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World Heritage Sites

Lord Marlesford asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord McIntosh of Haringey: Information on the UK's world heritage sites and their date of designation is shown in the table. UNESCO does not contribute any funding towards these sites and information on government, European Union and lottery funding can only be provided at disproportionate cost. I will write separately to the noble Lord with a fuller explanation, and will arrange to place copies in the Libraries of both Houses.

World Heritage SiteDate of Designation
Durham Cathedral and Castle1986
Fountains Abbey, St Mary's Church and Studley Royal Park1986
Ironbridge Gorge1986
Stonehenge, Avebury and associated sites1986
Blenheim Palace and Park1987
Palace of Westminster, St Margaret's Church and Westminster Abbey1987
City of Bath1987
Hadrian's Wall1987
The Tower of London1989
Canterbury Cathedral (with St Augustine's Abbey and St Martin's Church)1988
Castle and Town Walls of King Edward in Gwynedd1986
St Kilda1986
Giant's Causeway and Causeway coast1986
Henderson Island, South Pacific Ocean1986
Edinburgh Old and New Towns1996
Gough Island Wildlife Reserve, South Atlantic Ocean1996
Maritime Greenwich1997
Heart of Neolithic Orkney1999
Historic Town of St George and Related Fortifications Bermuda2000
Blaenavon Industrial Landscape2000
Dorset and East Devon Coast2001
Derwent Valley Mills2001
New Lanark2001
Royal Botanic Gardens, Kew2003

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State Pension: Cost of Uprating

Lord Oakeshott of Seagrove Bay asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What is their estimate of the net additional cost to the Exchequer in 2011–12, 2013–14 and 2015–16 if the basic state pension were increased in April 2006 by £7 for a single person and £11 for a couple and then increased annually in line with average earnings with no change in other relevant plans and policies; and how this compares with present projections. [HL4753]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Work and Pensions (Baroness Hollis of Heigham): We currently uprate the basic state pension by either 2.5 per cent or the retail prices index (RPI), whichever is higher, and will do so for the remainder of this Parliament. On this basis, we estimate that the basic state pension in 2011 will be £95.30 for single pensioners and £152.40 for pensioner couples.

Increasing the basic state pension by £7 in 2006, and thereafter uprating by earnings, would result in single pensioners receiving £110.65 and pensioner couples, £176.60.

Therefore, the net additional costs, for all pensioners, of increasing the basic state pension by £7 in 2006, and thereafter uprating by earnings, compared with uprating the basic state pension by the retail prices index, for the years 2011–12 to 2015–16, are as set out in the table.

Net additional costs for all pensioners of increasing the basic state pension by £7 in 2006, and thereafter uprating by earnings, compared with uprating the basic state pension by the retail prices index, for the years 2011–12 to 2015–16

Net cost (£ billions)


1. All costs are rounded to the nearest £100 million and are in 2003–04 price terms.

2. Gross costs are calculated by the Government Actuary's Department and are consistent with Budget 2003 assumptions.

3. The net costs are calculated using the DWP policy simulation model for 2005–06. The net cost represents the cost after allowing for any offsetting savings in income-related benefits.

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Bovine Tuberculosis

Baroness Byford asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What were the numbers of cattle slaughtered as a result of bovine tuberculosis and how much compensation was paid to farmers in the years 1998, 1999, 2000, 2001, 2002 and up to July 2003.[HL4731]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Whitty): Table 1, below, shows the number of cattle slaughtered under bovine TB measures in Great Britain, from 1998 to 2002 and from January to June 2003. The data are taken from Defra's most recently published national statistics (data for July 2003 not yet available).

Table 2 shows the amount of compensation paid to farmers in Great Britain for each financial year 1998–99 to 2002–03 and for April to July of this financial year.

Table 1—Number of cattle slaughtered in Great Britain under Bovine TB control measures 1998–2003(1)

YearNo of cattle slaughtered
January–June 2003(2)13,051

(1) TB reactors plus direct contacts.

(2) Provisional data only.

Table 2—Compensation paid to farmers in Great Britain as a result of Bovine Tuberculosis 1998–2003

Financial yearCompensation (£,000)
April–July 2003(2)8,254

(3) Provisional data only.


In 2001, the TB testing and control programme was largely suspended due to the foot and mouth disease (FMD) outbreak. Since testing resumed in 2002, resources have been concentrated on herds with overdue TB tests which would have had a longer period in which to contract the disease. Also the proportion of high-risk herds being tested post-FMD is greater than that prior to the outbreak. As a result, the number of TB reactors identified and slaughtered in 2002 is not comparable to those identified and slaughtered in previous years.


Lord Carter asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What view they have formed of the potential ability of British agriculture to produce biodiesel and bioethanol from current crops and technology.[HL4694]

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Lord Whitty: Biofuels offer an opportunity for diversification of agricultural activities and the development of new markets. Traditional technologies for producing biodiesel and bioethanol use crops including oilseed rape, suger beet and potatoes, which are well known to farmers and use the same crop management drivers as for food crops.

In order to produce a significant percentage of the UK's fuel requirements, a large amount of land would need to be dedicated to biofuel crops. To meet the 5.75 per cent reference target for use of biofuels in the EU Biofuels Directive, if entirely provided from virgin crops ie excluding recycled oil or forestry by-products etc, would require up to 1 million hectares of land: about 10 per cent of available land. For UK farmers to produce fuel crops on this scale, the market return to the farmer would need to be sufficient to motivate diversion from production for established food and animal feed markets.

Lord Carter asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What actions they propose to enable the United Kingdom to meet the 2005 and 2010 European Union targets for biofuel use, 2 per cent and 5.75 per cent respectively.[HL4695]

Lord Davies of Oldham: The European Union's Biofuels Directive requires member states to set their own indicative targets for sales of biofuels to be met in the years 2005 and 2010. The Government will be consulting early next year on the level of targets that might be appropriate for the UK, and on the steps that we might take to meet them.

HW Points Machines

Earl Attlee asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether the HW points machine is a safety critical component of a railway system; and[HL4837]

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    Who is the design authority for the HW points machine; and[HL4838]

    Whether Network Rail maintains or has access to a complete and up-to-date set of engineering drawings of the HW points machine; and[HL4839]

    Whether HW points machines are overhauled or refurbished; if so, by whom; and whether that organisation has:

    (a) a complete and up-to-date set of engineering drawings of the HW points machine; and

    (b) a schedule of limits and fits for the machine, covering all components that they inspect, reject, retain or repair.[HL4840]

Lord Davies of Oldham: Network Rail advises that all points machines are subject to a rigorous product acceptance process which forms part of its railway safety case. Meeting the appropriate acceptance criteria is a matter for the relevant suppliers.

Public Sector: Efficiency Review

Lord Tomlinson asked Her Majesty's Government:

    When there will be an efficiency review covering the public sector.[HL4962]

Lord Bassam of Brighton: My right honourable friend the Chancellor for the Exchequer announced an efficiency review of the public sector in his spring Budget speech (House of Commons Official Report, 9 April, col. 271-88). The review is being conducted by a joint team from the Cabinet Office and Her Majesty's Treasury.

The Minister for the Cabinet Office, Mr Douglas Alexander, has today placed in the Libraries of the House copies of the consultation document Efficiency Review—Releasing Resources to the Front Line. The consultation seeks the views of a wide range of public sector employees and other interested parties to inform the review, with initial views requested by 21 November 2003. A more detailed consultation will be undertaken when specific proposals have been developed.

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