Travel Survey shows the proportion of licence holders by age group from the mid-1970s until 2010. Figures are available in table NTS0201 at the following link:

http://www.dft.gov.uk/statistics/tables/nts0201/

Ex Gratia Payments

Stewart Hosie: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what estimate her Department has made of the monetary value of ex-gratia payments made through schemes administered by her Department in the last two years. [116811]

Norman Baker: To the best of my knowledge, the Department for Transport has made no such payments since May 2012.

High Speed 2 Railway Line

Andrea Leadsom: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many applications to the Exceptional Hardship Scheme have been (a) accepted by the Exceptional Hardship Scheme Panel but upon review rejected by her or a Minister acting on her behalf and (b) rejected by the panel but upon review been accepted by her or a Minister acting on her behalf. [111043]

Justine Greening [holding answer 13 June 2012]: The information requested is as follows:

17 July 2012 : Column 630W

(a) One application to the Exceptional Hardship Scheme was recommended for acceptance by the panel but subsequently refused by the Secretary of State for Transport or a Minister acting on her behalf.

(b) Three applications to the Exceptional Hardship Scheme were recommended for refusal by the panel but subsequently accepted by the Secretary of State for Transport or a Minister acting on her behalf.

Andrea Leadsom: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what additional expenditure has been allocated to enable her Department to purchase property along the High Speed Rail 2 preferred line route; and if she will make a statement. [115822]

Justine Greening [holding answer 9 July 2012]: I refer my hon. Friend to Table 12 of the ‘Economic Case for HS2: Updated appraisal of transport user benefits and wider economic benefits, at the following link:

http://assets.dft.gov.uk/publications/hs2-economic-case-appraisal-update/hs2-economic-case-appraisal-update.pdf

HS2 Ltd

Maria Eagle: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many staff have been employed at HS2 Ltd in each month since its creation. [109287][Official Report, 24 October 2012, Vol. 551, c. 5MC.]

Justine Greening [holding answer 24 May 2012]: From the time HS2 was established until my decision to proceed with High Speed Rail in January 2012, HS2 Ltd staff comprised a mix of direct employees, secondees from DFT and Network Rail and temporary staff. Following the announcement, a development partner, CH2M Hill, was appointed. Its staff (86) were integrated into the HS2 organisation structure between March and May and are included in the following numbers. Further recruitment has been undertaken, and is continuing, to provide HS2 Ltd with the capability to deliver its extended remit. In addition, HS2 is now moving to secure permanent appointments into roles and reduce to a minimum its need for temporary staff.

Month endingNumber of staff

2010

 

April

34

May

40

June

43

July

46

August

46

September

56

October

61

November

60

December

61

  

2011

 

January

60

February

70

March

78

April

80

May

80

June

80

July

80

August

81

September

86

17 July 2012 : Column 631W

October

87

November

90

December

92

  

2012

 

January

100

February

103

March

171

April

210

May

226

Maria Eagle: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many staff at HS2 Ltd are employed to work on the (a) Project Board, (b) Officers Working Group, (c) Consultation/Working Group, (d) Environmental Working Group, (e) Economic Business Case Working Group and (f) Legal Challenge Group; and how many are projected to be employed in each group in each year to 2015. [109288]

Justine Greening [holding answer 24 May 2012]: Staff are employed to work in specific roles within HS2 Ltd, but not within the working group categories as outlined in the question.

With reference to how many are projected to be employed in each group in each year up to 2015, HS2 Ltd's overall budget has been established for the years in question. However, since we do not group staff within the categories described in the question, we are not able to say at this time precisely how many people will be deployed on these activities.

Maria Eagle: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) how many additional staff HS2 Ltd is projected to hire in each year until 2015; [109289]

(2) how many staff at HS2 Ltd have salaries of (a) £20,000 to £30,000, (b) 30,001 to £40,000, (c) £40,001 to £50,000, (d) £50,001 to £60,000, (e) £60,001 to £70,000, (f) £70,001 to £80,000, (g) £80,001 to £90,000, (h) £90,001 to £100,000 and (i) £100,001 and above; and how many staff are projected to be in each salary band in each year up to 2015. [109290]

Justine Greening [holding answer 24 May 2012]: HS2 Ltd expects to hire up to an additional 105 staff before end March 2013. Although the overall budget for the programme has been established, the precise details of how many staff will be required in each year up to 2015 have not yet been set and will to some extent depend upon progress of the project.

Salary bandsNumber of staff current

£20,000 to £30,000

26

£30,000 to £40,000

15

£40,000 to £50,000

17

£50,000 to £60,000

9

£60,000 to £70,000

4

£70,000 to £80,000

0

£80,000 to £90,000

1

£90,000 to £100,000

0

£100,000+

1

Total

73

17 July 2012 : Column 632W

The above data include direct employees of HS2 Ltd. Data exclude 86 staff contracted through CH2M Hill, 10 Network Rail secondees and 35 temporary staff paid by agencies. For these staff members we are charged a rate which includes other employment costs and we do not hold individual salary information which would allow us to place staff in the above salary bands. Data also exclude 22 DFT secondees.

Network Rail

Maria Eagle: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) with reference to her Department's White Paper, Reforming our Railways: Putting the Customer First, whether she has agreed with Network Rail that it will appoint her preferred candidate as a public interest director on its Remuneration Committee; [116112]

(2) what representations she has made to the board of Network Rail on remuneration for executives; [116113]

(3) what process she has agreed with Network Rail to ensure her Department's input into the selection of Network Rail's Public Interest Director; [116114]

(4) whether (a) she, (b) Ministers in her Department, (c) special advisers in her Department and (d) officials in her Department plan to attend Network Rail's Annual General Meeting; [116115]

(5) what meetings (a) she, (b) Ministers in her Department and (c) officials in her Department have had with Network Rail to discuss bonus payments since February 2012. [116116]

Justine Greening [holding answer 9 July 2012]: Ministers and officials meet Network Rail regularly to discuss a wide range of operational and strategic issues.

Executive remuneration remains a matter for Network Rail, as a private sector, not-for-dividend Company limited by guarantee. Earlier this year I made my views on the subject clear when I said that the proposed reforms to Network Rail's incentive plan were unacceptable, and that taxpayers and farepayers would expect reward to be proportionate and to reflect performance.

Network Rail subsequently announced its plans to improve its corporate governance, including the appointment of a public interest director to articulate taxpayers’ interests in board discussions. The individual will need to demonstrate specific skills and interests in public policy, finance and corporate and social responsibility. The Company has already advertised for the post, and will involve all members, collectively, in the appointment process.

Proposals for the reform of Network Rail's Management Incentive Plan will be taken forward in the autumn, under the new governance structure and with the involvement of the public interest director. As in the past, since Network Rail's creation in 2002, no Minister plans to attend the AGM.

Railways: Freight

Mr Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what discussions she has had with the Office of Rail Regulation on proposed changes to the level of charges to freight companies for transporting coal by rail. [117151]

17 July 2012 : Column 633W

Mrs Villiers: The track access charges levied on rail freight operators in the next railway funding Control Period from 2014 to 2019 are matters for the Office of Rail Regulation (ORR), which is the independent economic and safety regulator for the railways in Great Britain. Some elements of these charges are the subject of a current ORR consultation on the variable usage charge and a freight specific charge. This consultation can be found on ORR's website at

http://www.rail-reg.gov.uk

Mr Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what charges were levied on the rail transportation of coal used for electricity generation in each year since 1997. [117153]

Mrs Villiers: Information relating to the track access charges paid by rail freight operators for the transportation of coal for the electricity supply industry since 1997 is a matter for Network Rail as the owner and operator of the national rail network, overseen by the rail regulator.

Network Rail's chief executive can be contacted at the following address for a response to this question:

David Higgins

Chief Executive

Network Rail

Kings Place

90 York Way

London, N1 9AG.

Mr Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport whether she has made an assessment of the effect of an increase in the charges levied on freight transported by rail on (a) road congestion, (b) safety and (c) pollution. [117154]

Mrs Villiers: No, the Office of Rail Regulation (ORR) has responsibility for regulating track access charges on the UK rail network.

The ORR has assessed the effects on a number of variables including demand for rail freight services that could result from a rise in track access charges for freight transported by rail. This is set out in its consultation document on the variable usage charge and a freight specific charge which can be found on ORR's website at

http://www.rail-reg.gov.uk

Nic Dakin: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport with reference to the Office of Rail Regulation's 13th Periodic Review, what environmental impact assessments she has made of proposals to increase rail freight charges; and if she will assess the extent to which such proposals fit with the Government's broader goals on the environment, growth and competitiveness. [117662]

Mrs Villiers: The Office of Rail Regulation (ORR), which is the independent economic and safety regulator for the railways in Great Britain, has assessed the effects on a number of variables that could result from a rise in track access charges for freight transported by rail in a consultation document on the variable usage charge and a freight specific charge. This can be found on the ORR's website at:

http://www.rail-reg.gov.uk

17 July 2012 : Column 634W

Nic Dakin: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport with reference to the Office of Rail Regulation’s 13th Periodic Review, what assessment she has made of the effect on the competitiveness of UK industry of rail freight charges. [117684]

Mrs Villiers: The track access charges levied on rail freight operators in the next railway funding control period from 2014 to 2019 are matters for the Office of Rail Regulation (ORR), which is the independent economic and safety regulator for the railways in Great Britain.

Some elements of these charges are the subject of a current ORR consultation on the variable usage charge and a freight specific charge which can be found on the ORR’s website at:

http://www.rail-reg.gov.uk

Railways: Scotland

Mr Donohoe: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what progress has been made on improving train journey times from (a) London to Edinburgh and Glasgow and (b) Edinburgh and Glasgow to Inverness. [116961]

Norman Baker: Recent infrastructure improvements have enabled East Coast to achieve a 4-hour timing between Edinburgh and London, and Virgin West Coast a 4h 08m timing on the Euston to Glasgow route. A new timetable for East Coast train services introduced in May 2011 provided a new standard interval timetable with additional services to and from Edinburgh, and a small improvement in average journey times. Further incremental improvements in journey times are expected in the next few years when IEP trains are introduced on the East Coast and through further timetabling initiatives on West Coast.

On 16th July, the Secretary of State announced the High Level Output Specification (HLOS) for the railway. This provides £240m for improvements to the East Coast Main Line to increase capacity and reduce journey times, and the industry will publish, through Network Rail, a Strategic Business Plan in due course responding to the HLOS and setting out initial ideas for this and many other HLOS requirements.

Train services between Edinburgh/Glasgow and Inverness are the responsibility of Transport Scotland.

Road Traffic Control

Esther McVey: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport by what method traffic density was recorded; and what the average traffic density was in the period (a) 1980-89, (b) 1990-99, (c) 2000-09 and (d) 2010 to date. [117941]

Mike Penning: The Department for Transport does not produce and publish traffic density statistics.

Although figures for traffic density (eg traffic volume per lane mile) are not calculated, DFT does publish annual estimates of total traffic volume. These figures are measured in vehicle miles and show the total distance travelled by vehicles on the roads of Great Britain each year.

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The latest estimates for 2011 were published on 28 June and showed that over the past year, total traffic volume was broadly stable. Traffic volumes are over 10 times higher than in 1949, although over the last 20 years there has been a decline in the rate of traffic growth. Motor vehicle traffic grew by 50% during the 1980s, by 14% during the 1990s and by 6% between 2000 and 2009. Motor vehicle traffic peaked in 2007 following which it fell for three consecutive years the first consecutive annual falls since traffic records began.

To calculate traffic density figures we would have to divide the total volume of traffic in Great Britain by the total length of all lanes on the road network. Although DFT does publish statistics on total length of the road network each year, this does not include information on total lane length. Therefore, it is not possible to calculate figures for traffic density.

Roads: Accidents

Jim Fitzpatrick: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport whether she has made an assessment of any correlation between levels of maintenance on road infrastructure and road casualties. [117685]

Mike Penning: The Department has not carried out any formal analysis into the correlation between levels of maintenance on road infrastructure and road casualties.

However, the Department does collect information on contributory factors for reported personal injury road accidents attended by a police officer at the scene of the accident. The contributory factors for road environment has a specific factor for “Poor or defective road surface”. The following table provides the relevant trend since 2007 for Great Britain:

Contributory factor in reported personal injury accidents(1): GB 2007-11
 Contributory factorFatalSeriousSlightAll

2007

Poor or defective road surface

22

153

707

882

 

Total number of accidents with contributory factors

2,538

21,346

116,477

140,361

 

As a percentage of all accidents with contributory factor

0.9

0.7

0.6

0.6

      

2008

Poor or defective road surface

6

157

733

896

 

Total number of accidents with contributory factors

2,170

20,429

108,993

131,592

 

As a percentage of all accidents with contributory factor

0.3

0.8

0.7

¦ 0.7

      

2009

Poor or defective road surface

15

197

613

825

 

Total number of accidents with contributory factors

1,935

19,566

106,684

128,185

 

As a percentage of all accidents with contributory factor

0.8

1.0

0.6

0.6

      

2010

Poor or defective road surface

19

191

671

881

 

Total number of accidents with contributory factors

1,620

18,043

101,164

120,827

17 July 2012 : Column 636W

 

As a percentage of all accidents with contributory factor

1.2

1.1

0.7

0.7

      

2011

Poor or defective road surface

10

196

650

856

 

Total number of accidents with contributory factors

1,663

18,391

98,349

118,403

 

As a percentage of all accidents with contributory factor

0.6

1.1

0.7

0.7

(1) Includes only accidents where a police officer attended the scene and in which a contributory factor was reported.

It is particularly notable that there were two separate periods of sustained snow and ice across many areas of Great Britain during 2010 (one at the beginning of the year, one at the end) which may have led to a deterioration of road surfaces. This may explain the higher proportion of accidents during that year for which “poor or defective road surface” was a contributory factor.

The Department for Transport provided £200 million in March 2011 to repair damage on the highway caused by the 2010 winter and is providing further £3 billion over four years to 2014-15 to local highway authorities in England for roads for which they are responsible.

Rail Freight

Mrs Main: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport with reference to the answer of 26 March 2012, Official Report, column 947W, on rail freight, whether the Minister of State has had any other private or social meetings with (a) Simon Hoare and (b) any representatives of Helioslough before or after her meeting of 10 August 2011 with Simon Hoare. [116199]

Mrs Villiers: I refer to my answers of 30 April 2012, Official Report, columns 1270-1W and 1269-70W.

South East Airports Taskforce

Mr Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what assessment she has made of the costs to date of servicing the South East Airports Taskforce; [117782]

(2) how the South East Airports Taskforce was (a) constituted and (b) funded. [117783]

Mrs Villiers: The South East Airports Taskforce was announced by written ministerial statement by the then Secretary of State for Transport, my right hon. Friend the Member for Runnymede and Weybridge (Mr Hammond) on 15 June 2010, Official Report, column 48WS, to explore measures to help make the most of existing infrastructure and improve conditions for all users at Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted airports. The taskforce, which I chaired as Aviation Minister, included representation from each of the main London airports, long-haul and short-haul carriers and the no-frills operators, and business, passenger and environmental interests.

The Department for Transport organised and hosted Taskforce meetings and the only expenditure incurred by my Department was £119,568 paid to the CAA for analytical work undertaken to look at ways in which to

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improve punctuality, resilience and delay at these airports. The taskforce was disbanded on publication of its conclusions in July 2011.

The terms of reference for the taskforce, membership, meeting minutes and conclusions can be found on the Department for Transport's website at the following web address:

http://www.dft.gov.uk/publications/south-east-airports-taskforce