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Millennium Dome: Sale

Lord Marlesford asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Falconer of Thoroton: In accordance with the legal agreement between English Partnerships and the New Millennium Experience Company dated 12 January 2001, the first call on the proceeds of sale of the Millennium Dome will be for costs defined in the agreement as Xallowable costs". These include various costs associated with English Partnerships's management and maintenance of the Dome, including decommissioning of the contents, and other categories of costs payable by English Partnerships. In addition, Xallowable costs" includes all legal costs, fees and expenses reasonably and properly incurred by either English Partnerships or the company to enable a sale to be achieved: the bulk of these costs have been incurred to date by English Partnerships.

Lord Marlesford asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Falconer of Thoroton: The net sum raised so far from the sale of assets by the New Millennium Experience Company is £3.7 million. The sum has been used to defray the New Millennium Experience Company's wind-down costs, reducing the net amount of grant needed from the Millennium Commission.

New Millennium Experience Company and English Partnerships: Legal Liability for Debts

Lord Marlesford asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Falconer of Thoroton: The New Millennium Experience Company is a limited company and the Government have no direct legal obligation to meet its liabilities.

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English Partnerships is made up of two bodies, the Urban Regeneration Agency and the Commission for New Towns. As NDPBs, they stand at arms' length from the Government, operating under their own statute. Legal liability for the commitments they incur therefore lies with them. However, the Government provide them with the necessary resources to carry out an agreed programme and operate a control regime aimed at preventing the bodies creating obligations they cannot fulfil.

Greenwich Millennium Village

Lord Marlesford asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What is the expenditure of public funds to date on the Millennium Village at Greenwich, together with a breakdown of the main source of such funds.[HL1360]

Lord Falconer of Thoroton: The Greenwich Millennium Village is being developed by the private sector with no contribution from public funds, up to now. English Partnerships, the Government's regeneration agency, has facilitated the remediation, servicing and landscaping for the area of the Millennium Village as part of its wider regeneration programme of the whole of the Greenwich Peninsula. In addition, English Partnerships has developed the Millennium School and Health Centre at a cost of £11.6 million, including fees. These facilities are to serve the Millennium Village, but also the far wider community, both on and off the Greenwich Peninsula.


The Countess of Mar asked Her Majesty's Government:

    When waxed fly strips containing Dichlorvos were first marketed under the trade name XVapona"; whether a licence was required; and what toxicity tests were the manufacturers required to conduct.[HL1420]

Lord Falconer of Thoroton: Resin strips impregnated with Dichlorvos have been marketed under the trade name XVapona" since the 1960s. A Xlicence" as such was not required at that time to allow manufacturers to place such products on the market. However the Pesticides Safety Precautions Scheme (PSPS) which operated on a voluntary basis Xcleared" products for safe use, subject to labelling and any other conditions set by government departments. PSPS was operated by the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food, with the HSE becoming involved about 1975.

To help manufacturers, guidance was published on the toxicity tests needed to help advisers make recommendations for the safe use of pesticides. The following information was published in XThe Pesticides Safety Precautions Scheme agreed between Government Departments and Industry (1975)"

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Toxicity data guide:

    Acute toxicity studies

    Cumulative toxicity studies

    Chronic toxicity studies, (including carcinogenicity tests if required).

    Neurotoxicity tests for organophosphorous compounds

    Metabolic studies

    Potentiation tests for organophosphorous compounds It should be noted that the trade name XVapona" covers a range of pesticide products.

The Countess of Mar asked Her Majesty's Government:

    When aerosol insect sprays for use in domestic situations in which the active ingredients were organophosphates were first introduced into the United Kingdom; and which were the organophosphates.[HL1421]

Lord Falconer of Thoroton: HSE records show aerosol products containing organophosphorus compounds were on the market in the UK at least from 1975–76. At this time HSE became involved in the voluntary scheme in place to clear and register them. Before then, such products were the responsibility of the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (MAFF—now DEFRA). The organophosphorus compounds contained within these products were as follows:






Phenols: Health and Safety Executive Advice

The Countess of Mar asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether the Health and Safety Executive advice about the use of phenols has been changed recently; if so, why; and to whom the advice has been communicated.[HL1422]

Lord Falconer of Thoroton: On 22 September 2001, the Health and Safety Commission approved a maximum exposure limit (MEL) for phenol. This will come into effect on 31 December 2001, when it will be published in Health and Safety Executive (HSE) guidance note EH40/2002, Occupational Exposure Limits. Employers must control exposure of employees by inhalation to any substance with a MEL as far as is reasonably practicable, and in any event below the limit. This new limit replaces former occupational exposure standards that had higher values and less stringent control duties, and reflects the

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latest scientific appraisal of the health effects of phenol. The new limit has been announced in an HSE press notice, and the intention to introduce it was subject to consultation in 2001.

Mox Development: Consideration of Security Implications

Lord Judd asked Her Majesty's Government:

    When the security implications of proceeding with the Mox development at Sellafield were last considered; and what was the outcome of that consideration.[HL750]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Whitty): My right honourable friends the Secretary of State and the Secretary of State for Health decided on 3 October that Mox manufacture is justified in accordance with the requirements of Article 6(1) of Directive 96/29/Euratom. This directive, commonly referred to as the XBasic Safety Standards Directive", requires in Article 6(1) that all new classes or types of practice resulting in exposure to ionising radiation are justified in advance of being first adopted or first approved by their economic, social or other benefits in relation to the health detriment they may cause. My right honourable friends took account of all relevant issues up to 3 October, including security considerations. A copy of their decision is in the Library, including a summary of some of the main considerations taken into account. Paragraphs 67–69 of the decision document and paragraphs 25–33 of Annex 1 describe these issues in detail. The Secretaries of State sought the advice of agencies responsible for safety and security issues, including the Office for Civil Nuclear Security which, as the decision document makes clear, took account of the terrorist attacks on 11 September.

Meat Imports

Lord Vinson asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What quantity of meat products have been imported into the United Kingdom from countries that have endemic foot and mouth disease over the last twelve months.[HL1500]

Lord Whitty: European Community legislation permits the importation of meat from certain countries where foot and mouth disease 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 foot and mouth disease 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 foot and mouth disease. All meat imported into the

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UK from third countries must enter at designated UK border inspection posts (BIPs) where it is subject to veterninary inspections.

The table below details UK imports of meat from foot and mouth disease susceptible species* between October 2000 and September 2001 from countries where foot and mouth disease is endemic.

ProductCountryTotal (tonnes)
Meat of Bovine Animals**Botswana11,296
South Africa 354
Meat of Bovine Animals, Fresh or Chilled Total108,339

*cattle, sheep, pigs, goats and reindeer

** There were no imports of sheepmeat, pigmeat, goatmeat or reindeer meat from the specified countries between October 2000 and September 2001.

Waterfowl: Ban on Shooting with Lead Shot

The Earl of Shrewsbury asked Her Majesty's Government:

    How they have monitored the ban on the shooting of waterfowl and other similar species with

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    lead shot; and what prosecutions for infringements of the ban have been brought to date.[HL1546]

Lord Whitty: The legislation implementing the ban on shooting of waterfowl, and other species, using lead shot has been monitored by the Lead Shot Legislation (England) Review Group. This report to Mr Meacher earlier this year recommended proposals for changes to the schedules to the legislation. A consultation about the proposals has been conducted by my department, the results of which should be known shortly. Reports from the organisations represented on the group indicate that compliance with the legislation is high. To date there have been no prosecutions for infringements of the ban.

The Earl of Shrewsbury asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Which bodies or organisations police the ban on the shooting of waterfowl and similar species with lead shot in order to enforce the existing legislation.[HL1547]

Lord Whitty: Under Section 4 of the Environmental Protection (Restriction of the Use of Lead Shot (England) Regulations 1999 any person who appears suitable to the Secretary of State may be authorised in writing to undertake enforcement. At the current time only the police are authorised to undertake this function.

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