|Previous Section||Back to Table of Contents||Lords Hansard Home Page|
The Minister of State, Department for Education and Employment (Baroness Blackstone): I announced on 10 December that Disabled Students' Allowances would be extended to new and existing part-time students in England and Wales from September 2000. To be eligible, students should be studying at degree or sub-degree level and the equivalent of at least 50 per cent of a full-time course.
I have written personally to Lord Snowdon informing him of the announcement; and Margaret Hodge wrote on 9 December to Andrew Farquhar, General Secretary of the Snowdon Award Scheme, in response to his earlier request to be kept informed.
The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions (Lord Whitty): Neither the police nor the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency (DVLA) hold information on the volume of abandoned or recovered vehicles which were unlicensed or found to be not currently registered.
DVLA holds a record of vehicle keepers. The agency, in conjunction with the police, has introduced a number of measures designed to ensure that vehicle records are accurate and kept up to date. These include a change to the registration system to require the disposer of a vehicle to notify details of the acquirer,
Lord Whitty: The Health and Safety Executive (HSE) has completed criminal proceedings against Mr Colin Boswell, who was the owner of Mersley Farm, for matters relating to pesticide abuse. These proceedings led to a £220,000 fine and high levels of public interest. Both before the prosecution and afterwards a number of people, both employees and others, complained of ill health as a result of the activities of the farm.
It is a matter of HSE policy that all allegations of ill health as a result of pesticide exposure are fully investigated. For each investigation a report is submitted to the Pesticide Incident Appraisal Panel (PIAP) for consideration. The Employment Medical Advisory Service (EMAS) plays a key role in this.
In accordance with HSE's policy, each complaint relating to alleged ill health due to pesticide misuse at Mersley Farm, including those made since the prosecution, has been investigated. The majority of the complaints have been completed and submitted to PIAP. Some more recent complaints are still under investigation.
PIAP gives detailed consideration to cases investigated by staff of HSE's Field Operations Division (FOD). Reported incidents of alleged ill health involving pesticides are considered and assessments made of the nature and severity of any adverse effects and whether or not they are consistent with the known toxic effects of the pesticides involved. These incidents are included in the FOD Annual Pesticide Incidents Report.
Lord Whitty: Nearly all production of shahtoosh clothing is carried out in the Indian State of Jammu and Kashmir. India is party to the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) which prohibits international trade in Tibetan antelope (Panthalops hodgsonii) and all products derived from it. However, within Jammu and Kashmir, the shahtoosh trade remains lawful if conducted under licence from state authorities. Her Majesty's Government are working bilaterally and within CITES to enforce the ban but it is the responsibility of Indian authorities to introduce measures prohibiting shahtoosh production in India.
Within the European Union, commercial use (including sale and purchase) of items made from the Tibetan antelope is banned. In 1997 the Metropolitan Police seized 138 shahtoosh shawls found on sale in London--the largest seizure of its type to date. The Metropolitan Police have since issued a publicity leaflet to help deter illegal trade in shahtoosh. More recently, undercover investigations by the World Wide
We provided financial assistance to a workshop held in China in October to develop international strategies to combat this trade. Following this, seven countries, including the UK and China, issued a joint declaration action plan for discussion at the next CITES Conference in April 2000.
Lord Whitty: Based on the greenhouse gas emissions factors used in the National Atmospheric Emissions Inventory (NAEI), kerosene emits approximately 3150 kg of carbon dioxide per tonne and liquefied petroleum gas emits approximately 3190 kg of carbon dioxide per tonne, based on the typical mix of gases involved.
|Back to Table of Contents||Lords Hansard Home Page|