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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Q
Asked by John Lamont
(Berwickshire, Roxburgh and Selkirk)
Asked on: 25 January 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Polar Regions and Seas and Oceans: Waste
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what international representations are being made to reduce waste in the oceans in international waters and the Polar Regions.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 31 January 2019

The UK is committed to achieving Sustainable Development Goal 14 – preventing and significantly reducing marine pollution of all kinds. Marine litter is a global issue affecting every region of the world’s oceans and therefore needs global action. To achieve this goal we are working through a number of organisations and multilateral organisations.

We played a leading role within the G7 to drive ambitious action under the Ocean Plastics Charter in 2018 which has secured support from 16 governments and 20 businesses and organisations.

In April 2018 the Prime Minister launched the Commonwealth Clean Ocean Alliance, an action group under the Commonwealth Blue Charter that takes action on marine plastic pollution. Led by the UK and Vanuatu, 24 Commonwealth country members of the CCOA have pledged ambitious action to tackle plastic pollution. The CCOA is supported by a package of UK aid of up to £66.4m, which will provide technical assistance and boost much needed research and innovation to stop plastic entering the marine environment in the first place.

In the Polar Regions, the UK has maintained strong involvement in finalising the environmental aspects of the Polar Code, through the International Maritime Organization (IMO) and Protection of the Marine Environment Working Group (PAME). The Polar Code includes mandatory measures covering pollution prevention from various wastes. The dumping of plastic waste in Antarctica is prohibited and UK fishing operators are leading action to reduce plastic pollution released into Antarctic waters.

Q
Asked by Jeremy Lefroy
(Stafford)
[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: 28 January 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Litter
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how much funding his Department has allocated directly to (a) Keep Britain Tidy and (b) other anti-litter initiatives in each year since 2010.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 31 January 2019

The following table sets out the grant funding allocated to Keep Britain Tidy from 2010 to 2015:

Year

Grant

2010-11

£4.75 million

2011-12

£4 million

2012-13

£3.5 million

2013-14

£2.25 million

2014-15

£0.5 million

After 2015, no funding was specifically allocated to Keep Britain Tidy, but it has successfully bid for a number of litter-related contracts:

Year

Project

Contract value

2015-16

Analysis of Local Environment Quality Survey for England data 2014-15

£29,986

2017-18

Survey of roadside litter on trunk roads other than motorways

£79,000

2018-19

Economic valuation of the non-market benefits of dealing with specific types of litter that a Deposit Return Scheme in England would help to overcome

£41,525

Keep Britain Tidy was also awarded the following grant funding towards the delivery of national clear-up days in 2015-18:

Year

Grant

2015 (Community Clear-Up Day)

£9,500

2016 (Clean for the Queen)

£9,500

2017 (Great British Spring Clean)

£10,000

In 2017, we also launched the £450,000 Litter Innovation Fund (jointly funded by Defra and the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government), to pilot, implement and evaluate small scale local research projects that could be replicated more widely. The Fund was open to applications from councils, community groups, campaign groups and small/medium-sized enterprises. A total of £122,449 was awarded to 13 projects in the first round, including 4 awards to Keep Britain Tidy, totaling £39,717. Full details of all the first-round awards are available online at:

http://www.wrap.org.uk/content/litter-innovation-fund

Defra has spent the following amounts on the development of the national anti-littering campaign (none of this funding was paid to Keep Britain Tidy).

Year

Purpose

Amount

2016-2017

Initial scoping and research

£15,868

2017-2018

Development of campaign and partnership strategy and stakeholder research, as well as testing and development of a campaign identify

£124,412

2018-2019

Campaign branding, creative assets and launch.

£50,000

Since 2015, Defra has also provided £5,000 per year to the Marine Conservation Society to carry out beach cleaning at priority beaches.

No funding has been allocated to other anti-litter initiatives.

Q
(Hendon)
Asked on: 21 January 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Environment Protection: Crime
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what new initiatives his Department plans to bring forward to tackle environmental crimes.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 29 January 2019

The Secretary of State commissioned an independent review into serious and organised crime in the waste industry which was published in November last year. The Resources and Waste Strategy sets out our new strategic approach to tackling crime and poor performance in the waste sector and actions in response to the recommendations of the review. We will:

  • consult on a fundamental reform of the waste carriers, brokers and dealers system to ensure that the supply of waste to criminals is curtailed;

  • consult on mandatory digital tracking of waste movements; and

  • work with the Environment Agency to create a Joint Unit for Waste Crime to deal with the threat of serious and organised criminal gangs.

These actions will build on the strong action we have already taken, including by:

  • legislating to enable local authorities and the Environment Agency to issue fixed penalty notices to householders who breach their duty of care to only pass their waste to authorised operators who can dispose of it legally and safely. The penalties came into force on 7 January this year;

  • enhancing local authorities’ and the Environment Agency’s ability to search and seize vehicles of suspected fly-tippers and introducing new powers for the Environment Agency to block access to problem waste sites.

  • increasing the fixed penalties for littering offence, and introducing new powers to tackle littering from vehicles. From April this year, the minimum fixed penalty for littering will rise from £50 to £65; and

  • consulting on improved guidance to litter authorities on the proportionate and effective use of their enforcement powers. The new guidance will be published shortly.

Q
(Hendon)
Asked on: 21 January 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Environment Protection: Crime
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, how many fixed penalty notices were issued by local authorities for environmental protection crimes in each of the last five years.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 28 January 2019

Defra publishes annual fly-tipping statistics for England which include information on the number of fixed penalty notices issued in relation to fly-tipping offences only. This data is compiled on a financial year basis with the latest published data available for 2017/18. A summary of the annual figures on the number of fixed penalty notices issued by local authorities is given in the table below from the data published here: www.gov.uk/government/statistics/fly-tipping-in-england.

Fixed penalty notices issued for fly-tipping offences in England:

Year

Fixed Penalty Notices issued in relation to fly-tipping

2013/14

36,835

2014/15

38,149

2015/16

35,888

2016/17

57,271

2017/18

68,618

We do not collect any data on fixed penalties issued for other environmental offences such as noise, littering, dog fouling or abandoned vehicles.

Asked on: 10 January 2019
Department for Transport
Roads: Litter
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government which organisation has responsibility for clearing litter from motorways and trunk roads; and whether they also have powers to issue civil penalties to the owner of a vehicle from which litter is seen to be thrown.
A
Answered by: Baroness Sugg
Answered on: 23 January 2019

Highways England are responsible for cleaning litter on motorways and a small number of A roads. Local Authorities are responsible for clearing litter on all other A roads and All Purpose Trunk Roads.

District councils in England (outside London) have powers to issue civil penalties to the keepers of vehicles from which litter is thrown onto their roads. All local authorities can also prosecute or issue fixed penalties in lieu of prosecution for littering offences on any road within their area, including motorways. Highways England do not have any enforcement powers in respect of littering offences on the roads from which they are responsible for clearing litter.

Q
(Easington)
[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: 09 January 2019
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Fishing Gear: Labelling
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of introducing tagging for trawler fishing nets to identify the source of sea litter when those nets are washed up onshore.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 14 January 2019

The Government is committed to reducing plastic litter in the marine environment from all sources, including fishing. Governance is in place to address waste, including plastic, and there are voluntary schemes run here in the UK to encourage good practice.

For the purposes of fisheries enforcement, guidance is in place that requires masters of a fishing vessel using static gear or beam trawls to mark their fishing gear so that it is identifiable. If all or part of their gear is lost they must attempt to retrieve it as soon as possible. This would include trawler fishing nets. If they are unable to retrieve their lost gear they must notify the UK fisheries authorities.

At the 33rd Session of the Committee on Fisheries for the Food and Agricultural Organization, the issue of marine litter, and in particular lost or discarded fishing gear, was discussed at length. The UK supports the Committee’s endorsement of voluntary guidelines for the marking of fishing gear, which assist fisheries management organisations such as regional fisheries management organisations in the development and application of gear marking policy.

Work is now underway to begin the development of an extended producer responsibility scheme for fishing gear containing plastic. This will require producers to take responsibility for gear at the end of life stage, and schemes will be in place across the EU under the European Plastics Strategy.

Asked on: 12 December 2018
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Plastics: Bottles
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many plastic bottles they estimate are used in the UK each year; what proportion of these plastic bottles is recyclable; and whether cans and glass bottles do more harm to the environment than plastic bottles.
A
Answered on: 28 December 2018

Evidence received as part of a Government Call for Evidence suggests that UK consumers go through an estimated 14 billion plastic drinks bottles a year, all of which are recyclable. Whether they are actually recycled depends on the local collection service and demand in end markets.

The aim of good waste management is to maximise recovery of useful materials and minimise impacts on the environment. There is evidence of the gradation of harm to the environment from the presence of different materials, however the Government has not carried out any assessment of the relative impacts of different types of litter on the environment.

WRAP’s (Waste and Resources Action Programme) carbon ready reckoner assesses the carbon impacts of different types of packaging. WRAP analysis suggests that it is not the material that is the determining factor of its carbon footprint, but rather other considerations such as packaging weight, recycled content, performance, and management of the packaging at end of life. The carbon footprint of all packaging materials can be reduced through optimising recycled content and weight.

Different materials have different environmental costs and benefits and, as set out in the Resources and Waste Strategy, our goal is to maximise the value of the resources we use whilst minimising waste and its impact on the environment.

Q
Asked by Steve McCabe
(Birmingham, Selly Oak)
[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 December 2018
Attorney General
Crown Prosecution Service
Commons
To ask the Attorney General, pursuant to the Answer of 26 November 2018 to Question 194050 on Crown Prosecution Service: Staff, what other types of case were transferred to the police in the same period.
A
Answered by: Robert Buckland
Answered on: 10 December 2018

The Prosecution of Offences Act 1985 (the 1985 Act) provides that the DPP had a duty to take over the conduct of all criminal proceedings, save for specified proceedings.

Specified proceedings are designated by Section 3(3) of the Prosecution of Offences Act 1985 and the Prosecution of Offences Act 1985 (Specified Proceedings) Order 1999 (the 1999 order) and include most motoring offences which are commenced by the police in accordance with Section 12 Magistrates’ Courts Act 1980 by serving with the summons either a statement of facts about the offence or a copy of the written statements.

The 1999 order also provides that proceedings cease to be specified when a court begins to receive evidence. At that stage the duty for a prosecutor to conduct the proceedings engages.

Annex 1 provides the full list of offences falling within The Prosecution of Offences Act 1985 (specified proceedings) Order 1999) and including all amendments to date.

During the 2008 – 2018 period the following offences were added to the list of specified proceedings as follows:

Offences added in 2012:

No

Section

Statute

Offence

1.

s.3

Road Traffic Act 1988

Careless and inconsiderate driving

2.

s.35

Road Traffic Act 1988

Failing to comply with a traffic direction

3.

s.163

Road Traffic Act 1988

Failing to stop a motor vehicle or bicycle when required to do so by the police

4.

s.170

Road Traffic Act 1988

Failing to stop, report an accident or give information or documents when required to do so

5.

s.1(1)

Criminal Damage Act 1971

Criminal damage where the value of the property involved is no more than £5,000 (not including arson)

6.

s.12

Criminal Justice and Police Act 2001

Consumption of alcohol in a designated public place

7.

s.91

Criminal Justice Act 1967

Disorderly behaviour while drunk in a public place

8.

s.12

Licensing Act 1872

Being drunk in a highway, other public place or licensed premises

9.

s.63B(8)

Police and Criminal Evidence Act 1984

Failing to give a sample for the purposes of testing for the presence of Class A drugs

10.

s.12(3) and 14(3)

Drugs Act 2005

Failing to attend an assessment following testing for the presence of Class A drugs

11.

s.55 and 56

British Transport Commission Act 1949

Trespassing or throwing stones on the railway

12.

s.49

Fire and Rescue Services Act 2004

Knowingly giving a false alarm of fire

13.

s.5

Public Order Act 1986

Behaviour likely to cause harassment, alarm or distress

14.

s.11

Fireworks Act 2003

Contravention of a prohibition or failure to comply with a requirement imposed by or under fireworks regulations or making false statements

15.

s.80

Explosives Act 1875

Throwing fireworks in a thoroughfare

16.

s.87(1)

Environmental Protection Act 1990

Depositing and leaving litter

Offences added in 2014:

No

Section

Statute

Offence

1.

s.1

Theft Act 1968 (but only if the offence constitutes low-value shoplifting within the meaning of section 22A(3) of the Magistrates’ Courts Act 1980)

Theft (Shoplifting where the value of the stolen goods is worth £200 or less)

Annex 1 (Word Document, 147 KB)
Q
(Hendon)
Asked on: 02 November 2018
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Litter
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps he is taking to reduce littering in communities across the UK.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 08 November 2018

We published the Litter Strategy for England in April 2017, setting out our aim to clean up the country and deliver a substantial reduction in litter and littering within a generation.

We have launched the Litter Innovation Fund to support councils and communities in the development and evaluation of innovative approaches to tackling litter. From April 2018, we have also increased the maximum fixed penalty for littering and given councils in England new powers to tackle littering from vehicles.

The first annual report on our progress delivering the actions set out in the Litter Strategy was published in July this year, and we will continue to report annually on our progress for the rest of this Parliament.

Q
Asked on: 22 October 2018
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Seas and Oceans: Plastics
Lords
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they have any plans to use the UK fishing fleet to collect plastics from the seas around the UK on days when they are restricted from fishing.
A
Answered on: 05 November 2018

There is no scheme at this time to financially support fishing fleets in collecting litter from the sea during periods when fishing activity might be restricted. We encourage Fishing for Litter: an initiative which supports fishers in Scotland and Southwest England in collecting litter during their usual fishing trips. We also recognise the work that the many NGOs and charitable groups do in conducting beach cleans and litter collection at sea. We are reviewing what more can be done to reduce plastic in the marine environment and will set out our plans shortly in our Resources and Waste Strategy.

Q
Asked by Dan Jarvis
(Barnsley Central)
[R]
Close

Registered Interest

Indicates that a relevant interest has been declared.

[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: 30 October 2018
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Recycling
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether he plans to provide additional funds to local authorities to help them better carry out their recycling obligations.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 05 November 2018

Councils play a central role in achieving high recycling rates and we want to see them provide comprehensive waste and recycling collection services that have the support of local householders. We have provided local government with over £200 billion for this spending period and while councils make their own spending decisions, we would expect them to prioritise what they do to deliver what their residents want to see and to ensure good waste management practice.

The government has also announced in the Budget a fund of £20 million to tackle plastic waste and boost recycling. It also announced measures to place a tax on packaging that does not contain enough recycled content. The government will consult shortly on these measures and measures to reform producer responsibility. Future revenues raised from these will enable investment to address single use plastics, waste and litter to meet the government’s ambitions for resources, waste and recycling.

Q
Asked by Steve Double
(St Austell and Newquay)
Asked on: 24 October 2018
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Beverage Containers: Recycling
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what discussions he has had with the food and beverage industry on the introduction of a deposit return scheme for drinks containers.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 31 October 2018

In autumn 2017, the Voluntary and Economic Incentives working group held a call for evidence on measures to reduce littering of drinks containers and promote recycling. This included seeking evidence on the costs, benefits and impacts of deposit and reward and return schemes, and gave the food and beverage industry the opportunity to provide their views.

Defra officials held a stakeholder workshop, including representatives from the food and beverage industry, in June this year to discuss early thinking on a deposit return scheme and seek their feedback.

Defra Ministers and Officials continue to engage with stakeholders from the food and beverage industry on an individual basis to discuss issues related to introducing a deposit return scheme.

The Government has confirmed that it will introduce a deposit return scheme in England, subject to consultation later this year. The upcoming consultation will allow a further opportunity for the food and beverage industry to inform the development of any deposit return scheme.

Q
(Ribble Valley)
Asked on: 24 October 2018
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Plastics: Seas and Oceans
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps his Department is taking to reduce plastics that are present in oceans.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 31 October 2018

The UK has made significant progress to address the scourge of plastic in the oceans. Our ban on microbeads in cosmetic and personal care products, one of the strongest in the world, came into force in June 2018. We are also researching the management of other sources of microplastics such as microfibres in tyres and the textile industry, which will help to inform future policy measures. Our plastic bag charge has led to an 86% reduction in the use of plastic carrier bags and last year alone raised over £51million for environmental causes.

We are also consulting on banning or restricting the distribution and/or sale of plastic stemmed cotton buds, stirrers and straws.

The UK is committed to our international work to lead action on the global threat of marine litter. We continue to actively engage internationally through OSPAR, the G7 and the G20, and the UN. Earlier this year, the Prime Minister announced the Commonwealth Clean Oceans Alliance, a ground-breaking initiative working with our Commonwealth partners to reduce marine plastic pollution. To help deliver this, we committed an ambitious package of up to £66.4m of UK Aid to drive research and innovation and stop plastic from entering into the oceans in the first place. Through this alliance we will build on the UK’s world-leading microbeads ban and 5p plastic bag charge to harness the full power of the Commonwealth in safeguarding our marine environment for future generations.

Although 80% of plastic waste comes from land, 20% comes from oceans sources. Ghost fishing gear accounts for 10% of all plastic waste in the ocean and presents acute threats to marine life. That is why the UK signed up to the Global Ghost Gear Initiative (GGGI) in 2016, a pioneering scheme tackling lost and abandoned fishing gear on a global scale. Through this initiative we are committed to working with our partners to address the management of existing ghost gear and the mitigation of potential ghost gear.

Q
Asked by Tom Brake
(Carshalton and Wallington)
[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 October 2018
Treasury
Beverage Containers: Taxation
Commons
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, with reference to the report of the Environment Audit Committee, Disposable packing: coffee cups, published on 19 December 2017, HC 657, what steps he is taking to implement the Committee's recommendation to introduce a levy on disposable coffee cups.
A
Answered by: Robert Jenrick
Answered on: 31 October 2018

The government recognises the problems caused by disposable cups, which are difficult to recycle and often littered. The government’s view is that a levy on all cups would not at this time be effective in encouraging widespread reuse.

Businesses are already taking steps to limit their environmental impact, but the government expects industry to go further, and we will return to the issue if sufficient progress is not made.

In the meantime, we will look in the Resources and Waste Strategy at the best way to tackle the environmental impact of cups.

Q
Asked by Karl Turner
(Kingston upon Hull East)
Asked on: 16 October 2018
Department for Transport
International Maritime Organisation
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will list the UK Government delegation to the 73rd meeting of the International Maritime Organisation’s Marine Environment Protection Committee in London 22-26 October 2018.
A
Answered by: Ms Nusrat Ghani
Answered on: 24 October 2018

The UK delegation for the 73rd meeting of the International Maritime Organization’s Marine Environment Protection Committee will be as follows:

Head of Delegation

Ms Katy Ware, Permanent Representative of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland to IMO and Director of Maritime Safety and Standards, Maritime and Coastguard Agency (MCA).

Alternate

Mr Gwilym Stone, Assistant Director, Ship Standards, MCA.

Advisors

Mr Tom Newman-Taylor, Deputy Director, Maritime Environment, Technology and Innovation, Department for Transport (DfT).

Ms Katie Carleton, Head of Maritime International Environment and Climate Change, DfT.

Mr Ian Timpson, Senior Policy Advisor, Ship Emissions and Recycling, Maritime Safety and Environment Division, DfT.

Mr Ethan Hall, Policy Lead, Domestic Shipping Emissions, DfT.

Mr James Kopka, Economic Adviser, Aviation and Maritime Economics, DfT.

Mr Andrew Newnham, Assistant Economist, DfT.

Ms Mallory Sedgwick, Policy Advisor, DfT.

Mr James Brown. Head Marine Litter, Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs.

Ms Sophie Rogers, Marine Pollution Lead, Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs.

Mr Kevin Hunter, International Relations Manager (Technical), MCA.

Mr Andrew Wibroe, EU Exit Coordinator, MCA.

Mr David MacRae, Environmental Policy Specialist, MCA.

Mr. Bennett Ng, Environmental Policy Specialist, MCA.

Ms Lorraine Weller, Senior Policy Advisor, MCA.

Mrs. Leanne Page, Policy Advisor, MCA.

Ms. Katharine Palmer, Manager, Environment & Sustainability, Lloyd’s Register EMEA.

Mr Timothy Wilson, Principal Specialist, Lloyds Register, EMEA.

Ms Yue Yao, Principal Specialist in Charge, Statutory Section, Lloyd’s Register Asia.

Ms Anna Ziou, Policy Director, UK Chamber of Shipping.

Mr Robert Carington, Policy Advisor, UK Chamber of Shipping.

Dr Zabi Bazari, Managing Director Energy and Emissions Solutions.

Q
(Mid Dorset and North Poole)
Asked on: 08 October 2018
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Litter: Fines
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what information his Department holds on how many local authorities have increased the level of fines for littering since April 2018.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 16 October 2018

Defra does not collect data on the level of fixed penalties set by local authorities for littering nor on the extent of littering in each constituent part of England.

Grouped Questions: 176471
Q
(Mid Dorset and North Poole)
Asked on: 08 October 2018
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Litter
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether his Department has carried out a statistical assessment of the extent of littering in each constituent part of England.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 16 October 2018

Defra does not collect data on the level of fixed penalties set by local authorities for littering nor on the extent of littering in each constituent part of England.

Grouped Questions: 176470
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: 09 October 2018
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Animal Breeding
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what protections he plans to put in place to ensure that small breeders are not disadvantaged because of the planned imposition of the £1000 trading allowance in the forthcoming animal welfare legislation.
A
Answered by: David Rutley
Answered on: 15 October 2018

Under the Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018 which came into force on 1 October, dog breeders must be licensed if they are in the business of breeding and selling dogs, or if they breed three or more litters a year and sell any of the puppies. Guidance for local authorities reflects that the Government announced in 2016 a new allowance of £1,000 for trading income from April 2017. Anyone falling under that threshold will not need to be considered as a business, and the guidance is clear that the regulations are aimed at businesses and not hobby breeders.

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: 08 October 2018
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Dogs: Animal Breeding
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what plans he has to strengthen current regulations on the maximum number of litters that a breeding dog may have during its lifetime; and what measures he intends to put in place so that breeders are legally responsible for the welfare of breeding dogs once they have stopped breeding.
A
Answered by: David Rutley
Answered on: 11 October 2018

The Animal Welfare (Licensing of Activities Involving Animals) (England) Regulations 2018 came into force on 1 October this year, and require that no breeding dog is mated if it is under 12 months’ of age; gives birth to no more than one litter every twelve months; gives birth to no more than six litters in total; and is not mated if it has had two litters delivered by caesarean section. The maximum number of dogs that a breeding dog may have during its lifetime was agreed with key animal welfare organisations and veterinary groups prior to the new regulations being drafted. As with any dog it is the responsibility of the owner to ensure that the welfare needs of a retired breeding dog are met, as required under the Animal Welfare Act 2006. There are no proposals to make any changes to the regulations at this very early stage. The regulations are subject to review within 5 years.

Q
(Chipping Barnet)
[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 September 2018
Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
Fly-tipping and Litter: Fines
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what steps he is taking to encourage local authorities to impose fines for littering and flytipping.
A
Answered by: Dr Thérèse Coffey
Answered on: 13 September 2018

The Government published the Litter Strategy for England in 2017, setting out our approach of applying best practice in education, enforcement and ‘binfrastructure’ in order to deliver a substantial reduction in litter and littering within a generation.

The Litter Strategy sets out a number of proposals to improve enforcement against littering, including commitments to “support councils in using new powers to issue fixed penalties for small‑scale fly‑tipping offences”, and “deliver guidance to promote proportionate and responsible enforcement”. Alongside the Strategy, we also consulted on proposals to increase the fixed penalty for littering, and to give councils improved powers to take enforcement action against littering from vehicles.

Through the National Fly-tipping Prevention Group we have published guidance which sets out clearly the powers available to local authorities when tackling fly-tipping. It is the responsibility of local authorities to use the full range of enforcement powers available to them to tackle fly-tipping. The list of powers is online here: http://www.tacklingflytipping.com/Documents/NFTPG-CaseStudies/Fly-tipping-responsibilities-Guide-for-local-authorities-and-land-manage....pdf

With effect from April 2018, we have increased the maximum fixed penalty for littering from £80 to £150, and given councils in England new powers to tackle littering from vehicles. We have no plans to make further changes to the level of fixed penalties at this stage. It is for councils now to use these powers and some are already taking advantage of them.

We have also recently consulted on improved guidance on the proportionate use of these enforcement powers, which we propose to incorporate into the statutory Code of Practice on Litter and Refuse. That consultation closed on 8 June and responses are currently being considered. We expect to publish the revised guidance later this year.

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