Civil Nuclear Constabulary: Firearms

Sir Tony Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what the status is of those civil nuclear police officers who are unable to carry firearms as a result of illness or injury. [154099]

Michael Fallon: Civil Nuclear Constabulary (CNC) authorised firearms officers (AFO) who are unable to carry firearms due to illness or injury retain their contractual AFO status. However, they are treated as non-deployable with immediate effect and, depending on the long-term prognosis, will either return to AFO duties or will be managed through the CNC's performance or capability processes.

Coal

Caroline Flint: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change with reference to the answer of 14 March 2013, Official Report, column 454, on the deep-mine coal industry, what progress has been made in developing a short to medium-term coal strategy. [155208]

Michael Fallon: As my predecessor, my right hon. Friend the Member for South Holland and The Deepings (Mr Hayes), stated on 14 March 2013, we believe that the interests of the industry at this point are best served by concentrating our efforts on supporting coal producers to manage the very significant shorter-term challenges they currently face. Once the outcome of that priority work is clearer we can then assess how best to meet the industry's future interests in the context of our wider energy policy agenda.

Energy

John Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what recent discussions he has had with Ofgem regarding energy efficiency targets for energy companies. [154599]

Michael Fallon: The Department is in regular contact with Ofgem in relation to the energy efficiency schemes which the Government impose on energy companies. The administration and enforcement of these schemes is a matter for Ofgem.

Martin Horwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what the statutory or other parliamentary authority is on which he will rely to incur expenditure or other financial liability pursuant to any investment contract he enters into, or strike price agreed, prior to the Energy Bill gaining Royal Assent. [154892]

15 May 2013 : Column 230W

Michael Fallon: Any investment contract that is entered into before Royal Assent of the Energy Bill will be conditional on the relevant provisions in the Energy Bill gaining Royal Assent.

Energy: Competition

Caroline Flint: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change with reference to the answer of 14 March 2013, Official Report, column 465, on energy market competition, (1) when the actions of Ofgem and industry to improve liquidity in the wholesale power market will be assessed on their effectiveness; [155060]

(2) by what criteria his Department will judge whether the actions of Ofgem and industry to improve liquidity in the wholesale power market have been insufficient. [155061]

Michael Fallon: Poor liquidity in the wholesale market, in particular in the forward markets, is acting as a barrier to entry and greater competition. Ofgem is currently taking forward reforms to address this issue.

We support Ofgem's objectives and are keen to see swift and appropriate action from the regulator. We are therefore encouraged by Ofgem's strong preference, in its latest consultation, for intervention, with a decision expected by summer 2013. We will assess the effectiveness of its reforms once we see the final proposed intervention options.

Government are seeking backstop powers through the current Energy Bill to address low liquidity if necessary, but Ofgem remains the primary vehicle for delivering any necessary regulatory intervention. It is important that its reform process is allowed to come to a decision before considering whether the proposals are sufficient to improve liquidity.

Energy: Housing

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change (1) how many properties were connected to the gas distribution network in (a) 2009, (b) 2010, (c) 2011 and (d) 2012; [154771]

(2) how many households in (a) the UK, (b) England, (c) Scotland, (d) Wales and (e) Northern Ireland are off the mains gas grid; and what percentage of off-grid households in (i) the UK, (ii) England, (iii) Scotland, (iv) Wales and (v) Northern Ireland are within 500 metres of the gas grid. [154781]

Michael Fallon: Annual statistics on the number of gas meters are available on the Department’s website for the years 2005 to 2011. Data for 2012 will be published in December 2013. It is estimated that 22.58 million households were connected to the gas distribution network in 2009; 22.72 million in 2010 and 22.84 million in 2011.

For 2011, it is estimated that 4.46 million homes in Great Britain did not have access to the gas network; 3.33 million of these households were in England, 0.83 million in Scotland and 0.27 million in Wales. Data on gas connections in Northern Ireland, and data on the number of households within 500 metres of the gas grid, are not held by DECC.

The off gas grid estimates have been produced based on information from the Gemserv database on the

15 May 2013 : Column 231W

location of electricity meters, and data from xoserve and independent gas transporters on the location of gas meters, which are used to produce the Department’s sub-national energy statistics for Great Britain. Subtracting the number of gas meters from the number of electricity meters produces a broad estimate of the number of homes that do not have access to the gas network. It should be noted that these estimates will overestimate the number of homes due to some homes having more than one electricity meter, and also that the statistics may include non-domestic gas meters.

Details of all methodologies used to compile the statistics can be found at:

http://www.decc.gov.uk/en/content/cms/statistics/regional/regional.aspx

Sub-national data showing the number of gas meters and consumption can be found at:

http://www.decc.gov.uk/en/content/cms/statistics/energy_stats/regional/gas/gas.aspx

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what assessment he has made of network owners' commitment to connect an additional 80,000 homes in fuel poverty to the gas distribution network. [154772]

Gregory Barker: The Department supports this scheme, and the efforts of Ofgem and the gas network owners to extend the grid to vulnerable households for whom a gas connection could mean lower energy costs. However we believe the promotion and operation of this scheme is a matter for the energy regulator and the network owners.

I am aware that Ofgem is planning a review of this scheme next year to assess whether it still serves as a suitable solution for vulnerable customers. We will be engaging with Ofgem and await the findings of this review.

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change whether his Department provides assistance to households within 500 metres of the gas grid to enable them to seek connection. [154777]

Michael Fallon: The Department does not currently provide any assistance to households within 500 metres of the gas grid to enable them to seek gas connection. Ofgem is responsible for regulating the extension of the gas grid, and individual connections are a matter for the local Gas Distribution Networks (GDNs).

DECC is currently promoting alternative, low carbon, options for off-grid consumers through the Renewable Heat Premium Payment scheme (RHPP) which provides grants towards renewable heating systems, including ground and air source heat pumps, biomass boilers, and solar thermal heaters. These technologies have the ability to bring down fuel bills in comparison to heating oil and LPG which are most commonly used by off-grid consumers.

DECC has extended the RHPP scheme to provide ongoing support for the domestic renewable heat market, ahead of the launch of the Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive in 2014.

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Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how much the cost of heating an average home with (a) propane and home fuel oil and (b) gas has changed in each year since 2009. [154778]

Michael Fallon: DECC does not hold data on average consumption levels of households using propane and home fuel oil, and as such does not produce average costs for these. However, data from fuel components of the retail prices index shows that the prices of propane and home fuel oil and gas changed as follows between 2009 and 2012:

 (a) Propane and home fuel oil(b) Gas

2009

126.4

193.5

2010

161.2

182.0

2011

201.4

201.4

2012

206.8

222.8

These data are shown in the form of an index, where costs in 2005 are set to 100, and subsequent years are shown relative to that year.

Energy: Job Creation

Tom Greatrex: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what assessment he has made of the number of jobs created in (a) renewable energy, (b) nuclear power and (c) network providers in (i) the UK, (ii) England, (iii) Scotland, (iv) Wales and (v) Northern Ireland in (A) 2009, (B) 2010, (C) 2011 and (D) 2012. [154768]

Michael Fallon: In response to part (a), the Department does not currently collect this information in the format requested.

Between 1 April 2011 and 31 July 2012, DECC has collated renewable announcements that have the potential to support around 22,800 jobs across the UK.

We are currently revising our methodology for collecting data on jobs created in the renewable energy sector and intend to publish up to date jobs figures shortly.

In response to part (b), the Department cannot provide a specific breakdown of the number of jobs created in nuclear power. However, the Nuclear Industry Association have produced Jobs Maps detailing the number of employees by parliamentary constituency in the UK Civil Nuclear Industry for the years 2009, 2010, 2011 and 2012. Note that for 2012 there are maps for the UK as a whole and one for Scotland. The documents containing this information will be placed in the Libraries of the House.

In response to part (c), the Department does not collect this information, though the network providers in these countries may do so.

Energy: Prices

Caroline Flint: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change with reference to the answer of 25 February 2013, Official Report, column 238W, on energy, what estimate his Department has made of the average household saving as a result of his proposals to move people to the cheapest energy tariff that meets their preferences. [155057]

15 May 2013 : Column 233W

Gregory Barker: Under our proposals suppliers would move customers off poor value dead tariffs and on to the cheapest tariff that meets their preferences. In its retail market review, Ofgem has estimated that there are over 650 dead tariffs and we would expect more to be created as a result of the introduction of a tariff cap. Whether or not these are of poor value so that a customer is moved to a cheaper tariff and the level savings made from this will depend on the tariffs a supplier is offering at that point. This will be a commercial decision for each supplier.

Caroline Flint: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change with reference to the answer of 25 February 2013, Official Report, column 238W, on energy, what estimate his Department has made of the number of households that will be moved to a cheaper energy tariff as a result of the proposals contained in the Energy Bill. [155058]

Gregory Barker: Under our proposals suppliers would have to move customers off poor value dead tariffs. In their retail market review, Ofgem have estimated that there are over 650 dead tariffs and we would expect more to be created as a result of the introduction of a tariff cap. Whether or not these are of poor value so that a customer is moved to a cheaper tariff will depend on the tariffs a supplier is offering at that point. This will be a commercial decision for each supplier.

Caroline Flint: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change with reference to the answer of 14 March 2013, Official Report, column 458, on energy bills, what assessment his Department has made of the impact of decarbonising the power sector by 2030 on consumer energy bills. [155064]

Gregory Barker: The Government have recently published their assessment of the impacts of energy and climate change policies on consumer energy bills(1). This shows that taken together, these policies mean that household energy bills will be on average 11%, or £166, lower in 2020 than if the policies had not been introduced. On average, energy efficiency savings from policies are expected to more than offset the necessary costs of supporting low carbon investment.

Taking account of the impact of low carbon generating plant on the wholesale electricity price (‘merit order impacts’), policies to support decarbonisation of electricity supply (Electricity Market Reform, EU ETS, the Carbon Price Floor and Renewables Obligation) currently add around 4% to household energy bills (including VAT). By 2020 it is estimated that these policies will add an average of around 10% to household bills (including VAT). These impacts are consistent with a scenario where the carbon intensity of grid electricity supply is reduced to 100gCO2 per kWh by 2030.

Decarbonising the power sector will help reduce the UK's exposure to volatile fossil fuel prices and over the long term consumers stand to benefit from cleaner, cheaper and more reliable sources of low carbon energy:

(1) https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/172923/130326_-_Price_and_Bill_Impacts_Report_Final.pdf

Caroline Flint: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change with reference to the

15 May 2013 : Column 234W

answer of 27 February 2013,

Official Report

, column 494W, on energy: billing, what methodology his Department plans to use to establish what the cheapest tariff that meets consumers' preference is. [155073]

Gregory Barker: The powers in the Energy Bill relating to tariffs are designed to be backstop powers to ensure that Government can take action to implement my right hon. Friend the Prime Minister's commitment to ensure consumers are on the cheapest tariff for them, should Ofgem's Retail Market Reform proposals not deliver or be frustrated or delayed.

Ofgem has set out a methodology for assessing a supplier's cheapest tariff in its retail market review final domestic proposals which can be found at:

http://www.ofgem.gov.uk/Markets/RetMkts/rmr/Documents1/The%20Retail%20Market%20Review%20-%20Final%20domestic%20proposals.pdf

EU Energy Policy

Martin Horwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how he proposes to comply with the standstill obligation in EU state aid law if he enters into an investment contract or sets a strike price before the European Commission has decided whether to approve such measures. [154850]

Michael Fallon: Any investment contract, if offered, will contain a condition dependent on a state aid decision from the European Commission.

Green Deal Scheme

Graham Stringer: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how many (a) assessments have been undertaken, (b) households have signed up to an installation and (c) households have received an installation under the Green Deal to date. [153908]

Gregory Barker [holding answer 14 May 2013]: Up to the end of April 2013, there had been 18,816 Green Deal assessments in Great Britain lodged, as reported in the following statistics release:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/green-deal-and-energy-company-obligation-eco-monthly-statistics-may-2013

The next monthly statistical release is planned for publication on 27 June 2013 and will contain, for the first time, information on Green Deal Plans taken out and measures installed through the Green Deal and Energy Company Obligation.

Heating

Graham Stringer: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change when he expects to publish results of the latest field trials of heat pumps commissioned by his Department. [155112]

Gregory Barker: The analysis of data from the second phase of the Energy Saving Trust field trial will be published by DECC this summer.

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Hinkley Point C Power Station

Nicholas Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change if he will make a statement on the current position of negotiations with EDF for a contract for electricity from Hinkley Point C. [154985]

Michael Fallon: It would not be appropriate to make a statement at this stage of the commercial negotiations. Should any agreement be reached in relation to an investment contract for Hinkley Point C, I will make a statement as required by the Energy Bill at the time I lay the contract before Parliament. In addition, in the case of Hinkley Point C, the Government have committed to provide summaries of reports from external advisers and analysis on the value for money of any contract agreed.

Natural Gas: Bassetlaw

John Mann: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how many and what proportion of homes in Bassetlaw do not have access to the gas network. [154162]

Michael Fallon: The exact number of homes that do not have access to the gas network is not held centrally.

Estimates have been produced based on information from the Gemserv database on the location of electricity meters, and data from xoserve and independent gas transporters on the location of gas meters, which are used to produce the Departments sub-national energy statistics. Subtracting the number of gas meters from the number of electricity meters produces a broad estimate of the number of homes that do not have access to the gas network. It should be noted that these estimates will overestimate the number of homes due to some homes having more than one electricity meter, and also that the statistics may include non-domestic gas meters.

It is estimated that, for 2011, 10,300 homes in the Bassetlaw local authority did not have access to the gas network; this represents 20.5% of homes in the area.

Natural Gas: Imports

Graeme Morrice: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change if he will introduce measures to reduce the UK's dependence on imported gas. [154219]

Michael Fallon: The Government already work to maximise economic UK gas production (including potentially from unconventional sources) and restrain gas demand (e.g. through promoting renewable heat

15 May 2013 : Column 236W

and encouraging energy efficiency). Nevertheless UK gas import dependency is expected to continue rising given declines in North sea production. We therefore also have a range of mechanisms in place to promote the security and affordability of gas imports, including extensive import infrastructure, liberalisation of EU and international gas markets, and strong bilateral relations with key gas suppliers.

Natural Gas: North East

Tom Blenkinsop: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what estimate he has made of the number of off-gas grid households in (a) Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland constituency, (b) the Tees Valley and (c) the North East of England. [154362]

Michael Fallon: The exact number of homes that do not have access to the gas network is not held centrally.

Estimates have been produced based on information from the Gemserv database on the location of electricity meters, and data from xoserve and independent gas transporters on the location of gas meters, which are used to produce the Department’s sub-national energy statistics. Subtracting the number of gas meters from the number of electricity meters produces a broad estimate of the number of homes that do not have access to the gas network. It should be noted that these estimates will overestimate the number of homes due to some homes having more than one electricity meter, and also that the statistics may include some non-domestic meters.

It is estimated that for 2011, 7,500 homes in the Middlesbrough South and East Cleveland constituencies (a combination of the Middlesbrough and Redcar and Cleveland local authorities) were off the gas grid. Likewise, 17,800 homes in the Tees Valley (a combination of Darlington, Hartlepool, Middlesbrough, Redcar and Cleveland and Stockton-on-Tees local authorities) and 112,200 homes in the North East of England did not have access to the gas network.

Nuclear Power Stations

Nicholas Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what the forecast out of service date is for each nuclear power station; and what the power output is for each such power station. [154987]

Michael Fallon: The scheduled closure dates for each nuclear power station and the net generation capacity for each such power station are detailed in the table below. The Government do not publish data on output at individual plant level.

Table of past and present UK nuclear reactors
 Net capacity (MW)Number of operating reactorsPublished lifetime

Magnox (NDA)

   

Wylfa

490

1

1971 to 2014

    

AdvancedGasCooled Reactor (AGR) -British Energy

   

Heysham 1

1,155

2

1989 to 2019

Hinkley Point B

810

2

1976 to 2023

15 May 2013 : Column 237W

15 May 2013 : Column 238W

Hunterson B

890

2

1976 to 2023

Dungeness B

1,040

2

1985 to 2018

Hartlepool

1,180

2

1989 to 2019

Heysham 2

1,220

2

1989 to 2023

Torness

1,185

2

1988 to 2023

    

Pressurised Water Reactor (PWR) - British Energy

   

Sizewell B

1,198

1

1995 to 2035

    

Total net capacity and number of operatingreactors

9,168

16

 

Nuclear Power Stations: Construction

Paul Flynn: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what evaluation and due diligence has been carried out by his Department of the ability of Electricité de France to capitalise the construction of any new nuclear power plant in the UK. [154466]

Michael Fallon: The offer of any investment contract in support of a new nuclear power plant at Hinkley Point C will require EDF to put in place a robust and appropriate financing plan for the construction of the station.

Ofgem

Caroline Flint: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change (1) how many enforcement cases currently being undertaken by Ofgem are at informal review stage; [154928]

(2) how many staff of Ofgem received bonuses in excess of (a) £1,420, (b) £2,000, (c) £5,000, (d) £10,000, (e) £20,000 and (f) £50,000 in 2012-13; [154929]

(3) what the (a) average and (b) total amount paid in bonuses to staff at Ofgem was in 2012-13; [154931]

(4) how many staff employed at Ofgem received bonuses in 2012-13. [154933]

Michael Fallon: The information requested is a matter for Ofgem. I have asked the Chief Executive of Ofgem to write to the right hon. Member and we will place a copy of his letter in the Libraries of the House.

Power Stations

Nicholas Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change (1) what the forecast out of service date is for each gas power station; and what the power output is for each such power station; [154986]


(2) what the forecast out of service date is for each oil-fired power station; and what the power output is for each such power station; [154988]


(3) what the forecast out of service date is for each coal-fired power station; and what the power output is for each such power station. [154989]

Michael Fallon: DECC publishes information about the capacity of individual power stations annually in its Digest of United Kingdom Energy Statistics (DUKES), Chapter 5: Electricity.

The 2012 version of the report can be found online at:

https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/department-of-energy-climate-change/series/digest-of-uk-energy-statistics-dukes

Decisions over when individual plants close are a commercial matter for individual operators.

Renewable Energy

Mr Thomas: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change whether his Department has made an assessment of whether independent generators, including co-operatives, will be at a market disadvantage under the electricity market reform proposals. [155287]

Gregory Barker: The Government are committed to supporting investment by independent generators, including co-operatives. Independent developers have played an important role in delivering new capacity, and we expect them to continue to make a material contribution to delivering investment and meeting our objectives of keeping energy prices affordable and supplies secure as we decarbonise. Accordingly, the Government are working to ensure that the electricity market reform proposals support independent generation.

The contracts for difference proposed in the Energy Bill will remove wholesale price risk and consequently improve conditions in the market for long-term power purchase agreements needed by many independent low carbon developers to secure project finance.

Further, we are taking powers in the Energy Bill to give Government the flexibility to support the availability of viable power purchase agreements for independent generators, should the market not develop as expected.

Wind Power

Barry Gardiner: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what assessment he has made of the likely price per megawatt-hour of electricity generated by offshore wind in each year between 2014 and 2030. [154467]

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Michael Fallon: DECC has published levelised costs estimates of various generation technologies including offshore wind on the DECC website for selected years. A summary report of the levelised cost data was published in November 2012 and is available on the DECC website:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/65713/6883-electricity-generation-costs.pdf

Please note that published estimates for offshore wind are based on scenarios of technical potential for deployment of offshore wind. If these levels of deployment do not materialise cost reductions may be less pronounced; similarly, innovation changes may accelerate cost reductions.

Barry Gardiner: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what estimate he has made of the likely price per megawatt-hour of electricity generated by offshore wind in each year from 2014 to 2030 if a decarbonisation target for electricity generation in 2030 of between 40 and 60 grams per kilowatt-hour is set in 2014. [154802]

Michael Fallon: DECC has published levelised costs estimates of various generation technologies including offshore wind on the DECC website for selected years. A summary report of the levelised cost data was published in November 2012 and is available on the DECC website:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/65713/6883-electricity-generation-costs.pdf

Please note that published estimates for offshore wind are based on scenarios of technical potential for deployment of offshore wind. If these levels of deployment do not materialise cost reductions may be less pronounced; similarly, innovation changes may accelerate cost reductions. DECC does not publish estimates associated with a specific decarbonisation target.

Wind Power: Seas and Oceans

Caroline Flint: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change with reference to the speech by the Prime Minister of 25 October 2010, on what projects the funds to support the establishment of offshore wind manufacturing at port sites in assisted areas of England have been used; and how much funding has been allocated to each such project. [154436]

Michael Fallon: Bids for support under this scheme are made on a confidential basis. Under the Grant for Business Investment scheme, information on grant offers for sums greater than £75,000 is normally published following the payment of the first instalment of the grant, including the name and location of the recipient of the grant and the size of the grant offered.

Foreign and Commonwealth Office

Arctic

Zac Goldsmith: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what timetable he has set for the development of his Department's policy framework for the Arctic. [155069]

Mark Simmonds: The Government have committed to publishing the policy framework for the Arctic in the summer of 2013.

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Bahrain

Richard Burden: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations (a) he and (b) the UK embassy in Bahrain has received in response to the publication of articles from Bahraini journalists and commentators on that embassy's blog marking World Press Freedom Day. [154683]

Alistair Burt: We have received representations from two non-governmental organisations (NGOs). We explained that the views expressed in the guest blogs for World Press Freedom Day that were published on the British embassy in Bahrain's webpage do not reflect those of the UK Government. All views expressed are solely those of the authors.

Our most recent human rights report made clear that we have some serious concerns about human rights in Bahrain—including freedom of expression—and our ambassador and Ministers raise these concerns regularly both in private and public.

Richard Burden: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs which Bahraini journalists and commentators were invited by the UK embassy in Bahrain to write an article for that embassy's blog on freedom of expression in Bahrain on World Press Freedom Day; what criteria were used to decide which journalists and commentators were invited to do so; and what efforts were made to ensure balance in the selection of articles to be published. [154684]

Alistair Burt: To mark World Press Freedom Day, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) asked journalists and bloggers to write guest blogs and articles in order to highlight freedom of expression across the world through personal testimonies. We had over 20 contributions from our embassies—including blogs, videos, and articles.

All views expressed in guest blogs for World Press Freedom Day are solely those of the author and do not necessarily reflect Government policy.

The embassy in Bahrain asked a range of journalists and commentators to contribute in order to ensure balance. Not all those invited responded, and the embassy published all of the articles it received. We made it clear that the views expressed on the guest blogs that appeared on the embassy's pages are not those of the Government.

British Indian Ocean Territory

Mr Wallace: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what meetings officials of his Department have had with officials of the US Administration on the subject of renewing the lease on Diego Garcia; and on what dates. [155750]

Mark Simmonds: The 1966 exchange of notes with the US provides that the islands of the British Indian Ocean Territory (BIOT), including Diego Garcia, shall be available to them until 30 December 2016 and continuing thereafter for a further period of 20 years unless terminated by either Government in the period 2014-16. There is no lease.

15 May 2013 : Column 241W

There have been no substantive discussions to date with the US on the future of their presence in BIOT post-2016, but we look forward to discussing this with them in due course.

Mr Wallace: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs when he expects to conclude negotiations with the US Administration on extending the lease on Diego Garcia. [155751]

Mark Simmonds: The 1966 exchange of notes with the US provides that the islands of the British Indian Ocean Territory (BIOT), including Diego Garcia, shall be available to them until 30 December 2016 and continuing thereafter for a further period of 20 years unless terminated by either Government in the period 2014-16. There is no lease.

There have been no substantive discussions to date with the US on the future of their presence in BIOT post-2016. We look forward to discussing this with them in due course, but cannot speculate on when those discussions are likely to conclude.

British Overseas Territories

Zac Goldsmith: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what fishing and marine protection patrols have been undertaken in (a) Tristan da Cunha, (b) Bermuda and (c) Pitcairn Island in the last 12 months. [154859]

Mark Simmonds: There have been no dedicated fishing and marine protection patrols in Tristan da Cunha or the Pitcairn Islands in the last 12 months.

In Bermuda, fishing and marine protection patrols are undertaken, either on land or at sea daily, weather and equipment permitting. Areas patrolled are largely the Bermuda Platform and Offshore Banks. Four (4) vessels are available for patrols.

Territory Governments are responsible for the protection and conservation of their natural environments and not all information related to vessel inspections is held centrally in the UK.

Burma

Stephen Timms: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what steps the Government are taking to urge the Government of Burma to address rising religious intolerance in that country. [155282]

Mr Swire: We are extremely concerned about the recent violence directed at Muslim communities that has affected parts of Burma, and about reports showing a rise in anti-Muslim and anti-Christian propaganda in the country. We are actively monitoring these issues. On 21 March, the Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my hon. Friend the Member for North East Bedfordshire (Alistair Burt), issued a statement on behalf of the British Government, condemning the violence in Meiktila and urging the Burmese Government to take all necessary action to protect civilians and to work with communities to tackle the underlying hostility.

15 May 2013 : Column 242W

We note the speech by President Thein Sein on 7 May, in which he stressed the importance to Burma's future of diversity and tolerance. The British Government currently fund organisations that deliver interfaith dialogue projects. We have also lobbied the Burmese Government to ask them to issue an invitation to the UN Special Rapporteur to visit the country.

Stephen Timms: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions he has had with the Government of Burma regarding anti-Muslim violence. [155290]

Mr Swire: The Senior Minister of State, my noble Friend the right hon. Baroness Warsi, on 15 April, and the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my right hon. Friend the Member for Richmond (Yorks) (Mr Hague), on 16 April, raised the issue of anti-Muslim violence with a delegation of senior Burmese Ministers on their visit to London, calling for accountability of those responsible and for action to bring communities together.

British officials have continued to raise the issue of anti-Muslim violence with the Burmese Government, since the inter-communal unrest in Rakhine State in 2012 and the incidents in Meiktila from 20-25 March. Her Majesty's Ambassador to Burma discussed these issues with senior advisors to the Burmese President on 1 May, in the aftermath of the most recent violence against Muslim communities, in Oak Kan. The Ambassador used this occasion to call on the Burmese Government to do all they could to prevent further attacks.

Stephen Timms: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what steps he is taking to urge the Government of Burma to address the culture of impunity in that country. [155298]

Mr Swire: We regularly raise specific allegations of human rights abuses with the Burmese Government at the most senior levels. We are clear that all those who are guilty of instigating, inciting or carrying out violence in Burma need to be held accountable for their crimes. This should be done through a clear and transparent investigative and prosecutorial process.

During a meeting on 15 April, the Senior Minister of State, my noble Friend the right hon. Baroness Warsi pressed Aung Min, Minister for Burmese President's Office, to follow up on the commitment made by President Thein Sein to open an office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR). The Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my right hon. Friend the Member for Richmond (Yorks) (Mr Hague), reiterated this point during his meeting with Aung Min on 16 April. We continue to make clear that an OHCHR office in Burma would be beneficial in assisting the Burmese Government to address some of the serious human rights concerns outlined by the international community.

Egypt

Jim Sheridan: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions he has had with the Egyptian authorities regarding the alleged kidnapping of refugees from East Sudan who are being held captive in the Sinai peninsula in Egypt. [154752]

15 May 2013 : Column 243W

Alistair Burt: The Government remain concerned about reports of people-trafficking in the Sinai. We have raised these concerns with the Egyptian and Israeli authorities, most recently with the Egyptian Ministry of Foreign Affairs in March 2013. We have also raised the treatment of refugees in Sinai with the UN High Commissioner for Refugees in Cairo, which, at the request of the Egyptian authorities, deals with asylum seekers in Egypt.

Enfield

Nick de Bois: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how much funding (a) his Department and (b) each of the non-departmental public bodies for which he is responsible has allocated to the London Borough of Enfield local authority in each of the last five years. [154515]

Mr Lidington: The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) has not allocated any funding to the London borough of Enfield local authority in any of the last five years.

The Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my right hon. Friend the Member for Richmond (Yorks) (Mr Hague), is responsible for the following non-departmental public bodies: Wilton Park; the British Council; the BBC World Service; the Marshall Aid Commemoration Commission; the Great Britain-China Centre; and the Westminster Foundation for Democracy. Of these, only the British Council has provided funding to the London borough of Enfield local authority. The British Council has funded a wide range of activity in the London borough of Enfield. Funding, however, is allocated to individual institutions, as opposed to local authority area. As a result, details of the total funding allocated within the borough could be made available only at disproportionate cost.

Entry Clearances: Charities

Mike Crockart: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how much his Department spent on providing gratis visas to charities in each of the last five years. [154077]

Mr Swire: The information requested is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Geneva Conventions

Nicholas Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what steps he is taking to push for the updating of the definition of combatants and non-combatants in the Geneva Conventions. [155022]

Mark Simmonds: The British Government are committed to upholding the Geneva conventions and encouraging others to do the same. We are not pushing for the conventions to be updated. We judge that the current priority is to improve implementation of existing international humanitarian law including the Geneva conventions, rather than the creation of new law.

15 May 2013 : Column 244W

Inflation

Mr Jenkin: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will list the purposes for which his Department uses (a) the retail prices index measure of inflation, (b) the consumer prices index measure of inflation and (c) any alternative measure of inflation. [154976]

Mr Lidington: The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) uses measures of inflation internally for analytical and management information purposes, but no area of expenditure is currently directly linked to inflation rates. The UK retail and consumer prices indices are not significant drivers for FCO policy or spending.

Some alternative measures of inflation are used by the FCO: price surveys conducted overseas are factored into the calculation of the cost of living allowance (COLA) paid to compensate UK-based staff overseas; our Posts abroad will consider local inflation when setting pay levels for locally-engaged staff; and data from the International Monetary Fund World Economic Outlook are used to monitor the difference between UK and overseas price levels to inform the FCO's overseas spending.

Public Services (Social Value) Act 2012

Hazel Blears: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what steps his Department is taking to implement the Public Services (Social Value) Act 2012 in its procurement procedures; and what guidance he has given to his Department's executive agencies and non-departmental public bodies on implementation of that Act. [154533]

Mr Lidington: The Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) uses an impact analysis tool to identify the potential of each of our high priority spend categories to improve the social, economic or environmental well being of the UK geographical areas where spend is incurred. The FCO has provided the FCO executive agencies and non-departmental public bodies with Cabinet Office Guidance on the Act.

Saudi Arabia

John Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions he has had with his Saudi Arabian counterpart regarding the rights of women in that country. [154598]

Alistair Burt: The Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my right hon. Friend the Member for Richmond (Yorks) (Mr Hague), discussed women's rights with the Foreign Minister, HRH Prince Saud al-Faisal, when he visited Saudi Arabia in July 2011—including education and employment opportunities, and allowing women to drive vehicles. The last discussion he had with Prince Saud on women's rights was on 5 November 2012, when they discussed plans for the Prime Minister to visit Dar Al Hekma College in Jeddah the following day. During this visit, the Prime Minister met female students and heard their assessment of women's rights in Saudi Arabia directly. On 5 March the Foreign Secretary discussed women's rights with the

15 May 2013 : Column 245W

Speaker of Saudi Arabia's Shura Council, and a delegation of representatives which included two of the newly appointed female members.

Serbia: Kosovo

Karen Lumley: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what assessment he has made of the recent negotiations between Serbia and Kosovo. [154104]

Mr Lidington: As the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my right hon. Friend the Member for Richmond (Yorks) (Mr Hague), said on 19 April, we welcome the agreement that Serbia and Kosovo have reached in the EU-facilitated dialogue.

I congratulate the High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy, the right hon. the Baroness Ashton of Upholland, on her part in achieving this significant step, and Prime Ministers Dacic and Thaci for showing the courage necessary to reach this agreement. The agreement lays a solid basis for further improvement in the relationship between Serbia and Kosovo and is a valuable contribution to the stability and security of the Western Balkans.

I urge both Serbia and Kosovo to implement this agreement rapidly, to remain constructively engaged in dialogue, and to take the further actions needed to continue their progress towards future membership of the EU, and a stable and prosperous future for their citizens.

Syria

Jim Sheridan: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions he has had with the Turkish authorities regarding allegations that Syrian refugees were forcibly returned to Syria from the Akcakale refugee camp. [154751]

Mr Lidington: The British Government continue to monitor closely the refugee situation in Turkey and have regular discussions with Turkish counterparts. We have not had any specific discussions about the alleged return of refugees from the Akcakale camp.

In order to support Turkey in the refugee response, the UK has provided over £6 million in humanitarian aid for the refugee response in Turkey, including £1 million to the Turkish Red Crescent. We welcome Turkey's generous provision of refuge for hundreds of thousands of Syrians who have fled the violence and its efforts to minimise the impact of the conflict on regional stability.

Jim Sheridan: To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what recent discussions he has had with international aid organisations in Syria and the surrounding countries on reports of the selling of young women refugees. [154755]

Justine Greening: I have been asked to reply on behalf of the Department for International Development.

Women and children are among those particularly at risk in situations of armed conflict, and Syria is no exception. UK humanitarian funding is targeting some

15 May 2013 : Column 246W

of the most vulnerable people affected by the crisis. For example, 1,800 particularly vulnerable Syrian women, perceived to be at risk of coerced marriage, will receive financial support to help mitigate the potential risk of this exploitation.

The UK maintains a close ongoing working relationship with our humanitarian partners to ensure we are aware of developments in the humanitarian crisis in Syria and the region, and are able to respond appropriately.

Environment, Food and Rural Affairs

Animal Welfare: Dogs

Mr Blunkett: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps his Department is taking to assess the rehabilitation and aftercare of dogs used in racing where owners no longer intend to keep such animals; and if he will make a statement. [155244]

Mr Heath: The sport's regulatory authority, the Greyhound Board of Great Britain (GBGB), helps fund the Retired Greyhound Trust which rehomes many retired racing greyhounds. In addition, a significant proportion of ex-racing greyhounds find homes with their owners and trainers or through other welfare charities and others will return to Ireland. It is the responsibility of any racing greyhound owner to ensure the welfare of their dog. Anyone failing to provide for the welfare of their dog faces prosecution under the Animal Welfare Act 2006.

G4S

Mr Sheerman: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the current level of expenditure by his Department is on contracts with G4S; and how much was spent by his Department on contracts with G4S in each year since 2008. [154552]

Richard Benyon: Core DEFRA has no contracts with G4S and has not made any payments to G4S since 2008.

Horses: Databases

Mary Creagh: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what expenditure his Department incurred on the cancelled tendering process to replace the National Equine Database. [154038]

Mr Heath: No additional cost was incurred in running the tendering process to replace the National Equine Database. The procurement exercise was managed by existing staff resource.

Livestock: Exports

Mr Frank Field: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if he will bring forward legislative proposals to amend the Harbours, Docks and Piers Clauses Act 1847 in order to give higher regard to the welfare of animals. [155027]

15 May 2013 : Column 247W

Mr Heath: No. The Harbours, Docks and Piers Clauses Act 1847 aims to ensure that ports are available to all without discrimination. It would not be an appropriate legal instrument for use by port authorities to introduce an effective barrier to trade. In any case, banning the export of live animals would be illegal and undermine the principle of free movement of goods enshrined in the Treaty on the Functioning of the European Union.

Livestock: Waste Disposal

Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (1) when he proposes that farmers will be able to access funding from the Fallen Stock scheme; [155009]

(2) who will administer the Fallen Stock scheme. [155010]

Mr Heath: The Scheme for providing support to farmers for the costs of disposal of sheep, which died in the recent severe weather, will be administered by the National Fallen Stock Company. The Scheme will be administered at no cost to the taxpayer or farmer and will be open to both members and non-members of the National Fallen Stock Company's regular Scheme. An announcement is being made on how to claim support and it is expected that payments to eligible farmers will be made in July.

Pesticides

Mr Nicholas Brown: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what his policy is on establishing a regional pilot scheme ban within the UK on the use of neonicotinoid pesticides. [154808]

Mr Heath: Measures recently proposed by the European Commission to restrict authorisations of three neonicotinoid insecticides (clothianidin, imidacloprid and thiamethoxam) will come into force later this year. The Government will implement those measures on the date required. The Government have no plans, either nationally or on a regional or pilot basis, to impose additional restrictions or to introduce the restrictions at an earlier date.

Recycling: St Albans

Mrs Main: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment he has made of the risk of contamination of water sources in the vicinity of the Appspond Lane Recycling Centre following a recent fire on that site. [153912]

Richard Benyon: In response to the fire, the Environment Agency carried out an assessment to identify possible

15 May 2013 : Column 248W

polluting matter present and examined the potential for it to have an adverse impact elsewhere.

The Environment Agency sampled nearby groundwater bodies in areas potentially at risk. The nearest public water supply to Appspond Lane is approximately five km from the site.

Based on its sample results, the Environment Agency has not expressed any current concerns. During the incident it liaised with the local water supplier, Affinity Water. It provided the local authority, St Albans city and district council, with the sampling data.

Mrs Main: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment he has made of air quality near the Appspond Lane Recycling Centre after the recent fire on that site. [153913]

Richard Benyon: The Environment Agency liaised with Public Health England (formerly the Health Protection Agency) and the assessment was that there was no significant risk to human health.

Any inquiries about the impact of smoke on public health were referred to the local authority and Public Health England for advice.

Education

Academies

Alex Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what deductions are applied to grant-in-aid to (a) free schools and (b) academies to take account of the number of fee-paying pupils entering the school in any given year. [154211]

Mr Laws: Free schools and academies are not allowed to charge fees. There are, therefore, no fee-paying pupils attending free schools or academies and no adjustments to funding are required.

Buildings

John Mann: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what the total running costs were for each building used, owned or rented in central London by his Department, its agencies and non-departmental public bodies other than buildings used primarily for the provision of education, in each of the last three financial years. [154249]

Elizabeth Truss: The Department for Education, its agencies and non-departmental public bodies leased the following properties in central London during the financial years 2010-11, 2011-12 and 2012-13.

 Total running costs (£) 
Central London properties2010-112011-122012-13Lease end

Sanctuary Buildings, Great Smith Street, SWIP 3BT (DFE)

15,808,941.00

15,351,301.00

18,027,219.00

28 September 2017

Greycoat Street, SW1P 2QB (DFE)

1,180,799.00

1,136,653.00

947,782.00

16 October 2014

1st Floor, 59-65 Wells Street, W1A 3AE (CAFCASS)

58,760.00

109,090.00

111,519.00

23 March 2015

Principal Registry Family Division, 42-49 High Holborn, WC1V 6NP (CAFCASS)

237,012.00

237,012.00

237,012.00

31 March 2014

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15 May 2013 : Column 250W

83 Piccadilly, W1J 8JB (QCDA/DFE)

8,543,000.00

4,502,970.00

3,415,642.00

9 November 2012

Union Street, Southwark, SE1 0NW (Ofsted)

200,011.00

199,294.00

199,294.00

24 March 2016

Aviation House, Holborn, WC2B 6NH (Ofsted)

3,103,654.00

2,898,603.00

2,378,791.00

16 February 2018

The increase in the Sanctuary Buildings cost during the financial year 2012-13 is due to the landlord electing to charge VAT on the rent and an increase in non-domestic rates. 83 Piccadilly has now been vacated.

Since May 2010 the Department for Education has reduced the size of its operational estate across the country from 30 properties, at a cost of circa £51 million per annum, to 12 properties, costing circa £34 million per annum. This is a saving of circa £17 million per annum. The Department’s current Estates Strategy is to consolidate further and reduce the size of its estate to six properties. This includes reducing our central London presence from two properties to one. The office at Greycoat street will close at lease expiry in 2014 and the staff based there will relocate to Sanctuary Buildings, generating annual savings of circa £900,000.

We plan to vacate Sanctuary Buildings when the lease expires in 2017 and we are working with the Government Property Unit (GPU) to secure an alternative accommodation solution that aligns to the GPU’s Property Strategy for Central London, representing best value for the taxpayer.

It should also be noted that Ofsted’s running costs at Aviation house will reduce by a further £535,000 per annum from April 2014 and in total its operational costs in London will have reduced by circa £1.26 million per annum over the four year period from 2010-11 to 2013-14.

Children in Care

Lucy Powell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education when he expects to publish the next stage of the Children's Home Reform Programme. [154258]

Mr Timpson: On 23 April I set out my plans to reform children's residential care, in response to the report of the Task and Finish Group and Expert Group on Quality of Children's Homes. On 14 May my Department held a seminar with children's homes providers, local authority representatives and voluntary organisations to discuss our detailed delivery plan to reform the quality of children's homes provision and care. We will be formally consulting on proposed changes to regulations in June.

Children's Centres

Mrs Hodgson: To ask the Secretary of State for Education how many children’s centres provided on-site full day care on (a) 6 May 2010 and (b) 6 May 2013. [155130]

Elizabeth Truss: The Department for Education collects information on the provision of child care through the annual Childcare and Early Years Provider Survey. This allows an estimate to be made of the number of Sure Start children’s centres providing full day care provision on site. Estimates from the survey show that in 2010 the number of children’s centres providing on-site full day care was 800. In 2011 this figure had fallen to 550.

However, the 2011 survey indicates that demand for child care provision specifically based in children’s centres may have been affected by increases in the broader supply of full day provision. The survey estimates that between 2010 and 2011 the number of full day care providers increased from 16,700 to 17,600.

These are the latest figures available to the Department. The survey is now undertaken every other year and the 2013 survey is due to be published in September 2014.

Mrs Hodgson: To ask the Secretary of State for Education how many children’s centres employed qualified teachers as of (a) 6 May 2010 and (b) 6 May 2013. [155131]

Elizabeth Truss: The Department collects information on the provision of child care through the annual Childcare and Early Years Provider Survey. This survey does not report the number of children’s centres employing qualified teachers. It does provide estimates of the proportion of staff who are qualified teachers in children’s centres which provide full day care. The estimates as a percentage by year are 7% in 2009, 6% in 2010, and 8% in 2011.

These are the latest figures available to the Department. The survey is now undertaken every other year and the 2013 survey is due to be published in September 2014.

Class Sizes: Bassetlaw

John Mann: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what the average class size was in (a) secondary and (b) primary schools in Bassetlaw constituency in each of the last three years. [154156]

Mr Laws: Data on class sizes in state-funded primary and secondary schools in England are published as part of the annual Statistical First Release “Schools, Pupils and their Characteristics”. The latest data are for January 2012 and are available on the Department's website

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/schools-pupils-and-their-characteristics-january-2012

The average size of one teacher classes in state-funded secondary schools in Bassetlaw constituency was: (i) 20.4 pupils in 2010, (ii) 18.4 pupils in 2011, and (iii) 20.0 pupils in 2012.

The average size of one teacher classes in state-funded primary schools in Bassetlaw constituency was: (i) 24.9 pupils in 2010, (ii) 24.5 pupils in 2011, and (iii) 25.2 pupils in 2012.

Climate Change: Curriculum

Tom Blenkinsop: To ask the Secretary of State for Education if he will make an assessment of the potential damage to (a) pupils' education and (b) efforts to combat climate change that might be caused by the proposed removal of climate change from the national curriculum guidelines for key stages one to three. [154369]

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Elizabeth Truss: The Government's intention is not to remove climate change from the national curriculum, but rather to bolster pupils' understanding of this important issue. The new national curriculum will ensure that pupils develop an understanding of the key concepts that underpin the study of climate change in both science and geography.

In geography, pupils will develop an evidence-based understanding of weather and climate patterns and processes in key stages 2 and 3. In science primary school pupils will be taught the key concepts that underpin meteorology and climate change science, before going on to study climate change at key stage 3; in particular, the production of carbon dioxide by human activity and its effect on climate.

The new national curriculum will provide a solid foundation for pupils to engage with climate change issues in a deep and meaningful way in school, and should they so choose, through further study of this important issue at GCSE and beyond.

Curriculum

Kevin Brennan: To ask the Secretary of State for Education when he plans to publish draft programmes of study for key stage 4. [155033]

Elizabeth Truss: Draft programmes of study for citizenship, computing and physical education at key stage 4 were published for consultation on 7 February 2013. At the same time draft programmes of study for English, mathematics and science at key stage 4 were also published for information. We plan to undertake formal consultation on draft programmes of study for these subjects in the autumn and finalise them next year. Schools will start teaching the new programmes of study from September 2015.

Enfield

Nick de Bois: To ask the Secretary of State for Education how much funding (a) his Department and (b) each of the non-departmental public bodies for which he is responsible has allocated to the London Borough of Enfield local authority in each of the last five years. [154512]

Mr Laws: The following table provides the total funding that has been allocated by the Department in each of the last five years:

 £ million

2008-09

252.9

2009-10

261.9

2010-11

268.5

2011-12

264.1

2012-13

317.7

The figures for 2012-13 include grants allocated by the Education Funding Agency. The information for each of the non-departmental public bodies is not readily available and could be compiled only at disproportionate cost.

15 May 2013 : Column 252W

Free School Meals: Bassetlaw

John Mann: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what steps he is taking to ensure that children living in poverty in (a) the UK and (b) Bassetlaw constituency receive free school meals. [154149]

Mr Laws: The Government recognise the benefits of healthy school meals and are committed to continuing to provide free school meals to those pupils who need them most. Our priority is to make sure that the most disadvantaged children are able to get a nutritious free school meal.

We are working to encourage all families who meet the criteria to register for free school meals. We want disadvantaged children to benefit from a nutritious meal, and their schools to be able to receive pupil premium funding to help raise disadvantaged pupils' attainment.

Free school meals are not compulsory and there are many reasons why a family may choose not to claim a free school meal to which they are entitled. The fear of being stigmatised can prevent many children from taking a free school meal, but we have made progress in addressing this. For example, many schools now have cashless systems and other methods to ensure that it is not obvious which pupils are receiving a free school lunch. The Department for Education's eligibility checking service, used by local authorities, has also made it much easier and quicker to check anonymously which families are entitled to free school meals. Free school meal take-up in England increased by 60,000 between 2010 and 2012.

Freedom of Information

Tom Blenkinsop: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what proportion of Freedom of Information requests submitted to his Department since May 2010 remained unanswered after (a) 20, (b) 40 and (c) 60 working days of their receipt. [154076]

Elizabeth Truss: The Ministry of Justice collates and publishes figures on Freedom of Information (FOI) performance across central Government Departments on a quarterly basis, most recently up to December 2012(1). The Department for Education's performance on FOI requests since December 2012 will be included in future quarterly reports.

(1)( )https://www.gov.uk/government/organisations/ministry-of-justice/series/government-foi-statistics

Tom Blenkinsop: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what recent discussions he has had with the Information Commissioner on his Department's compliance with the Freedom of Information Act 2000. [154620]

Elizabeth Truss: The Secretary of State for Education, my right hon. Friend the Member for Surrey Heath (Michael Gove), has had no recent discussions with the Information Commissioner on his Department's compliance with the Freedom of Information Act 2000.

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G4S

Mr Sheerman: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what the current level of expenditure by his Department is on contracts with G4S; and how much was spent by his Department on contracts with G4S in each year since 2008. [154550]

Elizabeth Truss: The Department's procurement records indicate that we have not contracted with G4S in the last 10 years. Additional searches for companies linked to G4S, specifically Group 4 and Securicor, also indicate there were no contracts with these company names.

GCSE

Simon Hart: To ask the Secretary of State for Education if he will issue guidance on the assessment of GCSE practical work and fieldwork in subjects including science and geography; and if he will make a statement. [154088]

Elizabeth Truss: Currently, science practical work and geography fieldwork are assessed by controlled assessment, a form of internal assessment. The Government's response to their public consultation on reforming key stage 4 qualifications set out that internal assessment should be kept to a minimum in new GCSEs and used only where there is a compelling case to do so. The response accepted that some aspects of assessment lend themselves less easily to externally marked examinations.

The Government will publish draft subject content requirements for consultation shortly, alongside Ofqual's consultation on regulatory requirements for new GCSEs. Together, those requirements will set the framework for the development of the new GCSEs, including the assessment of practical work and fieldwork.

Heart Diseases: First Aid

Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Education if he will make the teaching of cardio- pulmonary resuscitation skills a mandatory part of the national curriculum. [154786]

Elizabeth Truss: Our proposals for the new national curriculum were published for consultation on 7 February, and the consultation closed on 16 April. The proposals are based on the principle that the national curriculum should set out a body of essential knowledge that children should be expected to acquire in key subjects during the course of their school career.

We are reviewing the consultation responses, including those from organisations and individuals supporting the inclusion of emergency life-saving skills, and will publish a final version of the new national curriculum later in the year.

Overseas Students: Bahamas

David Morris: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what programmes there are to encourage school students from the Commonwealth of the Bahamas to study in the UK; and if he will make a statement. [154726]

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Matthew Hancock: This is a matter for individual schools. Through its Education UK website, the British Council provides information about boarding school opportunities for those interested in studying in the UK.

Publications

Ann McKechin: To ask the Secretary of State for Education how much his Department spent on subscriptions to academic journals published by (a) Reed-Elsevier, (b) Wiley-Blackwell, (c) Springer and (d) any other academic publisher in each of the last five years. [154492]

Elizabeth Truss: The Department for Education subscribes to a variety of journals from a range of academic publishers. With one or two exceptions, all our journal subscriptions are for academic journals. Departmental subscriptions are to journal titles, rather than to individual publishers, and as titles frequently change publisher it is difficult to provide the information in the format requested. Also, purchasing has been devolved to business and policy teams throughout the Department and there are a range of purchasing routes. The disproportionate cost threshold would be exceeded if all business and policy teams in the Department were contacted to retrieve and identify all academic journal subscriptions by publisher.

However, from information held centrally for journals subscribed to from the subscriptions agent and aggregator, the total cost of journal subscriptions for each of the last five financial years was:

Financial yearCosts of subscription (£)

2012-13

21,664.77

2011-12

17,294.01

2010-11

50,128.00

2009-10

41,849.33

2008-09

52,000.00

Vocational Training

Caroline Dinenage: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what budget his Department has allocated to the traineeships programme; and what information his Department holds on funding for that programme from other sources. [154371]

Matthew Hancock: The Framework for Delivery(1), which we published on 9 May 2013, confirmed that traineeships for 16-19 year olds will be part of 16-19 study programmes and will be funded on the same basis. Traineeships will be funded through the Education Funding Agency or, in the case of 16-19 apprenticeship providers, through the Skills Funding Agency.

Traineeships will be a demand-led programme. The number of places funded will reflect the number of employers and education and training providers who choose to offer a place and the number of eligible young people who wish to take one.

(1)www.gov.uk/government/publications/supporting-young-people-to-develop-the-skills-for-apprenticeships-and-sustainable-employment-framework-for-delivery

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Mr Graham Stuart: To ask the Secretary of State for Education with reference to paragraph 11 of Traineeships: Supporting young people to develop the skills for apprenticeships and sustainable employment: Framework for Delivery published on 9 May 2013, how many existing training programmes the Government estimate will (a) cease or (b) be subsumed into the new traineeship scheme; and which programmes are under consideration. [155281]

Matthew Hancock: Our intention is for traineeships to simplify the current policy landscape and make it easier for young people and employers to navigate. As traineeships develop we will look to subsume or cease similar existing training programmes in order to simplify the system. Decisions on whether to cease or subsume existing programmes will be taken in due course.

Mr Graham Stuart: To ask the Secretary of State for Education with reference to part D of Traineeships: Framework for Delivery, published 9 May 2013, what the annual cost of the traineeships programme will be in each of the next three financial years; whether additional funding will be made available to fund the new traineeships programme; how much funding from existing programmes will be diverted to fund new traineeships programme; and how any such funding will be divided between employers and training providers. [155292]

Matthew Hancock: Traineeships will be a demand-led programme. The number of places funded will reflect the number of eligible employers and education and training providers who choose to offer places and the number of eligible young people who wish to take one.

The Framework for Delivery confirmed that traineeships for 16 to 19-year-olds will be part of 16-19 Study Programmes and will be funded on the same basis. Traineeships will be funded through the Education Funding Agency or, in the case of 16-19 apprenticeship providers, through the Skills Funding Agency. Employers have also had the opportunity to bid for traineeship funding through the second round of the Employer Ownership of Skills Pilots. Applications are now being assessed. A formal announcement on Round 2 winners will be made later in the year.

Mr Graham Stuart: To ask the Secretary of State for Education with reference to paragraph 87 of Traineeships: Framework for Delivery, published 9 May 2013, what steps he will take to prevent providers from abusing the system by recruiting young people who are already prepared for employment or an apprenticeship in order to secure the funding for a full six-month course. [155293]

Matthew Hancock: The Framework for Delivery specifies that young people are not eligible for traineeships if they are already ready to start an apprenticeship or if they are already employed.

In 2013-14, the delivery of traineeships will be limited to those providers who have achieved an Ofsted inspection grade of outstanding or good. We expect these providers to offer a high-quality experience targeted only at those who are eligible for the programme.

15 May 2013 : Column 256W

This is the first year of the national rollout of traineeships, and we will monitor the delivery of the programme to ensure that providers are focusing on eligible young people. We will continue to develop and improve the programme over the coming years, and to help with that process we intend to commission an external evaluation of the programme in its first years of operation.

Mr Graham Stuart: To ask the Secretary of State for Education with reference to Traineeships: Framework for Delivery, published 9 May 2013, what estimate he has made of the (a) likely level of uptake among employers in providing traineeships and (b) number of placements that will be required to meet anticipated demand from young people in each of the next three years. [155294]

Matthew Hancock: We received a positive response to our traineeships discussion paper (January 2013) from employers and employer representatives. We know that many businesses are keen to support young people to gain the skills and experience that will help them make excellent future employees.

The National Apprenticeship Service will be working with employers to ensure that there are sufficient traineeship opportunities to meet the demand from the number of eligible young people.

Mr Graham Stuart: To ask the Secretary of State for Education with reference to paragraph 18 of Traineeships Framework for Delivery, published 9 May 2013, how many providers will be eligible to provide traineeships in 2013-14; which areas will not have any eligible traineeship providers in 2013-14; how he will ensure that all areas of the country have access to one or more traineeship providers after 2013-14; when he expects to achieve nationwide coverage of traineeship providers; and what safeguards he will put in place to ensure low quality providers do not enter the traineeships market. [155295]

Matthew Hancock: In 2013/14, the delivery of traineeships will be limited to those providers who have achieved an Ofsted inspection grade of outstanding or good. This will help ensure that traineeships are only delivered by quality providers in the first year of national rollout. Where there is no eligible provider in a location, we will support efforts to ensure that outstanding and good provision becomes available in that area.

We aim to reduce the requirement for traineeship providers to have achieved certain Ofsted inspection grades as the programme becomes established. We will confirm arrangements for 2014/15 over the next year. The primary measure of success for traineeships will be securing positive outcomes for participants and we intend to hold providers to account against this. We will develop success and destination measures for traineeships which we aim to publish and use for accountability purposes from 2015/16.

Young People: Carers

Lucy Powell: To ask the Secretary of State for Education what guidance he currently provides to schools to support pupils who might be young carers. [154259]

15 May 2013 : Column 257W

Mr Timpson: Several pieces of advice to schools offer guidance on how to support pupils who are young carers, for example advice on issuing no-notice detentions and non-statutory guidance to school sixth forms on making discretionary 16-19 bursary awards. Ofsted also take an interest in support offered to vulnerable students, including young carers during inspections.

We have also made our online training package to increase awareness of young carers' issues among teachers and school staff available on the websites of Carers Trust and The Children's Society. My Department has provided funding to The Children's Society for four years to promote that training alongside many other school resources and examples of best practice to local authorities and their statutory and voluntary sector partners.

The Department of Health has also recently announced plans to train school nurses to be champions for young carers. They will speak up on young carers' behalf and help head teachers and governors decide how best to support them at school.

Business, Innovation and Skills

Apprentices

Dan Rogerson: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what steps he is taking to enable young people with an offer of a farriery apprenticeship in 2013-14 to take up those apprenticeships following the withdrawal of funding by the National Farriery Training Association. [155289]

Matthew Hancock: All current learners training with the National Farriery Training Association will be funded to complete their qualification. The Skills Funding Agency is in active discussion with the Farriers Registration Council and colleges that deliver farrier training to secure provision through alternative delivery that ensures high quality training and apprentice safety and welfare.

Buildings

John Mann: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what the total running costs were for each building used, owned or rented in central London by his Department, its agencies and non-departmental public bodies in each of the last three financial years. [154231]

Jo Swinson: The total running costs for each building used, owned or rented in central London by BIS in each of the last three financial years were as follows:

£ million
Building2010/112011/122012/13

1 Victoria Street, SW1

19.68

20.86

20.64

10 Victoria Street, SW1

1.92

2.20

2.09

Kingsgate House, Victoria Street, SW1

8.75

8.21

151 Buckingham Palace Road, SW1

17.55

14.70

12.95

Victoria House, Southampton Row, WC1

0.188

0.796

0.813

21 Bloomsbury Street, WC1

3.47

7-10 Chandos St, W1

0.547

15 May 2013 : Column 258W

The figures are net running cost figures. The income received from letting space to other organisations has been deducted. Information for non-departmental public bodies is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

I have approached the chief executives of the Department's executive agencies (Insolvency Service, Companies House, National Measurement Office, Intellectual Property Office, UK Space Agency, Ordnance Survey, Met Office, Land Registry and the Skills Funding Agency) and they will respond to the hon. Member directly.

Letter from Tim Moss, dated 10 May 2013:

I am replying on behalf of Companies House to your Parliamentary Question tabled 8 May 2013, to the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, UIN 154231.

Companies House maintains one office in London, and its total running costs in each of the last three years were as follows.

 £

2010/11

239,295

2011/12

213,392

2012/13

230,889


Letter from Dr Richard Judge, dated 10 May 2013:

The Secretary of State for the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills has asked me to reply to your question, what the total running costs were for each building used, owned or rented in central London by his Department, its agencies and non-departmental public bodies in each of the last three financial years.

The Insolvency Service is an Executive Agency of the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills.

For the Insolvency Service the relevant figures are:

£
 2010/112011/122012/13

21 Bloomsbury Street (vacated June 2012)

3,069,531

2,904,535

610,653

4 Abbey Orchard Street

1,752,715

Total

3,069,531

2,904,535

2,363,368

Letter from John Alty, dated 13 May 2013:

I am responding in respect of the Intellectual Property Office to your Parliamentary Question tabled on 8 May 2013, to the Secretary of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills asking what the total running costs were for each building used, owned or rented in central London by his Department, its agencies and non-departmental public bodies in each of the last three financial years.

The Intellectual Property Office has maintained a small presence in London renting part of buildings in Abbey Orchard Street after moving from Bloomsbury Street on 21 May 2012.

£
 2010/112011/122012/13

Abbey Orchard Street

988,000

Bloomsbury Street

822,000

788,000

106,000

The 2012/13 costs for Abby Orchard street include extensive fitting out costs which will not recur.

Letter from John Hirst, dated 10 May 2013:

I am replying on behalf of the Met Office to your Parliamentary Question tabled on 8 May 2013, UIN 154231 to the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills.

15 May 2013 : Column 259W

The total running costs for each building used, owned or rented in central London by the Met Office were £708,513 in 2010-11, £650,209 in 2011-12, and £400,839 in 2012-13.

I hope this helps.

Letter from David Parker, dated 10 May 2013:

Thank you for your question addressed to the Secretary of State for the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills asking what the total running costs were for each building used, owned or rented in central London by his Department, its agencies and non-departmental public bodies in each of the last three financial years.

The UK Space Agency became an Executive Agency of the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills on the 1st April 2011.

The UK Space Agency has access to an area within the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills for staff requiring working space in London. The UK Space Agency has not owned or rented any buildings in central London since the 1st April 2011.

Letter from Dr Vanessa Lawrence CB, dated 10 May 2013:

As Director General and Chief Executive of Ordnance Survey, I have been asked to respond to your Parliamentary Question asking the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, “what the total running costs were for each building used, owned or rented in central London by his Department, its agencies and non-departmental public bodies in each of the last three financial years”.

Ordnance Survey rents space in the National Audit Office Building in Buckingham Palace Road, having moved from accommodation in Vauxhall on 1 January 2012.

Total costs in the last three financial years, including rent rates, services and utilities, were as follows:

2012-13: £114,839.51 (first full year at Buckingham Palace Road)

2011-12: £73,598.97

2010-11: £39,838.43

I hope this information is helpful.

Letter from Kim Thorneywork, dated 10 May 2013:

Thank you for your question in asking the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what the total running costs were for each building used, owned or rented in central London by his Department, its agencies and non-departmental public bodies in each of the last three financial years

Please be advised that the figures in the table detail the running costs for buildings in Central London paid for by the Skills Funding Agency from April 2010 to March 2013 by building and year.

The budget for 2010-11 was allocated to Skills Funding Agency and when Skills Funding Agency and YPLA split premises, leaving Centrepoint, it was agreed that the Skills Funding Agency would pay for the cost in that year for YPLA to occupy Sanctuary Buildings.

Costs per building2010-112011-122012-13

Centrepoint

610,758

0

0

Sanctuary Buildings

333,000

0

0

Kingsgate

905,688

0

0

1 Victoria Street

0

725,188

748,870

Total

1,849,446

725,188

748,870

Letter from Malcolm Dawson, dated 10 May 2013:

I write on behalf of Land Registry in response to Parliamentary Question 154231 tabled on 8 May 2013 which asked the following:

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, what the total running costs were for each building used, owned or rented in central London by his Department, its agencies and non-departmental public bodies in each of the last three financial years.

15 May 2013 : Column 260W

FY 

2010-11

1,244,421

2011-12

95,130

2012-13

27,575

Total

1,367,127


I hope you find this information useful.

Letter from Peter Mason, dated 9 May 2013:

I am responding in respect of the National Measurement Office (NMO) to your Parliamentary Question tabled on 8 May 2013, asking the Secretary of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) about the total running costs for each building used, owned or rented in central London by NMO in each of the last three financial years.

NMO does not use, own or rent any buildings in central London. We do not consider Teddington to be in central London.

Employment Schemes: Corby

Andy Sawford: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what jobs initiatives his Department is supporting in Corby constituency. [154175]

Matthew Hancock: We are supporting jobs in Corby by tackling the record deficit to keep interest rates low, tackling barriers to employment, radically reforming education and expanding apprenticeships, which provide individuals of all ages with pathways into employment.

Final data for 2011/12 show that there were 1,190 apprenticeship starts in Corby parliamentary constituency, up by 25.4% on 2010/11. Provisional data for the first six months of 2012/13 (August 2012 to January 2013) show that there were 610 apprenticeship starts in Corby parliamentary constituency.

£1.2 million has been awarded this year to the Northamptonshire Enterprise Partnership from the regional growth fund to support businesses in the high performance technologies sector and 32 Corby businesses have received a variety of UK Trade and Investment programmes and services support between July 2011 and April 2013.

In April 2012 we launched an online tool called “Employing staff for the first time” helping to make it easier for businesses taking on their first member of staff. Through the Business in You campaign we are supporting and encouraging people to start or grow their businesses and employ more staff, and small and medium-sized enterprises can access support and advice through

www.gov.uk

the new home for Government services and information online.

A huge number of further measures are taking place to support jobs in Corby and elsewhere to help Britain compete.

G4S

Mr Sheerman: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what the current level of expenditure by his Department is on contracts with G4S; and how much was spent by his Department on contracts with G4S in each year since 2008. [154545]

15 May 2013 : Column 261W

Jo Swinson: The following expenditure with G4S is recorded for the Department (including UKTI Admin).

Financial year£

2008/9

57,019

2009/10

5,074

2010/11

92,001

2011/12

72,391

2012/13

10,414

2013/14 (up to 8 May 2013)

Nil

These data exclude NDPBs as this information is not held centrally.

Insolvency

Mr Iain Wright: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills if he will bring forward legislative proposals relating to the Insolvency Service for the purposes of allowing (a) individuals or (b) organisations to request, upon the receipt of evidence and for an acceptable reason, investigation of an individual's ability to act as a director; and if he will make a statement. [155196]

Jo Swinson: The Government believe that new legislation is unnecessary because these powers of investigation already exist.

When a company goes into administration, insolvent liquidation or administrative receivership, the insolvency practitioner has a legal duty to report confidentially to the Insolvency Service about the conduct of the directors. If misconduct is alleged the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills has the power to seek the director's disqualification where it is believed to be in the public interest.

If a company is subject to any of these formal insolvency procedures, the insolvency practitioner is the person best placed to collate and report any evidence of misconduct. But any individual or organisation with evidence of misconduct by the company's directors can also bring that evidence to the attention of the insolvency practitioner so that it can be taken into account when the insolvency practitioner reports to the Secretary of State, or can produce that evidence directly to the Insolvency Service acting on behalf of the Secretary of State (BIS).

The Insolvency Service also has discretionary powers under the Companies Acts to conduct inquiries on behalf of the Secretary of State where it appears that there has been misconduct in relation to the affairs of any company, including those not subject to formal insolvency. Any individual or organisation with evidence of misconduct should send full details of their complaint and all the supporting evidence to:

Intelligence Hub

Investigations and Enforcement Services

The Insolvency Service

3(rd) Floor Cannon House

18 Priory Queensway

Birmingham B4 6FD

(e-mail: [email protected])

The Secretary of State has powers to use information arising from such inquiries, to seek the disqualification of the directors of the company, petition the court to wind up the company or bring criminal proceedings.

15 May 2013 : Column 262W

Land Use: Wales

Mr Hanson: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills what recent assessment (a) he and (b) the Land Registry has made of the (i) Ysceifiog and Nannerch Inclosure Act 1800 and (ii) Whitford Inclosure Act 1800; and whether he has any plans to bring forward proposals repeal or amend either Act. [154650]

Michael Fallon: The Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, my right hon. Friend the Member for Twickenham (Vince Cable), has no plans to bring forward such proposals. Land Registry's only concern is with the enclosure awards made under the Inclosure Acts.

Mr Hanson: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills how many notification of interest letters relating to the Land Registry Act 2002 have been sent to (a) Flintshire residents, (b) Delyn constituency residents and (c) residents of the parishes of (i) Cilcain, (ii) Ysceifiog and (iii) Nannerch in 2013 to date. [154651]

Michael Fallon: Land Registry estimates that it has sent out approximately 1,200 notices to date to property owners in Flintshire. The notices are to inform the owners of applications to the registrar for the registration of title to mines and minerals.

The Delyn constituency appears covers a similar area. The three parishes mentioned are all within Flintshire. But it is not possible for Land Registry to provide estimates of the number of notices sent to the residents of each of them.