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Baroness Byford: My Lords, I am grateful to the Minister and have been throughout. Obviously, he realises that we have genuine concerns and that there is a need to protect the environment. The reason I spread my nets very wide to start with was that the running down of nuclear and the Government's desire to push quickly the growth of wind farms will have huge implications for marine life. We talked about that in earlier amendments, so I shall not go over the ground again. If our demand were going to reduce, then the seriousness of it would not be so great.

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However, because there will be increasing pressures on this type of energy source in the future, I thought that it was important to spread the net wider.

I do not know much about business, but it seems to me to be an odd way to go about matters for one to get consent and then to come back and justify how one is going to decommission something at the end of the day. But I accept what the noble Lord has said. I also accept if one is not successful in one's bid that one has wasted time. Perhaps I can draw a parallel, which the noble Lord will know well. On the agricultural schemes, which he and I deal with on a regular basis, that is one of the risks one runs. One does a lot of work in trying to put in one's application, knowing full well that one may not actually get it granted anyway. I think the noble Lord knows why I have come that way.

I am grateful to the noble Lord for saying that we can discuss the matter further. The one thing that has come out of the Bill, and which has been highlighted in the amendments today, is the need to have regard also to the marine environment. My noble friend raised the whole question of fishing and of navigation, but certainly the protection of marine environment and our wildlife, which is so dependent on circumstances for future growth, is important. At this stage, I think I will have to say that it is over to my colleagues in another place when the Bill gets down there. I thank the Minister for his response and certainly will come back to him on the issue. I beg leave to withdraw the amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

Schedule 1 [The Nuclear Decommissioning Authority]:

Lord Whitty moved Amendment No. 30:


    Page 151, line 2, leave out paragraph 4 and insert—

"Constitution of NDA for initial period

4 (1) Until the end of the initial period the NDA is to consist of just those members who have been appointed.
(2) As soon as practicable after his own appointment takes effect, the chairman must exercise the power to appoint a chief executive.
(3) Appointments of members other than the chairman and chief executive may be made during the initial period only after the appointment of the chief executive has taken effect.
(4) During the initial period the requirements of paragraph 9(1)—
(a) do not apply to a decision to which the chairman is a party if it is made when the chairman is the only non-executive member; but
(b) are not to be capable of being satisfied in relation to a decision made at any other time unless at least two non-executive members are parties to the decision.
(5) The chairman must ensure that proper records are kept of everything he does, while he is the only non-executive member, in the exercise or performance of powers or duties conferred or imposed on the non-executive members.
(6) In this paragraph "the initial period" means the period which begins with the commencement of so much of this Act as provides for the establishment of the NDA and ends with whichever of the following first occurs—
(a) the time when an appointment takes effect that brings the number of members of the NDA up to seven;
(b) the time specified as the end of the initial period in a notice given during that period by the Secretary of State to the NDA for the purposes of this paragraph."

On Question, amendment agreed to.

20 Apr 2004 : Column 277

Schedule 2 [Procedural requirements applicable to NDA's Strategy]:

Lord Whitty moved Amendment No. 31:


    Page 157, line 22, at end insert—


"( ) In this paragraph references to a designated installation, designated site or designated facility include references to an installation, site or facility designated by a direction which is not yet in force."

The noble Lord said: In moving Amendment No. 31, I shall speak also to Amendment No. 32. The Bill provides that the NDA is required to consult local authorities and other bodies in respect of designated sites, installations and other facilities. The amendments provide that the NDA is under a similar obligation where the designation in question is not yet in force. That is because the NDA will not take formal responsibility until 1 April 2005. However, it is important that it is required to consult those bodies once it has identified the sites and facilities and prior to the formal designation. The issue is fairly straightforward. I beg to move.

On Question, amendment agreed to.

Schedule 3 [Procedural requirements applicable to NDA's annual plans]:

Lord Whitty moved Amendment No. 32:


    Page 160, line 13, at end insert—


"( ) In this paragraph references, in relation to the preparation or revision of a plan, to a designated installation, designated site or designated facility include references to an installation, site or facility designated by a direction which—
(a) is not yet in force; but
(b) is to come into force during the year to which the plan relates."

On Question, amendment agreed to.

Schedule 8 [Pensions]:

Lord Triesman moved Amendment No. 33:


    Page 184, line 43, after "securities" insert "of"

The noble Lord said: My Lords, a large number of amendments and possibly the shortest speech is a gratifying combination. This group of amendments makes very minor drafting clarifications to Schedules 8 and 9. I can assure noble Lords that they do not in any way affect the purpose of those schedules. I beg to move.

On Question, amendment agreed to.

Lord Triesman moved Amendments Nos. 34 and 35:


    Page 185, line 25, after "employer" insert "or if his employer becomes the subsidiary of a particular body corporate"


    Page 186, line 10, leave out "the"

On Question, amendments agreed to.

Lord Triesman moved Amendment No. 36:


    Page 186, line 25, leave out "the trustee of the scheme" and insert—


"(a) the trustee of the scheme; and
(b) such persons as appear to the NDA to represent the employees, or directors or other officers, likely to be affected by the modification."

The noble Lord said: My Lords, these amendments respond to the amendments tabled by my noble friends Lord Lea and Lord Brooke on Report. They extend the statutory right of employee consultation, first, to

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modifications of a relevant pension scheme—in practice, the BNFL group scheme—in Schedule 8(2), and, secondly, modifications of the NDA pension scheme. In practice, many of those modifications would have fallen within the original employee consultation requirements in the Bill. That is because the Bill as originally drafted already included statutory rights of employee consultation prior to transfer schemes or arrangements, where such schemes or arrangements require employees to leave their current pension schemes.

We anticipate that many of the modifications, certainly in relation to the NDA pension scheme, will be connected to such schemes or arrangements. Nevertheless, the Government are committed to ensuring that employees and their representatives will be consulted before anything is done to their pension schemes. That was the import of the amendments tabled by my noble friends Lord Lea and Lord Brooke. Extending the statutory right of consultation in that way therefore reinforces the undertakings given at earlier stages. I beg to move.

Lord Roper: My Lords, we are extremely grateful that this important amendment has been agreed. In the absence of the noble Lords, Lord Lea and Lord Brooke, I wish to say that we are very pleased that people have been given this appropriate response.

On Question, amendment agreed to.

Lord Whitty moved Amendments Nos. 37 to 49:


    Page 190, line 27, leave out "will apply" and insert "applies"


    Page 190, line 30, leave out "will have" and insert "has"


    Page 190, line 33, leave out "will satisfy" and insert "satisfies"


    Page 190, line 35, leave out "will be" and insert "is"


    Page 190, line 37, leave out "will be applying" and insert "applies"


    Page 190, line 39, leave out "will be" and insert "is"


    Page 191, line 19, leave out "at" and insert "immediately before"


    Page 191, line 37, leave out "are" and insert "will be"


    Page 191, line 40, leave out "who is"


    Page 193, line 13, leave out "are" and insert "will be"


    Page 193, line 15, leave out from "Before" to "entitled" in line 16 and insert "such transfer arrangements take effect, the NDA must satisfy itself that every person"


    Page 194, line 42, leave out from "consult" to end of line 44 and insert—


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