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6 May 2009 : Column WA115

Written Answers

Wednesday 6 May 2009

Carers

Question

Asked by Lord Taylor of Warwick

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Lord Darzi of Denham): It is for local employers to determine the level of pay for the adult social care workforce, including the pay levels of those providing care for the elderly.

The department is not responsible for setting the levels of pay for the adult social care workforce. However, we do recognise the importance of service providers offering fair workforce terms and conditions, while also providing best value and a quality service.

Chronic Fatigue Syndrome/Myalgic Encephalomyelitis

Question

Asked by The Countess of Mar

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Lord Darzi of Denham): We have made no assessment on whether the Clinical Network Collaborative Consortium is fulfilling the purposes for which it was set up.

It is the responsibility of strategic health authorities to ensure that services are available, and sufficiently funded and staffed with appropriately trained staff, to meet the health and social care needs of those of their local population diagnosed with chronic fatigue syndrome/myalgic encephalomyelitis.

Civil Service: Performance Pay

Question

Asked by Lord Oakeshott of Seagrove Bay

The Lord President of the Council (Baroness Royall of Blaisdon): Pay arrangements for the Senior Civil Service are based on recommendations by the independent Senior Salaries Review Body.

The size of the pot as a proportion of the pay bill in each year since 2005 is shown below:

2005-062006-072007-082008-092009-10

5.0%

6.5%

7.6%

8.6%

8.6%

Climate Change: Sweden

Question

Asked by Lord Dykes

The Minister of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change & Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Hunt of Kings Heath): The Government have not assessed the effect of Sweden's action plan for a fossil-fuel independent fleet by 2030 on UK policy, but as a matter of course will monitor Sweden's policy implementation and assess implications for UK policy. Ultra-low Carbon Vehicles in the UK, launched by Lord Mandelson and Geoff Hoon on 16 April, set out how the Government will help to make the UK a global leader in the development and production of electric cars and other ultra low-carbon vehicles. Central to the strategy is an initiative to provide motorists with help worth £2,000 to £5,000 towards buying the first electric and plug-in hybrid cars and plans to provide £20 million for charging points and related infrastructure to help develop a network of electric car cities throughout the UK.

Cuba: Havana

Question

Asked by Baroness Neville-Jones

The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Malloch-Brown): During financial year 2008-09, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office's (FCO) consular rapid deployment team travelled to Cuba in response to Hurricane Ike (in September 2008). Six members of staff deployed and the total cost of flights

6 May 2009 : Column WA117

was £23,676. There were visits to the embassy by contractors, technicians and other FCO staff from a range of departments, but as costs were incurred from different budgets individual breakdowns are not readily available. Members of staff from our embassy in Havana also travelled back to the UK for visits.

It is difficult to provide costs for an average journey as officials use different carriers and classes of travel. To ensure value for money, visits to Havana are often combined with travel elsewhere in the region.

Drugs: Khat

Question

Asked by Baroness Warsi

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Lord Darzi of Denham): The information requested is not collected centrally.

Embryology

Questions

Asked by Lord Alton of Liverpool

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Lord Darzi of Denham): The Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (HFEA) has advised me that it has made no public response, on this occasion, to the media coverage of Dr Zavos's work.

The HFEA considers each licence application on its merits. It would be inappropriate for the HFEA to speculate about how it would respond to hypothetical applications.

Energy: Wind Generation

Question

Asked by Lord Carlile of Berriew



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The Minister of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change & Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Hunt of Kings Heath): The UK has committed to a binding target of 15 per cent renewable energy (electricity, heat and transport) by 2020. Under a potential scenario in the renewable energy strategy (RES) consultation, published in June 2008, this could equate to 32 per cent renewable electricity.

We estimated in the RES consultation that under one scenario we might require up to 14 gigawatts (GW) of onshore wind, which is equivalent to around 9 per cent of our electricity needs (based on provisional net electricity supplied in 2008).

The actual number of wind farms will depend on the market bringing forward suitable proposals. These will all be considered on a project basis through the planning process. Environmental and visual impacts are a material consideration in the planning process. Clear guidance is set out in planning policy statement (PPS) 22 and will be reinforced through national policy statements (NPS) which are being introduced under the Planning Act. PPS 22 can be downloaded at www.communities.gov.uk/publications/planningand building/pps22.

Energy: Wind Turbines

Question

Asked by Lord Taylor of Holbeach

The Minister of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change & Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Hunt of Kings Heath): The issue of embodied carbon has been considered in relation to small wind turbines. However, as set out in the Answer I gave the noble Lord on 2 March 2009, calculations of embodied carbon need to consider a wide range of factors, such as whether materials are recycled, the carbon intensity of the energy used in the manufacturing process, transportation costs, rotor diameter and, most crucially, the height, wind speeds and obstructions near the turbine. For this reason, a range is given in calculations of embodied carbon.

The Energy Saving Trust's recent document Generating the Future: An Analysis of Policy Interventions to Achieve Widespread Small Scale On Site Low Carbon and Renewable Penetration (see www.energysavingtrust.org. uk/corporate/Global-Data/Publications/Generating-the-Future-An-analysis-of-policy-interventions-to-achieve-widespread-microgeneration-penetration) sets out details of energy generation and carbon savings for small-scale energy technologies.

The Government are not aware of specific data for the carbon emissions produced by the grid connection of a small wind turbine. This would relate to the

6 May 2009 : Column WA119

carbon intensity of fuels used for the building works, transportation and maintenance (eg, whether these fuels are oil/diesel/biofuels/electricity).

All renewable and low-carbon technologies have a role to play in reducing carbon. The Government are supporting appropriate, well sited technologies, including small wind turbines through their grants programmes and through the MCS standards (microgeneration certification scheme).

European Parliament: Members' Salaries

Question

Asked by Lord Stoddart of Swindon

The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Malloch-Brown): After the European elections this June, Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) will receive a common salary to be paid in euros under the MEPs' statute regardless of their member state. The salary will be set at 38.5 per cent of the basic salary of a judge at the Court of Justice of the European Communities. At present, this is €7,665 gross per month.

Serving UK MEPs who are re-elected in June will, however, have an individual choice whether to be paid under the MEPs' statute or to continue to be paid under the current system that gives them the same salary as Members of Parliament.

For those UK-resident MEPs who will be subject to the statute provisions, UK tax will be applied to salaries after giving credit for Community tax deducted at the time of payment. This will prevent double taxation while ensuring that the salaries will be taxed in the same way as the salaries of their constituents. Existing UK MEPs who are able to opt out of the statute will continue to be taxed in the UK in the normal way.

Health: Dementia

Questions

Asked by Lord Morris of Manchester

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Lord Darzi of Denham): The department does not collect the data on patient numbers that would be required to make the comparison asked for in my noble friend's Question.

Asked by Lord Morris of Manchester

Lord Darzi of Denham: The Medical Research Council, a body funded by the Department for Innovation, Universities and Skills (DIUS), has lead responsibility for the dementia research agenda, and is working jointly with the Department of Health to deliver the dementia research summit. The wide range of stakeholders involved in developing plans for the summit has included DIUS via its membership of the UK Age Research Forum.

The purpose of the department's dementia research summit is to identify key issues and gaps in current dementia research across the full range of scientific activity and care, with the aim of developing a framework for future research in the field.

Health: Irish Citizens

Question

Asked by Lord Laird

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Lord Darzi of Denham): The United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland make payments to each other to cover the cost of providing healthcare to each other's citizens. This is part of a bilateral agreement which is in line with European Union regulations covering patient mobility. The majority of sums due by both countries relate to healthcare for pensioners. There are around 5,000 pensioners in the UK whom the Republic of Ireland pays for every year, whereas there are around 50,000 pensioners in the Republic of Ireland whom the UK pays for every year. The advance payments due by the Republic of Ireland have totalled around £17 million in each of the past three years. These sums have been offset against the reciprocal payments the UK makes to the Republic of Ireland.

Immigration

Questions

Asked by Baroness Warsi

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Home Office (Lord West of Spithead): As of 10 March 2009 (the end of the period covered by the last quarterly

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Written Ministerial Statement on control orders), 26 foreign nationals had ever been subject to a control order. Of these, six individuals have successfully been deported.

Asked by Baroness Warsi

Lord West of Spithead: None.

India: Binayak Sen

Question

Asked by Lord Avebury

The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Malloch-Brown): I share the noble Lord's concerns and we continue to take an active interest in this case.

The EU has registered its concern with the Indian Government, writing to the Ministry of External Affairs, the National Human Rights Commission and a number of senior political leaders about the case.


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