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The Earl of Mar and Kellie: My Lords, subsection (3) in the amendment talks about airside vehicles, which I believe are being driven around on red diesel. I have just one question: does green red diesel—if one can have that—exist?

Lord Davies of Oldham: My Lords, I am grateful to the noble Lord for proposing this amendment. Inspiration comes at strange times and from strange quarters. The
 
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amendment shows the commonality of aims between us. I share his view of the necessity of ensuring a reduction in emissions that can contribute to pollutant concentrations in the vicinity of airports. I am only thankful that my noble friend Lord Soley is not here; if he were, his hobby horse would without doubt be run even later into the small hours of the morning.

Of course it is important that we reduce carbon emissions that bear on climate change and produce pollutant concentrations. The Government take both these topics very seriously. They have established air quality standards under the UK objectives that apply around airports, as they do at other locations where people may be exposed to harmful ambient concentrations. Ambient air quality requirements are not source-specific, so technical standards apply to various sources, such as road vehicles and aircraft engines. These are reviewed and tightened on a periodic basis as technology advances permit. On climate change and aviation, the noble Lord will of course recognise that the Government seek inclusion of aviation within the European emissions trading scheme, on which we expect to make progress. We already maintain pressure for tighter emission standards and support industry work to advance fuel efficiency.

There is no doubt that, at airports, airside emissions, whether from aircraft auxiliary power units—the small jet engines to which the noble Lord referred, no doubt on technical advice from another quarter—or from the fleets of airside vehicles servicing aircraft, represent a small but not insignificant percentage of total airport emissions. We think that the figure is between 10 and 15 per cent. This needs to be and is being addressed in various ways, and the noble Lord is right to draw attention to it.

I should stress that airports and airlines are highly sensitised to these issues on account of the need both to reduce emissions and to minimise fuel costs. On the question of fuel costs, the noble Earl is right: there is no green red diesel. If he wants to see improvements in emissions from fuel-consuming vehicles airside, we will have to look at improving technology. Larger airports have instigated programmes to address stand emissions and those from airside vehicle fleets. Emissions reductions from aircraft at the stand and from airside vehicles are targeted by the industry by means of the sustainable aviation strategy, which was published in June last year.

Fixed ground power, which was the burden of the noble Lord's argument, using evidence of what happens in Scandinavia—although not just in Scandinavia, I understand—is increasingly being introduced in order to minimise the use of APUs while aircraft are on stand. It is now more or less standard at our large airports, except on some of the more remote stands, and it tends to be incorporated into any airport terminal developments. As we see certain aspects of airports develop, the noble Lord will be reassured that this feature is part of them.

The measure has a significant beneficial effect on emissions at airports by limiting the APU running time to shorter periods after arrival and just before departure.
 
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It should be recognised, however, that FEGP only partially addresses the carbon issue as, inevitably, there will be emissions from electricity power generation. Nevertheless, I am not seeking to decry the obvious advantages that arise from greater use of FEGP. It should be noted that it would not be possible to avoid the use of APUs at the stand as these are needed to stabilise the aircraft's systems prior to "push back" from the stand and to provide main engine start power, so we cannot dispense with them altogether.

Pre-conditioned air is a harder issue to deal with for a number of reasons. It is more practicable to use it on stands for longer turnarounds—that is, medium and longer-range aircraft—as connection is not straightforward. It necessitates more serious air-bridge engineering and is very costly. The benefits of PCA are most obvious when ambient temperatures are sufficiently high or low to need adjusting to our comfort zone. That inevitably means that in our temperate climate there will be a significant portion of the year when the use of PCA is unnecessary or becomes marginal. Unfortunately, that undermines the economic case for the investment of the system. That said, following PCA trials by BAA at Heathrow, it is being fitted to A380 stands in the central terminal area and will be on all jetty stands at Terminal 5 when it opens. At some other airports, PCA may be at the feasibility stage of consideration, but generally its use is not being progressively rolled out. There are difficulties in this area, but airside vehicle programmes are firmly in the emissions plans of all major airports.

The noble Lord will recognise that there is a certain Heathrow quality to this argument because it is by far our biggest airport and that is where most progress is being made—and needs to be made—at present. I am at one with the objectives that the noble Lord puts forward in his amendment, but we believe that the control of airside emissions should remain voluntary. We have every reason to believe that the industry is taking a responsible attitude. I hope that the noble Lord will see from my short exposition of progress thus far that he can share our optimism on that front and that he will therefore feel able to withdraw his amendment.

Lord Hanningfield: My Lords, I thank the Minister for that answer. He obviously agreed with all the points that were made. It is just a question of whether we follow the Scandinavian principles by putting this into legislation. We have had several discussions today about the amount of regulation and legislation that we need on these matters. I thank the Minister for his answer. I shall withdraw the amendment today and reflect on it for the next stage, but I am grateful for the points that he made and will convey them back to my nephew. I beg leave to withdraw the amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

Clause 14 [Short title, commencement and extent]:

[Amendment No. 27 not moved.]

Lord Davies of Oldham moved Amendment No. 28:


 
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"( ) But an order under subsection (3) may not provide for subsections (2) to (4) of section 2 to come into force before 1st June 2012."

On Question, amendment agreed to.

[Amendment No. 29 not moved.]

Schedule 1 [Policing of airports]:

Baroness Crawley moved Amendment No. 30:


"( ) any person (other than the manager of the aerodrome) who is required to take any measures in relation to the aerodrome pursuant to a direction given under section 12, 13, 13A or 14 of this Act,"

The noble Baroness said: My Lords, in Grand Committee we amended the Bill to make changes to the provisions of the Aviation Security Act 1982 regarding policing at airports. Amendments Nos. 30 and 31 make a minor clarifying change to one of the new provisions inserted into that Act by Schedule 1 to this Bill.

Paragraph 2 of Schedule 1 inserts a new Section 25A into the Aviation Security Act 1982, regarding consultation about the policing of airports. Section 25A(6) defines "relevant information" for the purposes of the section, by reference to the people who are qualified to provide it; for example, the manager of the airport, the chief police officer of the area concerned, the Secretary of State or Her Majesty's Revenue and Customs.

10.15 pm

Parties who have been directed by the Secretary of State under Part II of the Aviation Security Act 1982 are also a source of relevant information. To include these persons, new Section 25A(6) cross-refers to new Section 25A(3)(a), which defines them. However, new Section 25A(4) empowers the Secretary of State to modify the application of new Section 25A(3)(a) to a particular airport. If this power were to be used, it is possible that the current cross-reference might be unhelpful and that information from directed parties might no longer be included within the definition of relevant information.

In the interests of clarity, therefore, Amendment No. 30 replaces the cross-reference in Section 25A(6) with a full description of those who may provide relevant information. Amendment No. 31 removes the current wording. I beg to move.

On Question, amendment agreed to.


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