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Dr. Kumar: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what schemes targeting urban regeneration needs are managed by her Department; how much each scheme has available to invest; what issues each scheme aims to tackle; and how much has been spent annually since 1997 (a) in the United Kingdom, (b) in Teesside, (c) in Redcar and Cleveland and Middlesbrough councils and (d) in the Middlesbrough, South and Cleveland, East constituency. 
Alun Michael: Regional development agencies, in partnership with the Countryside Agency, have been given the task of managing a programme aimed at the regeneration of small rural towns. Expenditure details are not yet available but £37 million was allocated to the programme for the period 200102 to 200304.
Mr. Mullin: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs when she will respond to the letter of 6 July 2001 from the hon. Member for Sunderland, South concerning the Environmental Protection Act 1990. 
Paul Flynn: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) what assessment she has made of the approximate total market value of animals killed because of foot and mouth disease; and what the total paid in compensation was; 
Mr. Morley: The levels of compensation paid to farmers whose animals were culled as a result of foot and mouth was determined in accordance with schedule 3 to the Animal Health Act 1981. Most valuations were made by independent valuers appointed by DEFRA who were instructed to determine the market value of culled livestock and the remainder were based on standard values published by the Department. The total paid in statutory compensation for slaughtered animals is £1,079,500,000.
The Department has not published an assessment of the total market value of animals killed because of FMD. The statistics which the Department will publish in "Agriculture in the UK" in March 2002 will show the impact of FMD on the value of the industry's assets.
Mr. Breed: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many sheep have been slaughtered since the last case of foot and mouth was diagnosed in the United Kingdom; and if she will make a statement. 
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came from 21 flocks (2,067 from one premises) and were culled as dangerous contacts as a result of returning sero-positive blood samples.
Mr. Heathcoat-Amory: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how much meat from countries where foot and mouth disease is present was imported into the United Kingdom in 2001; and if she will list the countries involved. 
|Meat of bovine animals and sheep(11)|
|Totalmeat and meat products (bovine and sheep)||103,807|
(11) There were no imports of pigmeat, goatmeat or reindeer meat from the specified countries between January and November 2001
European Community legislation permits the importation of meat from certain countries where FMD is present but only where the disease is restricted to specific areas. Imports are permitted either from parts of the country that are free of disease or under strict conditions that ensure the meat does not come from any animal that may have come in contact with FMD before, during or after slaughter.
All meat imported from third countries must be accompanied by veterinary certification. This must confirm that the meat is derived from animals which have been subjected to a veterinary inspection during the 24 hours prior to slaughter and showed no signs of FMD.
Hugh Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will ensure that extra costs associated with the showing of animals, and precautions against foot and mouth disease, will not be passed on to county shows. 
Mr. Morley [holding answer 21 January 2002]: Responsibility for taking the necessary biosecurity measures, to ensure that shows can be conducted without increased risk of disease spread, will rest with the organisers and participants.
Hugh Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if agricultural shows will remain exempt from the 20 day standstill period imposed as a result of foot and mouth disease unless the foot and mouth disease situation deteriorates. 
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Mr. Morley [holding answer 21 January 2002]: Detailed arrangements for agricultural shows are currently being drawn up. Essentially the 20 day standstill will not be triggered provided that the animals attending shows are individually identified and kept in isolation before and after each one.
Mr. Morley: Compensation in the form of interest may be paid to applicants where three criteria are met. These are that the Department was entirely at fault, it was entirely due to an administrative error and it could have been avoided.
Alun Michael: Within the England Rural Development Programme (ERDP), the hill farm allowance provides specific support to hill farmers. The hill farm allowance will be reviewed this year in the context of the mid-term evaluation of the ERDP. Ministers are keeping the position of tenant farmers under review.
Paul Flynn: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what her estimate is of the cost of installing (a) detectors and (b) staff to eliminate the illegal import of meat into the United Kingdom. 
Mr. Morley: [holding answer 17 January 2002]: We are considering a number of initiatives aimed at improving our ability to prevent and detect illegal imports of meat into the UK. No decisions have been taken to install new X-ray machines, although this is one of the options we are examining. We are also looking at improved intelligence to better target enforcement activity. Detailed costings will depend on what measures are decided, how they are to be targeted and what use can be made of existing resources.
Mr. Gareth R. Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment she has made of the difficulties facing councils in getting access to inland waters in England and Wales. 
Alun Michael: We have made no such assessment. Last month we published the findings of research establishing the facts about water-based sport and recreation. The report "Water-based Sport and Recreation" identified the powers available to local authorities to give people greater access to inland water for open-air recreation. We are looking at what action we may need to take in the light of the research report. Copies of the report are available in the Library.
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Mr. Alan Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps the Government will take to ensure that conventional seeds grown in the UK will remain free of GM contamination if GM crops are added to the National Seed List. 
Mr. Morley: The Government are participating in discussions in Brussels on Commission proposals to amend the EU seed marketing directives to control the adventitious presence of GM events in conventional seeds. When EU measures are adopted, these will be implemented in the UK. Meanwhile, the Central Science Laboratory continues to audit seed companies. The audits check that companies have taken appropriate precautions against the adventitious presence of GM events in conventional seeds that will be sold to farmers and growers.
Joan Ruddock: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps the Government will take to ensure that non-GM and organic crops will remain below the proposed 1 per cent. threshold if GM crops are included on the National Seed List. 
Mr. Morley: The Government are exploring with interested parties the terms on which GM and non-GM crops might co-exist, recognising that this needs to be resolved before there is any possibility of GM crops being grown here commercially. Commercialisation will not occur before the farm scale evaluations have been completed, even if GM varieties are included on the National Seed List.
Mr. Meacher: A site in Hordley, Shropshire was selected last year to take part in the farm scale evaluations of autumn-sown GM herbicide tolerant oil seed rape. The evaluations are being conducted under an agreement between the farming and biotechnology industry body (SCIMAC) and the Government. The progress of the evaluations is being overseen by the independent Scientific Steering Committee (SSC), which includes experts from academia and conservation organisations. SCIMAC finds locations for the evaluations programme. These are then checked, assessed and selected against scientific criteria, which includes crop history, agronomy and measures of biodiversity, by the independent researchers undertaking the field study. The distribution of locations is finally approved, on scientific grounds alone, by the SSC. They have recommended that a geographical spread of sites be obtained that is representative of regional differences in crop distribution and the range of current farming methods, biodiversity
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and production intensities throughout Britain. The Government are not involved in the process of selecting FSE sites.
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