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The EU waste framework directive (WFD) classes composting as a recovery operation. Full recycling of kitchen and gardening waste occurs when the compost can be considered to be a finished product. The British PAS 100 standard for compost is
widely accepted as defining requirements for finished compost products. The standard requires the plastic content of the compost to be strictly limited. In practice this means that only plastics conforming to the European standard EN13432:2000 should be included in garden and kitchen waste collections.
Bill Wiggin: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many sampling points the Environment Agency used for sampling pesticide in water in each year from 2002to 2006. 
Dr. Ladyman: The West Midlands Metropolitan authorities have been awarded £3.2 million of Transport Innovation Fund pump priming funding to explore the use of demand management solutions, including road pricing, to tackle their congestion problems.
Their initial feasibility study, Gridlock or Growth, published on 22 September 2006, set out the impact that different solutions, including road pricing, would have. Clearly there is more work to be done by the West Midlands and the Department for Transport will continue to work closely with them as they develop their thinking further.
Dr. Cable: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what his Department's annual budget is for employing workers on a consultancy basis; and how much of this budget was used in each of the last five years for which records are available. 
Responsibilities for delivering objectives set through the departmental business plan and the budgets associated with those objectives are delegated to the
relevant business unit. Each business unit is allocated an overall budget, from which they determine the proportion to be allocated, including that required for any consultancy support, to deliver those objectives. Budgets are monitored as part of the Departments resource management and business planning processes.
Mr. Hayes: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many temporary employees were contracted to work for his Department in 2005-06; and what the total cost of such employees was in (a) 2005-06 and (b) 1997-98. 
|Number of staff/cost (£)|
|(1) No information available.|
(2) The annual report provides figures for agency/consultancy support.
Mr. Carmichael: To ask the Secretary of Statefor Transport what the Governments policy is on implementation of taxi accessibility regulations under part 5 of the Disability Discrimination Act 1995; what the time scale was for the Governments policy formulation on this policy; and what steps he has taken to secure implementation of the regulations. 
An announcement was made in October 2003 on the policy approach for the implementation of taxi accessibility regulations under part 5 of the Disability Discrimination Act 1995. We are looking at how best to deliver more accessible taxis in the light of ergonomic research, a joint study by the
European Conference of Ministers of Transport and the International Road Transport Union on the provision of accessible taxis, as well as structured and informal consultations with stakeholders.
Mr. Carmichael: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what assessment his Department has made of the likely financial impact of the implementation of taxi accessibility regulations under part 5 of the Disability Discrimination Act 1995, on the taxi trade; and whom his Department has consulted on the implementation of the regulations. 
Gillian Merron: An informal consultation on taxi accessibility regulations under part 5 of the Disability Discrimination Act 1995 took place with the trade and disability groups in 1997. The accompanying draft regulatory impact assessment is available on the Departments website. Further work is being done at present to inform the development of policy and costs for accessible taxis to bring this up to date.
Dr. Ladyman: The drink-driving limit is continually kept under review. At the present time the Government are not minded to change it. We believe the emphasis must be on effective enforcement against drivers who are over the existing limit.
For an offence at the United Kingdom legal BAC limit of 80 mg of alcohol per 100 ml of blood, the penalties in most EU countries are not as severe asin the United Kingdom, and for offences below80 mg the penalties are significantly lighter and generally only involve a fine.
Clive Efford: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what the cost to public funds was of upgrading the infrastructure on the North Kent rail lines in each year since 1997; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Tom Harris: It is for Network Rail to determine the expenditure levels to operate, maintain and renew the infrastructure on each of its routes, to enable delivery of the targets set by the Office of Rail Regulation for the current Periodic Review. The hon. Member should contact Network Rails chief executive at the following address for a response to his question:
40 Melton Street
London NW1 2EE
To ask the Secretary of Statefor Transport what comparative assessment his Department has made of safety at manned full barrier
level crossings, automatic full barrier level crossings and automatic half barrier level crossings; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Tom Harris: The Department has not undertaken such a comparative assessment. However the Office of Rail Regulation (ORR) ensures through the level crossing order-making process that the appropriate protective equipment is in place to control the risks.
Sir John Stanley: To ask the Secretary of Statefor Transport whether the installation of lighting at Junction 3 of the M20/M26 has now been approved; and what the contingent timetable is for the installation up to completion. 
A timetable for the installation up to completion will be dependent on the outcome of the environmental assessment and statutory procedures. A full environmental statement for the lighting scheme will need to be undertaken as junction 3 of the M20/M26 lies within an area of outstanding natural beauty (AONB).
Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what powers the Maritime and Coastguard Agency has to prevent ship-to-ship transfers of oil and other substances in UK territorial waters; and if he will list the occasions on which each such power has been used in the last five years. 
Dr. Ladyman: The Maritime and Coastguard Agencys network was infected by the Sasser virus in May 2004. The outbreak was contained within a few hours and no lasting damage was caused to the HM Coastguards systems, which include access to maps and charts.
Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what sanctions are available to enforce the regulatory regime for ship-to-ship transfers of oil (a) in statutory harbour areas and (b) elsewhere in UK territorial waters. 
Dr. Ladyman: The Merchant Shipping (Oil Pollution Preparedness, Response and Co-operation Convention) Regulations 1998 (SI 1998/1056) apply in statutory harbour areas. This requires operators and harbour authorities to maintain oil pollution emergency plans. The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) may, after consulting statutory harbour authorities, direct that a plan be altered if it is not compatible with the National Contingency Plan or is not appropriate for dealing with oil pollution incidents which may occur in the area in which the harbour authority or operator has jurisdiction or exercises responsibility (regulation 4). Failure to maintain the approved plan, or failure to implement the plan in the event of an oil pollution incident is a criminal offence punishable by a fine.
In UK territorial waters (outside harbour authority areas), the Departments MCA has non-statutory arrangements and procedures under which ship owners and operators are expected to notify the MCA of the intention to carry out a ship-to-ship transfer, and to carry out such transfers according to best practice.
Mr. Tom Harris: The National Cycle Network (NCN) is not a central government led project, it is a network of on and off-road cycle routes promoted and co-ordinated by the transport charity Sustrans in partnership with local authorities.
The Department has helped fund extensions to the Network, most recently through the Links to School project, which links residential areas to schools via the NCN. The Department has invested £15.705 million since 2004-05 either directly or through Cycling England. This investment is expected to generate a further £26.9 million of local authority matched funding by the end of 2006-07. Cycling England has plans to allocate further funds to the project in 2007-08.
Mr. Tom Harris: The direct hourly train service between Peterborough and Cambridge will continueto be provided by Central Trains, as part of its Birmingham-Stansted airport service, until the endof the Central franchise in November 2007. The continuation of this service is a mandatory requirement in the new Cross Country franchise, due to commence on 11 November 2007.
Mrs. Dunwoody: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of the system for transfer of cases for consideration of prosecution via electronic link from the Driver and Vehicle Licensing Agency to the Crown Office and Procurator Fiscal Service; when he first became aware of difficulties with the system; and if he will make a statement. 
There have been problems setting up and using this electronic link. A suitable method of transmitting these cases is now in place and work is continuing to make this process as streamlined as possible.
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