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("(7) In this section and section 41A "authorised shipper" means a person authorised by a licence or exemption to arrange with any gas transporter for gas to be introduced into, conveyed by means of, or taken out of a pipe-line system operated by that transporter."").

On Question, amendments agreed to.

Clause 99 [Energy efficiency requirements for gas transporters and suppliers]:

Lord McIntosh of Haringey moved Amendments Nos. 88 and 89:



("( ) An order under this section may specify criteria by reference to which the Authority is to determine energy efficiency targets for the gas transporters and gas suppliers on whom obligations are imposed by the order.
( ) The Secretary of State and the Authority shall carry out their respective functions under this section in the manner he or it considers is best calculated to ensure").


    Page 111, line 14, after ("supplier") insert ("or to an electricity distributor or electricity supplier (within the meaning of Part I of the Electricity Act 1989)")


1989 c. 29.

On Question, amendments agreed to.

Clause 102 [Maximum prices for reselling gas]:

Lord McIntosh of Haringey moved Amendment No. 90:


    Page 114, line 17, leave out from ("supplier"") to end of line 20.

On Question, amendment agreed to.

Lord McIntosh of Haringey moved Amendment No. 91:


    Before Clause 103, insert the following new clause--


OVERALL ENERGY EFFICIENCY TARGETS.
(" .--(1) For the purposes of the exercise by the Authority of its functions under either or both of--
(a) section 33BC of the 1986 Act (energy efficiency requirements for gas transporters and suppliers) and any order made under that section, and
(b) section 41A of the 1989 Act (energy efficiency requirements for electricity distributors and suppliers) and any order made under that section,
the Secretary of State may by order specify an overall target for the promotion of improvements in energy efficiency.
(2) Where an overall target applies in relation to both sections mentioned in subsection (1), the order specifying the target may make provision for the Authority to apportion the target between--
(a) persons who are gas transporters or gas suppliers (for the purposes of section 33BC of the 1986 Act and any order under that section); and
(b) persons who are electricity distributors or electricity suppliers (for the purposes of section 41A of the 1989 Act and any order under that section),
by reference to such criteria as may be specified in the order.
(3) The Authority shall exercise its functions under the provisions mentioned in subsection (1) in relation to which an overall target applies (and in particular its functions relating to the

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determination of energy efficiency targets) in the manner it considers best calculated to result in the achievement of the overall target.
(4) Before making an order under this section the Secretary of State shall consult the Authority, the Council, gas transporters, gas suppliers, electricity distributors, electricity suppliers, and such other persons as he considers appropriate.
(5) An order under this section shall not be made unless a draft of the instrument containing it has been laid before, and approved by a resolution of, each House of Parliament.")

On Question, amendment agreed to.

Baroness Buscombe moved Amendment No. 92:


    Before Clause 103, insert the following new clause--


STOPPING-UP OF ROADS AND STREET WORKS ETC.


    (" .--(1) Schedule 4 to the 1986 Act shall apply to an electricity distributor as it applies to a gas transporter as if, in each place where they occur, for the words "gas transporter" there were substituted "electricity distributor".


(2) Schedule 4 to the 1989 Act shall apply to a gas transporter as it applies to an electricity distributor as if, in each place where they occur, for the words "electricity distributor" there were substituted "gas transporter".

The noble Baroness said: My Lords, this amendment seeks to give gas transporters or electricity distributors the right to install the infrastructure of the other utility subject only to the same limitations placed on that other utility. The amendment does not seek to enlarge existing powers but merely to enlarge the number of entities capable of exercising them. In this case, it would be the owner or occupier, often a developer, who will be able to decide who shall enjoy these rights.

The Minister will be pleased to hear that this is essentially a probing amendment to gauge the Government's thinking in this area, given that our overriding interests are to save costs as well as to be expedient about the manner in which those works are carried out. I beg to move.

Lord McIntosh of Haringey: My Lords, I am grateful to the noble Baroness for explaining the amendment. Perhaps I may explain the fundamental underlying differences between the gas and electricity provisions with regard to street works. In gas there is a duty on the gas transporter to connect anyone within 23 metres of a gas main. That is an absolute duty and means that there have to be corresponding powers to enable gas transporters to fulfil their duty.

In electricity there is a duty to connect any person on request, subject to questions of practicality and cost which are reflected in the terms offered for the making of a connection, rather than an absolute right within a prescribed distance of an established part of the electricity distribution network. We believe that it is reasonable to insist that in the 21st century everyone should be able to have access to electricity but it would not make sense to require a transporter to put in several miles of gas main to service one customer in a remote location.

Turning to the detail of the proposed new clause, if it is designed to align the regimes governing street works under the Gas Act and the Electricity Act by making

5 Jul 2000 : Column 1569

electricity distributors subject to obligations under the Gas Act and vice versa, this is inappropriate because each Act deals with a defined subject area; namely, gas on the one hand and electricity on the other.

If the amendment is designed to assist those who are active in both the gas and electricity markets, it is misguided. A company which is both an electricity distributor and a gas transporter will have appropriate rights under the Electricity Act 1989 and the Gas Act 1986 which he should use according to which activity necessitates the street works. If both of them necessitate street works, he will need to exercise rights under both Acts. However, that should not create any problems for a company.

I should point out that there are other difficulties with the amendment. For example, if the amendment is made workable, there will be a potential for companies to use one Act to exercise rights and, when this proves unsuccessful, to attempt to use the other Act as a way forward. Granting rights under Schedule 4 to the Electricity Act to gas transporters could result in them having more extensive rights to land belonging to third parties than is presently the case.

On either interpretation of the amendment, it is inappropriate and could lead to damaging rather than helpful consequences.

Baroness Buscombe: My Lords, I thank the Minister for that response and for his clear explanation of the Government's approach here. I shall read Hansard and consider carefully what he has said. On that basis, I beg leave to withdraw the amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

Schedule 6 [Minor and consequential amendments]:

Lord McIntosh of Haringey moved Amendments Nos. 93 to 103:


    Page 132, line 14, at end insert ("; and


(c) at the end of paragraph (b) there is inserted "; and--
(c) to any other person who holds a licence and whose interests may, in the opinion of the Authority, be affected by the grant."
. In section 15A (billing disputes)--
(a) for "domestic customer" (in each place) there is substituted "customer";
(b) subsection (10) shall cease to have effect.").


    Page 132, line 15, leave out paragraphs 7 and 8 and insert--


(" .--(1) Section 24 (modification references to Competition Commission) is amended as follows.
(2) In subsection (1)(a)(i) and subsection (1A)(a), for "required" there is substituted "regulated".
(3) In subsection (6) for "4 and 4A(1) and (2) above" there is substituted "4AA, 4AB and 4A".
(4) In subsection (8) for "and 26 below" there is substituted ", 26 and 26A.
. In section 27(3) and (4) (modification by order under other enactments) for "required" there is substituted "regulated".").


    Page 132, line 21, leave out ("inserted") and insert ("substituted").


    Page 132, line 30, at end insert ("33C,"").

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    Page 133, line 5, at end insert--


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