Written questions and answers

Written questions allow Members of Parliament to ask government ministers for information on the work, policy and activities of government departments.

Historical written answers can be found in Hansard.

Find the latest written questions and answers for the 2017-19 session below. We welcome your feedback on this service.

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Unique Identifying Number – Every written question in the House of Commons has a UIN per Parliament. In the House of Lords each written questions has a UIN per parliamentary session.
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Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 22 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Dutch Elm Disease: Disease Control
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps the Government is taking to (a) support local authorities managing and tackling elm disease and (b) ensure that Brighton and Hove City Council has adequate support to protect the National Elm Collection in the city.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

Landowners are responsible for managing the trees on their land. All Local Authorities, including Brighton and Hove, have been provided with the legislative powers necessary to safeguard the nation’s elm population and prevent the spread of elm disease. These powers are set out in the Dutch Elm Disease (Local Authorities) Order 1984. They allow officers (appointed by the Local Authority) who suspect the presence of this disease to enter any land to inspect trees and take samples, and where disease is present, to take action to eradicate it. Government has a strong risk-based biosecurity response to reduce the pest and disease risk to trees involving comprehensive international and domestic surveillance, stringent border biosecurity, robust contingency plans and world leading research. Government invests over £30million per year on our plant health service.

Q
Asked by Angela Smith
(Penistone and Stocksbridge)
Asked on: 23 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Animal Welfare: Licensing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many local authorities in England have submitted data for 2019 on the number of licences they have issued under the Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

Under regulation 29 of The Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018 it is a requirement for local authorities in England to submit specified information relating to licensable activities in their respective areas. Such information should be submitted to the Secretary of State by 31 May for each preceding year 1 April to 31 March. Local authorities have submitted information to the Secretary of State for this year and Defra is analysing the data. We aim to publish the information later this year.

Grouped Questions: 280992 | 280993
Q
Asked by Angela Smith
(Penistone and Stocksbridge)
Asked on: 23 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Animal Welfare: Licensing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, with reference to the Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018, how many licences have been issued under those regulations in 2019 for (a) breeding dogs, (b) providing or arranging for the provision of boarding for cats, (c) providing or arranging for the provision of boarding for dogs in kennels, (d) providing or arranging for the provision of day care for dogs, (e) hiring out horses, (f) selling animals as pets and (g) keeping or training animals for exhibition.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

Under regulation 29 of The Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018 it is a requirement for local authorities in England to submit specified information relating to licensable activities in their respective areas. Such information should be submitted to the Secretary of State by 31 May for each preceding year 1 April to 31 March. Local authorities have submitted information to the Secretary of State for this year and Defra is analysing the data. We aim to publish the information later this year.

Grouped Questions: 280991 | 280993
Q
Asked by Angela Smith
(Penistone and Stocksbridge)
Asked on: 23 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Animal Welfare: Licensing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, with reference to The Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018, what the (a) average fee and (b) lowest and highest charges for licences issued in England in 2019 to date across all local authorities was for (i) breeding dogs, (ii) providing or arranging for the provision of boarding for cats, (iii) providing or arranging for the provision of boarding for dogs in kennels, (iv) providing or arranging for the provision of day care for dogs, (v) hiring out horses, (vi) selling animals as pets and (vii) keeping or training animals for exhibition.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

Under regulation 29 of The Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018 it is a requirement for local authorities in England to submit specified information relating to licensable activities in their respective areas. Such information should be submitted to the Secretary of State by 31 May for each preceding year 1 April to 31 March. Local authorities have submitted information to the Secretary of State for this year and Defra is analysing the data. We aim to publish the information later this year.

Grouped Questions: 280991 | 280992
Q
(South Holland and The Deepings)
Asked on: 24 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Tree Planting
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps he has taken to increase the number of trees planted in (a) Lincolnshire and (b) the UK.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

Forestry is a devolved matter and these figures apply to England only.

The Government remains committed to planting 11 million trees this parliament, and to the shared aspiration of reaching 12% woodland cover in England by 2060.

We have amended our main grant schemes to make applications easier by streamlining the application processes, opening the Countryside Stewardship Woodland Creation window all year round and reducing the threshold of applications from 30 hectares to 10 hectares for Woodland Carbon Fund applications. We have invested £5.7 million in the new Northern Forest; and announced a further £10 million for urban trees and £50 million for the Woodland Carbon Guarantee scheme.

We have planted approximately 16 million trees in England since 2010, of which approximately 437,000 have been planted across Lincolnshire, North Lincolnshire and North East Lincolnshire.

Q
Asked by Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 24 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Primates: Pets
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the scale of the problem of primates being kept and traded as pets in the UK.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

There is no doubt that primates are complex creatures requiring specialist care. I recently met with the owner of a leading specialist primate rescue centre who informed me about the rising numbers they are having to take from private care. Given these issues I am looking at the options for banning the trade altogether.

In the meantime, we have strict laws in place restricting the keeping of primates and action can be taken if a primate is being kept in poor welfare conditions. Under the Animal Welfare Act 2006, it is an offence to cause any unnecessary suffering to an animal or to fail to provide for its welfare.

The 2006 Act is backed up by the statutory Code of Practice for the Welfare of Privately Kept Non-human Primates that provides essential information for any primate keeper on how to meet the welfare needs of the primates in their care. The Code is made under the 2006 Act and can be used as evidence in court in support of a prosecution made under the 2006 Act.

If anyone has any concerns about the way a primate is being kept they should report to the relevant local authority, who have powers to investigate such issues, or to the RSPCA who can also investigate and take action.

In addition to the animal welfare controls, the keeping of most primates requires a licence under the Dangerous Wild Animals Act 1976 (DWAA), which is issued by a local authority. The DWAA licence is primarily to ensure public safety is protected.

The trade of primates is regulated through a Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) licensing system. Under this system, the international, commercial trade of the most endangered primates is prohibited, except under exceptional circumstances. Whilst it is not in itself a welfare measure, CITES does contain welfare provisions for the transport, keeping and moving of animals, including primates.

Q
Asked by Lyn Brown
(West Ham)
Asked on: 24 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Primates: Pets
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of further restricting the keeping of primates as pets beyond that set out in section 4 and section 9 the Animal Welfare Act 2006.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

There is no doubt that primates are complex creatures requiring specialist care. I recently met with the owner of a leading specialist primate rescue centre who informed me about the rising numbers they are having to take from private care. Given these issues I am looking at the options for banning the trade altogether.

In the meantime, we have strict laws in place restricting the keeping of primates and action can be taken if a primate is being kept in poor welfare conditions. Under the Animal Welfare Act 2006, it is an offence to cause any unnecessary suffering to an animal or to fail to provide for its welfare.

The 2006 Act is backed up by the statutory Code of Practice for the Welfare of Privately Kept Non-human Primates that provides essential information for any primate keeper on how to meet the welfare needs of the primates in their care. The Code is made under the 2006 Act and can be used as evidence in court in support of a prosecution made under the 2006 Act.

If anyone has any concerns about the way a primate is being kept they should report to the relevant local authority, who have powers to investigate such issues, or to the RSPCA who can also investigate and take action.

In addition to the animal welfare controls, the keeping of most primates requires a licence under the Dangerous Wild Animals Act 1976 (DWAA), which is issued by a local authority. The DWAA licence is primarily to ensure public safety is protected.

The trade of primates is regulated through a Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES) licensing system. Under this system, the international, commercial trade of the most endangered primates is prohibited, except under exceptional circumstances. Whilst it is not in itself a welfare measure, CITES does contain welfare provisions for the transport, keeping and moving of animals, including primates.

Q
(Clwyd West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 24 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Eggs: Imports
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent discussions he has had with the British Egg Industry Council on food safety standards for imported egg products after the UK leaves the EU.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Secretary of State has not had any recent discussions with the British Egg Industry Council on food safety standards for imported egg products after the UK leaves the EU. Food safety policy is the responsibility of the Food Standards Agency.

Q
Asked by Alex Sobel
(Leeds North West)
Asked on: 25 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Palm Oil
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department is taking to (a) ensure that corporations adhere to regulations on the declaration on packaging of the use of palm oil in their products and (b) enforce other regulations on the use by those organisations of that oil in their products.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The EU Regulation (1169/2011) on the Provision of Food Information to Consumers requires that where vegetable oils or fats are listed in the ingredients of food, the vegetable origin of the oil must be given (Annex VII, Part A.8.).

Food Business Operators are responsible for ensuring that the correct information is provided on labels and that consumers are not misled.

Along with all food information regulations, these requirements are enforced by Trading Standards Officers.

Q
Asked by Andrew Percy
(Brigg and Goole)
Asked on: 25 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Nature Conservation
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps the Government is taking to prevent endangered plant and animal species coming into the UK.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Government is committed to the conservation and protection of wildlife and we play a leading role internationally in addressing threats to endangered species; for instance through our membership of the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora (CITES). Under our obligations as a party to CITES, the Government regulates trade in listed endangered species into the UK under a permitting regime; safeguarding such species from over-exploitation and with the aim of ensuring that international trade in specimens of wild animals and plants does not threaten their survival. Defra coordinates across policy, scientific authorities and enforcement authorities, and engages closely with stakeholders in the UK, to ensure we continue to deliver on our international commitments to protect endangered species under CITES.

Q
Asked by Andrew Percy
(Brigg and Goole)
Asked on: 25 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Nature Conservation: Crime
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what meetings she has had with her international counterparts on tackling wildlife crime.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

Defra Ministers have had numerous meetings with their international counterparts in the last year to discuss efforts to protect endangered species from unsustainable and illegal trade and to follow up on commitments made at the international illegal wildlife trade conference held in London last October.

I look forward to continuing discussions on this important issue when I meet with my international counterparts in the future.

Q
(South Shields)
Asked on: 25 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Food Supply
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what plans she has to ensure that public services that (a) care homes, (b) schools, (c) hospitals and (d) prisons will have adequate supplies of food in the event that the UK leaves the EU without a deal.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

We remain focused on ensuring our smooth and orderly withdrawal from the EU with a deal as soon as possible. As a responsible Government, for almost three years we have been undertaking extensive work to prepare for a no deal scenario and minimise disruption to ensure trade continues to operate smoothly from the day we leave.

The UK has a high degree of food security built on access to a range of sources, including strong domestic production and imports from other countries. This will not change whether we leave the EU with or without a deal. Defra, as the lead Government department for food supply, has long established relationships with industry, and we are working closely with key stakeholders to prepare for all scenarios.

Public sector food provision for specific sectors including hospitals, prisons, schools and care settings is led by the relevant Government departments. However, Defra has been working closely with lead departments (DfE, DHSC, MOJ, MOD) to support their contingency planning for food supply to public services. Defra is providing advice and support to these departments especially to support their engagement with the food industry. Lead Government departments are engaging with key suppliers for schools, hospitals and prisons to ensure the supply chain is prepared and supply is maintained.

Q
(South Shields)
Asked on: 25 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Wildlife: Animal Welfare
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether the provisions of the Wild Animals in Circuses (No.2) Act 2019 applies to wild animals used in public parades.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Wild Animals in Circuses Act 2019 prohibits the use of wild animals as part of a travelling circus in England. A wild animal is used in a travelling circus if the animal performs or is exhibited as part of the circus. The Government has committed to issue guidance covering, amongst other things, activities that it considers will and will not be prohibited by the Act.

Q
Asked by Mary Creagh
(Wakefield)
Asked on: 25 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Local Adaptation Advisory Panel
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, when the local adaptation advisory panel last met.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Local Adaptation Advisory Panel (LAAP) acts as a forum for dialogue on climate change adaptation between local government, central government and arm’s length delivery bodies. The LAAP last met on 6 June.

Q
Asked by Jo Platt
(Leigh)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Pets: Sales
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what progress her Department has made on delivering a public information campaign alongside the introduction of the ban on commercial third-party sales of puppies and kittens in April 2020.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) (Amendment) Regulations 2019, known as ‘Lucy’s Law’, bans the commercial third party sales of puppies and kittens and will come into force in April 2020. We intend to launch a campaign focused on helping the public understand how to responsibly source a puppy or kitten in early 2020, in the run up to the ban coming into force. The campaign is currently under development.

Q
Asked by Damian Green
(Ashford)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Members: Correspondence
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, when her Department intends to reply to the letter dated 3 July 2019 from the hon. Member for Ashford.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Q
Asked by Dr David Drew
(Stroud)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Tritium
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, for what reasons there has been a change to permitted levels of gaseous tritium discharges at former Magnox Nuclear Stations as a result of the operation of the waste encapsulation plants.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Q
Asked by Frank Field
(Birkenhead)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Environment Protection
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether she will ensure that any forthcoming environmental legislation (a) sets out legally binding targets for environmental protection, the progress of which must be reported on annually by Government, (b) incorporates a non-regression principle to prevent backward steps in the adoption and implementation of environmental laws and (c) establishes an independent and adequately resourced environmental watchdog.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Q
Asked by Paul Farrelly
(Newcastle-under-Lyme)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Packaging: Recycling
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment she has made of the potential merits of obligating all retailers to ensure that the packaging of products sold can be recycled locally before stocking those products.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Q
(Morley and Outwood)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Agriculture: Packaging
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what plans he has to tackle packaging waste in the agricultural sector.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Q
Asked by Alex Sobel
(Leeds North West)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Clean Air Zones
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, when the national online platform to enable the public to check vehicle compliance with Clean Air Zone emissions standards is scheduled to be fully functioning and available to the public; and for what reasons delivery of this platform by the Government has been delayed.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Q
(Brighton, Kemptown)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for International Development
Developing Countries: Food
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, with reference to the State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World's report which found that global hunger has increased for the fourth year, what steps the Government is taking to (a) tackle global hunger and (b) achieve the Sustainable Development Goal Two.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The State of Food Security and Nutrition in the World (SOFI) report shows that without significantly increased efforts the world will fall far short of achieving the target of eradicating hunger by 2030. The UK is playing its part to ending hunger and undernutrition through its substantial portfolio of humanitarian support and longer-term responses to tackling chronic hunger and supporting food security by transforming agriculture. We are aware that the international community needs to do more. We are discussing opportunities for scaled-up and improved global interventions, including the German-initiated proposal for a SDG2 moment in 2020, and are supporting the Government of Japan in its preparations for the 2020 Nutrition for Growth Summit.

Q
(Romford)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Rain Forests: Brazil
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what discussions her Department is holding with the Government of Brazil to help stop deforestation in the Amazon.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The UK Government recognises the importance of protecting rainforests and has a long and proud history of supporting action to combat deforestation. The Government’s 25 Year Environment Plan, published last year, sets out work to protect the world’s forests, support sustainable agriculture and move towards zero-deforestation supply chains.

Brazil is one of our priority countries for both climate change and biodiversity engagement, and the UK Embassy in Brazil leads our engagement with the Brazilian Government on the environment. We have been having positive discussions with the Brazilian Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Food Supply, who are keen to continue our partnership to promote sustainable agricultural practices to combat deforestation rates. The first phase of our Low-carbon Agriculture programme (£24.9 million), completed in May this year, reached over 18,500 beneficiaries in the Amazon and Atlantic forest biomes and delivered a seven-fold increase in livestock productivity, while avoiding the clearance of 175,000 hectares of land and reducing 52% of carbon emissions. An additional £30 million has been committed to expand project activities to a second phase, taking place in two other major biomes in Brazil – Cerrado and Caatinga.

Brazil will continue to be an important partner in negotiations at the forthcoming UN climate summits in Chile this December (the 25th Conference of the Parties to the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change, or COP 25) and again at the significant COP 26 in late 2020, where we hope to raise the level of global ambition on climate change five years on from the landmark Paris Agreement in 2015.

Q
Asked by Deidre Brock
(Edinburgh North and Leith)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Water Treatment: Chemicals
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what plans her Department has in place to assist water companies with supplies of purification chemicals in the event of the UK leaving the EU without a deal.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Q
Asked by Ian Lavery
(Wansbeck)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Squirrels: Northumberland
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps her Department is taking to (a) protect red squirrels in Northumberland and (b) tackle the damaging effect of the invasive grey squirrel species.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Q
(Bristol East)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Chemicals: Registration
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether the Government will require companies to repeat tests on animals if previously shared data on chemical substances registered under EU REACH is no longer accessible.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Q
(Morley and Outwood)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Amazonia: Fires
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what plans the Government has to provide assistance to Brazil to help combat forest fires in the Amazon region.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The UK Government is working with Brazil to help ensure it protects the Amazon. We have invested nearly £120 million of our international climate finance in projects to limit deforestation, support local and indigenous people, prevent forest fires and implement the Forest Code in the Amazon, Atlantic Forest and Cerrado biomes.

Following the Amazon fires the UK has also recently engaged with the Brazilian Government and has pledged a further £10 million to fight deforestation.

Q
Asked by Dr David Drew
(Stroud)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Trees
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if she will make an assessment of the potential merits of bringing forward legislative proposals to require each local authority to employ suitably qualified public-realm tree officers to ensure that (a) statistics are collated on the number and condition of trees and (b) existing trees are adequately maintained in each local authority area.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

A public consultation on policies to improve the management of our trees and woodlands by Local Authorities was opened in December 2018. The consultation ended in February 2019. This document set out Government’s view on the importance of trees, especially in an urban environment, and the need for more policies to enhance the status and protection of urban trees.

The Government committed in the 25 Year Environment Plan to introduce a duty on Local Authorities to consult the public on felling street trees. This will increase the transparency of decision-making and give the public a say in the management of these important natural assets. It will encourage local authorities to consider concerns raised and have regard to these when making decisions. This duty will be introduced in the forthcoming Environment Bill.

Grouped Questions: 286096
Q
Asked by Dr David Drew
(Stroud)
Asked on: 03 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Trees: Urban Areas
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if the Government will make an assessment of the effect of urban trees on levels of human physical health and well being; and if she will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Social and Economic Research Group of Forest Research, part of the Forestry Commission, focuses on understanding the complex relationships between forestry, the environment and society. The importance of peri urban woods and urban woods for people’s wellbeing, both physical, mental and social is well known. The group is currently participating in a number of activities which will help increase our understanding of the health and wellbeing benefits of trees and greenspace.

The Forestry Commission also supports the Urban Forest and Woodland Advisory Committee Network, which advises the Forestry Commission on forestry. The network has produced various publications on the benefits of a resilient urban forest, including for human health and quality of life.

Q
Asked by Dr David Drew
(Stroud)
Asked on: 03 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Tree Planting
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment she has made of the adequacy of funding and other Government support for the tree nursery industry to ensure that it is able to plan and invest in the infrastructure required to increase the numbers of trees that the Government estimates will be required to be planted to help meet its climate change and biodiversity targets.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

We do not provide direct support to tree nurseries. Our sustained support for new woodland creation helps ensure that there is ongoing demand for forest trees. The Forestry Commission has regular contact with representative bodies, sharing information on the expected level of tree planting and demand for trees to aid the planning of tree production.

We are looking at how we can support the nursery industry in improving biosecurity and improve tree seed viability.

Q
Asked by Dr David Drew
(Stroud)
Asked on: 03 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Trees
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what plans the Government has to (a) collate statistics on the number of trees in the UK and (b) ensure that existing trees are adequately maintained.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The National Forest Inventory Forest Research, part of the Forestry Commission, gathers data on the number of trees within woodland in Britain. In addition it monitors the canopy area of trees outside of woodland within. More details of the work carried out and information it publishes can be found here: https://www.forestresearch.gov.uk/tools-and-resources/national-forest-inventory/about-the-nfi/

All woodland is protected against unauthorised removal through the control of tree felling in the Forestry Act 1967, the Environmental Impact Assessment (Forestry) Regulations and the planning system. Activities authorised and supported by the Forestry Commission, including woodland management which has grant support available through Countryside Stewardship and Felling Licences applications, are expected to meet the UK Forestry Standard, the Government’s approach to sustainable forestry.

Q
Asked by Dr David Drew
(Stroud)
Asked on: 03 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Trees
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if she will make an assessment of the potential merits of bringing forward legislative proposals to require each local authority to employ suitably qualified public-realm tree officers to ensure that (a) statistics are collated on the number of trees and (b) existing trees are adequately maintained in each local authority area.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

A public consultation on policies to improve the management of our trees and woodlands by Local Authorities was opened in December 2018. The consultation ended in February 2019. This document set out Government’s view on the importance of trees, especially in an urban environment, and the need for more policies to enhance the status and protection of urban trees.

The Government committed in the 25 Year Environment Plan to introduce a duty on Local Authorities to consult the public on felling street trees. This will increase the transparency of decision-making and give the public a say in the management of these important natural assets. It will encourage local authorities to consider concerns raised and have regard to these when making decisions. This duty will be introduced in the forthcoming Environment Bill.

Grouped Questions: 285154
Q
(Bristol East)
Asked on: 03 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Clothing: Sustainable Development
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps the Government is taking to encourage sustainable fashion from production to purchase in order to meet (a) UN Sustainable Development Goal 12 on sustainable consumption and production and (b) the target for net zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Q
Asked by Damian Green
(Ashford)
Asked on: 03 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Members: Correspondence
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, when her Department plans to reply to the letter of 3 July 2019 from the hon. Member for Ashford.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Q
(Woking)
Asked on: 03 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Forests: Woking
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, which areas of forestry and woodland in Woking constituency are classed by her Department as ancient woodland.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The Ancient Woodland Inventory can be found on Defra’s website at Magic Map Application. It shows all the woodland and forestry areas in England classed as ancient woodland. This service is managed by Natural England.

Q
(East Yorkshire)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 03 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Hare Coursing: Fines
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if she will increase the penalties imposed by the courts in respect of offences of harecoursing; and if he will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Q
(Midlothian)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 04 September 2019
Department for International Development
Developing Countries: Climate Change
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what recent assessment he has made of the effect on his Department's climate-focused work of planning for the UK to leave the EU without a deal.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

DFID is fully supporting the Government’s preparations to ensure that the UK leaves the EU on 31 October. At the same time, as the Prime Minister made clear at the recent G7 Leaders meeting, the UK is strongly committed to tackling the two immense threats of climate change and biodiversity loss. Putting climate change and environment at the heart of our development programming is a high priority for DFID. While we have, since July 2019, deployed a small number of staff (fewer than 5) who were working on climate change to work on planning for our exit from the EU, overall the number of staff working on climate change is increasing.

Grouped Questions: 286840
Q
(Midlothian)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 04 September 2019
Department for International Development
Developing Countries: Climate Change
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, how many staff of his Department who previously focused on climate change have moved to a role to plan for the UK leaving without a deal since July 2019.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

DFID is fully supporting the Government’s preparations to ensure that the UK leaves the EU on 31 October. At the same time, as the Prime Minister made clear at the recent G7 Leaders meeting, the UK is strongly committed to tackling the two immense threats of climate change and biodiversity loss. Putting climate change and environment at the heart of our development programming is a high priority for DFID. While we have, since July 2019, deployed a small number of staff (fewer than 5) who were working on climate change to work on planning for our exit from the EU, overall the number of staff working on climate change is increasing.

Grouped Questions: 286838
Q
Asked by Dr David Drew
(Stroud)
Asked on: 04 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Snakes: Animal Welfare
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, for what reasons the minimum size of enclosures for snakes was changed from the requirement stated in the draft Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018 guidance.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The draft statutory guidance relating to pet sales that accompanies The Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018 (the 2018 Regulations) contained two minimum accommodation size lengths for snakes in pet selling establishments. One was two thirds snake length and related to the minimum length of the enclosure in order to comply with the 2018 Regulations; and the other was 1x snake length which was the minimum length needed to attain the optional higher welfare standard.

During consultation on the draft guidance a group of specialist exotic animal veterinary and keeping professionals advised that there was no welfare basis for the higher welfare standard. We therefore withdrew the higher minimum welfare standard for snake accommodation sizes from the final published guidance. However, the minimum welfare size needed to comply with the 2018 Regulations remains at two thirds snake length. We have not made an estimate of the costs to businesses if they were required to increase the size of their snake enclosures.

Grouped Questions: 286612
Q
Asked by Dr David Drew
(Stroud)
Asked on: 04 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Snakes: Animal Welfare
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if she will publish correspondence between her Department and businesses on the Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018 guidance on the size of snake enclosures; and what estimate she has made of the costs to businesses of increasing the size of snake enclosures.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

The draft statutory guidance relating to pet sales that accompanies The Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018 (the 2018 Regulations) contained two minimum accommodation size lengths for snakes in pet selling establishments. One was two thirds snake length and related to the minimum length of the enclosure in order to comply with the 2018 Regulations; and the other was 1x snake length which was the minimum length needed to attain the optional higher welfare standard.

During consultation on the draft guidance a group of specialist exotic animal veterinary and keeping professionals advised that there was no welfare basis for the higher welfare standard. We therefore withdrew the higher minimum welfare standard for snake accommodation sizes from the final published guidance. However, the minimum welfare size needed to comply with the 2018 Regulations remains at two thirds snake length. We have not made an estimate of the costs to businesses if they were required to increase the size of their snake enclosures.

Grouped Questions: 286611
Q
(Stockton South)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 04 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Northumbrian Water
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what meetings her Department has had with Northumbrian Water to discuss preparations for the UK leaving the EU without a withdrawal agreement.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Q
(Dunfermline and West Fife)
Asked on: 04 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Plastics: Pollution
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps her Department is taking to encourage ports and transport companies involved in the movement of plastic pellets/nurdles to sign up to the British Plastics Federation’s industry-led scheme Operation Clean Sweep to reduce the loss of plastic pellets in transit.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Q
(Dunfermline and West Fife)
Asked on: 05 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Seas and Oceans: Environment Protection
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps her Department is taking to improve the UK’s Ocean Health Index score.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Q
(Dunfermline and West Fife)
Asked on: 05 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Plastics: Recycling
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what progress has been made on analysing the results of the consultation on introducing a Deposit Return Scheme for plastic drinks containers in England, Wales and Northern Ireland.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Q
Asked by Luke Pollard
(Plymouth, Sutton and Devonport)
Asked on: 05 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Animal Welfare (Sentencing) Bill
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what the timetable is for the conclusion of the Animal Welfare (Sentencing) Bill.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Q
Asked by Luke Pollard
(Plymouth, Sutton and Devonport)
Asked on: 05 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Primates: Pets
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether she has plans to bring forward legislative proposal to ban the keeping of primates as pets.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Q
Asked by Faisal Rashid
(Warrington South)
Asked on: 05 September 2019
Department for International Development
Developing Countries: Living Wage
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, what funding her Department has allocated to programmes supporting the payment of living wages in global value chains; and whether this funding is supporting workers in the cocoa sector.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 09 September 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Q
Asked by Paul Farrelly
(Newcastle-under-Lyme)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 22 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Pets: Tagging
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department is taking to create a centrally accessible database logging pets' microchip numbers and date of entry into the UK.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 06 September 2019

It is already a requirement for every dog in the UK to be identified by a microchip and its details to be recorded on a recognised database. This includes dogs imported from outside the UK. Defra will shortly be issuing a call for evidence on whether to introduce compulsory microchipping for all cats in England. Furthermore, all pets (cats, dogs and ferrets) entering Great Britain on approved routes have their microchip scanned and recorded by the carrier at the time of travel.

We do not consider it necessary at this time to introduce an additional database along the lines proposed.

Q
Asked by Paul Farrelly
(Newcastle-under-Lyme)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 22 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Pets: Animal Welfare
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that all dog and cat rehoming centres are adequately regulated.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 06 September 2019

As with anyone who owns or keeps animals, rescue and rehoming centres are subject to the provisions of the Animal Welfare Act 2006 which means they must provide for the animals’ welfare needs and protect them from pain, injury and disease. During the consultation on whether to ban the third party selling of puppies and kittens, carried out last year, we included a question about whether rescue and rehoming centres should be regulated. We need to be confident of the benefits and the impacts of any regulations placed on rescue and rehoming centres, particularly on some of the smaller rescues. We will put forward legislative proposals at the earliest possible point, once we have fully consulted with the sector and understood the impact of any proposals.

Q
Asked by Paul Farrelly
(Newcastle-under-Lyme)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 23 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Dogs: Imports
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent steps his Department is taking to increase collaboration between the Animal and Plant Health Agency and veterinary regulatory authorities in other countries to tackle provision of fake pet passports and veterinary certificates for dogs being imported into the UK.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 06 September 2019

Defra takes the issue of illegal dog and puppy imports very seriously. This is an abhorrent trade which causes suffering to the smuggled dogs and puts the health of pets and people in the UK at risk. Defra is working hard to tackle the problem through a comprehensive approach that seeks to target both the supply and demand of illegally imported dogs.

International engagement is one aspect of this approach. It takes place through Defra, with input from APHA intelligence and expertise. Under Article 26 of EU Regulation 1/2005 (on the protection of animals during transport and related operations), Defra notify Member States of the origin of the transporter where a welfare issue with an import has been identified. We send these to notify the Member State so that they can take remedial action to ensure that the transporter complies in future. The notifications include details of passports and certificates. The UK Chief Veterinary Officer (CVO) has written to her counterparts in countries where illegally imported dogs typically originate, including (most recently) her counterparts in Hungary and Serbia. The issue also continues to be raised and discussed at EU CVO meetings.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 23 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Food Supply
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether the legal responsibility of local authorities to provide food in a time of crisis extends to (a) children, (b) people on a low income, (c) elderly people, (d) disabled people and (e) housebound people.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 06 September 2019

Food is a critical national infrastructure sector and Defra has lead Government department oversight of responsibility for food supply in England. The policy is devolved to Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland in the constitutional settlement.

Defra is not responsible for the supply of food and drink to the population in an emergency, and the expertise, capability and levers to plan for and respond to food supply disruption lie within the industry. However, we have well established relationships with the food and drink sectors, and we work collaboratively with the food industry and across Government to support coherent and robust industry contingency planning and response in the event of an incident situation. The food industry is experienced in dealing with scenarios that can affect food supply.

Local authorities do not have a general duty to provide food but have duties to provide food to particular groups in particular circumstances, including schools and care settings. Public sector food provision for specific sectors is led by the relevant Government departments. Defra works with lead Departments (including DfE, DHSC and MoJ) to support their contingency planning for food supply to public services. Defra’s role involves providing advice and support to these departments who in turn work with their public services to ensure that supply is resilient.

We are committed to a strong safety net for those who need it, which is why this Government continues to spend over £90 billion a year on welfare benefits.

Q
Asked by Dr Rupa Huq
(Ealing Central and Acton)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Livestock: Exports
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment she has made of the potential merits of bringing forward legislative proposals to ban the export of live animals from the UK for slaughter and fattening abroad.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 06 September 2019

I refer the Honourable Member to the reply given to the Honourable Member for Crewe and Nantwich, on 2 July 2019; PQ UIN 268497.

Q
(Clwyd West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 24 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Eggs: Imports
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps he is taking to ensure that imported liquid and powdered egg products are compliant with UK food standards after the UK leaves the EU.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 05 September 2019

Our high animal welfare, environmental and biosecurity standards are of critical importance to the UK and we are committed to ensuring those standards are maintained when we leave the EU. We have been clear that we will not water down our standards in pursuit of trade deals.

As a member of the EU we share standards of biosecurity with other Member States. This has facilitated the free movement of these goods between Member States. In the short term those standards will not change. Furthermore, to ensure minimum disruption at the UK border, we will not introduce new border controls on these goods imported from the EU. Import requirements relating to welfare will also be retained.

To ensure we remain vigilant, we will require advance notification of imports of high risk food and feed from the EU. This includes products of animal origin and high risk food and feed not of animal origin. The Food Standards Agency will be in a position to monitor those notifications so that, in the event of a food incident occurring involving imported food or feed, it will be able to respond effectively to safeguard public health by swiftly identifying the point of entry to the UK and the spread of a problem. We will also be reviewing our imports regime once we leave the EU.

For imports from countries outside the EU we will maintain the current controls, and consignments of animal products will continue to be required to enter at UK Border Inspection Posts for veterinary checks. Notification will be required using the UK Import of Products, Animals and Food and Feed System. These controls will also apply to products of animal origin that come from outside the EU, but travel through the EU before arriving in the UK.

Q
Asked by Dr David Drew
(Stroud)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 25 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Tree Planting: Urban Areas
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what funding her Department is making available for planting or replanting urban trees to replace trees that have been removed due to disease or decay.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 05 September 2019

There are no grants available specifically for the replacement of trees removed due to disease or decay, but there are opportunities for funding or new planting in and around our towns and cities under the recently launched £10 million Urban Tree Challenge Fund. This fund will support the planting of up to 130,000 trees across towns and cities in England, and contributes to our manifesto commitment to plant one million urban trees by 2022.

Q
Asked by Paul Farrelly
(Newcastle-under-Lyme)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Livestock: Animal Welfare
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether she plans to bring forward legislative proposals to ban cages for all farm animals in the UK.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 05 September 2019

The issue of cages for farmed animals is one in which the government is taking a close interest. We have already banned cages or close confinement systems where there is clear scientific evidence that they are detrimental to animal health and welfare. We banned the keeping of calves in veal crates in 1990, sixteen years before the rest of the EU. We banned the keeping of sows in close confinement stalls in the UK in 1999, and conventional battery cages for laying hens in 2012. I am pleased that the UK has by far the largest free range laying hen sector of any EU country, with over 50% of our hens kept in free range systems.

The government is actively looking into the use of cages and we will be considering the full range of options that are available for future reform.

Q
Asked by Dr Rupa Huq
(Ealing Central and Acton)
Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Livestock: Animal Welfare
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment she has made of the merits of banning the caging of farmed animals.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 05 September 2019

The issue of cages for farmed animals is one in which the government is taking a close interest. We have already banned cages or close confinement systems where there is clear scientific evidence that they are detrimental to animal health and welfare. We banned the keeping of calves in veal crates in 1990, sixteen years before the rest of the EU. We banned the keeping of sows in close confinement stalls in the UK in 1999, and conventional battery cages for laying hens in 2012. I am pleased that the UK has by far the largest free range laying hen sector of any EU country, with over 50% of our hens kept in free range systems.

The government is actively looking into the use of cages and we will be considering the full range of options that are available for future reform.

Q
Asked by Alex Sobel
(Leeds North West)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 02 September 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Amazonia: Fires
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what support his Department is giving to indigenous people in the Amazon affected by major forest fires; and what steps his Department is taking to discourage forest burning by logging and farming interests in Brazil.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 05 September 2019

The increase in forest fires in the Amazon is a tragedy for all of us, but none more so than the indigenous people who call the Amazon their home. These fires are made more likely by deforestation, and that is why we have invested nearly £120 million of our international climate finance in projects to limit deforestation, support local and indigenous people, prevent forest fires and implement the Forest Code in the Amazon, Atlantic Forest and Cerrado biomes.

We will continue to work with Brazilian partners at federal and sub-national levels to help them protect the Amazon, and to support the transition to a low carbon economy. The first phase of Defra’s £24.9 million Low-carbon Agriculture programme, for example, completed in May this year. It reached over 18,500 beneficiaries in the Amazon and Atlantic forest biomes, avoided the clearance of 175,000 hectares of land, reduced carbon emissions by 52% and delivered a seven-fold increase in livestock productivity.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 24 July 2019
Department for International Development
Fossil Fuels: Development Aid
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development, with reference to the Green Finance Strategy: Transforming Finance for a Greener Future, published in July 2019, under what circumstances and using what criteria the Government will determine that Official Development Assistance spent on investment support for fossil fuels is in line with the Paris Agreement temperature goals and transition plans.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 03 September 2019

The Government is committed to achieving the Paris Agreement climate goals and is increasingly putting environment and climate at the heart of UK Aid. The majority of UK Official Development Assistance for energy either supports renewable energy, helps governments to improve sector policy and governance, or supports energy research. UK Aid has helped over 17 million people with improved access to clean energy.

We do not provide direct assistance for coal-fired generation.

For other fossil fuels our approach is to support their development where there is a clear developmental need and as part of a transition to low-carbon economies. In assessing new support, we will ensure that assistance does not undermine the ambition in a country’s Nationally Determined Contributions (NDC) and that an appropriate carbon price is used in the appraisal of the programme.

Q
Asked by Dr David Drew
(Stroud)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 22 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Donkeys: Animal Products
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what recent discussions he has had with (a) China and (b) countries in east Africa on ending the international trade in donkey skins; and what recent steps he has taken to help implement an international ban on the trade in donkey skins.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 08 August 2019

Defra takes the welfare of donkeys and other equids very seriously and has taken an active role in global efforts to monitor and strengthen welfare standards for these species. This included contributing to the World Organisation for Animal Health (OIE) Terrestrial Code chapter on Welfare or Working Equids adopted by OIE members in 2016, which provides species specific guidance to complement the general welfare principles applying to all animals. In addition we have contributed to the EU voluntary initiative developing guidance on responsible ownership and care of equidae. Influencing the raising of global standards through international fora can be an effective and sustainable way to address these issues across the world and therefore have a broader impact than bilateral meetings with particular countries. This is part of the Government’s strong commitment to strengthening welfare standards.

Q
Asked by Dr David Drew
(Stroud)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 22 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Livestock: Electromagnetic Fields
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether he has commissioned research on the potential effect of electro-magnetic waves on levels of premature deaths in farm animals.
A
Answered by: Zac Goldsmith
Answered on: 08 August 2019

Defra manages an active programme of research to support the health and welfare of livestock. The research programme focusses on prevention and control of infectious diseases as well as covering animal welfare issues. There is no current research funded on electro-magnetic waves and their potential impact from this programme.

Defra does have a regular, consistent systematic process for identifying and assessing new threats to animal health and welfare through the Veterinary Risk Group and the issue has not been raised which could inform future research requirements.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 25 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Forests: Tree Planting
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what her Department's plans are for new woodland establishment and tree planting during the transition period from the existing Countryside Stewardship scheme towards the new Environmental Land Management Schemes being fully established by 2024 in order to begin sequestering carbon to deliver the UK 2050 net zero target.
 
Withdrawn
Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 25 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Tree Planting
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what proportion of the estimated £1 trillion financial implication of delivering the UK’s 2050 net zero target can be attributed to afforestation and tree planting outside of woodland.
 
Withdrawn
Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 25 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Tree Planting
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, which Committee on Climate Change scenario was used to calculate any costs associated with afforestation and tree planting outside of woodlands in order to meet the UK’s net zero target.
 
Withdrawn
Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 25 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Tree Planting
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what financial incentivisation mechanisms other than her Department's new Environmental Land Management scheme would be expected to contribute towards any increase in tree cover accounted for under the estimated £1 trillion cost of delivering the UK 2050 net zero target.
 
Withdrawn
Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 25 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Tree Planting
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many Environmental Land Management test and trials projects incorporate an objective to increase tree cover through woodland creation, agroforestry or increased hedgerows; and how many or those projects will undertake to investigate carbon storage or mitigation.
 
Withdrawn
Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 25 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Tree Planting
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how she plans to ensure that Environmental Land Management test and trials incorporate projects with a focus on carbon mitigation via increasing tree cover in order to meet the UK's 2050 net zero target; and if she will publish details of the proposed trials.
 
Withdrawn
Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 25 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Trees
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps she is taking to enable the natural regeneration of trees and shrubs to contribute to the delivery of the UKs 2050 net zero target.
 
Withdrawn
Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 25 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Tree Planting
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment she has made of the contribution the new Environmental Land Management Scheme will make towards a national increase in tree cover (a) to meet the 2050 net zero target and (b) within ten years of that scheme being established; and what proportion will be delivered by (i) increased woodland, (ii) agroforestry, and (iii) hedgerow creation.
 
Withdrawn
Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 25 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Tree Planting
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps her Department is taking to (a) encourage farmers to engage directly with the tests and trials phase of Environmental Land Management Scheme where such trials offer scope to increase tree cover, (b) communicate to farmers the future financial benefits of tree planting and woodland creation activities under the Environmental Land Management Scheme and (c) provide financial support to farmers to engage in those activities.
 
Withdrawn
Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 25 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Agriculture: Subsidies
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether her Department plans to prioritise (a) agroforestry and (b) other farming systems in future farm payments.
 
Withdrawn
Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 25 July 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Agriculture: Subsidies
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether her Department will include (a) silvo-arable and (b) silvo-pastoral systems in the Environmental Land Management Scheme test and trial period.
 
Withdrawn
Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 10 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Prisons: Mental Health Services
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what steps he is taking to improve the mental health of prisoners.
A
Answered by: Jackie Doyle-Price
Answered on: 15 July 2019

NHS England and NHS Improvement are currently working across the entire criminal justice pathway to develop and improve services for offenders with mental health difficulties.

NHS England and NHS Improvement are working with partners to intervene at the earliest opportunity to ensure that offenders receive the right care, in the right place, at the right time.

Liaison and Diversion Services operate in police stations and courts to identify and assess people with vulnerabilities including mental health issues. Where that individual is subsequently sent to prison the receiving prison will have the relevant information of the individual’s mental health needs to inform the reception healthcare staff so that they can implement appropriate interventions as soon as possible after they arrive.

Health services are available across the estate where assessment identifies treatment needs.

The service specification for prison mental health services was reviewed in 2017-18. This review, led by clinicians in conjunction with stakeholders and informed by experts with experience, was published in March 2018, with all new services being commissioned against it from April 2018. The new specification includes the Royal College of Psychiatrists Quality Network for Prison Mental Health Services standards, ensuring equity of quality across the estate.

NHS England and NHS Improvement are currently consulting on revised Transfer and Remission guidance to ensure that new clinically developed timescales are set which ensure timely and appropriate access to mental health treatment in hospital when necessary, in a clinically safe and well managed way. The consultation ends on 19 July 2019.

The NHS Long Term Plan committed to a new service to support people leaving custody to remain engaged with community-based healthcare services. The reconnect service will support continuity of care when people return to the community.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 10 July 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Prisoners: Mental Illness
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what estimate he has made of the proportion of the prison population with mental health problems.
A
Answered by: Jackie Doyle-Price
Answered on: 15 July 2019

No estimate has been made of the proportion of the prison health population with mental health problems.

Currently a closed system is used to record clinical data in prisons. The Health and Justice Information Service system, being rolled out between 2018-20, will have the ability to share information with community healthcare services; this is integral to the collection of relevant data that is quality assured and robust.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 08 July 2019
Treasury
Tax Avoidance
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the cost to the public purse of disapplying the 2019 Loan Charge to loans made before the Finance (No. 2) Act 2017 received Royal Assent.
A
Answered by: Jesse Norman
Answered on: 11 July 2019

An estimate of the cost of amending the loan charge to remove loans made before 2017 is not available. The loan charge was legislated in the Finance (No.2) Act 2017 and is part of a package which was estimated to yield £3.2 billion over five years.

HMRC have written directly to scheme users identified through their compliance work, IT records and tax return data. This includes individual scheme users, employers and company directors.

In addition, HMRC have actively encouraged DR scheme users to come forward through their regular contact with taxpayers, and seek to increase awareness through their series of Spotlight publications, social media activity, and webinars.

HMRC are not aware of any individuals affected whom they have not yet contacted.

Grouped Questions: 274514
Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 08 July 2019
Treasury
Tax Avoidance
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what estimate he has made of the number of people affected by the 2019 Loan Charge that have not been contacted by HMRC.
A
Answered by: Jesse Norman
Answered on: 11 July 2019

An estimate of the cost of amending the loan charge to remove loans made before 2017 is not available. The loan charge was legislated in the Finance (No.2) Act 2017 and is part of a package which was estimated to yield £3.2 billion over five years.

HMRC have written directly to scheme users identified through their compliance work, IT records and tax return data. This includes individual scheme users, employers and company directors.

In addition, HMRC have actively encouraged DR scheme users to come forward through their regular contact with taxpayers, and seek to increase awareness through their series of Spotlight publications, social media activity, and webinars.

HMRC are not aware of any individuals affected whom they have not yet contacted.

Grouped Questions: 274513
Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 02 July 2019
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
Israel: Refugees
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what discussions he has had with his Israeli counterpart on recognition of the plight of Jewish refugees from the Middle East and North Africa.
A
Answered by: Dr Andrew Murrison
Answered on: 08 July 2019

​I am yet to discuss this matter with my Israeli counterpart. The history of Jewish migration and displacement in the region is highly complex and cannot be ignored. We acknowledge that the Jewish community has experienced unacceptable suffering. We continue to support the aspiration for a Jewish homeland in the modern state of Israel, just as we support the objective of a viable and sovereign Palestinian state. A peaceful future for the Middle East depends on a peace agreement that offers fair restitution for both sides, and a willingness on the part of all countries in the region to respect the rights of minorities and build inclusive societies which enshrine and uphold those rights.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 04 June 2019
Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Coal
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the adequacy of existing coal stocks to meet expected needs for electricity generation before coal is phased out.
A
Answered by: Chris Skidmore
Answered on: 13 June 2019
Holding answer received on 10 June 2019

The latest statistics are publicly available (Energy Trends table 2.1.)

The government is committed to ending unabated coal power by 2025. As a result of our existing policies, including carbon pricing and our support for renewables, we have already made great headway in reducing our reliance on coal, which fell from 39% of electricity in 2012 to 5% in 2018. There are now regular coal free periods, and in May the UK went without running coal power generation for over two weeks – the longest coal-free period in the country since the 1880s.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 04 June 2019
Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government
Coal
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what consideration he has made of the implications of the level of stockpiles of coal for planning decisions on new and proposed coal mining operations, including those currently under consideration or review.
A
Answered by: Kit Malthouse
Answered on: 10 June 2019

The Government is committed to clean growth and is taking action to reduce our reliance on coal. We have set out our aim to end electricity generation from unabated coal by 2025 and we are also taking action to reduce coal use in industry and heating.

Our world leading plans to end electricity generation from unabated coal by 2025 are expected to further this trend, and I am delighted that 30 countries, 22 states and cities, and 28 businesses have signed up to our Powering Past Coal Alliance.

The National Planning Policy Framework makes clear that planning permission should not be granted for the extraction of coal unless the proposal is environmentally acceptable or the national, local or community benefits outweigh its likely impacts. The Framework is a material consideration in the determination of all applications for coal extraction in England. Given my quasi-judicial role in the planning system, it would not be appropriate to comment on the merits of current or future planning applications for coal extraction.

Grouped Questions: 259968 | 259969
Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
Asked on: 04 June 2019
Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government
Coal
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what assessment he has made of the implications of the Committee on Climate Change's report on net zero carbon emissions for (a) current and future planning decisions on coal mines for which approval has recently been granted, recommended or sought, and (b) planning guidelines for new coal mining applications and possible revision of the National Planning Policy Framework.
A
Answered by: Kit Malthouse
Answered on: 10 June 2019

The Government is committed to clean growth and is taking action to reduce our reliance on coal. We have set out our aim to end electricity generation from unabated coal by 2025 and we are also taking action to reduce coal use in industry and heating.

Our world leading plans to end electricity generation from unabated coal by 2025 are expected to further this trend, and I am delighted that 30 countries, 22 states and cities, and 28 businesses have signed up to our Powering Past Coal Alliance.

The National Planning Policy Framework makes clear that planning permission should not be granted for the extraction of coal unless the proposal is environmentally acceptable or the national, local or community benefits outweigh its likely impacts. The Framework is a material consideration in the determination of all applications for coal extraction in England. Given my quasi-judicial role in the planning system, it would not be appropriate to comment on the merits of current or future planning applications for coal extraction.

Grouped Questions: 259967 | 259969
Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 04 June 2019
Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government
Coal: Opencast Mining
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, if he will introduce urgently a presumption against all applications for deep or opencast coal mines in England.
A
Answered by: Kit Malthouse
Answered on: 10 June 2019

The Government is committed to clean growth and is taking action to reduce our reliance on coal. We have set out our aim to end electricity generation from unabated coal by 2025 and we are also taking action to reduce coal use in industry and heating.

Our world leading plans to end electricity generation from unabated coal by 2025 are expected to further this trend, and I am delighted that 30 countries, 22 states and cities, and 28 businesses have signed up to our Powering Past Coal Alliance.

The National Planning Policy Framework makes clear that planning permission should not be granted for the extraction of coal unless the proposal is environmentally acceptable or the national, local or community benefits outweigh its likely impacts. The Framework is a material consideration in the determination of all applications for coal extraction in England. Given my quasi-judicial role in the planning system, it would not be appropriate to comment on the merits of current or future planning applications for coal extraction.

Grouped Questions: 259967 | 259968
Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 05 June 2019
Department for Transport
Regional Airports: Air Pollution
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the Answer of 4 June 2019 to Question 256996 on regional airports: air pollution, what criteria his Department uses to define material impact in determining how a project affects the Government's ability to meet its carbon reductions target.
A
Answered by: Michael Ellis
Answered on: 10 June 2019

The Government recognises that climate change is one of the most urgent and pressing challenges we face and we are working to ensure the UK takes a leading role in tackling it.

In December 2018 the Government published a green paper consultation for a new aviation strategy, ‘Aviation 2050 – The future of UK aviation’. It commits the Government to ensure that the aviation sector plays its part by limiting greenhouse gas emissions and contributing to achieving the UK’s domestic and international climate change obligations.

The green paper also includes a proposal that “planning applications for capacity growth provide a full assessment of emissions, drawing on all feasible, cost-effective measures to limit their climate impact and demonstrate that their project will not have a material impact on the Government’s ability to meet its carbon reduction targets”. However, this proposal is still subject to consultation and is not yet the Government’s policy. The consultation closes on 20 June.

On 2 May the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) published advice to government, recommending the UK legislates for a 2050 net zero greenhouse gas emissions target. We await aviation specific advice from the CCC and will take this into consideration in the development of Aviation 2050, which is due to be published later this year.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 22 May 2019
Department for Transport
Aviation: Noise
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what recent discussions he has had with (a) the Health and Safety Executive and (b) Public Health England on the effect of aircraft noise on mental health.
A
Answered by: Michael Ellis
Answered on: 05 June 2019

Officials from the Department have regular discussions with Public Health England to discuss a range of matters, including issues relating to the effect of aircraft noise on mental health. Recent discussions include engagement in the development of the Government’s Aviation Strategy and PHE officials sit on the Department’s Airspace and Noise Engagement Group.

Ministers and officials have not had any recent discussions with the Health and Safety Executive.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 22 May 2019
Department for Transport
Aviation: Noise
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what recent discussions he as had with (a) the Health and Safety Executive and (b) Public Health England on the effect of aircraft noise on the health of communities under proposed flight paths.
A
Answered by: Michael Ellis
Answered on: 05 June 2019

Officials from my Department have regular discussions with Public Health England (PHE) to discuss a range of matters, including issues relating to the effect of aircraft noise on the health of communities under proposed flight paths. Recent discussions include engagement in the development of the Government’s Aviation Strategy and PHE officials sit on the Department’s Airspace and Noise Engagement Group.

Ministers and officials have not had any recent discussions with the Health and Safety Executive.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 21 May 2019
Department for Transport
Heathrow Airport
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the potential requirement for public funding to contribute to the construction of Heathrow's third runway.
A
Answered by: Michael Ellis
Answered on: 04 June 2019

The Government is clear that the Northwest Runway scheme at Heathrow will be financed in its entirety by the private sector. Ahead of the decision to designate the Airports National Policy Statement (NPS) the Government and its independent expert advisors concluded that, so far as can be assessed at this early stage of the process, Heathrow Airport Limited (HAL) is able to privately finance expansion without Government support.

The Airports Commission also concluded that the scheme is financeable without Government support.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 21 May 2019
Department for Transport
Heathrow Airport: Air Pollution
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what recent assessment he has made of the effect of a target of net zero carbon emissions by 2050 on the expansion of Heathrow Airport.
A
Answered by: Michael Ellis
Answered on: 04 June 2019

The Committee on Climate Change (CCC) published its report recommending a new target for the UK of net-zero greenhouse gas emissions by 2050 on 2 May 2019. We now need to carefully consider this advice and the recommended policy approach for aviation that the CCC will produce later in 2019.

The Airports National Policy Statement sets out several strict environmental red lines that must be delivered for a third runway to gain development consent. These include no expansion if the applicant cannot demonstrate that the scheme would not materially impact the UK’s ability to meet its carbon reduction targets.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 21 May 2019
Department for Transport
Regional Airports: Air Pollution
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether his Department plans to restrict the operation of regional airports to meet UK climate change targets.
A
Answered by: Michael Ellis
Answered on: 04 June 2019

In its Aviation 2050 consultation, the Government recognises that regional airports are often vital drivers for local economies, providing connectivity, employment, and a hub for local transport schemes. The consultation sets out proposals to ensure the sector grows sustainably, taking measures to mitigate its environmental impacts, including limiting carbon emissions.

The Government is proposing that applications for future growth will be required to provide a full assessment of emissions, drawing on all feasible, cost-effective measures to limit their climate impact and demonstrating that their project will not have a material impact on the Government’s ability to meet its carbon reductions target.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 21 May 2019
Department for Transport
Heathrow Airport
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the potential effectiveness of the level of the proposed penalty to be imposed on Heathrow airport in the event that it does not increase the number of passengers using public transport to access the airport by the time a third runway is operational.
A
Answered by: Michael Ellis
Answered on: 04 June 2019

The Airports National Policy Statement is clear that any application for development consent must include details of how the applicant will achieve a wide range of mitigations, including public transport mode share targets.

Mitigations included in a Development Consent Order or recommended as a result of examination will become requirements that are enforceable under the Planning Act 2008. The detail of these requirements, including any penalties, will flow from the planning process, but could include financial provision for remedial measures or operating restrictions. A breach of any requirement without reasonable excuse would be a criminal offence, and there are wide-ranging powers for the relevant planning authority to investigate and intervene should there be any breach, including by injunctions.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 21 May 2019
Department for Transport
Aircraft: Noise
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what recent discussions he has had with (a) the Health and Safety Executive and (b) Public Health England on the effect on health of aircraft noise.
A
Answered by: Michael Ellis
Answered on: 04 June 2019

Officials from the Department have regular discussions with Public Health England to discuss a range of matters, including issues relating to the effect of aircraft noise on health. Recent discussions include engagement in the development of the Government’s Aviation Strategy and PHE officials sit on the Department’s Airspace and Noise Engagement Group.

Ministers and officials have not had any recent discussions with the Health and Safety Executive.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 14 May 2019
Department for Transport
River Thames: Boats
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will publish the (a) dates on and (b) reports of all recorded (i) safety breaches and (ii) safety incidents involving (A) the Thames Clipper fleet and (B) other passenger boats on the River Thames since 2010.
A
Answered by: Ms Nusrat Ghani
Answered on: 20 May 2019

Operators are required to report certain incidents to the MCA and the Marine Accident Investigation Branch (MAIB). The MCA will liaise with the operator directly and no formal reports are published.

Between the beginning of 2010 and the end of 2018, the MAIB received reports of 44 accidents and incidents on the River Thames in the Greater London area that involved vessels in the Thames Clipper fleet and 190 accidents and incidents involving other passenger vessels on the Thames (excluding large sea-going vessels e.g. cruise ships). Investigations are carried out where the MAIB believes there are lessons for the industry to learn and then publishes reports on its investigations online.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 07 May 2019
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
St Helena: Fisheries
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, if he will publish the (a) permitted geographic catch locations and (b) permitted species and catch volumes under licenses sold by the Saint Helena Government to the Argos Fishing Company in (i) 2016, (ii) 2017 and (iii) 2018.
A
Corrected answer by: Sir Alan Duncan
Corrected on: 14 May 2019
An error has been identified in the written answer given on 13 May 2019.
The correct answer should have been:

The sale of commercial fishing licenses, and conditions within the licenses such as location and target species, are is the responsibility of the St Helena Government.

A
Answered by: Sir Alan Duncan
Answered on: 13 May 2019

The sale of commercial fishing licenses, and conditions within the licenses such as location and target species, are is the responsibility of the St Helena Government.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 07 May 2019
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
St Helena: Fisheries
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, if he will publish the price for which the Saint Helena Government sold commercial fishing licences to the Argos Fishing Company in (a) 2016, (b) 2017 and (c) 2018.
A
Answered by: Sir Alan Duncan
Answered on: 13 May 2019

The sale of commercial fishing licenses is the responsibility of the St Helena Government.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 07 May 2019
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
St Helena: Fishing Vessels
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, if he will publish the income from fishing vessel registration fees paid to the Saint Helena Government by the Argos Fishing Company in the years (a) 2016, (b) 2017 and (c) 2018.
A
Answered by: Sir Alan Duncan
Answered on: 13 May 2019

Any commercial agreements between Argos Fishing company and the St Helena Government are a matter for the St Helena Government.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 07 May 2019
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
St Helena: Fisheries
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, if he will publish the level of subsidy paid to the Saint Helena Fisheries Corporation from the UK public purse in the years (a) 2016, (b) 2017 and (c) 2018.
A
Answered by: Sir Alan Duncan
Answered on: 13 May 2019

Any financial support to the St Helena Fishery Corporation is determined by the St Helena Government.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 07 May 2019
Foreign and Commonwealth Office
St Helena: Fisheries
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, what the terms and conditions are under which fishing licenses are sold by the Saint Helena Government; how conditions on those licences are enforced by the Saint Helena Government; and if he will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Sir Alan Duncan
Answered on: 13 May 2019

The St Helena Government are responsible for selling and administering commercial fishing licences.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 24 April 2019
Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Passenger Ships
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what discussions he has had with the Department for Transport on the effect of the Maritime and Coastguard Agency’s proposals on older UK passenger boats on businesses and skilled maritime jobs.
A
Answered by: Kelly Tolhurst
Answered on: 07 May 2019
Holding answer received on 29 April 2019

My rt. hon. Friend the Secretary of State and BEIS ministers have not had any direct discussions with the Department for Transport (DfT) on the effect of the Maritime and Coastguard Agency’s proposals on older UK passenger boats on businesses and skilled maritime jobs. BEIS officials have reached out to the MCA and industry to further understand the issue raised. They also remain closely engaged with DfT on the delivery of the recently published Maritime 2050 strategy and to support growth ambitions across the maritime sector.

Should my hon. friend wish to discuss this issue, I would be happy to arrange a meeting.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 25 April 2019
Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
Passenger Ships
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Transport on the potential effect of the Maritime and Coastguard Agency’s proposals for older UK passenger boats on (a) businesses (b) investment and (c) skilled engineering jobs in boatyards.
A
Answered by: Andrew Stephenson
Answered on: 30 April 2019

BEIS officials remain closely engaged with DfT on the delivery of the recently published Maritime 2050 strategy and to support growth ambitions across the maritime sector. BEIS and DfT officials speak regularly about a range of topics.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 24 April 2019
Department for Transport
Kew Palace: Boats
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when he last met the (a) Royal Botanic Gardens and (b) Historic Royal Palaces to discuss the potential effect of the Maritime and Coastguard Agency’s proposals for older UK passenger boats on tourism and visitor numbers at (i) Kew Gardens and (ii) Kew Palace.
A
Answered by: Ms Nusrat Ghani
Answered on: 30 April 2019

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) consulted upon an Impact Assessment (IA) during a public consultation which ran from 6 November 2018 to 29 January 2019. Consultees were invited to comment on the validity of the analysis in the IA and encouraged to provide information that would help to strengthen this. The IA is now being updated to reflect the range of further information provided through consultee feedback.

This process is ongoing and policy officials in the MCA are happy to discuss impacts with any interested parties and take onboard relevant evidence for the assessment.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 25 April 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Electronic Equipment: Waste Disposal
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what estimate his Department has made of the volume of consumer electronics that end up in landfill.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 30 April 2019

The Government has not made an estimate of the volume of consumer electronics that end up in landfill. The 2013 Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Regulations seek to reduce the amount of WEEE going to landfill by encouraging its separate collection and subsequent treatment, reuse, recovery, recycling and environmentally sound disposal.

Reports on the amount of WEEE (both household and non-household) collected in the UK under the WEEE Regulations is published by the Environment Agency here: https://www.gov.uk/government/statistical-data-sets/waste-electrical-and-electronic-equipment-weee-in-the-uk.

Last year, producers financed the collection of 493,323 tonnes of household WEEE.

Additionally, based on a study carried out by the Waste and Resources Action Programme, we estimate that between 250k and 273k tonnes of large domestic appliances (cookers, washing machines etc.) are collected with scrap metal and recycled outside the WEEE system every year.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 25 April 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Electronic Equipment: Waste Disposal
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what guidance his Department issues on the processing of consumer electronics in landfill after metals have been harvested from them.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 30 April 2019

Defra has not issued any guidance on the processing of consumer electronics in landfill or removal from landfill sites after metals have been harvested from them.

The 2013 Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment (WEEE) Regulations seek to reduce the amount of WEEE going to landfill by encouraging its separate collection and subsequent treatment, re-use, recovery, recycling and environmentally sound disposal.

Defra has issued statutory guidance on the best available collection, treatment, recovery and recycling techniques (BATRRT) for WEEE at approved authorised treatment facilities. The BATRRT guidance sets out the minimum requirements which treatment facilities must comply with.

The guidance can be found here: https://webarchive.nationalarchives.gov.uk/20130403043343/http://archive.defra.gov.uk/environment/waste/producer/electrical/documents/weee-batrrt-guidance.pdf.

Q
Asked by Zac Goldsmith
(Richmond Park)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 24 April 2019
Department for Transport
River Thames: Boats
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, with reference to proposals from the Maritime and Coastguard Agency on older UK passenger boats, what discussions he has had with the (a) Mayor of London and (b) Minister for London on the loss of competition and choice on the tidal River Thames.
A
Answered by: Ms Nusrat Ghani
Answered on: 29 April 2019

Ministers have regular meetings with the Mayor of London and the Minister for London to discuss a range of matters.

The Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA) is in communication with the Competition and Markets Authority to ensure the effect of the proposals for harmonising safety standards on older and newer passenger vessels is acceptable from the perspective of competition and choice.

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