Matthew Offord Portrait

Matthew Offord

Conservative - Hendon

First elected: 6th May 2010




There are no upcoming events identified
Division Votes
Wednesday 21st February 2024
Ceasefire in Gaza
voted Aye - against a party majority
One of 9 Conservative Aye votes vs 24 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 20 Noes - 212
Speeches
Thursday 22nd February 2024
Business of the House
Mr Speaker, you are entirely correct that the level of intimidation against hon. Members is unacceptable, but many of my …
Written Answers
Thursday 15th February 2024
Animal Welfare (Electronic Collars) (England) Regulations 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, why has he withdrawn the Animal Welfare (Electronic …
Early Day Motions
None available
Bills
Wednesday 22nd January 2014
Animal Welfare (Electronic Collars) Bill 2013-14
The Bill failed to complete its passage through Parliament before the end of the session. This means the Bill will …
MP Financial Interests
Monday 30th October 2023
3. Gifts, benefits and hospitality from UK sources
Name of donor: ELNET UK
Address of donor: Epworth House, 25 City Road, London EC1Y 1AA
Estimate of the probable …
Supported Legislation
Wednesday 2nd February 2022
Carbon Emissions (Buildings) Bill 2021-22
A Bill to require the whole-life carbon emissions of buildings to be reported; to set limits on embodied carbon emissions …

Division Voting information

During the current Parliament, Matthew Offord has voted in 707 divisions, and 29 times against the majority of their Party.

22 Mar 2021 - Trade Bill - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 29 Conservative Aye votes vs 318 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 300 Noes - 318
22 Mar 2021 - Trade Bill - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 26 Conservative No votes vs 318 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 319 Noes - 297
22 Mar 2021 - Fire Safety Bill - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 33 Conservative No votes vs 320 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 322 Noes - 253
9 Feb 2021 - Trade Bill - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 31 Conservative No votes vs 318 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 318 Noes - 303
2 Sep 2020 - Recall of MPs (Change of Party Affiliation) - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 41 Conservative No votes vs 47 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 55 Noes - 52
1 Jul 2020 - Finance Bill - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 12 Conservative Aye votes vs 316 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 254 Noes - 317
30 Jun 2020 - Immigration and Social Security Co-ordination (EU Withdrawal) Bill - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 5 Conservative Aye votes vs 331 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 255 Noes - 332
17 Jun 2020 - Divorce, Dissolution and Separation Bill [Lords] - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 23 Conservative Aye votes vs 283 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 31 Noes - 400
20 May 2020 - Liaison (Membership) - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 16 Conservative Aye votes vs 316 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 262 Noes - 323
10 Mar 2020 - Telecommunications Infrastructure (Leasehold Property) Bill - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 36 Conservative Aye votes vs 301 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 282 Noes - 306
27 Apr 2021 - Fire Safety Bill - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 31 Conservative No votes vs 320 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 320 Noes - 256
27 Apr 2021 - Delegated Legislation - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 77 Conservative No votes vs 222 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 431 Noes - 89
28 Apr 2021 - Fire Safety Bill - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 32 Conservative No votes vs 321 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 322 Noes - 256
20 Oct 2021 - Environment Bill - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 22 Conservative No votes vs 265 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 268 Noes - 204
3 Nov 2021 - Committee on Standards - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 13 Conservative No votes vs 247 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 250 Noes - 232
3 Nov 2021 - Committee on Standards - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 6 Conservative No votes vs 242 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 248 Noes - 221
14 Dec 2021 - Public Health - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 97 Conservative No votes vs 224 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 369 Noes - 126
14 Dec 2021 - Public Health - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted No - against a party majority - in line with the party majority and against the House
One of 60 Conservative No votes vs 258 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 385 Noes - 100
22 Jun 2022 - Health and Personal Social Services - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 61 Conservative No votes vs 106 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 215 Noes - 70
31 Oct 2022 - Genetic Technology (Precision Breeding) Bill - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted No - against a party majority - in line with the party majority and in line with the House
One of 276 Conservative No votes vs 1 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 37 Noes - 282
31 Oct 2022 - Genetic Technology (Precision Breeding) Bill - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 1 Conservative Aye votes vs 273 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 159 Noes - 280
31 Oct 2022 - Genetic Technology (Precision Breeding) Bill - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 1 Conservative Aye votes vs 272 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 136 Noes - 279
31 Oct 2022 - Genetic Technology (Precision Breeding) Bill - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted No - against a party majority - in line with the party majority and in line with the House
One of 269 Conservative No votes vs 1 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 141 Noes - 275
22 Mar 2023 - Northern Ireland - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 22 Conservative No votes vs 281 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 515 Noes - 29
22 Mar 2023 - CRIMINAL LAW - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 14 Conservative No votes vs 282 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 290 Noes - 14
13 Sep 2023 - Exiting the European Union - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted No - against a party majority and against the House
One of 3 Conservative No votes vs 271 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 434 Noes - 10
16 Jan 2024 - Safety of Rwanda (Asylum and Immigration) Bill - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 57 Conservative Aye votes vs 262 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 58 Noes - 525
16 Jan 2024 - Safety of Rwanda (Asylum and Immigration) Bill - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 58 Conservative Aye votes vs 262 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 68 Noes - 529
21 Feb 2024 - Ceasefire in Gaza - View Vote Context
Matthew Offord voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 9 Conservative Aye votes vs 24 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 20 Noes - 212
View All Matthew Offord Division Votes

Debates during the 2019 Parliament

Speeches made during Parliamentary debates are recorded in Hansard. For ease of browsing we have grouped debates into individual, departmental and legislative categories.

Sparring Partners
Jacob Rees-Mogg (Conservative)
(22 debate interactions)
Penny Mordaunt (Conservative)
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
(18 debate interactions)
Mark Spencer (Conservative)
Minister of State (Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
(13 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
Leader of the House
(27 debate contributions)
Home Office
(10 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
View all Matthew Offord's debates

Hendon Petitions

e-Petitions are administered by Parliament and allow members of the public to express support for a particular issue.

If an e-petition reaches 10,000 signatures the Government will issue a written response.

If an e-petition reaches 100,000 signatures the petition becomes eligible for a Parliamentary debate (usually Monday 4.30pm in Westminster Hall).

Petition Debates Contributed

Mark Allen, aged 18, drowned after jumping into a freezing reservoir on a hot day in June 2018.

In May 2019 we watched whilst 3 throwlines were installed where he died.

Mark could have possibly been saved if they were in place beforehand.


Latest EDMs signed by Matthew Offord

Matthew Offord has not signed any Early Day Motions

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Matthew Offord, and are more likely to reflect personal policy preferences.

MPs who are act as Ministers or Shadow Ministers are generally restricted from performing Commons initiatives other than Urgent Questions.


1 Urgent Question tabled by Matthew Offord

1 Adjournment Debate led by Matthew Offord

Thursday 11th May 2023

2 Bills introduced by Matthew Offord


The Bill failed to complete its passage through Parliament before the end of the session. This means the Bill will make no further progress. A Bill to prohibit the use on dogs of any electronic collar designed to administer an electric shock; and for connected purposes.

Commons - 20%

Last Event - 1st Reading: House Of Commons
Wednesday 22nd January 2014

The Bill failed to complete its passage through Parliament before the end of the session. This means the Bill will make no further progress. A Bill to make provision about the inclusion at local authority meetings of observances that are, and about powers of local authorities in relation to events that to any extent are, religious or related to a religious or philosophical belief.

Commons - 20%

Last Event - 1st Reading: House Of Commons
Wednesday 19th June 2013

2232 Written Questions in the current parliament

(View all written questions)
Written Questions can be tabled by MPs and Lords to request specific information information on the work, policy and activities of a Government Department
29 Other Department Questions
15th Nov 2023
To ask the Member for South West Bedfordshire, representing the Church Commissioners, if he will make an assessment of the contribution of church schools in (a) Hendon constituency and (b) the UK.

The Church of England educates over one million children in its 4,700 schools. Church of England schools are committed to the flourishing of children and deliver a rounded education that remains in high demand with parents. In Hendon an excellent example is St Mary's and St John's, a large, successful and thriving all-through school which yielded outstanding GCSE results this summer; the highest they have been.

The Church of England is one of the leading providers for leadership development, through National Professional Qualifications. These qualifications, in partnership with His Majesty's Government, have provided vital investment in leadership and teacher development at a time when attracting people into teaching faces numerous challenges. The Government's commitment in this area is welcome because it is a key part of ensuring improved outcomes for children, especially those who are most vulnerable.

The Church's contribution and vision for how the whole system can flourish is set out in Our Hope for a Flourishing Schools System - Foundation For Educational Leadership. It explains that Church schools "ensure a careful balance of wisdom, knowledge and skills in their curriculum planning, enabling their students not only to excel in examinations but releasing wise young leaders and courageous advocates, inspired and equipped to shape their future society. They are beacons of hope for the communities they serve, frequently standing as the most significant institution in a local area."

Andrew Selous
Second Church Estates Commissioner
15th Nov 2023
To ask the Member for South West Bedfordshire, representing the Church Commissioners, whether the Church of England is taking steps to advocate for freedom of religion and belief in other countries.

Over the past two years the Church of England has been closely involved with the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office in supporting the work of His Majesty's Ambassadors and diplomats, as part of a structured programme of engagement between the Church’s global networks and the civil service, to increase awareness of Freedom of Religion or Belief (FoRB).

The Church was represented at the Government conference in 2022 that highlighted the need for increased global action on FoRB and continues to support the International Panel of Parliamentarians for Freedom of Religion or Belief. More information about the work of the International Panel can be found here: https://www.ippforb.com/about/

Bishops of the global Anglican Communion came together for the Lambeth Conference in 2022 and spent a day discussing issues of interfaith engagement, human dignity and freedom of religion and belief. At the Conference a range of calls were made, outlining priorities for the Church worldwide. The documents relating to Freedom of Religion and religious persecution can be found under the Inter-Faith, Christian Unity and Human Dignity sections here: https://www.lambethconference.org/wp-content/uploads/2023/05/The-Lambeth-Calls-English-2023.pdf(opens in a new tab)

The United Nations Security Council has recently adopted a resolution to produce an annual report on freedom of religion and belief. It was sponsored by the United Kingdom and the United Arab Emirates, and the resolution was based on the former Bishop of Truro's review, commissioned by the UK Government. The Security Council adopted the proposal, which will see the UN Secretary General produce an oral report on FoRB-related threats to international peace and security.

Andrew Selous
Second Church Estates Commissioner
9th Nov 2023
To ask the Member for South West Bedfordshire, representing the Church Commissioners, what steps the Anglican diocese of Jerusalem is taking to help people impacted by the conflict in Israel and Gaza.

I am only able to answer on behalf of the National Church Institutions of the Church of England, and cannot on behalf of the Anglican Diocese of Jerusalem.

One of the significant contributions the Anglican Church makes as a global body is in the provision of healthcare. The Church of England is supporting the Diocese of Jerusalem’s request to launch a financial appeal to support the work of the Al Ahli Hospital in Gaza. More information is here: https://j-diocese.org/wordpress/2023/10/24/joint-gaza-appeal-letter-from-the-most-revds-hosam-naoum-and-justin-welby-the-anglican-archbishop-in-jerusalem-and-the-archbishop-of-canterbury/

Bishops in the House of Lords have committed to continuing to raise issues with His Majesty’s Government around the treatment of the Christian community in Israel, Gaza and the Occupied Palestinian Territories.

The Archbishop of Canterbury paid a pastoral visit to the Diocese of Jerusalem on the 19th of October where he met with Christian and Jewish leaders in both Israel and the Occupied Palestinian Territories. He also met with families affected by the attacks on the 7th October. More details of the visit can be found here: https://www.archbishopofcanterbury.org/news/news-and-statements/archbishop-canterbury-arrives-jerusalem-pastoral-visit-anglican-church#:~:text=The%20Archbishop%20of%20Canterbury%20has%20begun%20a%20pastoral,Archbishop%20in%20Jerusalem%2C%20the%20Most%20Revd%20Hosam%20Naoum.

Subsequently, the Archbishop spoke in a special debate in the House of Lords, and the House of Bishops released a joint statement, which can be read here: https://www.churchofengland.org/media-and-news/press-releases/house-bishops-oct-30-nov-1-2023

The Archbishop of Canterbury also addressed the conflict in his presidential address to the November meeting of the General Synod of the Church of England, which also included a pastoral message from the Archbishop of Jerusalem. You can read the presidential address here: https://www.churchofengland.org/media-and-news/press-releases/archbishops-presidential-address-synod The Archbishop of Jerusalem’s speech is available here: https://www.churchofengland.org/media-and-news/press-releases/archbishop-jerusalem-addresses-synod-call-ceasefire-and-plea-peace

Andrew Selous
Second Church Estates Commissioner
12th May 2023
To ask the Member for South West Bedfordshire, representing the Church Commissioners, what guidance has been published to assist with the security of churches.

The Cathedral and Church Buildings team of the National Church Institutions has been in touch with all Diocesan Advisory Committees to remind them of its security guidance, which is also available on the Church of England website here: https://www.churchofengland.org/resources/churchcare/advice-and-guidance-church-buildings/security-and-crime-prevention

The guidance includes details of safes that are compliant with current standards. Advice on the locking of churches during the day has not changed despite the recent spate of burglaries. Historic England and Ecclesiastical Insurance advice is that existing security alarms be extended to include the church safe, or the room in which the safe is housed.

Andrew Selous
Second Church Estates Commissioner
20th Sep 2022
To ask the Member for South West Bedfordshire, representing the Church Commissioners, what recent discussions he has had with the Church Commissioners about repair and renewal of the church estate.

The Church Commissioners and Archbishops' Council have agreed to funding of £11 million for 2023-25 in support of Buildings for Mission, which includes £2m for places of worship maintenance/repairs, and funding for up to 20 support officers to work with communities on the care of their church buildings. This is alongside a one-off commitment of £190 million (over nine years) to support the whole Church, including its buildings, in the transition towards Net Zero 2030.

12,500 church buildings are listed, with 45% of all England's Grade I listed buildings being cathedrals and churches. The average annual cost for the maintenance and repairs to parish churches alone is estimated at £150 million, and the maintenance of our churches across the country is mostly financed by generous local donors and volunteers. Support and advice, including on available grants, is available from ChurchCare: https://www.churchofengland.org/resources/churchcare

The Church remains grateful for the continuation of the Listed Places of Worship Grant Scheme and the Culture Recovery Fund. Money invested in church buildings has positive benefits to the wider community: the 2021 House of Good report by the National Churches Trust (https://www.houseofgood.nationalchurchestrust.org/) found that "the annual social and economic value of church buildings to the UK is worth around £55 billion. This sum, calculated using the latest HM Treasury Green Book guidance, includes the contribution churches make to wellbeing and to local economies."

The Church is committed to engaging with the Government on the implementation of the recommendations of the 2017 Taylor Review into the sustainability of church buildings (The Taylor Review: Sustainability of English Churches and Cathedrals - GOV.UK (www.gov.uk)).

Andrew Selous
Second Church Estates Commissioner
21st Jul 2022
To ask the President of COP26, what steps he has taken to help ensure delivery of promised climate finance from (a) the UK and (b) international partners; and what steps he plans to take towards that aim over the remainder of the UK's presidency of COP.

During COP26, 95% of the largest developed country climate finance providers made new, forward-looking climate finance commitments, with many doubling or even quadrupling their support for developing countries to take climate action.We are now encouraging all climate finance providers to bring forward their Progress Update to the $100bn Delivery Plan, led by German and Canadian Ministers.

Earlier this year, alongside the incoming Egyptian Presidency of COP27 and the High-Level Champions, we announced a new independent High-Level Expert Group on scaling up investment and finance to deliver on climate ambition and development goals.

In the recently published International Development Strategy, the Government reiterated the Prime Minister’s promise to double our International Climate Finance (ICF) contribution to at least £11.6 billion between 2021-2026. This sustained commitment will ensure that UK ICF is focussed on driving rapid transformation and systemic shifts required to achieve the Paris Agreement goals and deliver on the Glasgow Climate Pact.

Following the South African Just Energy Transition Partnership announced at COP26, we confirmed at the recent G7 Leaders meeting, that we are working in partnership with four additional developing countries which want to accelerate their clean energy transitions.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
11th Jul 2022
To ask the President of COP26, what discussions he has had with Cabinet colleagues on the progress the Department has made on delivering the Just Energy Transition Partnership with South Africa.

Following my visit to South Africa in June, I have briefed Cabinet Colleagues on the Climate Action Implementation Committee about the progress we are making. During my visit I met with the South African Inter-Ministerial Committee on the Energy Transition and we made public the formal 6-Month Update to Leaders agreed by South Africa and the International Partners Group (IPG).

The COP26 Unit is working with FCDO and other Departments, international partners and the South African government to support the design of an Investment Plan against which the $8.5bn can be mobilised.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
11th Jul 2022
To ask the President of COP26, what assessment he has made of the adequacy of the response of Commonwealth nations on tackling climate change.

Last month I joined the Prime Minister in Kigali for the Commonwealth Heads of Government Meeting (CHOGM). In the communique text coming out of this meeting, leaders renewed their commitment under the Paris Agreement to keep the increase in global average temperature to well below 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels and resolved to pursue efforts to limit the temperature increase to 1.5 degrees Celsius as outlined in the COP26 Glasgow Climate Pact. They also stressed the urgency of enhancing ambition and action in relation to mitigation, adaptation, and finance in this critical decade to address the gaps in the implementation of the goals of the Paris Agreement, and welcomed the substantive progress made at COP26.

Four Commonwealth countries have already come forward with new or strengthened NDCs since COP26: Australia, Gabon, Dominica, and Mozambique. We look forward to working with other member states to deliver on these commitments ahead of COP27.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
11th Jul 2022
To ask the President of COP26, what his priorities are for the remainder of the UK’s COP Presidency.

At COP26 in Glasgow all 197 Parties agreed to the Glasgow Climate Pact to urgently keep 1.5°C alive and finalise the outstanding elements of the Paris Rulebook. Through our COP26 Presidency, we are committed to working with international partners to deliver the commitments made at COP26.

On Mitigation, the Glasgow Climate Pact requests parties to revisit and strengthen their 2030 targets in their Nationally Determined Contributions (NDCs) as necessary to align with the Paris Agreement temperature goal by the end of 2022.

On Adaptation, we must demonstrate that sufficient progress is being made through the Glasgow Sharm El-Sheikh work programme on the Global Goal on Adaptation and on efforts to double climate finance for adaptation to developing countries by 2025.

On Finance, we will work on delivering the South Africa Just Energy Transition Partnership (JETP) announced at COP26 and continue discussions with potential future partners announced at this year's G7.

We will continue our ambition as an inclusive Presidency Year, collaborating across sectors and all parts of society to deliver effective climate action.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
11th Jul 2022
To ask the President of COP26, what progress the Department has made on the delivery of COP26 objectives at the Bonn Climate Change Conference in June 2022.

The June Intersessional on Climate Change brought together 5000 representatives across 180 parties to discuss issues relating to climate change ahead of COP27. Progress was made in many areas, including on the technical details of Carbon Markets (Article 6) following the direction set by COP26. Substantive policy discussions took place in forums created by the Glasgow Climate Pact, including workshops on the Glasgow Dialogue on Loss and Damage and the Global Goal on Adaptation, and Finance and Ocean dialogues. Parties and stakeholders also engaged positively in the first technical discussions under the Global Stocktake: the Paris Agreement’s ambition ratcheting mechanism.

More work remains to be done ahead of COP27 to drive practical action across all issues in line with the Glasgow Climate Pact and support reaching a successful outcome in Sharm El-Sheikh, and we are committed to delivering on this for the remainder of our COP Presidency.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
11th Jul 2022
To ask the President of COP26, what discussions he has had during his presidency with Small Island Developing States on climate mitigation and adaptation.

I have had regular engagement with the Small Island Developing States (SIDS) throughout the UK’s COP26 Presidency.

I have held meetings with representatives from many countries, and also with representative groups for the regions, including the Caribbean and Pacific regions, such as CARICOM and the Pacific Island Forum.

Over 2021 and 2022, I have visited Barbados, Antigua and Barbuda, and Jamaica. In all countries, my climate change discussions were wide-ranging and covered global climate ambition and mitigation, the urgency of climate adaptation and issues around loss and damage, among many other topics.

In addition to this I will visit Fiji later this month, and will also meet with regional institution representatives, civil society groups and climate champions during my time there.

Regional Ambassadors for COP26, Fiona Clouder and Ken O’Flaherty, have also discussed a wide range of topics with SIDS and conducted several visits.

The UK is committed to ensuring the voices of all SIDS are heard in the run-up to COP27, in partnership with Egypt as COP27 Presidency holders.


Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
11th Jul 2022
To ask the President of COP26, what assessment he has made of the progress of nations on submitting new Nationally Determined Contributions since COP26.

Since COP26, there have been 16 NDC submissions. This represents progress but the Government continues to work closely with partner countries and organisations to drive climate ambition, and to urge all countries to revisit and strengthen their NDCs by the end of 2022 to close the ambition gap and keep 1.5C within reach.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
27th Jun 2022
To ask the President of COP26, if he will hold discussions with his international counterparts on the potential merits of prioritising discussion of food sustainability at COP27.

To keep 1.5C within reach, we are engaging internationally to accelerate action on reducing agricultural carbon emissions while meeting the world’s growing need for food. At COP26 we held the Policy Dialogue on Accelerating Transition to Sustainable Agriculture bringing together 34 countries to catalyse efforts to deliver the global transformation in agriculture and land use by sharing their experiences and opportunities to deliver transformation through public policies and innovation. Following these discussions, we launched the Policy Action Agenda for Transition to Sustainable Food and Agriculture, endorsed by 16 countries, to set pathways and actions that countries can take to repurpose public policies and support to food and agriculture.

At COP27, it will be for Egypt to determine their agenda. In the lead up to this transition, we continue to work closely with Egypt as the incoming Presidency and meet regularly to discuss our priority work areas, this includes delivering on the commitments made in Glasgow and how they can be built upon for COP27.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
17th Nov 2021
To ask the Member for South West Bedfordshire, representing the Church Commissioners, whether he has had recent discussions with the Church of England on the number of asylum seekers who have converted to Christianity in the last year.

Specific discussion on that issue has not taken place. Data are not kept on the nationality or migration status of those who seek Baptism. Baptism is a sacrament ordained by God and must always be open to anyone regardless of race, nationality or status, so long as they meet the requirements set out in Canon law.

Andrew Selous
Second Church Estates Commissioner
17th Nov 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what assessment he has made of the progress made on tackling deforestation at COP26.

At COP26, more than 140 world leaders whose countries contain over 90% of the world’s forests endorsed the Glasgow Leaders’ Declaration on Forests and Land Use, committing to halt and reverse forest loss and land degradation by 2030. This powerful coalition of governments, businesses, Indigenous Peoples and civil society committed to a step-change in global action on forests. The political commitment is backed by almost £14 billion ($19.2 billion) in public and private funding, including £1.5 billion from the UK, which will support action in developing countries, including restoring degraded land, tackling wildfires and advancing the rights of Indigenous Peoples and local communities.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
17th Nov 2021
To ask the President of COP26, for what reason Shell were not invited to COP26.

As COP26 Presidency, we are working to encourage the innovation and commitment of everyone – people, business, countries, cities and regions – as we move the global economy to net zero emissions. This includes a wide range of energy companies.

The COP26 Presidency is working most closely with organisations that have strong climate credentials – that means companies which have committed to achieving net zero by 2050, have published a 5-10 year plan of action on how they will do this, and committed to Science Based Targets or joined the UN-backed Race to Zero.

Every country is responsible for choosing its own delegates and the UNFCCC was responsible for all accreditation to COP26.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
17th Nov 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what assessment he has made of the main outcomes of COP26.

Our key aims for COP26 were to keep alive the possibility of limiting the rise in global temperature to 1.5°C (mitigation); help the world to adapt to protect communities and natural habitats (adaptation); to accelerate the delivery of resources needed to fund the transition (finance); to complete the Paris rulebook, and to work together to deliver a safe and inclusive COP (collaboration).

We have delivered against those goals. Over 90% of world GDP is now covered by net zero commitments and 153 countries put forward new 2030 emissions targets. COP26 boosted efforts to deal with climate impacts and 80 countries are now covered by either Adaptation Communications or National Adaptation Plans. COP26 mobilised billions towards delivering the $100 billion climate finance goal and will reach it by 2023 at the latest. Through the Glasgow Climate Pact we have finalised the Paris Rulebook, and secured amongst other things a route to ambition raising on NDCs, increased funding for adaptation, and progress on action to manage loss and damage. The goal of limiting temperature rises by the end of the century to 1.5°C is still within reach. But this is based on commitments made and relies on concerted and dedicated delivery by all countries.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
17th Nov 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what assessment he has made of the actions that (a) China and (b) India will take to reduce the amount of coal burned in those countries as a result of COP26.

At COP26, all parties agreed to phase down the use of coal. The Glasgow Climate Pact secured its specific mention for the first time ever. In addition, China and India have both made commitments to act on climate change, and have endorsed the Glasgow Breakthrough Agenda. At COP26, Prime Minister Modi and Prime Minister Johnson jointly launched the Green Grids Initiative – One Sun One World One Grid, with over 80 signatories. India also announced a new commitment to have 50% electricity capacity from renewable sources by 2030, and China has committed to peak their carbon emissions before 2030. On coal power, both China and India committed to end overseas coal financing in the run-up to COP26.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
17th Nov 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what assessment he has made of the potential effect of the actions agreed at COP26 on the goal of limiting global warming to 1.5 celsius.

Our key aim was to keep alive the possibility of limiting the rise in global temperature to 1.5°C, and we have delivered. But this is based on commitments made and relies on concerted and dedicated delivery by all countries.

The UK Presidency has also given significantly more focus to championing real world sectoral action than ever before and as a result has garnered significant commitments across high emitting sectors of coal, nature and land use, road transport, and methane, critical to achieving a 1.5 degree pathway.

Pledges, initiatives and funding announced in Glasgow have contributed to reducing the significant gap to achieving 1.5. The Glasgow Climate Pact requests Parties to revisit and strengthen the 2030 targets in their nationally determined contributions as necessary to align with the Paris Agreement temperature goal by the end of 2022, taking into account different national circumstances.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
29th Oct 2021
To ask the President of COP26, if he will invite representatives of Royal Dutch Shell to COP26.

The UK Presidency did not invite Shell under the UK Delegation. As COP26 Presidency, we are working to encourage the innovation and commitment of everyone – people, business, countries, cities and regions – as we move the global economy to net zero emissions. This includes a wide range of energy companies.

The COP26 Presidency is working most closely with organisations that have strong climate credentials – that means companies who have committed to achieving net zero by 2050, have published a 5-10 year plan of action on how they will do this, and committed to Science Based Targets or joined the UN-backed Race to Zero.

14th Sep 2021
To ask the Member for South West Bedfordshire, representing the Church Commissioners, if the Commissioners will make representations to Church leaders on allowing people to marry in any church of their choosing.

Since 2008 a couple can marry in a Church of England church of any parish where either of them resides or is on the church electoral roll, or any parish where either was baptised, prepared for confirmation, or had formerly lived or worshipped. They also qualify if the parents of either of them have lived in the parish of that church, or have worshipped there, or the parents or grandparents of either of them were married there.

Being married in a church not only reflects the faith commitment of the couple but their connection to the communities to which they are linked, whether through present circumstances or family histories. This policy of ‘qualifying connections’ allows couples great flexibility in choosing their wedding venues while also maintaining those important community links.

There are many positive effects of attending a church in order to get married there and the website yourchurchwedding.org encourages couples to ‘just ask’ to find out how they can get married in church.

Andrew Selous
Second Church Estates Commissioner
7th Jul 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what mechanisms are in place to audit information provided to his Department by (a) regulatory bodies and (b) non-departmental public bodies.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to PQ 23158 on 6 July 2021.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
1st Jul 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what steps his Department has taken to raise international ambition for onshore wind ahead of COP26.

Accelerating the global energy transition from coal to clean power is a top priority of the UK COP26 Presidency. We are working with countries to expand the use of clean, renewable energy sources such as onshore and offshore wind. We launched the Energy Transition Council to bring together the political, financial and technical leaders of the global power sector to ensure that clean power is the most attractive option for new power generation for all countries. At the G7, members committed to achieving overwhelmingly decarbonised power systems in the 2030s. Wind generation will play an important role in delivering this in the UK, and internationally we are working closely with partners including the Global Wind Energy Council.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
11th Feb 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what steps he is taking as COP President to focus UK climate adaptation on flooding and coastal defences as part of the COP26 adaptation and resilience agenda.

In July 2020, the government published a Long-Term Policy Statement which sets out our ambition to make the UK more resilient to future flood and coastal erosion risk. The Policy Statement includes five policies and over 40 supporting actions which will accelerate progress to better protect and better prepare the country against flooding and coastal erosion.

The government is investing a record £5.2 billion to build 2,000 new flood defences over the next 6 years which will better protect 336,000 properties from flooding and coastal erosion. Long-term investment decisions should follow an adaptive approach which takes account of climate and demographic change over time to enable decision makers to identify the best combination of resilience actions and the right time to act and invest.

We are also investing an additional £200 million to further explore actions that will improve the resilience of communities at risk of flooding and coastal change.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
11th Feb 2021
To ask the President of COP26, how he plans to use the Presidency of COP26 as a global platform to help ensure that the humanitarian effects of climate change are considered when developing and financing responses to the covid-19 pandemic.

At COP26, adaptation and resilience will be a priority. We are calling on countries to agree and put in place delivery mechanisms for adaptation and loss and damage. As COP President Designate, I have engaged personally with over 50 countries. With donors, we have been clear that we must deliver for those that are at the front line of climate change and collectively honour the $100 billion commitment.

The UK Prime Minister launched an Adaptation Action Coalition (AAC) last month to mobilise action on adaptation and galvanize momentum ahead of COP26 and beyond and we want to encourage all parties to join. In partnership with the existing UNCAS Coalition, this will build on the Call for Action on Adaptation and Resilience to transform political commitments into tangible action on the ground.

We aim to enable action to avert, minimise and address loss and damage through wider resilience building and a specific focus on preparedness and response to natural disasters. This includes: expanding early action financing, improving early warning systems and the capacity to act on the risks they identify, and increasing insurance and social protection coverage, including through the Risk Informed Early Action Partnership (REAP) and other disaster risk reduction initiatives such as InsuResilience.

We are additionally continuing to support the Least Developed Countries (LDC) Initiative for Effective Adaptation and Resilience (LIFE-AR), which is an LDC-led, LDC-owned initiative to put in place the long term, locally responsive action that is needed to deliver a climate-resilient future.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
11th Feb 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what recent steps he has taken to engage with countries and communities most at risk of the effect of climate change in the run up to COP26.

At COP26, adaptation and resilience will be a priority. We are calling on countries to agree and put in place delivery mechanisms for adaptation and loss and damage. As COP President Designate, I have engaged personally with over 50 countries. With donors, we have been clear that we must deliver for those that are at the front line of climate change and collectively honour the $100 billion commitment.

The UK Prime Minister launched an Adaptation Action Coalition (AAC) last month to mobilise action on adaptation and galvanize momentum ahead of COP26 and beyond and we want to encourage all parties to join. In partnership with the existing UNCAS Coalition, this will build on the Call for Action on Adaptation and Resilience to transform political commitments into tangible action on the ground.

We aim to enable action to avert, minimise and address loss and damage through wider resilience building and a specific focus on preparedness and response to natural disasters. This includes: expanding early action financing, improving early warning systems and the capacity to act on the risks they identify, and increasing insurance and social protection coverage, including through the Risk Informed Early Action Partnership (REAP) and other disaster risk reduction initiatives such as InsuResilience.

We are additionally continuing to support the Least Developed Countries (LDC) Initiative for Effective Adaptation and Resilience (LIFE-AR), which is an LDC-led, LDC-owned initiative to put in place the long term, locally responsive action that is needed to deliver a climate-resilient future.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
11th Feb 2021
To ask the President of COP26, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that communities at highest risk are prioritised for support with climate adaptation programmes during COP26.

At COP26, adaptation and resilience will be a priority. We are calling on countries to agree and put in place delivery mechanisms for adaptation and loss and damage. As COP President Designate, I have engaged personally with over 50 countries. With donors, we have been clear that we must deliver for those that are at the front line of climate change and collectively honour the $100 billion commitment.

The UK Prime Minister launched an Adaptation Action Coalition (AAC) last month to mobilise action on adaptation and galvanize momentum ahead of COP26 and beyond and we want to encourage all parties to join. In partnership with the existing UNCAS Coalition, this will build on the Call for Action on Adaptation and Resilience to transform political commitments into tangible action on the ground.

We aim to enable action to avert, minimise and address loss and damage through wider resilience building and a specific focus on preparedness and response to natural disasters. This includes: expanding early action financing, improving early warning systems and the capacity to act on the risks they identify, and increasing insurance and social protection coverage, including through the Risk Informed Early Action Partnership (REAP) and other disaster risk reduction initiatives such as InsuResilience.

We are additionally continuing to support the Least Developed Countries (LDC) Initiative for Effective Adaptation and Resilience (LIFE-AR), which is an LDC-led, LDC-owned initiative to put in place the long term, locally responsive action that is needed to deliver a climate-resilient future.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
20th Jan 2021
To ask the President of COP26, how many departmental staff will be attending COP26 in an official capacity with their expenses covered.

Numbers on departmental staff attending COP26 are to be determined in due course.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
23rd Jan 2024
To ask the Attorney General, what targets her Department has set to help achieve the Government's commitments on net zero.

As part of the greening government commitments framework, set for the period between April 2021 to March 2025, the Attorney General’s Office’s overall and direct emissions reduction targets are 49% and 25%, respectively.

Robert Courts
Solicitor General (Attorney General's Office)
27th Jun 2023
To ask the Attorney General, what steps the Crown Prosecution Service is taking to adopt a child-first approach to prosecuting people under the age of 18.

Each CPS Area has a lead prosecutor for cases involving children, who is equipped to deal with complex casework and provide support to other prosecutors.

In May 2023, the CPS published the single biggest update to their legal guidance on Children as Suspects and Defendants, which can be found here: Children as suspects and defendants | The Crown Prosecution Service (cps.gov.uk). This guidance sets out the approach prosecutors should take when applying the Code for Crown Prosecutors when deciding whether to prosecute children. This update incorporates all recent policy, terminology, and legislative updates, and is intended to reflect a ‘Child First’ justice principle.

Michael Tomlinson
Minister of State (Minister for Illegal Migration)
27th Jun 2023
To ask the Attorney General, what recent assessment she has made of the potential impact of Operation Soteria on the level of prosecution for rape offences.

Operation Soteria is a significant step-change in Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) and Police ways of working to ensure national consistency in the approach to handling adult rape cases.

Since the launch of Operation Soteria pilots, the CPS has observed consistent improvements in performance on rape prosecutions.

For example, in CPS London North we have seen significant improvements in our prosecutions flagged as adult rape, with a 24% increase in the calendar year 2022 compared to 2021. Similarly, charging decisions on cases flagged as adult rape have also increased in CPS London North, by 41% in the calendar year 2022 compared to 2021.

Michael Tomlinson
Minister of State (Minister for Illegal Migration)
27th Jun 2023
To ask the Attorney General, what discussions she has had with Cabinet colleagues on the operation of the special mechanism of justice for the investigation and judicial examination of crime by occupiers in Ukraine announced by President Zelensky in April 2022.

Accountability for Russia’s actions is one of the key tenets of UK foreign policy on the Ukraine crisis – alongside military, economic, and humanitarian support. The UK is genuinely a practical and thought leader on this.

There are three broad strands to our work on accountability. First, the UK has provided expert assistance to assist Ukrainian investigators and prosecutors. Second the UK, alongside the international community, will continue to provide the International Criminal Court with the funding, people, and expertise to ensure justice is served. Third, we are exploring options to hold Russia accountable for the Crime of Aggression.

On 20 January 2023, the Foreign Secretary announced that the UK had accepted Ukraine’s invitation to join a core group of States to shape thinking on how to ensure criminal accountability for Russia’s aggression against Ukraine. On 4 March 2023 at the United for Justice conference in Lviv, it was announced that an International Centre for the Prosecution of Crimes of Aggression against Ukraine will be established in The Hague, within the structure of Eurojust’s Joint Investigation Team for Ukraine. I represented the UK at that conference.

On 18 April 2023, the Foreign Ministers of the G7 countries issued a joint communiqué stating that they “support exploring the creation of an internationalized tribunal based in Ukraine’s judicial system to prosecute the crime of aggression against Ukraine.” On 26 June 2023 the Ukrainian Prosecutor General and I attended an event hosted by the Slynn Foundation which considered impunity and justice and accountability for Ukraine.

I continue to have discussions on the principle and practicalities of accountability mechanisms with Cabinet colleagues, including the Foreign Secretary and Lord Chancellor on a regular basis. In addition, I have regular discussions with our Ukrainian allies and my international counterparts on these issues.

Victoria Prentis
Attorney General
27th Jun 2023
To ask the Attorney General, what assessment she has made of the adequacy of the level of prosecution of serious violent crime in London.

Serious violent crime encompasses many different crime types but is more commonly associated with drug crime, knife crime, gun crime and homicide.

  • In 2022, CPS London prosecuted 10,675 defendants allocated the principal offence category of Drugs Offences with a conviction rate of 87.4%.
  • In the same period, CPS London prosecuted 255 defendants allocated the principal offence category of Homicide with a conviction rate of 78.0%.
  • In 2022, CPS London charged 3,734 knife crime offences under Section 139 of the Criminal Justice Act 1988 and 2,624 offences under Section 1 of the Prevention of Crime Act 1953.
  • In 2022, CPS London charged 1411 firearms offences under the Firearms Act 1968.

Michael Tomlinson
Minister of State (Minister for Illegal Migration)
19th Apr 2023
To ask the Attorney General, if she will make an assessment of the adequacy of support provided to Crown Prosecution Service lawyers prosecuting rape and serious sexual offences in London.

The CPS has a comprehensive programme of learning and wellbeing support for all lawyers prosecuting rape and serious sexual offences, including those in London. All lawyers dealing with such casework are required to undertake bespoke training providing a clear understanding of the complexities surrounding the offence, the suspect centric approach, the impact of trauma upon victim’s memory and how to reach Code compliant decisions and assessment of evidence. The wellbeing of all lawyers and paralegals dealing with such offences is paramount and as such, timely and accessible wellbeing support mechanisms are in place to support the mental and physical wellbeing of those dealing with traumatic material.

Michael Tomlinson
Minister of State (Minister for Illegal Migration)
19th Apr 2023
To ask the Attorney General, what recent discussions she has had with the Ukrainian Prosecutor General on the progress of criminal investigations and prosecutions in that country into potential war crimes perpetrated during the Russian invasion.

The United Kingdom stands shoulder to shoulder with Ukraine in its fight for accountability for Russia’s actions.

The Attorney General has regular contact with her Ukrainian counterpart, Prosecutor General Andriy Kostin. She visited him in Kyiv and joined him at Ukraine’s United for Justice conference in Lviv over 3 to 5 March, and more recently hosted him in London for the UK-Dutch Justice Ministers’ Conference in support of the International Criminal Court’s investigation into the situation in Ukraine.

Prosecutor General Kostin is responsible for the extraordinary task of investigating and prosecuting crimes committed in Ukraine and has opened over 80,000 files covering a range of alleged offences. The Ukrainian authorities have brought successful war crimes prosecutions already in Ukraine’s domestic courts, in real time during this live and brutal conflict – a practically unprecedented achievement.

We are supporting Ukraine in their domestic legal processes through a number of significant initiatives. We have recently concluded a judicial training programme in the region, led by Sir Howard Morrison KC, training over 100 judges in person on the conduct of war crimes trials.

The UK, together with the United States and EU, has also launched the Atrocity Crimes Advisory Group (ACA) to directly support the War Crimes Units of the Office of the Prosecutor General of Ukraine in its investigation and prosecution of conflict-related crimes. The ACA seeks to streamline coordination and communication efforts to ensure best practices, avoid duplication of efforts, and encourage the expeditious deployment of financial resources and skilled personnel to respond to the needs of the OPG as the legally constituted authority in Ukraine responsible for dealing with the prosecution of war crimes on its own territory.

This government remains steadfast in its ongoing support to Ukraine’s search for justice.

Michael Tomlinson
Minister of State (Minister for Illegal Migration)
18th Apr 2023
To ask the Attorney General, what steps the Crown Prosecution Service is taking to increase its number of legal trainees.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) runs an award-winning and highly competitive legal trainee scheme that has seen hundreds of trainees undertake a training contract and/or pupillage across England and Wales with the CPS since 2012. The CPS has extended its post graduate qualification requirements, to include not only the LPC and Bar Qualification, but the new Solicitors Qualifying Examination, which opens a career in law to a broader and more diverse audience.

Michael Tomlinson
Minister of State (Minister for Illegal Migration)
9th Jan 2023
To ask the Attorney General, what proportion of her Department’s employees work from home at least one day a week.

The Attorney General’s Office do not monitor individuals’ attendance in the office and are unable to provide the proportion of employees working from home at least one day a week. Overall occupancy data is published https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/civil-service-headquarters-occupancy-data. Decisions about workforce and working arrangements are delegated to individual departments and the AGO expect employees to attend the workplace for a minimum of 40% of their time. Over the past two years, the Civil Service has had to work in a more agile way whilst still delivering essential public services. Before the pandemic, most departments worked on a basis of a ratio of desks to staff and that remains the case – so hybrid working arrangements are not new. No office operates at 100% occupancy given there will always be a number of reasons why staff may be out of the office, for example people being on annual leave, attending meetings off site or external visits.

Michael Tomlinson
Minister of State (Minister for Illegal Migration)
2nd Sep 2022
To ask the Attorney General, how many (a) males and (b) females have been charged with the offence of rape in England in each of the last three years.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) does not hold any data which shows the number of suspects charged with the offence of rape. However, management information is held showing the number of suspects charged, by sex, flagged as involving allegations of rape where the CPS authorised a charge and a prosecution has commenced in each of the last three years ending March 2022. The table below shows the number of decisions to charge, in rape flagged cases by the sex of suspects, where this has been identified.

2019-2020

2020-2021

2021-2022

Female

22

41

24

Male

1,831

1,905

2,179

Data Source: CPS Case Management Information System

Decisions to charge are where CPS is satisfied that the legal test for prosecution, set out in the Code for Crown Prosecutors is met: there is enough evidence to provide a ‘realistic prospect of conviction’ against each defendant and the prosecution is in the public interest.

29th Jun 2022
To ask the Attorney General, what recent assessment her Department has made of the effectiveness of the Unduly Lenient Sentence Scheme.

The Unduly Lenient Scheme allows the Law Officers to refer sentences passed for the most serious criminal offences to the Court of Appeal for review. The Court of Appeal has the power to increase a sentence on referral in the rare cases where the sentencing judge has fallen into gross error and imposed a sentence which is outside the reasonable range. This is an important mechanism in our criminal justice system to ensure that such sentences are commensurate with the seriousness of the offending and give the victims of crime confidence that justice will be served.

In the course of this year the Law Officers have successfully referred sentences for a variety of offences including controlling and coercive behaviour, rape of a child, rape, kidnapping and robbery. Earlier this year, the Attorney General successfully argued in person before the Court of Appeal that the sentence imposed on Stephen Gibbs for the attempted murder of his ex-partner was unduly lenient. The Court of Appeal increased his sentence from 13 years’ imprisonment with a licence extension of 5 years to 20 years and 7 months’ imprisonment with a licence extension of 5 years.

8th Dec 2021
To ask the Attorney General, what assessment she has made of trends in the level of prosecutions of offences under the Modern Slavery Act 2015 in each of the last five years.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) has had considerable success in increasing prosecutions of modern slavery cases involving the exploitation of vulnerable people. In addition to the number of offences charged by way of the Modern Slavery Act 2015, CPS records identify the number of defendants prosecuted for offences related to modern slavery, including conspiracy to commit Modern Slavery Act offences, which is charged under s1 of the Criminal Law Act 1977 . The number of defendants who have been prosecuted for modern slavery offences increased from 284 in 2017-18 to 322 in 2020-21, an increase of 13.4%. The increase has been achieved despite the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Alex Chalk
Lord Chancellor and Secretary of State for Justice
11th Mar 2021
To ask the Attorney General, what steps he is taking to increase public understanding of the law during the covid-19 outbreak.

Public understanding of the law is even more essential during this unique time when individuals are facing unprecedented challenges. Public legal education is vital to help people to understand the law, their rights, and their responsibilities, and I am proud to work closely with the legal and third sector as part of my Public Legal Education Committee to support and promote this work.

The Attorney General’s Office has also recently supported Justice Week this year, delivered digitally at the start of March. It is a testament to the sector’s commitment to supporting the public in times of crisis that pro bono support and public legal education across the country has continued in spite of the COVID-19 outbreak.

Lucy Frazer
Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport
11th Mar 2021
To ask the Attorney General, what Departmental oversight is exercised over the decisions of the CPS Complex Casework Units.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) Complex Casework Units (CCUs) undertake some of the most complex and serious casework handled by the CPS. A recent report published by Her Majesty’s Crown Prosecution Service Inspectorate (HMCSPI) found that CCUs are staffed by highly dedicated, skilled and professional teams who deliver high quality casework, often in demanding circumstances.

CCUs are overseen through a structure of experienced legal managers including Unit Heads, Deputy Chief Crown Prosecutors and Chief Crown Prosecutors. The Report identified evidence of effective and regular meetings and conversations between lawyers and managers about casework. They also identified evidence of national oversight with the referral of relevant cases being made to Headquarters for consideration.

Lucy Frazer
Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport
17th Jan 2020
To ask the Attorney General, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that the CPS has adequate resources to tackle hate crime on social media.

The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) is committed to robustly prosecuting online hate crime cases, including offline offences with online elements. The CPS works closely with partners across Government under the hate crime action plan.

On 12 August 2019, the Prime Minister announced an investment of an additional £85 million for the CPS. The work carried out by the CPS is changing, and this new funding will provide the increased capacity to enable the CPS to respond effectively to challenging trends, such as an increase in online crime and the volume of digital evidence.

17th Jan 2020
To ask the Attorney General, whether the provisions in the EU (Withdrawal Agreement) Bill will enable the UK to determine the circumstances in which lower courts will have regard to rulings of the European Court of Justice in relation to retained EU case law.

Section 26 of the European Union (Withdrawal Agreement) Act 2020 provides a power for Ministers to make regulations to determine which Courts may depart from judgments handed down by the Court of Justice of the European Union before the end of the implementation period and in what circumstances. This will ensure UK courts are not inappropriately bound by retained EU case law after the UK has left the EU.

17th Jan 2020
To ask the Attorney General, whether the UK will remain a party to the European Convention on Human Rights after the UK leaves the EU.

The UK will remain party to the ECHR after it has left the EU. The UK has strong human rights protections within a comprehensive and well-established constitutional and legal system and the decision to leave the EU does not change this.

23rd Jan 2024
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what targets his Department has set to help achieve the Government's commitments on net zero.

The Cabinet Office Core Estate is currently focused on reducing its carbon emissions by 52% against its Greening Government Commitment 2017/18 baseline and the Net Zero target of 2050.

The Government set out how we would meet our commitments in the Net Zero Strategy in 2021 which included a detailed breakdown of actions required across all sectors in the economy. This was updated in 2023 through the publication of ‘Powering Up Britain’.

The UK has halved its emissions, ahead of every other major economy, and we have grown our economy by over 70% since 1990. The UK over-achieved against the first and second carbon budgets, and the latest projections show that we are on track to meet the third.

We have one of the most ambitious decarbonisation targets in the world, and we have set more stretching targets for 2030 than most countries. We plan to cut emissions by 68% by 2030, which is more than the EU, Japan or the United States.

Alex Burghart
Parliamentary Secretary (Cabinet Office)
27th Nov 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment he has made of the potential impact of the responsibilities of the Cabinet Secretary being covered by other civil servants during the Cabinet Secretary's absence on the effectiveness of the Civil Service.

The Cabinet Secretary is currently on a period of medical leave. He is expected back in January. At the beginning of his medical leave, Ministers approved temporary arrangements under which a number of permanent secretaries and other senior officials are covering his responsibilities.

This includes Alex Chisholm, as Chief Operating Officer of the Civil Service and Chair of the Civil Service Board, Chris Wormald, as Chair of the Senior Leadership Committee, and Sarah Healey, as Chair of the People Board. These arrangements remain in place and are working well.

John Glen
Paymaster General and Minister for the Cabinet Office
13th Nov 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how much each Secretary of State who has resigned in the last three years received as severance pay.

Details of the severance payments made to ministers when leaving office are published in departments’ annual reports and accounts.

John Glen
Paymaster General and Minister for the Cabinet Office
14th Sep 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how much funding his Department has requested from the Exchequer for next year’s Conflict, Security and Stability Fund allocation.

As announced in March, the Conflict, Stability and Security Fund (CSSF) fund will be replaced by a new UK Integrated Security Fund (UKISF) from 2024/25. The new Fund will support the implementation of key Integrated Review Refresh (IRR) objectives, funding projects both at home and overseas to tackle some of the most complex national security challenges facing the UK and its partners. As part of this approach, funding will be raised to almost £1 billion in 2024/25.

Alex Burghart
Parliamentary Secretary (Cabinet Office)
1st Sep 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent discussions he has had with the EU on references to the United Kingdom being removed from EU tender.

Following the UK’s exit from the EU, the UK is no longer bound by EU procurement laws. Through the Procurement Bill, we now have an opportunity to develop and implement a new procurement regime.

However, UK and EU suppliers continue to enjoy reciprocal access to each other's public procurement marketplaces through our commitments in free trade agreements such as the UK/EU Trade & Cooperation Agreement and the WTO Government Procurement Agreement.

Alex Burghart
Parliamentary Secretary (Cabinet Office)
1st Sep 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will make it his policy to introduce legislation to amend the Ministerial Salaries Act 1975 to cover all ministerial positions.

The Government has no current plans to amend the Ministerial and Other Salaries Act (1975), which covers all types of ministerial office.

Alex Burghart
Parliamentary Secretary (Cabinet Office)
18th Apr 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, whether his Department is taking steps to ensure that goods produced by the forced labour of Uyghur Muslims in China are not included in any Government procurement contracts.

HM Government is committed to preventing modern slavery occurring in public sector supply chains. The Cabinet Office has published commercial policy and guidance setting out the steps that all Government departments must take to identify and mitigate modern slavery and labour abuse risks throughout the commercial life cycle - focusing on the areas of highest risk. This policy is mandatory for all Central Government Departments, their Executive Agencies and Non-Departmental Public Bodies.

The Government has taken a number of measures to help ensure that no British organisations are profiting from or contributing to human rights violations against the Uyghurs or other minorities. We have introduced guidance for UK businesses on the risks of conducting business in Xinjiang, implemented enhanced export controls, and committed to introducing new procurement guidance for Government bodies as well as financial penalties for non-compliance with section 54 of the Modern Slavery Act.

The Procurement Bill, which is being considered by Parliament, strengthens the rules around excluding suppliers due to serious misconduct anywhere in their operations, including the supply chain. This includes explicit provision for suppliers to be prevented from bidding for contracts where there is evidence of their involvement in modern slavery.

Alex Burghart
Parliamentary Secretary (Cabinet Office)
28th Feb 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, whether his Department has provided guidance for (a) civil servants and (b) other people who work for Government departments on the use of TikTok on devices issued by their employers.

We continue to monitor potential threats to our systems and data and will not hesitate to take further action if necessary.

With regards to potential security risks, His Majesty’s Government does not comment on these matters.

Alex Burghart
Parliamentary Secretary (Cabinet Office)
3rd Feb 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment his Department has made of trends in the level of regional productivity rates in England.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority.

A response to the Hon. Member's Parliamentary Question of 3 February is attached.

3rd Feb 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment his Department has made of the comparative level of productivity between England, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority.

A response to the Hon. Member's Parliamentary Question of 3 February is attached.

3rd Feb 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment his Department has made of the comparative level of productivity between the UK and EU countries.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority.

A response to the Hon. Member's Parliamentary Question of 3 February is attached.

9th Jan 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many and what proportion of their Department’s employees work from home at least one day a week.

I refer the Rt Hon Lady to the data on Civil Service headquarters occupancy which is published on Gov.UK. Although the data does not provide exact figures in response to the member’s question, data does provide the daily average staff working in the HQ building - 70 Whitehall as a percentage of staff in the office of current daily capacity.

In the Cabinet Office, we have organised our estate to make maximum use of our office space. This will mean that most people will spend time in the office each week allowing them to realise the benefits of face to face collaborative working. There will be a mix of working patterns across the department depending on business need and the job role, which means attendance at the office may be different each week.

1st Nov 2022
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment his Department has made of the potential merits of using Artificial Intelligence in the delivery of public services.

Safe and ethical use of artificial intelligence (AI) offers opportunities for the Government to improve the delivery of public services. The Cabinet Office has published joint guidance on the use of artificial intelligence in the public sector. This explores how AI can benefit the delivery of public services. It is important to also consider ethics and safety in each use case. To this end, the Central Digital and Data Office (CDDO) has partnered with the Centre for Data Ethics and Innovation to develop the UK algorithmic transparency data standard.

CDDO is also baselining the performance of public services and looking at opportunities for public service improvement that can be realised through digital, data and technology. AI is a possible route to realising some of these opportunities. The Government has committed to systematically identify and capture opportunities arising from emerging technologies, such as AI, by 2025.

19th Oct 2022
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what estimate his Department has made of the number of pubs that have closed in the last 12 months.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority.

A response to the Hon. Member's Parliamentary Question of 19 October is attached.

18th Jul 2022
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many deaths his Department has recorded where the death certificate stated related to covid in each month since 2020.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority.

A response to the hon. Member’s Parliamentary Question of 18 July is attached.

18th Jul 2022
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many drug-related deaths were recorded in (a) England and (b) each police service area in each of the last three years.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority.


A response to the hon. Member’s Parliamentary Question of 18 July is attached.

Johnny Mercer
Minister of State (Cabinet Office) (Minister for Veterans' Affairs)
11th Jul 2022
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will make it his policy to abolish ministerial severance payments.

The provision of severance payments for those who leave ministerial office is set out in the Ministerial and other Pensions and Salaries Act 1991. The Government has no current plans to abolish ministerial severance payments.

13th Jun 2022
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment his Department has made of the average life expectancy in each region of England.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority.

A response to the hon. Member’s Parliamentary Question of 13 June is attached.

14th Mar 2022
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what progress he has made on relocating civil service jobs across the UK.

By the end of 2021, more than 2,000 Civil Service jobs had already been relocated from Greater London under the Places for Growth programme.

Places for Growth is contributing towards the Declaration on Government Reform and Levelling Up agenda by significantly increasing the geographic spread of Civil Servants across the UK, increasing opportunities for people from a wider range of places. As the Levelling Up White Paper set out, departments have committed to moving more than 15,000 Civil Service roles out of Greater London by 2025, and 22,000 by 2030.

23rd Feb 2022
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps he is taking to promote measures to ensure the reliability of public services in protecting them from the risk of hostile cyber threats.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave on 24 February to Question PQ 121977 and PQ 121979.

23rd Feb 2022
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to promote ways to strengthen the UK’s cyber resilience.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave on 24 February to Question PQ 121977 and PQ 121979.

29th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking with the Wales Office to ensure supply chain resilience for that Department.

The resilience of our Supply Chains is a key priority for the Government. We have already put in place a raft of measures to deal with the extraordinary set of circumstances brought on by the pandemic and the global economy rebounding.

These include:

  • increasing HGV testing capacity by 90% to help get new drivers into the sector quickly;

  • extending cabotage rights;

  • making available bootcamp places to train up to 5,000 HGV drivers, and

  • making available temporary visas for poultry workers and butchers.

In October, the Prime Minister appointed Sir Dave Lewis to advise HM Government on supply chains and to identify both immediate improvements and any necessary long-term changes. He has spoken with over 100 businesses from across 14 sectors since his appointment. In order that we can continue to monitor supply chain risks and coordinate work across government, we have also established a new Supply Chains Unit within the Cabinet Office.

29th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking with the Scotland Office to ensure supply chain resilience for that Department.

The resilience of our Supply Chains is a key priority for the Government. We have already put in place a raft of measures to deal with the extraordinary set of circumstances brought on by the pandemic and the global economy rebounding.

These include:

  • increasing HGV testing capacity by 90% to help get new drivers into the sector quickly;

  • extending cabotage rights;

  • making available bootcamp places to train up to 5,000 HGV drivers, and

  • making available temporary visas for poultry workers and butchers.

In October, the Prime Minister appointed Sir Dave Lewis to advise HM Government on supply chains and to identify both immediate improvements and any necessary long-term changes. He has spoken with over 100 businesses from across 14 sectors since his appointment. In order that we can continue to monitor supply chain risks and coordinate work across government, we have also established a new Supply Chains Unit within the Cabinet Office.

29th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking with the Northern Ireland Office to ensure supply chain resilience for that Department.

The resilience of our Supply Chains is a key priority for the Government. We have already put in place a raft of measures to deal with the extraordinary set of circumstances brought on by the pandemic and the global economy rebounding.

These include:

  • increasing HGV testing capacity by 90% to help get new drivers into the sector quickly;

  • extending cabotage rights;

  • making available bootcamp places to train up to 5,000 HGV drivers, and

  • making available temporary visas for poultry workers and butchers.

In October, the Prime Minister appointed Sir Dave Lewis to advise HM Government on supply chains and to identify both immediate improvements and any necessary long-term changes. He has spoken with over 100 businesses from across 14 sectors since his appointment. In order that we can continue to monitor supply chain risks and coordinate work across government, we have also established a new Supply Chains Unit within the Cabinet Office.

29th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking with the Ministry of Justice to ensure supply chain resilience for that Department.

The resilience of our Supply Chains is a key priority for the Government. We have already put in place a raft of measures to deal with the extraordinary set of circumstances brought on by the pandemic and the global economy rebounding.

These include:

  • increasing HGV testing capacity by 90% to help get new drivers into the sector quickly;

  • extending cabotage rights;

  • making available bootcamp places to train up to 5,000 HGV drivers, and

  • making available temporary visas for poultry workers and butchers.

In October, the Prime Minister appointed Sir Dave Lewis to advise HM Government on supply chains and to identify both immediate improvements and any necessary long-term changes. He has spoken with over 100 businesses from across 14 sectors since his appointment. In order that we can continue to monitor supply chain risks and coordinate work across government, we have also established a new Supply Chains Unit within the Cabinet Office.

29th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking with the Ministry of Defence to ensure supply chain resilience for that Department.

The resilience of our Supply Chains is a key priority for the Government. We have already put in place a raft of measures to deal with the extraordinary set of circumstances brought on by the pandemic and the global economy rebounding.

These include:

  • increasing HGV testing capacity by 90% to help get new drivers into the sector quickly;

  • extending cabotage rights;

  • making available bootcamp places to train up to 5,000 HGV drivers, and

  • making available temporary visas for poultry workers and butchers.

In October, the Prime Minister appointed Sir Dave Lewis to advise HM Government on supply chains and to identify both immediate improvements and any necessary long-term changes. He has spoken with over 100 businesses from across 14 sectors since his appointment. In order that we can continue to monitor supply chain risks and coordinate work across government, we have also established a new Supply Chains Unit within the Cabinet Office.

29th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking with the Home Office to ensure supply chain resilience for that Department.

The resilience of our Supply Chains is a key priority for the Government. We have already put in place a raft of measures to deal with the extraordinary set of circumstances brought on by the pandemic and the global economy rebounding.

These include:

  • increasing HGV testing capacity by 90% to help get new drivers into the sector quickly;

  • extending cabotage rights;

  • making available bootcamp places to train up to 5,000 HGV drivers, and

  • making available temporary visas for poultry workers and butchers.

In October, the Prime Minister appointed Sir Dave Lewis to advise HM Government on supply chains and to identify both immediate improvements and any necessary long-term changes. He has spoken with over 100 businesses from across 14 sectors since his appointment. In order that we can continue to monitor supply chain risks and coordinate work across government, we have also established a new Supply Chains Unit within the Cabinet Office.

29th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking with HM Treasury to ensure supply chain resilience for that Department.

The resilience of our Supply Chains is a key priority for the Government. We have already put in place a raft of measures to deal with the extraordinary set of circumstances brought on by the pandemic and the global economy rebounding.

These include:

  • increasing HGV testing capacity by 90% to help get new drivers into the sector quickly;

  • extending cabotage rights;

  • making available bootcamp places to train up to 5,000 HGV drivers, and

  • making available temporary visas for poultry workers and butchers.

In October, the Prime Minister appointed Sir Dave Lewis to advise HM Government on supply chains and to identify both immediate improvements and any necessary long-term changes. He has spoken with over 100 businesses from across 14 sectors since his appointment. In order that we can continue to monitor supply chain risks and coordinate work across government, we have also established a new Supply Chains Unit within the Cabinet Office.

29th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking with the Department for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs to ensure supply chain resilience for that Department.

The resilience of our Supply Chains is a key priority for the Government. We have already put in place a raft of measures to deal with the extraordinary set of circumstances brought on by the pandemic and the global economy rebounding.

These include:

  • increasing HGV testing capacity by 90% to help get new drivers into the sector quickly;

  • extending cabotage rights;

  • making available bootcamp places to train up to 5,000 HGV drivers, and

  • making available temporary visas for poultry workers and butchers.

In October, the Prime Minister appointed Sir Dave Lewis to advise HM Government on supply chains and to identify both immediate improvements and any necessary long-term changes. He has spoken with over 100 businesses from across 14 sectors since his appointment. In order that we can continue to monitor supply chain risks and coordinate work across government, we have also established a new Supply Chains Unit within the Cabinet Office.

29th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking with the Department of Health and Social Care to ensure supply chain resilience for that Department.

The resilience of our Supply Chains is a key priority for the Government. We have already put in place a raft of measures to deal with the extraordinary set of circumstances brought on by the pandemic and the global economy rebounding.

These include:

  • increasing HGV testing capacity by 90% to help get new drivers into the sector quickly;

  • extending cabotage rights;

  • making available bootcamp places to train up to 5,000 HGV drivers, and

  • making available temporary visas for poultry workers and butchers.

In October, the Prime Minister appointed Sir Dave Lewis to advise HM Government on supply chains and to identify both immediate improvements and any necessary long-term changes. He has spoken with over 100 businesses from across 14 sectors since his appointment. In order that we can continue to monitor supply chain risks and coordinate work across government, we have also established a new Supply Chains Unit within the Cabinet Office.

29th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking with the Department for Work and Pensions to ensure supply chain resilience for that Department.

The resilience of our Supply Chains is a key priority for the Government. We have already put in place a raft of measures to deal with the extraordinary set of circumstances brought on by the pandemic and the global economy rebounding.

These include:

  • increasing HGV testing capacity by 90% to help get new drivers into the sector quickly;

  • extending cabotage rights;

  • making available bootcamp places to train up to 5,000 HGV drivers, and

  • making available temporary visas for poultry workers and butchers.

In October, the Prime Minister appointed Sir Dave Lewis to advise HM Government on supply chains and to identify both immediate improvements and any necessary long-term changes. He has spoken with over 100 businesses from across 14 sectors since his appointment. In order that we can continue to monitor supply chain risks and coordinate work across government, we have also established a new Supply Chains Unit within the Cabinet Office.

29th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking with the Department for Transport to ensure supply chain resilience for that Department.

The resilience of our Supply Chains is a key priority for the Government. We have already put in place a raft of measures to deal with the extraordinary set of circumstances brought on by the pandemic and the global economy rebounding.

These include:

  • increasing HGV testing capacity by 90% to help get new drivers into the sector quickly;

  • extending cabotage rights;

  • making available bootcamp places to train up to 5,000 HGV drivers, and

  • making available temporary visas for poultry workers and butchers.

In October, the Prime Minister appointed Sir Dave Lewis to advise HM Government on supply chains and to identify both immediate improvements and any necessary long-term changes. He has spoken with over 100 businesses from across 14 sectors since his appointment. In order that we can continue to monitor supply chain risks and coordinate work across government, we have also established a new Supply Chains Unit within the Cabinet Office.

29th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking with the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities to ensure supply chain resilience for that Department.

The resilience of our Supply Chains is a key priority for the Government. We have already put in place a raft of measures to deal with the extraordinary set of circumstances brought on by the pandemic and the global economy rebounding.

These include:

  • increasing HGV testing capacity by 90% to help get new drivers into the sector quickly;

  • extending cabotage rights;

  • making available bootcamp places to train up to 5,000 HGV drivers, and

  • making available temporary visas for poultry workers and butchers.

In October, the Prime Minister appointed Sir Dave Lewis to advise HM Government on supply chains and to identify both immediate improvements and any necessary long-term changes. He has spoken with over 100 businesses from across 14 sectors since his appointment. In order that we can continue to monitor supply chain risks and coordinate work across government, we have also established a new Supply Chains Unit within the Cabinet Office.

29th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking with the Department for International Trade to ensure supply chain resilience for that Department.

The resilience of our Supply Chains is a key priority for the Government. We have already put in place a raft of measures to deal with the extraordinary set of circumstances brought on by the pandemic and the global economy rebounding.

These include:

  • increasing HGV testing capacity by 90% to help get new drivers into the sector quickly;

  • extending cabotage rights;

  • making available bootcamp places to train up to 5,000 HGV drivers, and

  • making available temporary visas for poultry workers and butchers.

In October, the Prime Minister appointed Sir Dave Lewis to advise HM Government on supply chains and to identify both immediate improvements and any necessary long-term changes. He has spoken with over 100 businesses from across 14 sectors since his appointment. In order that we can continue to monitor supply chain risks and coordinate work across government, we have also established a new Supply Chains Unit within the Cabinet Office.

29th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking with the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs to ensure supply chain resilience for that Department.

The resilience of our Supply Chains is a key priority for the Government. We have already put in place a raft of measures to deal with the extraordinary set of circumstances brought on by the pandemic and the global economy rebounding.

These include:

  • increasing HGV testing capacity by 90% to help get new drivers into the sector quickly;

  • extending cabotage rights;

  • making available bootcamp places to train up to 5,000 HGV drivers, and

  • making available temporary visas for poultry workers and butchers.

In October, the Prime Minister appointed Sir Dave Lewis to advise HM Government on supply chains and to identify both immediate improvements and any necessary long-term changes. He has spoken with over 100 businesses from across 14 sectors since his appointment. In order that we can continue to monitor supply chain risks and coordinate work across government, we have also established a new Supply Chains Unit within the Cabinet Office.

29th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking with the Department for Education to ensure supply chain resilience for that Department.

The resilience of our Supply Chains is a key priority for the Government. We have already put in place a raft of measures to deal with the extraordinary set of circumstances brought on by the pandemic and the global economy rebounding.

These include:

  • increasing HGV testing capacity by 90% to help get new drivers into the sector quickly;

  • extending cabotage rights;

  • making available bootcamp places to train up to 5,000 HGV drivers, and

  • making available temporary visas for poultry workers and butchers.

In October, the Prime Minister appointed Sir Dave Lewis to advise HM Government on supply chains and to identify both immediate improvements and any necessary long-term changes. He has spoken with over 100 businesses from across 14 sectors since his appointment. In order that we can continue to monitor supply chain risks and coordinate work across government, we have also established a new Supply Chains Unit within the Cabinet Office.

29th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking with the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport to ensure supply chain resilience for that Department.

The resilience of our Supply Chains is a key priority for the Government. We have already put in place a raft of measures to deal with the extraordinary set of circumstances brought on by the pandemic and the global economy rebounding.

These include:

  • increasing HGV testing capacity by 90% to help get new drivers into the sector quickly;

  • extending cabotage rights;

  • making available bootcamp places to train up to 5,000 HGV drivers, and

  • making available temporary visas for poultry workers and butchers.

In October, the Prime Minister appointed Sir Dave Lewis to advise HM Government on supply chains and to identify both immediate improvements and any necessary long-term changes. He has spoken with over 100 businesses from across 14 sectors since his appointment. In order that we can continue to monitor supply chain risks and coordinate work across government, we have also established a new Supply Chains Unit within the Cabinet Office.

29th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking with the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy to ensure supply chain resilience for that Department.

The resilience of our Supply Chains is a key priority for the Government. We have already put in place a raft of measures to deal with the extraordinary set of circumstances brought on by the pandemic and the global economy rebounding.

These include:

  • increasing HGV testing capacity by 90% to help get new drivers into the sector quickly;

  • extending cabotage rights;

  • making available bootcamp places to train up to 5,000 HGV drivers, and

  • making available temporary visas for poultry workers and butchers.

In October, the Prime Minister appointed Sir Dave Lewis to advise HM Government on supply chains and to identify both immediate improvements and any necessary long-term changes. He has spoken with over 100 businesses from across 14 sectors since his appointment. In order that we can continue to monitor supply chain risks and coordinate work across government, we have also established a new Supply Chains Unit within the Cabinet Office.

29th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking with the Office of the Attorney General to ensure supply chain resilience for that Department.

The resilience of our Supply Chains is a key priority for the Government. We have already put in place a raft of measures to deal with the extraordinary set of circumstances brought on by the pandemic and the global economy rebounding.

These include:

  • increasing HGV testing capacity by 90% to help get new drivers into the sector quickly;

  • extending cabotage rights;

  • making available bootcamp places to train up to 5,000 HGV drivers, and

  • making available temporary visas for poultry workers and butchers.

In October, the Prime Minister appointed Sir Dave Lewis to advise HM Government on supply chains and to identify both immediate improvements and any necessary long-term changes. He has spoken with over 100 businesses from across 14 sectors since his appointment. In order that we can continue to monitor supply chain risks and coordinate work across government, we have also established a new Supply Chains Unit within the Cabinet Office.

18th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to help achieve net zero through procurement in the Office of the Secretary of State for Scotland.

This year, the Government has put in place a new procurement policy which underlines the UK’s global leadership in tackling climate change.

Prospective suppliers bidding for contracts above £5million a year must now have committed to the government’s target of net zero by 2050 and have published a carbon reduction plan. Firms which fail to do so may be deselected from the procurement.

This policy supports the Government’s plan to build back greener, by ensuring that potential government suppliers publish plans to reduce carbon emissions across their operations in order to bid for major government contracts.

In addition, ‘Fighting Climate Change’ is one of the priority themes of the government’s Social Value Model, launched earlier this year. This enables departments to take environmental considerations, such as a reduction in carbon emissions, into account in the award of government contracts, where relevant.

18th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to help achieve net zero through procurement in the Ministry of Justice.

This year, the Government has put in place a new procurement policy which underlines the UK’s global leadership in tackling climate change.

Prospective suppliers bidding for contracts above £5million a year must now have committed to the government’s target of net zero by 2050 and have published a carbon reduction plan. Firms which fail to do so may be deselected from the procurement.

This policy supports the Government’s plan to build back greener, by ensuring that potential government suppliers publish plans to reduce carbon emissions across their operations in order to bid for major government contracts.

In addition, ‘Fighting Climate Change’ is one of the priority themes of the government’s Social Value Model, launched earlier this year. This enables departments to take environmental considerations, such as a reduction in carbon emissions, into account in the award of government contracts, where relevant.

18th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to help achieve net zero through procurement in the Northern Ireland Office.

This year, the Government has put in place a new procurement policy which underlines the UK’s global leadership in tackling climate change.

Prospective suppliers bidding for contracts above £5million a year must now have committed to the government’s target of net zero by 2050 and have published a carbon reduction plan. Firms which fail to do so may be deselected from the procurement.

This policy supports the Government’s plan to build back greener, by ensuring that potential government suppliers publish plans to reduce carbon emissions across their operations in order to bid for major government contracts.

In addition, ‘Fighting Climate Change’ is one of the priority themes of the government’s Social Value Model, launched earlier this year. This enables departments to take environmental considerations, such as a reduction in carbon emissions, into account in the award of government contracts, where relevant.

18th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to help achieve net zero through procurement in the Treasury.

This year, the Government has put in place a new procurement policy which underlines the UK’s global leadership in tackling climate change.

Prospective suppliers bidding for contracts above £5million a year must now have committed to the government’s target of net zero by 2050 and have published a carbon reduction plan. Firms which fail to do so may be deselected from the procurement.

This policy supports the Government’s plan to build back greener, by ensuring that potential government suppliers publish plans to reduce carbon emissions across their operations in order to bid for major government contracts.

In addition, ‘Fighting Climate Change’ is one of the priority themes of the government’s Social Value Model, launched earlier this year. This enables departments to take environmental considerations, such as a reduction in carbon emissions, into account in the award of government contracts, where relevant.

18th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to help achieve net zero through procurement in the Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office.

This year, the Government has put in place a new procurement policy which underlines the UK’s global leadership in tackling climate change.

Prospective suppliers bidding for contracts above £5million a year must now have committed to the government’s target of net zero by 2050 and have published a carbon reduction plan. Firms which fail to do so may be deselected from the procurement.

This policy supports the Government’s plan to build back greener, by ensuring that potential government suppliers publish plans to reduce carbon emissions across their operations in order to bid for major government contracts.

In addition, ‘Fighting Climate Change’ is one of the priority themes of the government’s Social Value Model, launched earlier this year. This enables departments to take environmental considerations, such as a reduction in carbon emissions, into account in the award of government contracts, where relevant.

18th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to help achieve net zero through procurement in the Department for Health and Social Care.

This year, the Government has put in place a new procurement policy which underlines the UK’s global leadership in tackling climate change.

Prospective suppliers bidding for contracts above £5million a year must now have committed to the government’s target of net zero by 2050 and have published a carbon reduction plan. Firms which fail to do so may be deselected from the procurement.

This policy supports the Government’s plan to build back greener, by ensuring that potential government suppliers publish plans to reduce carbon emissions across their operations in order to bid for major government contracts.

In addition, ‘Fighting Climate Change’ is one of the priority themes of the government’s Social Value Model, launched earlier this year. This enables departments to take environmental considerations, such as a reduction in carbon emissions, into account in the award of government contracts, where relevant.

18th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to help achieve net zero through procurement in the Department for Work and Pensions.

This year, the Government has put in place a new procurement policy which underlines the UK’s global leadership in tackling climate change.

Prospective suppliers bidding for contracts above £5million a year must now have committed to the government’s target of net zero by 2050 and have published a carbon reduction plan. Firms which fail to do so may be deselected from the procurement.

This policy supports the Government’s plan to build back greener, by ensuring that potential government suppliers publish plans to reduce carbon emissions across their operations in order to bid for major government contracts.

In addition, ‘Fighting Climate Change’ is one of the priority themes of the government’s Social Value Model, launched earlier this year. This enables departments to take environmental considerations, such as a reduction in carbon emissions, into account in the award of government contracts, where relevant.

18th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to help achieve net zero through procurement in the Department for Transport.

This year, the Government has put in place a new procurement policy which underlines the UK’s global leadership in tackling climate change.

Prospective suppliers bidding for contracts above £5million a year must now have committed to the government’s target of net zero by 2050 and have published a carbon reduction plan. Firms which fail to do so may be deselected from the procurement.

This policy supports the Government’s plan to build back greener, by ensuring that potential government suppliers publish plans to reduce carbon emissions across their operations in order to bid for major government contracts.

In addition, ‘Fighting Climate Change’ is one of the priority themes of the government’s Social Value Model, launched earlier this year. This enables departments to take environmental considerations, such as a reduction in carbon emissions, into account in the award of government contracts, where relevant.

18th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to help achieve net zero through procurement in the Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities.

This year, the Government has put in place a new procurement policy which underlines the UK’s global leadership in tackling climate change.

Prospective suppliers bidding for contracts above £5million a year must now have committed to the government’s target of net zero by 2050 and have published a carbon reduction plan. Firms which fail to do so may be deselected from the procurement.

This policy supports the Government’s plan to build back greener, by ensuring that potential government suppliers publish plans to reduce carbon emissions across their operations in order to bid for major government contracts.

In addition, ‘Fighting Climate Change’ is one of the priority themes of the government’s Social Value Model, launched earlier this year. This enables departments to take environmental considerations, such as a reduction in carbon emissions, into account in the award of government contracts, where relevant.

18th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to help achieve net zero through procurement in the Department for International Trade.

This year, the Government has put in place a new procurement policy which underlines the UK’s global leadership in tackling climate change.

Prospective suppliers bidding for contracts above £5million a year must now have committed to the government’s target of net zero by 2050 and have published a carbon reduction plan. Firms which fail to do so may be deselected from the procurement.

This policy supports the Government’s plan to build back greener, by ensuring that potential government suppliers publish plans to reduce carbon emissions across their operations in order to bid for major government contracts.

In addition, ‘Fighting Climate Change’ is one of the priority themes of the government’s Social Value Model, launched earlier this year. This enables departments to take environmental considerations, such as a reduction in carbon emissions, into account in the award of government contracts, where relevant.

18th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to help achieve net zero through procurement in the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs.

This year, the Government has put in place a new procurement policy which underlines the UK’s global leadership in tackling climate change.

Prospective suppliers bidding for contracts above £5million a year must now have committed to the government’s target of net zero by 2050 and have published a carbon reduction plan. Firms which fail to do so may be deselected from the procurement.

This policy supports the Government’s plan to build back greener, by ensuring that potential government suppliers publish plans to reduce carbon emissions across their operations in order to bid for major government contracts.

In addition, ‘Fighting Climate Change’ is one of the priority themes of the government’s Social Value Model, launched earlier this year. This enables departments to take environmental considerations, such as a reduction in carbon emissions, into account in the award of government contracts, where relevant.

18th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to help achieve net zero through procurement in the Department for Education.

This year, the Government has put in place a new procurement policy which underlines the UK’s global leadership in tackling climate change.

Prospective suppliers bidding for contracts above £5million a year must now have committed to the government’s target of net zero by 2050 and have published a carbon reduction plan. Firms which fail to do so may be deselected from the procurement.

This policy supports the Government’s plan to build back greener, by ensuring that potential government suppliers publish plans to reduce carbon emissions across their operations in order to bid for major government contracts.

In addition, ‘Fighting Climate Change’ is one of the priority themes of the government’s Social Value Model, launched earlier this year. This enables departments to take environmental considerations, such as a reduction in carbon emissions, into account in the award of government contracts, where relevant.

18th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to help achieve net zero through procurement in the Department of Digital, Culture, Media and Sport.

This year, the Government has put in place a new procurement policy which underlines the UK’s global leadership in tackling climate change.

Prospective suppliers bidding for contracts above £5million a year must now have committed to the government’s target of net zero by 2050 and have published a carbon reduction plan. Firms which fail to do so may be deselected from the procurement.

This policy supports the Government’s plan to build back greener, by ensuring that potential government suppliers publish plans to reduce carbon emissions across their operations in order to bid for major government contracts.

In addition, ‘Fighting Climate Change’ is one of the priority themes of the government’s Social Value Model, launched earlier this year. This enables departments to take environmental considerations, such as a reduction in carbon emissions, into account in the award of government contracts, where relevant.

18th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to help achieve net zero through procurement in the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.

This year, the Government has put in place a new procurement policy which underlines the UK’s global leadership in tackling climate change.

Prospective suppliers bidding for contracts above £5million a year must now have committed to the government’s target of net zero by 2050 and have published a carbon reduction plan. Firms which fail to do so may be deselected from the procurement.

This policy supports the Government’s plan to build back greener, by ensuring that potential government suppliers publish plans to reduce carbon emissions across their operations in order to bid for major government contracts.

In addition, ‘Fighting Climate Change’ is one of the priority themes of the government’s Social Value Model, launched earlier this year. This enables departments to take environmental considerations, such as a reduction in carbon emissions, into account in the award of government contracts, where relevant.

18th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to help achieve net zero through procurement in the Attorney General’s Office.

This year, the Government has put in place a new procurement policy which underlines the UK’s global leadership in tackling climate change.

Prospective suppliers bidding for contracts above £5million a year must now have committed to the government’s target of net zero by 2050 and have published a carbon reduction plan. Firms which fail to do so may be deselected from the procurement.

This policy supports the Government’s plan to build back greener, by ensuring that potential government suppliers publish plans to reduce carbon emissions across their operations in order to bid for major government contracts.

In addition, ‘Fighting Climate Change’ is one of the priority themes of the government’s Social Value Model, launched earlier this year. This enables departments to take environmental considerations, such as a reduction in carbon emissions, into account in the award of government contracts, where relevant.

18th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to help achieve net zero through procurement in the Ministry of Defence.

This year, the Government has put in place a new procurement policy which underlines the UK’s global leadership in tackling climate change.

Prospective suppliers bidding for contracts above £5million a year must now have committed to the government’s target of net zero by 2050 and have published a carbon reduction plan. Firms which fail to do so may be deselected from the procurement.

This policy supports the Government’s plan to build back greener, by ensuring that potential government suppliers publish plans to reduce carbon emissions across their operations in order to bid for major government contracts.

In addition, ‘Fighting Climate Change’ is one of the priority themes of the government’s Social Value Model, launched earlier this year. This enables departments to take environmental considerations, such as a reduction in carbon emissions, into account in the award of government contracts, where relevant.

18th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to help achieve net zero through procurement in the Home Office.

This year, the Government has put in place a new procurement policy which underlines the UK’s global leadership in tackling climate change.

Prospective suppliers bidding for contracts above £5million a year must now have committed to the government’s target of net zero by 2050 and have published a carbon reduction plan. Firms which fail to do so may be deselected from the procurement.

This policy supports the Government’s plan to build back greener, by ensuring that potential government suppliers publish plans to reduce carbon emissions across their operations in order to bid for major government contracts.

In addition, ‘Fighting Climate Change’ is one of the priority themes of the government’s Social Value Model, launched earlier this year. This enables departments to take environmental considerations, such as a reduction in carbon emissions, into account in the award of government contracts, where relevant.

18th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that other Government departments use data to inform policy decisions.

The Government Analysis Function, led by the National Statistician, is developing the Government Analysis Functional Standard. This sets expectations of analysis as a collaborative activity, with analysts working in partnership with policy makers and wider professions to support well informed decision making and the development and delivery of policy.

Through its functions and professions, the Civil Service is improving its ability to advise ministers using data through a number of work streams including developing the Government Analysis Functional Standard and ensuring policy professionals use data at all stages of decision making.

18th Nov 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps his Department is taking to help ensure that people who do not use online resources are able to access Government services easily.

Government has committed to ensuring that assistance is always available for those who need it. Departments are required by the Service Standard to provide support via alternative channels for their services, where it is required, and the Central Digital and Data Office assures this via a service assessment process.

14th Sep 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what the headcount of the Civil Service was in each of the last five years.

Headline Civil Service employment figures, on both a headcount and full-time equivalent basis, are published as part of Public Sector Employment Statistics by the Office for National Statistics (ONS) each quarter. The latest dataset, containing the Civil Service headcount time series back to 1999, is available from the ONS website at the following link:

https://www.ons.gov.uk/employmentandlabourmarket/peopleinwork/publicsectorpersonnel/datasets/publicsectoremploymentreferencetable

28th Jun 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what mechanisms are in place to ensure that non-departmental public bodies performance reporting arrangements are accurate.

The Cabinet Office does not capture non-departmental public body performance reporting centrally, this is the responsibility of the public body’s sponsoring department.

A non-departmental public body is required to submit to their sponsoring department, on an annual basis, an annual report and audited accounts prepared in accordance with the relevant statutes and guidelines. The annual report and accounts provide the sponsoring department with the financial and non-financial performance of the non-departmental public body. In addition, they will state if the non-departmental public body has met key performance indicators as set out in their business and corporate plans. The report and accounts are laid in Parliament and, where commercially possible, made available on the non-departmental public body’s website

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
12th Apr 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, for what reasons individual honours were forfeited in each of the last five years.

The names of those who have had honours revoked are usually published in the London Gazette and can be found at: https://www.thegazette.co.uk. Any exceptions to this reflect broader duty of care considerations.

The reasoning behind individual forfeiture decisions is not published and we do not comment on individual cases. Honours are forfeited where there is clear evidence of action or inaction that is not in keeping with the values of the honours system, that could bring it into disrepute.

We have increased transparency in the forfeiture system, including making more information about the process available publicly, increasing engagement with complainants and appointing independent members to the Committee.

12th Apr 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many individual honours were forfeited in each of the last five years.

The names of those who have had honours revoked are usually published in the London Gazette and can be found at: https://www.thegazette.co.uk. Any exceptions to this reflect broader duty of care considerations.

The reasoning behind individual forfeiture decisions is not published and we do not comment on individual cases. Honours are forfeited where there is clear evidence of action or inaction that is not in keeping with the values of the honours system, that could bring it into disrepute.

We have increased transparency in the forfeiture system, including making more information about the process available publicly, increasing engagement with complainants and appointing independent members to the Committee.

6th Jan 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment he has made of the implications of delaying municipal and local elections in May 2021.

Primary legislation states that the elections will go ahead in May 2021.

We continue to work closely with the electoral community, including electoral suppliers, and public health bodies to resolve challenges and ensure everyone will be able to cast their vote safely and securely - and in a way of their choosing.

Measures are planned to support absent voting at short notice. Guidance will be published in good time ahead of the polls and this matter will be kept under review. The House will be kept updated.

The Government has also engaged with the Parliamentary Parties Panel to ensure that views from political parties are taken on board.

30th Oct 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of making the London Mayoral and Greater London Authority elections a postal ballot only in response to the covid-19 outbreak; and if he will make a statement.

The UK Government is of the view that it would not be appropriate to impose an all-postal vote for the local and mayoral elections in England, and the Police and Crime Commissioner elections in England and Wales, in May 2021. All-postal voting increases fraud risks, and removes choice from voters who wish to cast their vote in person.

Postal voting on demand already allows any registered elector to vote by post.

The Government is working with the electoral administrators and Public Health England to identify and resolve challenges involved in delivering the May 2021 elections, including ensuring polling stations are safe and covid-secure places to vote. People will be able participate in the polls safely, and in a way of their choice, whether by post, proxy or in-person.

This work is outlined in my recent letter to Electoral Returning Officers, which can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/letter-from-chloe-smith-mp-to-returning-officers.

7th Oct 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will bring forward legislative proposals to revoke the (a) Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984 (as amended by the Health Protection Act 2008), (b) Public Health etc. (Scotland) Act 2008 and (c) Public Health Act (Northern Ireland) 1967; and what legislative plans he has to ensure conformity in the tackling of pandemics.

I apologise for the delay in answering this question. The Public Health (Control of Disease) Act 1984 (as amended by the Health Protection Act 2008), (b) Public Health etc. (Scotland) Act 2008 and (c) Public Health Act (Northern Ireland) 1967 enable the UK Government and devolved administrations to take a flexible approach according to the data in different parts of the UK. Public health is devolved and different underpinning legislation is required to enable interventions in different parts of the UK - even where those interventions may be similar. We will continue to work closely with the devolved administrations on the substance of our response.

1st Sep 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will amend the Government's guidance to the Electoral Commission to ensure the Commission's recommendations on the Boundary Review are based on the number of people in the total population rather than those only on the electoral register.

Boundary reviews have always been based on the number of registered electors. The Government considers that using the definitive registered electorate, and holding regular reviews, is the clearest and most effective method of keeping constituency sizes up to date.

1st Sep 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, when the McKinsey consultancy report on Civil Service Modernisation and Reform will be completed.

Mckinsey were contracted by the Cabinet Office to support the development of a programme of government reform, considering a range of evidence on past reforms in the UK, private sector and international comparators, and input from across government. This work, which runs until the end of September 2020, contributes to development of wider plans for Civil Service reform, further details of which we will set out in due course.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
1st Sep 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, whether his Department plans to publish the results of the McKinsey consultancy report on Civil Service Modernisation and Reform.

Mckinsey were contracted by the Cabinet Office to support the development of a programme of government reform, considering a range of evidence on past reforms in the UK, private sector and international comparators, and input from across government. This work, which runs until the end of September 2020, contributes to development of wider plans for Civil Service reform, further details of which we will set out in due course.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
1st Sep 2020
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what information was assessed as part of the McKinsey consultancy report on Civil Service Modernisation and Reform.

Mckinsey were contracted by the Cabinet Office to support the development of a programme of government reform, considering a range of evidence on past reforms in the UK, private sector and international comparators, and input from across government. This work, which runs until the end of September 2020, contributes to development of wider plans for Civil Service reform, further details of which we will set out in due course.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
1st Jun 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps he is taking to ensure that orchestrated campaigns and pressure groups are not able to (a) inundate and (b) influence the findings of government consultations.

Effective consultation exercises can contribute to better policy making, to improved delivery of public services and to Government accountability.

There is a risk that orchestrated campaigns or pressure groups could unduly influence policy making and departments ought to be aware of this when analysing consultation responses. The Cabinet Office is responsible for the Government Consultation Principles, which provide departments with guidance on conducting consultations. Analysing consultation responses is primarily a qualitative rather than a quantitative exercise, and departments will consider a range of factors in reaching policy decisions following a consultation exercise.

24th Apr 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent progress he has made in negotiations with the EU.

Last week the UK and EU engaged in a full and constructive negotiating round, via videoconference. A Written Ministerial Statement (HCWS209) made on Tuesday 28 April 2020 provides full details.

Penny Mordaunt
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
22nd Apr 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will amend the Government's guidance to the Electoral Commission to ensure the Commission's recommendations on the 2018 Boundary Review are based on the number of people on the electoral register rather than in the total population.

Given the independent nature of the Boundary Commissions, the Government has not issued guidance to either the Electoral Commission or to the Boundary Commissions in respect of the conduct of boundary reviews.

Boundary reviews have always been based on the number of registered electors. The 2018 Boundary Review was conducted by the four independent Boundary Commissions in accordance with the Parliamentary Constituencies Act 1986 which provides for boundary reviews and their recommendations to be based on the number of registered electors.

25th Mar 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment his Department has made of trends in the murder rate in the Merseyside Police region.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority. I have therefore asked the Authority to respond.

24th Mar 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what additional activities the Government envisage Members of Parliament will undertake as a result of the abolition of British Members of the European Parliament.

The United Kingdom has left the European Union. At the end of this year we will have recovered our economic and political independence. This means that there will be no alignment with EU law and no jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice.

We will have control of our own trade; we will control our own migration policy through an Australian style points-based system; our own laws and courts will be supreme within the UK; we will regain control of UK fishing waters; our farmers will be free from the bureaucratic CAP; and we will have the power to set our taxes. These matters will be debated and decided by the people’s representatives in Parliament and the devolved administrations.

Penny Mordaunt
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
24th Mar 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps he plans to take to enable MPs to scrutinise decisions made by the European (a) Parliament and (b) Commission.

The Government is committed to facilitating the scrutiny of EU decisions through the House of Commons European Scrutiny Committee and the Lords EU Committee during the transition period.

In addition, section 13A of the EU (Withdrawal) Act 2018 (inserted by section 29 of the EU (Withdrawal Agreement) Act 2020) provides that if the House of Commons European Scrutiny Committee or the Lords EU Committee publishes a report which states that EU legislation, including Council Decisions, made during the transition period raises a matter of vital national interest, a Minister must make arrangements for a debate in the relevant House within 14 sitting days.

By the end of the year, we will be a fully independent and sovereign country: this means that there will be no alignment with EU law and no jurisdiction of the European Court of Justice.

Penny Mordaunt
Lord President of the Council and Leader of the House of Commons
24th Mar 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what plans he has to bring forward proposals for a UK-wide boundary review of parliamentary constituencies.

The Conservative Government committed, in its 2019 Manifesto, to delivering updated and equal UK Parliamentary boundaries with the essential aim of making sure that every vote counts the same - a cornerstone of democracy.

In the written statement of 24 March, ‘Update: Strengthening Democracy’ (HCWS183), the Government set out its policy position in relation to the boundaries of UK Parliamentary constituencies. The statement noted that legislation currently provides that, on implementation of the 2018 Boundary Review recommendations, the number of constituencies in the UK shall be 600, and that the Government is instead minded to make provision for the number of parliamentary constituencies to remain at 650. This is a change in policy from the position previously legislated for under the Coalition Government. Since that policy was established in the Coalition Agreement, the United Kingdom has left the European Union. The UK Parliament will have a greater workload now we are taking back control, abolishing MEPs and regaining our political and economic independence. It is therefore sensible for the number of parliamentary constituencies to remain at 650.

The written statement explained that, when Parliamentary time allows, the Government is minded to bring forward primary legislation to set the framework for future boundary reviews, including the next review due to begin in early 2021.

24th Mar 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what the basis was for there being 650 parliamentary constituencies.

The Conservative Government committed, in its 2019 Manifesto, to delivering updated and equal UK Parliamentary boundaries with the essential aim of making sure that every vote counts the same - a cornerstone of democracy.

In the written statement of 24 March, ‘Update: Strengthening Democracy’ (HCWS183), the Government set out its policy position in relation to the boundaries of UK Parliamentary constituencies. The statement noted that legislation currently provides that, on implementation of the 2018 Boundary Review recommendations, the number of constituencies in the UK shall be 600, and that the Government is instead minded to make provision for the number of parliamentary constituencies to remain at 650. This is a change in policy from the position previously legislated for under the Coalition Government. Since that policy was established in the Coalition Agreement, the United Kingdom has left the European Union. The UK Parliament will have a greater workload now we are taking back control, abolishing MEPs and regaining our political and economic independence. It is therefore sensible for the number of parliamentary constituencies to remain at 650.

The written statement explained that, when Parliamentary time allows, the Government is minded to bring forward primary legislation to set the framework for future boundary reviews, including the next review due to begin in early 2021.

24th Mar 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, when the Government plans to bring forward legislative proposals to amend the Fixed-term Parliaments Act 2011.

The Queen’s Speech set out that “work will be taken forward to repeal the Fixed-term Parliaments Act.” The Act led to parliamentary paralysis at a critical time for the country and repealing the Act will make sure this doesn’t happen again. Further announcements will be made in due course.

24th Feb 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what plans he has to ensure a Sikh ethnic tick box in the forthcoming Census Order.

The draft Census (England and Wales) Order 2020 was laid in Parliament on 2 March. It sets the date of the Census and the topics on which census questions are to be asked.

Once made, the Order will be followed by Census Regulations for England and for Wales. The Regulations for England will be laid before Parliament. The Regulations for Wales are the responsibility of Welsh Ministers and will be laid before the National Assembly for Wales. The Regulations to be made by the Welsh Ministers will contain the final wording of the questions on Welsh language skills and ethnic group to be asked in the Wales census.

As part of the Census Data Collection and Transformation Programme, the ONS is exploring how to produce census-type statistics more frequently than the decennial census, using other sources of data. The ONS will make a recommendation to the Government in 2023 on the future of the census.

19th Dec 2019
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what estimate his Department has made of the level of personal debt in the agricultural industry.

The information requested falls under the remit of the UK Statistics Authority. I have therefore asked the Authority to respond.

19th Dec 2019
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, if he will bring forward legislative proposals to introduce a requirement for voter identification at polling stations.

The Government will bring forward legislation requiring electors to show an approved form of photographic ID before casting their vote in a polling station in a UK parliamentary election in Great Britain and local election in England. Any voter who does not have an approved form of ID will be able to apply, free of charge, for a local electoral identity document.

These measures are part of a wider initiative to improve trust in the integrity of the electoral process, maintain public confidence and support equality and inclusivity in our electoral system.

23rd Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, what targets her Department has set to help achieve the Government's commitments on net zero.

The Government set out how we would meet our commitments in the Net Zero Strategy in 2021 which included a detailed breakdown of actions required across all sectors in the economy. This was updated in 2023 through the publication of 'Powering Up Britain'.

The UK has halved its emissions, ahead of every other major economy, and we have grown our economy by over 70% since 1990. The UK over-achieved against the first and second carbon budgets, and the latest projections show that we are on track to meet the third.

We have one of the most ambitious decarbonisation targets in the world, and we have set more stretching targets for 2030 than most countries. We plan to cut emissions by 68% by 2030, which is more than the EU, Japan or the United States.

The Department for Business and Trade’s activities contribute to these objectives by facilitating private investment into priority green sectors, supporting scale up of green businesses and building resilient supply chains for the net zero transition.

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
5th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, whether her Department is taking steps to ensure compliance with the working time directive for apprentices.

Apprentices have the same employment rights as other employees, including those under the Working Time Regulations.

The enforcement of sanctions under the Working Time Regulations is dependent upon the breach. Breaches of limits on maximum weekly working time, night work and patterns of work which generate health and safety risks are enforced by the Health and Safety Executive, other sector-specific state enforcement bodies, and local authorities for certain types of premises.

Workers may bring a complaint to an Employment Tribunal if they feel they have not been permitted to exercise their right to daily or weekly rest.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
17th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, whether she plans to appeal the decision of Mr Justice Linden on 13 July 2023 relating to the use of agency workers to fill in for striking workers.

We have carefully considered the judgment and decided not to appeal, given that it was solely restricted to the issue of whether sufficient consultation took place before this change was made.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
27th Jun 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, whether it is her policy to increase the number of trade envoys.

There are currently 36 Trade Envoys progressing our trade and investment agenda in 66 markets across the world and the Department is constantly reviewing suitable markets to identify where the appointment of a Trade Envoy can be of greatest benefit to the trade and investment aims of the UK alongside the Department’s other support for exporters and investors. The ultimate decision to increase the number of his Trade Envoys is the Prime Minister’s.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
27th Jun 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, if she will take steps to bring forward legislative proposals to prevent charges in addition to the cost of a product from being imposed through online transactions.

The Consumer Contracts (Information, Cancellation and Additional Charges) Regulations 2013 (CCRs) require that traders must give full information about the price of the product including any unavoidable extra charges before purchase. These must be given in a clear and comprehensible manner.

The Government has commissioned research on some of the wider issues around ‘drip pricing’ - i.e. traders who unfairly add fees late in the purchasing process. This looks at how widespread the practice is, and the various steps that could be taken to tackle those practices. As part of our review, the Government will consult on ‘drip pricing’ during passage of the Digital Markets, Competition and Consumers Bill to seek views on which elements of ‘drip pricing’ might need tackling and if further action is required.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
21st Jun 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, if she will make an estimate of the average wage of people employed in the deep sea mining industry in the UK.

This information is not held centrally.

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
21st Jun 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, if she will make an estimate of the number of (a) companies that are involved in deep sea mining and (b) jobs supported by that industry.

This information is not held centrally.

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
21st Jun 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, what estimate she has made of the number of jobs created by deep sea mining in the UK in each of the last five years.

This information is not held centrally.

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
17th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, if he will make an assessment of the potential impact of the Automotive Transformation Fund on the competitiveness of electric vehicle manufacturing.

The impact of the Automotive Transformation Fund (ATF) will be assessed at intervals over the next five years, with baselining work already underway.

Funding from the ATF has already helped secure key investments including £380m in the production of electric drive units at Ford Halewood, a £60 million investment by Johnson Matthey in Hertfordshire to develop hydrogen technologies, and the £1bn electric vehicle hub in Sunderland in partnership between Nissan and Envision AESC.

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
17th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, what recent assessment his Department has made of global demand for UK automotive exports.

Global demand and interest in UK automotive exports is high. 80% of all cars made in the UK are exported, with nearly 60% of those going to the EU, and just under 15% to the USA.

The Society of Motor Manufacturers & Traders reported that in 2022 the automotive industry contributed £32 billion in exports (10% of total UK goods exports). UK factories made record numbers of electrified vehicles, boosting their exports to £1.3 billion and British commercial vehicle exports surged by 63.4%.

Our trade deals will further increase export opportunities for UK automotive businesses through tariff removal, flexible rules of origin, and efficient customs procedures. This will ensure the UK automotive sector continues to meet the overseas demand for UK cars.

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
17th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, what steps her Department is taking to secure a positive outcome on Rules of Origin for automotive companies.

The UK is negotiating new Free Trade Agreements with modern Rules of Origin that support market access, enabling our industries to benefit from global trade opportunities.

On Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA) Rules of Origin, raw material costs for automakers have spiked due to the war in Ukraine, Covid pandemic and energy crisis since we signed the TCA. This is making it harder for UK and EU manufacturers to meet the 2024 transitional rules for electric vehicles, meaning they could face 10% tariffs. We want to work with the EU to fix this specific problem, and UK Ministers and officials are engaging with EU counterparts.

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
8th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, if he will take steps to issue guidance to vaping manufacturers on compliance with the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Regulations.

Vaping products are in scope of the Waste Electrical and Electronic Equipment Regulations and the Government has published comprehensive guidance on Gov.uk setting out what businesses, including manufacturers, need to do to comply with the legislation. The guidance can be found at the following link:

https://www.gov.uk/guidance/regulations-waste-electrical-and-electronic-equipment

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
8th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, whether the Office for Product Safety and Standards has taken enforcement action against any company placing disposable vaping products on the market in each of the last five years.

The Office for Product Safety and Standards has not taken enforcement action in relation to disposable vapes in the last five years.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
7th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, what recent steps her Department has taken to help reduce the practice of late payments being made to small and medium-sized enterprises.

Government is tackling the culture of late payments with measures including Payment Practices Reporting, the Small Business Commissioner and Prompt Payment Code.

We are currently undertaking a Payment and Cash Flow review which will set out the actions we will take to ensure we have the right approach to support businesses on payment issues.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
23rd Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what targets her Department has set to help achieve the Government's commitments on net zero.

The Government set out how it would meet its commitments in the Net Zero Strategy in 2021, which included a detailed breakdown of actions required across all sectors in the economy. This was updated in 2023 through the publication of 'Powering Up Britain'.

The UK has halved its emissions, ahead of every other major economy, and its economy has grown by over 70% since 1990. The UK over-achieved against the first and second carbon budgets, and the latest projections show that it is on track to meet the third.

The UK has one of the most ambitious decarbonisation targets in the world, and has set more stretching targets for 2030 than most countries. The UK plans to cut emissions by 68% by 2030, which is more than the EU, Japan or the United States.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
12th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, how many officials from her Department attended COP 28.

My Rt hon Friend the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, and my Rt hon Friend the Minister for Energy Security and Net Zero, attended COP28. A final list of confirmed UK participants, including officials from DESNZ, will be published by the UNFCCC in due course.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
6th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, how many employment tribunals were brought by employees of their Department in the last 12 months.

Details of all employment tribunal decision outcomes are available on

GOV.UK: https://www.gov.uk/employment-tribunal-decisions.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
8th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what discussions she has had with the Local Net Zero Forum; and if she will list the outcomes generated by the Local Net Zero Forum.

The Local Net Zero Forum has met five times at official level and held a ministerial level meeting on 09 February 2023. Forum discussions feed into ongoing policy and delivery work but the Forum itself does not make decisions or produce publications.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
7th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, if she will make it her policy to introduce grants for houseboat (a) owners and (b) occupiers to decarbonise their heating systems.

The Government currently has no plans to introduce grants for houseboats.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
6th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, whether her Department has made an assessment of the potential impact of the Energy Bill Support Scheme on businesses in Hendon constituency.

Businesses, including those within the Hendon constituency, have already benefitted from the Energy Bill Relief Scheme which ended on 31 March and provided over £7.4 billion of support. Businesses experiencing high energy costs will continue to get a discount on gas and electricity bills under the Energy Bills Discount Scheme (EBDS) until 31 March 2024, including the higher level of support for eligible Energy and Trade Intensive Industries (ETII).

The Government has to date provided £55m of support under the EBDS to non-domestic customers.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
6th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, whether her Department has made an assessment of the potential merits of maintaining the Energy Price Guarantee at £3,000 until April 2024.

The Energy Price Guarantee will remain in place as a safety net until the end of March 2024 should energy prices increase above £3,000 per year.

Due to recent falls in the wholesale price of energy, consumers currently pay the rates set by Ofgem’s price cap, with a typical household paying the equivalent of £2,074 per year between July and September. This figure will drop further to £1,923 per year between October and December. Pre-payment meter customers also receive a discount through the Energy Price Guarantee to bring PPM costs into line with equivalent direct debit costs.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
6th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what assessment her Department has made of the potential (a) merits and (b) feasibility of developing nuclear fusion technology.

Fusion energy could be the ultimate clean power solution, representing a low carbon, safe, continuous, and sustainable source of energy.

More work is required to make fusion energy a reality. In line with our Fusion Strategy, we are investing over £700 million from 2021/22 to 2024/25 in cutting-edge research programmes and facilities, to grow the capability of UK industry and make the UK the global hub for fusion innovation. We have committed over £240 million towards the first phase of STEP – a programme which aims to develop and build, by 2040, a prototype fusion power plant capable of delivering energy to the UK grid.

Andrew Bowie
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
6th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what assessment her Department has made of the potential impact of Great British Nuclear on the Government’s domestic nuclear energy targets.

The British Energy Security Strategy set out our ambition for deploying up to 24 gigawatts of civil nuclear by 2050, around 25% of our projected 2050 electricity demand. We launched Great British Nuclear (GBN) to help deliver new nuclear projects.

GBN is currently conducting a Technology Selection Process to select the best Small Modular Reactor technologies for the UK to facilitate the Government’s ambition to take two Final Investment Decisions next parliament.

Chosen SMR technologies will be offered an unprecedented level of support and funding to support technology development and site-specific design, as well as a close partnership with GBN, which will be ready and able to provide developer capability and support in accessing sites.

GBN will also support the Government’s consideration of further large Gigawatt-scale projects to help us deliver on our net zero ambitions.

Andrew Bowie
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
6th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, if she will make it her policy to promote the North Sea as a location for carbon capture, usage and storage technology.

Carbon capture, usage and storage (CCUS) is a priority for this Government. The UK continental shelf, and particularly the North Sea, provides a unique geological opportunity for the UK to become a world leader in this sector. The recent announcements on Track 1 and Track 2 reaffirm Government commitment, and the North Sea Transition Authority has estimated that as many as 100 CO2 stores could be required to meet net zero.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
6th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what assessment her Department made of the potential impact of solar power on national net zero targets.

The Government is aiming for 70 gigawatts of solar capacity by 2035. Solar power will make a significant contribution to electricity supply by 2050 alongside other low carbon sources.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
6th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, if she will make a comparative assessment of the carbon footprint of (a) domestically-produced gas and (b) imported liquified natural gas.

Recent research from the North Sea Transition Authority shows that the production of gas extracted from the UK Continental Shelf has an average emission intensity of 21 kilogrammes of CO2 kgCO2e/boe, whereas imported Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) has a significantly higher average production and transportation intensity of 79 kgCO2e/boe.

This means that domestically produced gas releases around four times less carbon dioxide during the process of extraction, treatment and transportation, when compared to imported liquefied natural gas.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
6th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what recent assessment she has made of the adequacy of the level of support provided to households by her Department’s energy support schemes in the last 12 months.

The Government has already spent nearly £40 billion protecting households and businesses from spiralling energy bills over last winter and we welcome recent reductions to household energy bills.

Together, the Energy Price Guarantee and Energy Bills Support Scheme covered around half of a typical household energy bill this past winter, and by the end of June this year had saved a typical household around £1,500. Analysis for 2022, published 28 February 2023, indicates that 350,000 households in England were kept out of fuel poverty as a result of temporary support offered to households with energy bills.

The Government is continuing to closely monitor energy prices and keeping energy support schemes under review and is planning for a range of possible scenarios. This planning is being guided by extensive experience in delivering household support last year that is also taking onboard the lessons learned from doing so.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
6th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what assessment her Department has made of the effectiveness of the Contracts for Difference scheme in supporting low-carbon electricity generation.

The Contracts for Difference (CfD) scheme is the Government’s main mechanism for supporting new low-carbon electricity generation projects in Great Britain. It has awarded contracts to renewable projects totalling over 30 Giga Watts (GW) of capacity, including around 20GW of offshore wind. On 8 September the Government published Allocation Round 5 results, which awarded contracts to a record 95 projects with total generation capacity of 3.7GW. The scheme now runs annual auctions and the evidence base is reviewed every round. The Government has published the timeline for the next round, which opens in March 2024.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
6th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what the total amount of funding was awarded to households under the Great British Insulation Scheme.

The Great British Insulation Scheme is not a grant or loan scheme, but a legal obligation placed on larger energy suppliers who fund the delivery of energy efficiency measures to eligible households. The Scheme is worth a total of £1bn and will run until March 2026.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
6th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what the average cost is per household of the the Great British Insulation Scheme as of 4 September 2023.

The Great British Insulation Scheme is estimated to be worth £150m in 2023/24, which would add around £5 to the average domestic energy bill.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
6th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what progress her Department has made on delivering the Great British Insulation Scheme in making homes energy efficient.

The Great British Insulation Scheme was fully established in law on 25 July 2023, but energy suppliers have been able to deliver insulation measures under the scheme since 30 March 2023. Industry reports show measures are being installed however official statistics are not yet available.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
6th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, whether her Department is taking steps to ensure that any new oil and gas licences will be compatible with the Government's 2050 net zero target.

The Government has strict measures in place to ensure emissions from oil and gas production are accounted for in legally binding domestic carbon budgets; new oil and gas licences will not increase emissions above carbon budgets.

As a net importer of oil and gas and a rapidly declining producer, new oil and gas licences simply reduce the fall in the UK supply; they do not increase it above current levels.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
5th Jul 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, whether subsidies for biomass will be included under the contracts for difference scheme after 2027.

Biomass is eligible for the current Contracts for Difference Scheme for specific technologies including anaerobic digestion (above 5MW), landfill gas, sewage gas, advanced conversion technologies, energy from waste with combined heat and power and dedicated biomass plants with combined heat and power. Allocation Round 5 (AR5) opened in March 2023 for new projects with delivery years of 2025/26, 2026/27 and 2027/28 for pot 1 technologies and 2026/27 and 2027/28 for pot 2 technologies.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
17th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, if she will take steps to develop a strategic framework to help enable local authorities to deliver net zero within their areas.

The Net Zero Strategy and the Net Zero Growth Plan set out the Government’s commitments to enable local areas to deliver net zero.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
17th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what steps his Department are taking to encourage collaboration and knowledge sharing between Government Departments on reaching net zero goals.

The creation of the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero means there is now a department dedicated to delivering on the Government’s climate ambitions. The Department aligns with Cabinet committee structures; the Domestic and Economic Affairs (Energy, Climate and Net Zero) Committee ensures a coordinated approach to delivering net zero across government.

The Department works closely with counterparts across government to coordinate action, working with Cabinet Office and HM Treasury to ensure net zero goals are prioritised in Government policy abd decision-making, and align with other Government priorities.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
17th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what progress Government Departments have made on net zero project delivery.

The Net Zero Growth Plan, published on 30 March this year, set out the Government’s progress towards net zero, reported on 24 metrics as committed to in the Net Zero Strategy, and announced further progress on delivery such as the Floating Offshore Wind Manufacturing Investment Scheme

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
17th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what steps his Department are taking to help (a) coordinate and (b) measure the delivery of net zero projects across various Government Departments.

The creation of the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero means there is now a department dedicated to delivering on the Government’s climate ambitions. The Department aligns with Cabinet committee structures; the Domestic and Economic Affairs (Energy, Climate and Net Zero) Committee ensures a coordinated approach to delivering net zero across government.

In March this year, the Government published the Carbon Budget Delivery Plan. It outlines the progress Government departments have made on delivering net zero and sets out the full package of proposals and polices to meet Carbon Budgets 4, 5 and 6.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
17th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, whether he has had discussions with the Secretary of State for Transport on the potential merits of requiring National Highways to cooperate with local authorities on emission reduction schemes for major highways.

The Department engages regularly with the Department for Transport on issues relevant to transport decarbonisation.

National Highways published its own plan, ‘Net Zero Highways’ in 2021, which provides details on how it will cut emissions from road construction, maintenance and operations, supporting the transition to zero emission vehicles. This can be found at: https://nationalhighways.co.uk/media/eispcjem/net-zero-highways-our-2030-2040-2050-plan.pdf

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
17th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what assessment has the Department made of the availability of people with the necessary skills and knowledge to adequately staff Net Zero Hub projects across the UK.

The Local Net Zero Hubs support local authorities, so that local authorities can develop a range of net zero projects and attract commercial investment. Local authorities manage their own workforce. The Government invests £5 million/year in the Local Net Zero Hubs Programme.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
17th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, how much funding will be made available for phase 3c of the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme.

The total available funding for Phase 3c of the Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme will be announced in due course, alongside application guidance. The Government expects the scheme to open in Autumn 2023.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
17th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, if she will take steps to introduce legislation to enable the introduction of a social energy tariff.

The Government is working with consumer groups and industry to explore the best approach to consumer protection from April 2024 as part of wider retail market reforms. As set out in the Energy Security Plan, the Government intends to consult on these options in summer 2023.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
16th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what steps he is taking to achieve smart shifting of consumer demand for energy to help smooth peaks in demand and absorb excess supply.

The Government is working with Ofgem to implement the 2021 Smart Systems and Flexibility Plan, and with National Grid as they review the Demand Flexibility Service that last winter incentivised businesses and households to reduce electricity demand at peak periods. Alongside “Powering Up Britain”, the Government published our consultation response on Delivering a Smart and Secure Electricity System. It set out a multi-year programme to support competitive and well-functioning markets in Energy Smart Appliances and Demand Side Response services which will facilitate shifting electricity demand, thus reducing system costs and benefitting consumers in terms of their energy costs and choices.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
16th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, if he will publish an analysis of Greenhouse Gases Emissions in each of the London Boroughs in each of the last five years.

The UK greenhouse gas emission statistics and the UK local and regional greenhouse gas emissions national statistics, 2005 to 2020 set out emissions data down to the local authority level, including for the London Boroughs.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
16th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what recent progress he has made on the hydrogen power station at Keadby in Scunthorpe.

The Government is taking steps to enable the decarbonisation of unabated gas generation like Keadby Power Station. This includes supporting hydrogen production through the £240 million Net Zero Hydrogen Fund (NZHF) while providing revenue support through the Hydrogen Production Business Model; enabling power CCUS through the Dispatchable Power Agreement; and in Powering Up Britain, the Government announced its intention to consult on the need and design of a market intervention for hydrogen power.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
16th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, if he will make it his policy to increase the number of hydrogen power stations.

The Government views hydrogen as an important component of the UK's future power system to provide flexible low carbon generation capacity as the UK integrates more renewables.

Government analysis shows that having hydrogen available in the power sector could achieve emission reductions at a lower cost than scenarios without hydrogen.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
16th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what assessment his Department has made of the availability of local authority qualified employees to contribute on Net Zero Hub projects.

Local Net Zero Hubs support local authorities to develop a range of net zero projects and attract commercial investment. Local authorities manage their own workforce. The Government will continue to invest £5 million per year in the Local Net Zero Hubs Programme.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
16th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, how much funding each Net Zero Hub received in the most recent funding round.

Local Net Zero Hubs support local authorities to develop a range of net zero projects and attract commercial investment. Local authorities manage their own workforce. The Government will continue to invest £5 million per year in the Local Net Zero Hubs Programme.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
16th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, when his Department plans to announce the replacement funding for the Net Zero Hubs.

Local Net Zero Hubs support local authorities to develop a range of net zero projects and attract commercial investment. Local authorities manage their own workforce. The Government will continue to invest £5 million per year in the Local Net Zero Hubs Programme.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
16th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, how many energy projects have been created by each of the Net Zero Hubs in each of the last three years.

Local Net Zero Hubs support local authorities to develop a range of net zero projects and attract commercial investment. Local authorities manage their own workforce. The Government will continue to invest £5 million per year in the Local Net Zero Hubs Programme.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
16th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, if he will make an estimate of the number of energy efficiency measures that were installed through Treasury funded initiatives in each of the last ten years.

The Department publishes information on the number of energy efficiency measures installed through Treasury-funded schemes in each year since 2013 on GOV.UK.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
16th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what the terms of reference are for the Local Net Zero Forum.

The Local Net Zero Forum has met four times to date at official level, on: 20 June 2022; 6 October 2022; 25 January 2023; and 4 May 2023. The Ministerial Local Net Zero Forum has met once to date, on 9 February 2023.

The Department will discuss publication of the reports considered at the Ministerial Local Net Zero Forum in February 2023 with local government co-chairs.

The Government is discussing with local government what levels of meetings would be useful, including a local authority Chief Executive and Departmental Permanent Secretary level Local Net Zero Forum.

The terms of reference for the Local Net Zero Forum will be published online in due course.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
16th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, if he will make it his policy to establish a local authority Chief Executive and Departmental Permanent Secretary level Local Net Zero Forum.

The Local Net Zero Forum has met four times to date at official level, on: 20 June 2022; 6 October 2022; 25 January 2023; and 4 May 2023. The Ministerial Local Net Zero Forum has met once to date, on 9 February 2023.

The Department will discuss publication of the reports considered at the Ministerial Local Net Zero Forum in February 2023 with local government co-chairs.

The Government is discussing with local government what levels of meetings would be useful, including a local authority Chief Executive and Departmental Permanent Secretary level Local Net Zero Forum.

The terms of reference for the Local Net Zero Forum will be published online in due course.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
16th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, if his Department will publish the reports considered at the Ministerial Local Net Zero Forum held in February 2023.

The Local Net Zero Forum has met four times to date at official level, on: 20 June 2022; 6 October 2022; 25 January 2023; and 4 May 2023. The Ministerial Local Net Zero Forum has met once to date, on 9 February 2023.

The Department will discuss publication of the reports considered at the Ministerial Local Net Zero Forum in February 2023 with local government co-chairs.

The Government is discussing with local government what levels of meetings would be useful, including a local authority Chief Executive and Departmental Permanent Secretary level Local Net Zero Forum.

The terms of reference for the Local Net Zero Forum will be published online in due course.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
16th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, how many times and on what dates the Local Net Zero Forum met since its establishment.

The Local Net Zero Forum has met four times to date at official level, on: 20 June 2022; 6 October 2022; 25 January 2023; and 4 May 2023. The Ministerial Local Net Zero Forum has met once to date, on 9 February 2023.

The Department will discuss publication of the reports considered at the Ministerial Local Net Zero Forum in February 2023 with local government co-chairs.

The Government is discussing with local government what levels of meetings would be useful, including a local authority Chief Executive and Departmental Permanent Secretary level Local Net Zero Forum.

The terms of reference for the Local Net Zero Forum will be published online in due course.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
16th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what assessment he has made of the adequacy of the progress of local authorities in achieving net zero by 2050.

The Government has not collected figures on the number of local authorities that have declared a climate emergency.

The Government has not made an assessment of the adequacy of the progress made towards net zero by local authorities.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
16th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, whether he has made an estimate of the number of local authorities that have declared a climate emergency.

The Government has not collected figures on the number of local authorities that have declared a climate emergency.

The Government has not made an assessment of the adequacy of the progress made towards net zero by local authorities.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
10th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of Department for Energy Security and Net Zero, if he will make it his policy to require local authorities to publish Minimum Energy Efficiency Standard levels for domestic private rented properties in their areas.

The Government has consulted on raising minimum energy efficiency standards in the domestic private rented sector. As part of this consultation, the Government sought views on a) introducing a compliance and enforcement database to support local authorities with the enforcement of regulations in their area and b) disclosure or benchmarking around how effectively local authorities address tenant complaints where a property is in breach of the regulations. The Government will publish a summary of responses to this consultation by the end of the year.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
10th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, if he will make it his policy to establish an Office for Net Zero.

The creation of the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero means there is a department dedicated to delivering the Government’s climate ambitions and a senior ministerial voice in Cabinet whose focus, alongside energy security, is driving overall delivery of net zero across government and maximising the economic opportunity the transition presents.

The Department’s officials work closely with counterparts across government to coordinate action, particularly with Cabinet Office and HM Treasury to ensure that net zero is prioritised and aligns with other priorities.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
10th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what progress he has made on coordinating cross-departmental prioritisation of net zero actions.

The creation of the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero means there is a department dedicated to delivering the Government’s climate ambitions and a senior ministerial voice in Cabinet whose focus, alongside energy security, is driving overall delivery of net zero across government and maximising the economic opportunity the transition presents.

The Department’s officials work closely with counterparts across government to coordinate action, particularly with Cabinet Office and HM Treasury to ensure that net zero is prioritised and aligns with other priorities.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
10th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, if he will hold discussions with local authorities on co-designing net zero plans for local delivery.

The Government engages with local authorities on net zero issues through the Local Net Zero Forum, which brings together national and local government to discuss local net zero policy and delivery issues.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
27th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what is the total value of awards by central Government for local authorities to deliver net zero projects in the last twelve months.

The Government provides a wide range of funding to support local authorities in reaching net zero. Through their core settlement, grant funding schemes, and UK growth funding, the Government is enabling local authorities to tackle net zero goals.

The Government has established the UK Infrastructure Bank with an initial £12billion of capital for the twin goals of tackling climate change and levelling-up. This includes a loan facility for local government to deliver net zero.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
27th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, how many grants central Government has awarded to local authorities to deliver net zero projects in the last twelve months.

The Government provides a wide range of funding to support local authorities in reaching net zero. Through their core settlement, grant funding schemes, and UK growth funding, the Government is enabling local authorities to tackle net zero goals.

The Government has established the UK Infrastructure Bank with an initial £12billion of capital for the twin goals of tackling climate change and levelling-up. This includes a loan facility for local government to deliver net zero.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
27th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what assessment his Department has made of the adequacy of the availability of labour in the insulation and retrofit sector.

For work carried out under Government schemes installers are required to be TrustMark registered, as well as PAS certified for energy efficiency measures and MCS certified for low carbon heating measures. In November 2022, there were 1782 TrustMark businesses across the UK which were certified to PAS or MCS standards.

The Mace market intelligence report commissioned by BEIS last year found that in 2021 there were 154,748 individuals installing energy efficiency measures in England. Research undertaken last year by Eunomia shows there are between 36,000 and 87,000 non-domestic retrofit businesses in the UK.

The Government is working with key industry bodies to consider what other actions are necessary both from industry and government to continue to grow this industry.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
27th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, whether his Department is taking steps to help ensure a coordinated approach to the delivery of local area energy plans.

The Government is considering the role of local-level energy planning in delivering Net Zero. We need to be clear on the value of local-level energy planning before taking decisions on how to coordinate delivery. This includes considering local-level energy planning in the context of potential future changes to the energy system, such as Ofgem's regional energy system planning proposals.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
27th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what (a) financial and (b) other support his Department is providing to local authorities to develop local area energy plans.

The Government is considering the role of local-level energy planning in delivering Net Zero. We have supported the development of local area energy planning through the Prospering from the Energy Revolution (PFER) programme, to which we committed £104 million in funding.

The PFER programme included co-funding for the development of local area energy planning guidance, and the production of plans for Peterborough, Pembrokeshire, Stafford, Cannock Chase and Lichfield.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
17th Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, if he will take steps to engage with (a) disabled people and (b) disability charities when developing his Department’s approach to consumer protection.

The Autumn Statement set out a commitment to work with consumer groups and industry to consider the best approach to consumer protection, including options such as social tariffs, as part of wider retail market reforms.

The Government is assessing evidence and options and proactively discussing this with stakeholders. As part of this work, the Government is engaging with organisations that represent disabled people and considering the energy costs of disabled people and those with in-home medical equipment.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
17th Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what steps he plans to take to help tackle the impact of increases in energy costs on disabled people when developing his Department's approach to consumer protection.

The Autumn Statement set out a commitment to work with consumer groups and industry to consider the best approach to consumer protection, including options such as social tariffs, as part of wider retail market reforms.

The Government is assessing evidence and options and proactively discussing this with stakeholders. As part of this work, the Government is engaging with organisations that represent disabled people and considering the energy costs of disabled people and those with in-home medical equipment.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
3rd Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what steps his Department is taking to ensure people on pre-payment metres are receiving assistance with their energy bills.

The Energy Bills Support Scheme (EBSS) is providing support to households with a direct relationship to an energy supplier. Smart prepayment meter customers are credited directly each month by their supplier. Customers with traditional prepayment meters are receiving the discount via vouchers or Special Action Messages from their supplier which they need to redeem at a Post Office or PayPoint as directed.

Further assistance is available to all households depending on eligibility, including via the Warm Home Discount and Winter Fuel Payment.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
3rd Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, how many and what proportion of people with prepayment meters who are eligible for support for their energy costs have taken up that support in the latest period for which data is available.

In the first 3 months of the Energy Bills Support Scheme, energy suppliers in Great Britain issued a total of 6,020,560 vouchers to customers with traditional prepayment meters, of which 4,261,940 (71%) had been redeemed by the end December - an increase from 66% in the previous month. 6,292,140 smart prepayment credits have also been applied automatically, via a remote credit to the meter. Data relating to the Energy Bills Support Scheme GB can be found at https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/energy-bills-support-scheme-payments-made-by-electricity-suppliers-to-customers.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
3rd Feb 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, if he will bring forward legislative proposals to prevent utility companies from forcibly entering residential properties to install prepayment meters.

My Rt. Hon. Friend the Secretary of State announced a five-point plan to tackle concerning behaviour by energy suppliers, including a call for suppliers to stop voluntarily, forced prepayment switching. Following recent findings by the Times, Ofgem have asked suppliers to pause the installation of prepayment meters under warrant until they have assured Ofgem that they are compliant with all relevant regulations and obligations. The Secretary of State has asked domestic energy suppliers what steps they are taking to identify consumers who may have had a prepayment meter installed inappropriately, and confirm that where such customers are identified, appropriate action will be taken.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
23rd Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology, what targets her Department has set to help achieve the Government's commitments on net zero.

The Government set out how we would meet our commitments in the Net Zero Strategy in 2021 which included a detailed breakdown of actions required across all sectors in the economy. This was updated in 2023 through the publication of 'Powering Up Britain'. The UK has halved its emissions, ahead of every other major economy, and we have grown our economy by over 70% since 1990. The UK over-achieved against the first and second carbon budgets, and the latest projections show that we are on track to meet the third. We have one of the most ambitious decarbonisation targets in the world, and we have set more stretching targets for 2030 than most countries. We plan to cut emissions by 68% by 2030, which is more than the EU, Japan or the United States.

Andrew Griffith
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
8th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology, what steps her Department is taking to attract private investment for gigabit broadband.

More than 99% of premises in Hendon have access to Superfast broadband speeds (>=30 Mbps) and over 69% can access gigabit-capable broadband. This is up from just 12% in March 2019, and is expected to increase as we support suppliers to expand their networks.

We introduced measures in the Product Security and Telecommunications Infrastructure Act 2022 to specifically assist telecoms operators providing broadband services, such as an increased ability to upgrade and share the existing duct and pole network and a procedure to deal with non-responsive landowners. This is in addition to the Telecommunications Infrastructure (Leasehold Property) Act 2021, which makes it easier for broadband operators to install in multiple dwelling units where the landlord is repeatedly unresponsive to requests for access.

We have also taken steps to ensure that new homes are built with fast, reliable broadband. On 26 December 2022, new regulations came into force making it mandatory for new homes in England to be future-proofed with gigabit-ready physical infrastructure and - where they can be provided within a cost cap - gigabit-capable connections. This will help ensure that many more new households each year get the connectivity they want and need without costly and disruptive installation work after the home is built.

For premises that are not included in suppliers' commercial plans, we are delivering Project Gigabit, which is focused on bringing gigabit-capable broadband to hard-to-reach areas across the UK. There are high levels of commercial coverage within the borough of Barnet, and we are reviewing this commercial coverage prior to identifying what support could be provided through Project Gigabit.

Attracting private investment and incentivising competition in the fixed telecoms market is integral to the government’s strategy to deliver nationwide coverage of gigabit-capable broadband. Through the 2018 Future Telecoms Infrastructure Review (FTIR) and the 2019 Statement of Strategic Priorities (SSP), we brought forward substantive proposals to make it easier for new firms to enter the market and compete with the incumbent provider, such as granting competitors access to Openreach’s national network of ducts and poles. The SSP gave Ofcom a strategic priority to incentivise private investment and market competition by providing long-term regulatory stability. This approach has been successful – the UK fixed telecoms market now has over 80 companies investing c.£35 billion in its networks.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
8th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology, what steps her Department is taking to provide gigabit-capable broadband in hard-to-reach communities in Hendon constituency.

More than 99% of premises in Hendon have access to Superfast broadband speeds (>=30 Mbps) and over 69% can access gigabit-capable broadband. This is up from just 12% in March 2019, and is expected to increase as we support suppliers to expand their networks.

We introduced measures in the Product Security and Telecommunications Infrastructure Act 2022 to specifically assist telecoms operators providing broadband services, such as an increased ability to upgrade and share the existing duct and pole network and a procedure to deal with non-responsive landowners. This is in addition to the Telecommunications Infrastructure (Leasehold Property) Act 2021, which makes it easier for broadband operators to install in multiple dwelling units where the landlord is repeatedly unresponsive to requests for access.

We have also taken steps to ensure that new homes are built with fast, reliable broadband. On 26 December 2022, new regulations came into force making it mandatory for new homes in England to be future-proofed with gigabit-ready physical infrastructure and - where they can be provided within a cost cap - gigabit-capable connections. This will help ensure that many more new households each year get the connectivity they want and need without costly and disruptive installation work after the home is built.

For premises that are not included in suppliers' commercial plans, we are delivering Project Gigabit, which is focused on bringing gigabit-capable broadband to hard-to-reach areas across the UK. There are high levels of commercial coverage within the borough of Barnet, and we are reviewing this commercial coverage prior to identifying what support could be provided through Project Gigabit.

Attracting private investment and incentivising competition in the fixed telecoms market is integral to the government’s strategy to deliver nationwide coverage of gigabit-capable broadband. Through the 2018 Future Telecoms Infrastructure Review (FTIR) and the 2019 Statement of Strategic Priorities (SSP), we brought forward substantive proposals to make it easier for new firms to enter the market and compete with the incumbent provider, such as granting competitors access to Openreach’s national network of ducts and poles. The SSP gave Ofcom a strategic priority to incentivise private investment and market competition by providing long-term regulatory stability. This approach has been successful – the UK fixed telecoms market now has over 80 companies investing c.£35 billion in its networks.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
8th Mar 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology, what steps her Department is taking to help provide fast and reliable broadband throughout Hendon constituency.

More than 99% of premises in Hendon have access to Superfast broadband speeds (>=30 Mbps) and over 69% can access gigabit-capable broadband. This is up from just 12% in March 2019, and is expected to increase as we support suppliers to expand their networks.

We introduced measures in the Product Security and Telecommunications Infrastructure Act 2022 to specifically assist telecoms operators providing broadband services, such as an increased ability to upgrade and share the existing duct and pole network and a procedure to deal with non-responsive landowners. This is in addition to the Telecommunications Infrastructure (Leasehold Property) Act 2021, which makes it easier for broadband operators to install in multiple dwelling units where the landlord is repeatedly unresponsive to requests for access.

We have also taken steps to ensure that new homes are built with fast, reliable broadband. On 26 December 2022, new regulations came into force making it mandatory for new homes in England to be future-proofed with gigabit-ready physical infrastructure and - where they can be provided within a cost cap - gigabit-capable connections. This will help ensure that many more new households each year get the connectivity they want and need without costly and disruptive installation work after the home is built.

For premises that are not included in suppliers' commercial plans, we are delivering Project Gigabit, which is focused on bringing gigabit-capable broadband to hard-to-reach areas across the UK. There are high levels of commercial coverage within the borough of Barnet, and we are reviewing this commercial coverage prior to identifying what support could be provided through Project Gigabit.

Attracting private investment and incentivising competition in the fixed telecoms market is integral to the government’s strategy to deliver nationwide coverage of gigabit-capable broadband. Through the 2018 Future Telecoms Infrastructure Review (FTIR) and the 2019 Statement of Strategic Priorities (SSP), we brought forward substantive proposals to make it easier for new firms to enter the market and compete with the incumbent provider, such as granting competitors access to Openreach’s national network of ducts and poles. The SSP gave Ofcom a strategic priority to incentivise private investment and market competition by providing long-term regulatory stability. This approach has been successful – the UK fixed telecoms market now has over 80 companies investing c.£35 billion in its networks.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
11th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will make it his policy to reallocate remaining funds from the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund in a way that allows local authorities to increase the (a) reach and (b) uptake of the scheme across all communities by 2030.

The 2019 Conservative Manifesto committed to a £3.8bn Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund (SHDF) over a 10-year period to improve the energy performance of social homes. Grant funding allocated to SHDF has totalled over £1bn.

In the Autumn Statement, the Government announced £6 billion of new Government funding that will be made available from 2025 to 2028 for energy efficiency. The design of future waves of the SHDF will consider all relevant evidence to ensure effective delivery.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
10th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department is taking to help local authorities in achieving the Government’s net zero targets.

The Net Zero Strategy sets out our commitments to enable local areas to deliver net zero.

This includes establishing a Local Net Zero Forum to bring together national and local government senior officials on a regular basis to discuss policy and delivery options on net zero; running the Local Net Zero Hubs Programme to support all local areas with their capability and capacity to meet net zero; and funding work to develop business models to increase private sector investment in local net zero.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
10th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment his Department has made of the potential merits of allocating additional funding to retrofitting social housing stock; and if he will support local authorities in accelerating those measures.

The Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund (SHDF) Demonstrator project awarded around £62m of grant funding to Local Authorities in 2021. The Government launched Wave 1 of the SHDF in 2021 and awarded around £179m of grant funding to Local Authorities for delivery from 2022 into 2023. The Wave 2.1 competition, which closed in November 2022, will look to allocate up to £800m of grant funding to Social Housing Landlords, including Local Authorities, with successful projects likely to be notified in March 2023. The significant investment of Wave 2.1 provides the opportunity for delivery at scale.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
10th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what discussions his Department has had with representatives from the Local Government Association on accelerating the rollout of onshore wind and solar energy.

The Government recognises the role that local government plays in realising the UK's net zero carbon ambitions for onshore wind and solar.

Through the Local Net Zero Forum, BEIS regularly engages with representatives from local authority organisations on net zero policy and delivery issues.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
10th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department has taken to prepare for the potential impact of trends in the level of energy bills on commercial enterprises in winter 2023-24.

A new Energy Bill Discount Scheme has been announced from April 2023 meaning that all eligible businesses, charities and the public sector will receive a discount on high energy bills until 31 March 2024. The scheme will provide a discount on high energy costs to give businesses certainty while limiting taxpayers’ exposure to volatile energy markets through the use of a wholesale price threshold and maximum discount.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
9th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how many and what proportion of their Department’s employees work from home at least one day a week.

Over the past two years, the Civil Service as a whole has had to work in a more agile way whilst still delivering essential public services. Before the pandemic, most departments worked on a basis of a ratio of desks to staff and that remains the case – so hybrid working arrangements are not new. No office will operate at 100% occupancy given there will always be a number of reasons why staff may be out of the office, for example people being on annual leave, attending meetings off site or external visits. Data on the Department’s occupancy are published: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/civil-service-headquarters-occupancy-data.

Like most departments, in line with the practice in many public and private sector organisations, BEIS operates hybrid working arrangements where employees are expected to attend the office for at least 40%-60% of their time.

Kevin Hollinrake
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade)
13th Dec 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will make it his policy to prioritise children’s hospice and palliative care providers for targeted financial support when the non-domestic Energy Bill Relief Scheme ends in March 2023.

HM Treasury is currently conducting a review of the EBRS and evidence from care providers is included. However, the Government cannot confirm which sectors will receive further support after 31st March 2023 until the end of the review, which will be reported by the end of the year 2022.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
12th Dec 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether his Department has made a recent assessment of the potential merits of redeploying social housing energy efficiency funding to local authorities.

The Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund Demonstrator project, launched in 2020, awarded around £62m of grant funding to Local Authorities in 2021. The Government launched Wave 1 of the SHDF in 2021 and awarded around £179m of grant funding to Local Authorities for delivery from 2022 into 2023. The Wave 2.1 competition, which closed in November 2022, will look to allocate up to £800m of grant funding to Social Housing Landlords, including Local Authorities, with successful projects likely to be notified in March 2023.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
12th Dec 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of instructing the Energy Efficiency Taskforce to consider the redeployment of social housing decarbonisation funding.

More details on the scope and membership of the Taskforce will be announced in due course.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
12th Dec 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will make it his policy to ensure that families of seriously ill children who rely on life-saving equipment at home are included on energy suppliers’ priority services registers.

Electricity network operators are obliged to maintain a Priority Services Register to ensure support is given to the most vulnerable customers during power disruptions. Customers who would be vulnerable during a power cut, such as children who are medically dependent on electricity, should be signed up for the Priority Services Register directly with their Energy Supplier or Distribution Network Operator. Those who require a continuous supply of electricity for medical reasons and would need medical support during a power cut, should seek advice from their medical equipment provider and local health service provider.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
22nd Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, in what way he expects the Energy Efficiency Taskforce to gather the opinions of local authorities; and whether local authority representatives will form part of that Taskforce.

More details on the scope and membership of the Taskforce will be announced in due course.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
21st Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether any (a) oil and (b) oil-based products that originated from Russia have been imported into the UK since the implementation of sanctions.

On 8 March 2022, the UK announced it would ban the import of all Russian oil and oil products by the end of 2022. Legislation was passed on 3 November to implement the ban which will come into effect from 5 December. A parallel Maritime Services ban will apply from 5 December for crude oil and 5 February for refined oil products. Since the announcement of the ban, the industry has been self-sanctioning to move away from Russian oil and products.

Provisional data shows in the three months to September 2022, the UK imported 0.1 per cent of gross oil supply (production + imports) from Russia, down from 4.4% in the same period in 2021. Of these imports all were products, the UK did not import crude oil from Russia in the three months to September 2022.

Source: Energy Trends.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
8th Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, when his Department will publish revised guidance on tidal energy as part of the energy National Policy Statement.

BEIS has been analysing the responses received as part of the public consultation on the draft revised energy National Policy Statements and aims to issue the response shortly. This will take into account these responses and any resolutions or recommendations from the Parliamentary scrutiny process.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
3rd Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the adequacy of the private sector research and development opportunities available for research in the Higher Education sector.

Data on university income from private business is collected annually by the Higher Education Statistics Authority. The latest data from the 2020/21 academic year shows that higher education institutions received £5.1 billion from the main sources of private sector funding. This includes £1.4 billion for contract research and £1.8 billion for collaborative research.

In addition, there are several government programmes that require or encourage collaboration between higher education and the private sector, such as the UK Research Partnerships Investment Fund, which has provided £900m to higher education institutions that has been matched by twice as much private investment.

2nd Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking to ensure the Rosebank oil field development in the North Sea does not damage marine habitats.

The environmental impacts of offshore oil and gas developments, including the likely impacts on marine habitats, are subject to rigorous regulatory assessment by the Offshore Petroleum Regulator for Environment and Decommissioning (OPRED). This includes consultation with government nature protection bodies and with the public.

If required, OPRED can put in place conditions to protect marine habitats from significant impacts which may occur during preparatory work, installation and operation of the facilities.

The Environmental Statement for the Rosebank Field Development is currently being reviewed by OPRED and a decision will be published in due course.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
2nd Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent assessment he has made of the potential impact of the new oil and gas licensing round on the UK's ability to protect 30 per cent of its oceans by 2030.

I refer my hon. Friend to the answers I gave the hon. Member for Brighton Pavilion on 8th November 2022 to Questions 74614, 74616 and 74617.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
2nd Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking to help protect Marine Protected Areas during new oil and gas licensing rounds.

I refer my hon. Friend to the answers I gave the hon. Member for Brighton Pavilion on 8th November 2022 to Questions 74614, 74616 and 74617.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
26th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what his Department's priorities are for pursuing post-Brexit opportunities.

The Government is committed to taking full advantage of the benefits of Brexit, including through the Retained EU Law (REUL) (Revocation and Reform) Bill, which had Second Reading on 25 October. The Bill will end the special legal status of all REUL and make it more easy to amend, repeal or replace. This will allow us to create a more agile and innovative regulatory environment, and reform our laws and regulations to best fit the needs of the UK and boost economic growth.

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
25th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what role his Department will have in the Treasury-led review into the Energy Price Guarantee in April 2023.

The Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy will work closely with the Treasury in conducting a review of the Energy Price Guarantee to support households with their energy bills after 31 March 2023. This new approach will consider more targeted measures to support households with their energy bills and cost the taxpayer significantly less than initially planned.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
25th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, when the Critical Minerals Strategy will be published.

The Critical Minerals Strategy was published on 22 July 2022 and sets out plans to accelerate the UK’s domestic capabilities, collaborate with international partners and enhance international financial and trading markets.

The Critical Minerals Expert Committee provides high quality, independent advice to the Government on critical minerals. At the most recent Committee meeting on 10 October, members reflected on the publication of the Strategy, and articulated which measures should be prioritised in the Delivery Plan which we are expecting to publish by the end of the year.

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
25th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what progress was reported at the most recent Critical Minerals Expert Committee.

The Critical Minerals Strategy was published on 22 July 2022 and sets out plans to accelerate the UK’s domestic capabilities, collaborate with international partners and enhance international financial and trading markets.

The Critical Minerals Expert Committee provides high quality, independent advice to the Government on critical minerals. At the most recent Committee meeting on 10 October, members reflected on the publication of the Strategy, and articulated which measures should be prioritised in the Delivery Plan which we are expecting to publish by the end of the year.

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
25th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent discussions he has had with the President of COP26 on the progress of COP26 commitments.

The Minister meets regularly with the COP President, including through the Climate Action Implementation Committee, to discuss progress on implementing the historic Glasgow Climate Pact agreed at COP26.

COP27 must now build on these commitments made at COP26, with Glasgow and Paris as the baseline of our ambition. The UK will continue driving the delivery of Glasgow commitments at the upcoming COP27 and beyond.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
25th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment his Department has made of the potential obstacles to increasing the production of tidal energy.

The Government is planning to publish revised guidance on tidal energy in the energy National Policy Statement to bring greater clarity for developers and remove any potential obstacles to deployment. The Government is also exploring options for increasing the production of tidal energy including innovative funding mechanisms.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
25th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will make it his policy to include tidal energy as a means to meet the net zero target by 2050.

The Government is planning to publish revised guidance on tidal energy in the energy National Policy Statement on the important role this technology can play in meeting the net zero target and how its impacts can be mitigated.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
25th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what support his Department provides for energy supply in communal areas in (a) apartment buildings and (b) other shared accommodation.

Intermediaries supplying energy via a domestic contract benefit from the Energy Price Guarantee (EPG) and the Energy Bills Support Scheme (EBSS). Non-domestic contracts will benefit from the Energy Bill Relief Scheme (EBRS).

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
19th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will make estimate of the number of pubs that will close in the next 12 months.

The Department monitors hospitality sector trends using a range of data sources and regularly meets with businesses to understand the pressures that they face.

The Hospitality Sector Council (HSC) has been set up to support delivery of the commitments set out in the Hospitality Strategy and build the long-term resilience of the sector.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
11th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department will take to support proactive, predictive immunology research into second and third generation COVID-19 vaccinations.

UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) will be committing at least £21 million in 2023 to support major new research consortia addressing key challenges to underpin development of second and third generation COVID-19 vaccinations. These consortia will provide sustained funding to address key issues in understanding viral evolution, future variant risks, immune responses to infection and vaccination and how to drive sustained, mucosal immune responses. The consortia will be multidisciplinary and cross-institutional, will be supported for 5 years and are encouraged to engage with industry partners.

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
11th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department has taken to support the development of mucosal covid-19 vaccines.

UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) will be committing at least £21 million in 2023 to support major new research consortia addressing key challenges to underpin development of second and third generation COVID-19 vaccinations. These consortia will provide sustained funding to address key issues in understanding viral evolution, future variant risks, immune responses to infection and vaccination and how to drive sustained, mucosal immune responses. The consortia will be multidisciplinary and cross-institutional, will be supported for 5 years and are encouraged to engage with industry partners.

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
11th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what his timetable is for the implementation of the alternative UK programme to Horizon Europe.

Our preference remains association to EU programmes and we continue to do everything we can to secure this, however we cannot wait indefinitely; the EU’s delays are creating significant uncertainty for our R&D communities. The Government’s priority remains to support the UK’s research and development sector through this period which is why the Government has already put in place a guarantee for eligible, successful UK applicants to Horizon Europe which we recently extended to cover all calls closing on or before 31 December 2022.

On 20 July 2022, the Department set out detail on plans for transitional measures that would be implemented if association is no longer possible. The document made clear that a comprehensive package of transitional measures could be launched immediately, if needed, and would aim to provide stability and continuity of funding for UK researchers and businesses. These transitional measures would remain in place as long as it is needed to establish the long-term programme.

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
11th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he has taken with the Treasury to help increase investment in UK Research and Development to 2.4 per cent GDP by 2026-27.

The Government remains committed to the 2.4% target. The public research and development (R&D) spending commitments delivered at Spending Review 2021 will contribute to driving increases in private sector investment in R&D. This will support the Government’s aim of raising economic growth by boosting productivity and thus raising living standards across the country.

My Hon. Friend the Economic Secretary to the Treasury has confirmed that Government will abide by SR21 R&D allocations, including for Core Innovation. This will support delivery of the Innovation Strategy’s ambition to boost private sector investment in UK R&D by creating the conditions for all businesses to innovate and giving them the confidence to do so.

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
11th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, that steps he has taken to progress the ratification of the UK’s association with the EU’s Horizon Europe programme.

The UK should already be part of Horizon Europe, as agreed in the Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA). Association to Horizon Europe remains our preference and we continue to do everything we can to secure this. That is why we entered into formal consultations with the EU under the TCA.

At the UK-EU Specialised Committee meeting on 22 September, which marked the end of the consultation period, the UK requested that the EU fulfil its obligation to finalise the UK’s association to Horizon Europe. Disappointingly, the EU continues to decline this request, despite association being a clear win-win and supported across the UK and European R+D sectors.

The UK government is now considering next steps. Our priority is to support the UK’s world leading R&D sector and we have already outlined potential options for doing so.

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
10th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what estimate his Department has made of the cost to the public purse of loans fraudulently claimed under the Bounce Back Loan Scheme; and what proportion of those loans were administered by (a) Lloyds, (b) Barclays, (c) NatWest, (d) HSBC and (e) other UK banks.

Performance data for the Bounce Back Loan Scheme is available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/covid-19-loan-guarantee-schemes-repayment-data/bounce-back-loan-scheme-performance-data-as-at-31-july-2022. This includes specific information on the value of loans marked as suspected fraud, and claims made and settled by individual lenders who are accredited for the scheme.

An updated estimate on the total rate of fraud in the Bounce Back Loan Scheme will be reported in the Department’s Annual Report and Accounts 2021-2022, due for publication later this year.

10th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether his Department has taken steps to promote the use of large scale biomethane energy production in the UK; and if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of encouraging energy providers to facilitate such production.

The Green Gas Support Scheme (GGSS) provides tariff-support for biomethane produced via anaerobic digestion and injected into the gas grid. The design of the scheme aims to stimulate production at larger volumes than under previous schemes which will lead to increased carbon savings and value for money.

As stated in our government response to the Future Support for Low Carbon Heat Consultation, for long term support to biomethane we expect to focus on market-based mechanisms which leverage competitive forces to drive down costs and ensure cost-effectiveness. Any future policy will be subject to external consultation.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
10th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will make biomethane energy production a part of the national energy strategy.

The Heat and Buildings Strategy and the Net Zero Strategy published in 2021 are clear on the need to increase the proportion of biomethane injected into the gas grid. Government launched the Green Gas Support Scheme in November 2021 providing tariff-support for biomethane produced via anaerobic digestion and injected into the gas grid.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
10th Oct 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will make it his policy to use biomethane energy production facilities to reduce carbon emissions.

The Heat and Buildings Strategy and the Net Zero Strategy published in 2021 are clear on the need to increase the proportion of biomethane injected into the gas grid. Government launched the Green Gas Support Scheme in November 2021 providing tariff-support for biomethane produced via anaerobic digestion and injected into the gas grid.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
8th Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking to support new low carbon technologies.

The Government supports the development of new technology throughout its full technology development cycle. This starts with early-stage UKRI funding, progressing into mid to late-stage innovation funding such as the 4-year £1bn Net Zero Innovation Portfolio to demonstrate technology at pilot scale or on-site. This also includes the recently launched ARIA that focusses on high-risk disruptive innovation. Once the technology is ready for first commercial deployment the Government supports deployment through CfD auctions, and programmes like the Industrial Energy Transformation Fund. Finally, to establish an enduring marketplace for new low carbon technology the Government is developing, for example, business models for hydrogen, CCUS and greenhouse gas removal technology.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
8th Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking to deliver new and advanced nuclear power in the UK.

The Government intends to take one project to Final Investment Decision (FID) this Parliament and two projects in the next Parliament, subject to necessary approvals.

The Government will set up a new flagship body - ‘Great British Nuclear’ - to develop a resilient pipeline of projects. The Government appointed Simon Bowen to lead and help develop government proposals for this body.

On the 2nd of September 2022, the Government launched the bid window for the £120 million Future Nuclear Enabling Fund. This fund will provide targeted support to potential new and advanced nuclear projects seeking to enter the UK nuclear market.

This is additional to £210m for Rolls-Royce SMR which will be matched by industry.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
8th Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent progress his Department has made on securing business investment in the UK.

Earlier this year, the Government secured £28.5 billion from Australian Investors for clean energy, technology and infrastructure. In addition, the Government has provided support to attract significant investment in manufacturing including Airbus’ August announcement of a £100m investment in Broughton to increase their wing production capacity. In the Life Sciences sector, the Government has worked to secure over £80 million R&D investment by Smith and Nephew into their manufacturing facility in Melton near Hull.

8th Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking to ensure that UK businesses benefit from the UK leaving the EU.

Cutting red tape is a central part of the Government’s growth policy. The Government is carrying out a major cross-government drive to reform, repeal and replace outdated retained EU law. This will aim to cut £1 billion of red tape for UK businesses, ease regulatory burdens and contribute to the Government’s mission to unite and level up the country.

Through a reformed Better Regulation Framework we will foster alternatives to regulation, bear down on costs, and assess the effects of regulation on innovation and competition in order to deliver growth. Regulators will also work collaboratively with businesses to minimise the costs they face.

8th Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking to reduce the regulatory burden on UK businesses.

Cutting red tape is a central part of the Government’s growth policy. The Government is carrying out a major cross-government drive to reform, repeal and replace outdated retained EU law. This will aim to cut £1 billion of red tape for UK businesses, ease regulatory burdens and contribute to the Government’s mission to unite and level up the country.

Through a reformed Better Regulation Framework we will foster alternatives to regulation, bear down on costs, and assess the effects of regulation on innovation and competition in order to deliver growth. Regulators will also work collaboratively with businesses to minimise the costs they face.

8th Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department is taking to increase research and development spending.

At the Spending Review 2021 (SR21), the Government committed to its largest ever sustained uplift in research and development (R&D) funding, including the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy’s (BEIS) largest ever R&D budget.

BEIS, in recent months, has published how our R&D settlement at SR21 will be allocated over the next three years.

Alongside this, increasing private R&D investment will be critical to reaching economy-wide R&D investment of 2.4% of GDP by 2027. In July 2021, we published the Innovation Strategy, which aims to boost private sector R&D investment across the whole of the UK by creating the conditions for all businesses to innovate and giving them the confidence to do so

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
8th Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent progress the Government has made on the UK’s application to associate to Horizon Europe.

Our preference remains association to the EU programmes as agreed under the Trade and Cooperation Agreement (TCA), including Horizon Europe, and we continue to do everything we can to secure this. The EU is in breach of the agreement reached under the TCA for the UK to participate in EU programmes and these unjustified delays are causing uncertainty for our research and business communities. That is why we entered into formal consultations with the EU, which are a mechanism set out in the TCA to resolve issues between the UK and the EU.

At the UK-EU Specialised Committee meeting on 22 September, which marked the end of the consultations period, the UK once again requested that the EU fulfil its obligation to finalise the UK’s association to EU Programmes. It is regrettable that the EU continues to decline this request. The UK government is now considering next steps. Our priority is to support the UK’s world leading R&D sector and we have already outlined potential options for doing so.

Nusrat Ghani
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade) (jointly with the Cabinet Office)
21st Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the potential impact of the upcoming Contract for Difference Auction Round 4 on energy bills.

The Government is committed to minimising energy costs for businesses and consumers.

The precise bill impact of Allocation Round 4 (AR4) will be dependent on future wholesale electricity prices, which remain uncertain. Although difficult to predict with certainty, the Government expects AR4 to have a relatively small impact on household bills. AR4 will deliver capacity which is a critical part of the Government’s strategy to reduce system costs and will increase energy independence by contributing towards the transition to a low carbon electricity system.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
19th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what progress his Department has made on implementing the recommendation of the Taylor Review to ensure more attainable ways for employees to strengthen their future work prospects.

The opportunity to progress in work is any integral part of job quality and the Government has taken steps since the publication of the Taylor Review to help workers improve their prospects to progress in work. The Department for Work and Pensions recently launched an in-work progression offer to support low paid universal credit claimants in work to progress and increase their earnings. This support will be provided by work coaches and will focus on removing barriers to progression, helping people identify skills gaps and relevant training, helping people look for progression opportunities in their current role, and consider changing roles or sectors.  Furthermore, low-paid workers are eligible for training funded by the Department for Education, who maintain a suite of skills programmes to help all workers boost skills and prospects.

19th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what progress his Department has made on implementing the recommendation of the Taylor Review to ensure that platform based employees should be clearly distinguished from those who are legitimately self-employed.

The Government is clear that everyone deserves to be treated fairly at work and rewarded for their contribution to the economy, both in terms of fair pay and fair working conditions.

We announced on the 9th May that we will bring forward employment status guidance to help clarify the existing status boundaries. This will make it easier for individuals and businesses, including for those in the gig economy, to understand which employment rights apply to them, enhancing worker protections whilst maintaining flexibility and ensuring a level playing field within the labour market.

18th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether his Department has made progress on implementing recommendation seven in the Taylor Review on ensuring that there are sectoral strategies to engage employers, employees and stakeholders so that people in low paid sectors do not continuously remain on the minimum wage.

Earlier this year we increased the National Living Wage, putting £1,000 more a year in the pay packets of those who need it most. Programmes offered by the Department for Education and the Department for Work and Pensions are helping to up-skill workers, allowing them to progress in work and thrive in the labour market.

18th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what progress his Department has made on implementing the recommendation of the Taylor Review to ensure that the same basic principles should apply to all forms of employment in the British economy.

The Government is clear that everyone deserves to be treated fairly at work and rewarded for their contribution to the economy, both in terms of fair pay and fair working conditions.

We announced on the 9th May that we will bring forward employment status guidance to help clarify the existing status boundaries. This will make it easier for individuals and businesses, including for those in the gig economy, to understand which employment rights apply to them, enhancing worker protections whilst maintaining flexibility and ensuring a level playing field within the labour market.

18th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether his Department has made progress on implementing the recommendation in the Taylor Review on ensuring a more proactive approach to workplace health.

The Government is committed to supporting people living with disabilities and long term health conditions.

A range of Government initiatives are supporting disabled people and people with health conditions to start, stay and succeed in work. These include the Work and Health Programme, the Intensive Personalised Employment Support programme, Access to Work, Disability Confident and support in partnership with the health system, including Employment Advice in NHS Improving Access to Psychological Therapy services. We will be investing £1.3bn in employment support for disabled people and people with health conditions over the next three years.

11th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the adequacy of the response of Oversea Territories on tackling climate change.

Responsibility for the environment and climate change policy is devolved to the Overseas Territories, although the UK is responsible for extension of international treaties to them. The Government is working with the Overseas Territories on extension of the UK ratification of the Paris Agreement to those that are eligible and that formally request it. The extension process will include an assessment of Overseas Territories’ climate action plans.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
23rd May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the compatibility of the development of the North Sea gas field, Jackdaw, with his Department’s Energy Security Strategy.

The North Sea Transition Authority plans to launch another licensing round in the autumn, taking into account the forthcoming climate compatibility checkpoint and the need for energy security.

Development proposals for oil fields under existing licences are a matter for the regulators - the North Sea Transition Authority and the Offshore Petroleum Regulator for Environment and Decommissioning (OPRED). OPRED’s decision for Jackdaw will be made in due course.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
17th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what progress he has made on the £400m partnership between his Department and the Breakthrough Energy Catalyst that was announced in October 2021.

Since my rt. hon. Friend the Prime Minister announced the partnership with Breakthrough Energy Catalyst (BEC), progress has been made in formalising the relationship and driving value by sharing information on funding opportunities and signposting project opportunities. The Government has launched a number of funding and market development programmes in the four technology areas covered by the partnership. BEC has launched a UK request for proposals for emerging climate technology projects and is now undertaking its first round of evaluations.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
16th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the potential effect of the upcoming Contract for Difference Auction Round 4 on energy bills.

The Government is committed to minimising energy costs for businesses and consumers. Contracts for Difference offer value-for-money to consumers and continue to deliver low prices. For example, between the first allocation round in 2015 and the last round in 2019, the price per unit (MWh) of offshore wind fell by around 65%.

Competitive auctions are proven to be effective in helping to keep costs down and this year’s auction has been designed to keep the allocation process highly competitive. The impact will be dependent on the outcome of the competitive auction process; it is expected that this year’s round will have a small impact on household bills.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
11th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps the Department is taking to increase the development of renewable energy.

The Contracts for Difference (CfD) scheme is the Government’s flagship scheme for supporting renewable generation in Great Britain. The latest round is the largest yet, and aims to secure more capacity than all previous rounds combined, supporting technologies including offshore wind, onshore wind, solar, tidal and floating offshore wind. In February, the Government announced that the next CfD round will be held in March 2023, and future rounds will run annually.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
10th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how much and what proportion of funds obtained fraudulently through covid-19 loan schemes have since been (a) returned to or (b) reclaimed by his Department.

As of 30th April 2022 a total of £4,022,685 of funds, obtained fraudulently through covid-19 loan schemes, has been recovered by the National Investigation Service. Of the funds recovered, £3,010,831 was returned to lenders and the remaining £1,011,854 has been or is in the process of being returned to the Government.

10th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what estimate his Department has made of the amount of covid-19 loans that were claimed fraudulently but cannot be retrieved.

We continue to work with lenders and enforcement agencies to recover fraudulently obtained loans.

The Department’s 2020-2021 Annual Report & Accounts has a central estimate for fraud and error loss of relating to the Bounce Back Loan Scheme specifically. We do not hold a central estimate for fraud and error loss for the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme or the Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme.

The final level of loss will not be known for some time, as not all suspected fraud will necessarily translate into a fraud occurrence, and because some fraudulently obtained funds will be recovered or repaid.

10th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment his Department has made of the number of companies that claimed loans under the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme without ever publishing company results before the pandemic.

The Department does not hold this data. In order to be eligible for a Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan, a business had to have a borrowing proposal which the lender would consider viable, were it not for the pandemic.

10th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how many people have been disqualified as company directors because of misuse of covid-19 loans scheme.

The Insolvency Service has secured 159 disqualifications of company directors as a result of COVID-19 financial support scheme abuse. This includes abuse of the Bounce Back Loan (BBL) Scheme, Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS), and Coronavirus Large Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CLBILS).

The Insolvency Service publishes official statistics of its enforcement outcomes, which provide a breakdown of figures in relation to COVID-19 financial support scheme abuse. This is available here.

14th Apr 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department plans to take ensure to that people who reside in non-family households are not penalised if they move to other properties within the period when the energy bills rebate is recharged.

The Government understands there will be cases where changes in people’s circumstances mean they may not directly be the recipient of the reduction, but still see increases in future bills, or vice versa.

The Energy Bills Support Scheme, as announced by my rt. hon. Friend Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer on 3 February, is currently the subject of a government consultation issued on 11 April.

The implementation of the policy will be reviewed following the conclusion of the consultation.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
18th Mar 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department has taken to develop the UK R&D Roadmap into the forthcoming R&D Plan.

Published in July 2020, the R&D Roadmap set out the Government’s vision and ambition for the next chapter for UK research and development.

BEIS is focusing on implementation and delivery of the Roadmap and of subsequent strategies, such as the Innovation and People and Culture Strategies. The objectives of the Roadmap are also being driven through the independently led Reviews of Research Bureaucracy and the Research, Development and Innovation Organisational Landscape.

The Department recently received its largest ever R&D budget at SR21 – £39.8bn over the SR period. We have now set out how funding will be allocated across our partner organisations over the next three years.

We have also announced the Advanced Research and Invention Agency (ARIA), for which the Government has committed £800 million to by 2025/2026 to fund high-risk high-reward research.

18th Mar 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment has been made of how the model of collaborative funding for covid-19 research at pace can be used to fund other research areas.

I refer the Hon. Member to the answer I gave to the Hon. Member for Strangford on 15 February 2022 to Question UIN 119577.

18th Mar 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent steps his Department has taken to support research into cancer immune therapies.

Medical Research Council, as part of UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) funds research relevant to cancer immune therapies as part of its wider cancer portfolio. Development of cancer vaccines and immune therapies, including immune-oncology work into Chimeric antigen receptor (CAR-T) approaches and immunotherapies, is funded through MRC’s research boards, panels and Unit and Institutes.

For example, research into cancer immune therapies have been supported through MRC’s Developmental Pathway Funding Scheme such as research taking place at Great Ormond Street Hospital which is aiming to use novel base editing techniques to develop new CAR-T approaches to treat Leukemia in Children. In addition, research at Queen Mary, University of London is looking at Tumour-targeting oncolytic viruses, a new class of therapeutic that has shown immense promise in clinical trials for a number of different cancers and provide a promising platform for development of curative therapies for pancreatic cancer.

MRC has also supported research through its Units including research at the MRC Clinical Trials Unit which is focusing on new drugs including immune-oncology drugs, and artificial intelligence technologies to improve cancer treatments. There is also research at the MRC Toxicology Unit looking at using new technologies to better understand the immune system and to investigate how and why toxicity develops. This knowledge will help to design interventions that make immune therapies safer and more widely available.

MRC always welcomes high quality applications for support into any aspect of human health and these are judged in open competition with other demands on funding. Awards are made according to their scientific quality and importance to human health.

18th Mar 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what progress has been made on the ratification of the UK’s association with the EU’s Horizon Europe programme.

The UK stands ready to formalise our association to EU programmes at the earliest opportunity. The UK raised the ongoing delays at the EU-UK Specialised Committee on Participation in Union Programmes in December. In this meeting the EU confirmed that they were unwilling to move on UK association due to broader political issues. The minutes from this meeting can be found on gov.uk. We continue to push the EU to formalise our association to Horizon Europe as soon as possible.

We recognise that the EU’s delays to the UK’s association have led to uncertainty for researchers, businesses and innovators based in the UK. In order to provide reassurance, the Government guaranteed funding for the first wave of eligible successful applicants to Horizon Europe. On 15 March, the Government announced an extension of the guarantee to a second wave of eligible, successful applicants to ensure that important international collaborations can continue and to provide reassurance for future collaborations.

This guarantee protects researchers whether we associate to Horizon Europe, or not. The Government’s position remains to associate and we will continue to do everything we can, but the UK cannot wait indefinitely. If the UK is unable to associate to Horizon Europe soon, and in time to make full use of the opportunities it offers, we are committed to introducing a comprehensive alternative programme of international science, research and innovation collaborations. These will focus on both immediate stability for the sector, with short-term mitigations including the guarantee of funding for successful Horizon applicants, and a bold and ambitious longer-term offer that delivers many of the benefits of Horizon association, and additional benefits, through wider global participation, and even stronger industry and SME engagement.

18th Mar 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his his Department has taken to support scientific research consortia as a future funding model for domestic R&D.

Support for research consortia is a well-established aspect of the UK Government’s approach to funding R&D. Between 2015 – 2021, UK Research and Innovation provided over 16,500 research and innovation grants, over 65% of which were collaborative awards.[1] [2]

SR21 sets out the government’s plan to cement the UK as a global science and technology superpower, with public spending on R&D rising to £20bn in 2024/25, an increase of around a quarter in real terms over the SR period.

As the custodian of the R&D system, BEIS has been allocated £39.8bn for R&D over the SR period, the largest ever budget committed to BEIS for R&D. This investment will continue to support both individual researchers and groups of researchers working in consortia to solve the biggest challenges facing society.

It will also encourage private sector investments and give the market players the confidence that they are backing national priorities – so that the public and private sector can come together to deliver breakthroughs, like the Covid-19 vaccine, that can transform our lives and economic prospects.

[1] https://www.ukri.org/publications/competitive-funding-decisions-data-2015-to-2020/

[2] https://www.ukri.org/publications/competitive-funding-decisions-data-2020-to-2021

24th Feb 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether his Department has made an assessment of the potential merits of introducing voluntary climate and nature reporting frameworks for small businesses.

To support the UK’s transition to net zero, the Government considers it important to ensure that companies with a material economic or environmental impact or exposure assess, disclose and ultimately take actions against climate-related risks and opportunities. In light of this, from 6 April 2022, over 1,300 of the largest UK-registered companies and financial institutions will have to disclose climate-related financial information on a mandatory basis – in line with recommendations from the Task Force on Climate-Related Financial Disclosures.

The Government’s longer-term ambition is for this to lead to the development of best practice, to support smaller companies to disclose should they wish to.

The Government continues to encourage small businesses to join the Race to Zero and make a net zero commitment, with over 2,800 doing so to date.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
17th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of establishing conditions so that retrofitting the existing building stock contributes to the Department’s levelling up agenda.

The Government is committing a further £3.9 billion for retrofitting buildings with energy-efficiency measures over the next three years. This takes total commitment to decarbonising buildings to £6.6 billion in this Parliament. In the Heat and Buildings Strategy, the Government sets out how decarbonising buildings can support growth and levelling up. This work is predicted to support 175,000 green skilled jobs by 2030 and 240,000 by 2035. This will result in £6 billion additional gross value added by 2030, with a focus on the areas that most need investment.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
4th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of promoting initiatives to increase opportunities for tidal power projects in the UK.

The Government announced in November that the fourth Contracts for Difference allocation round will feature a £20m annual ringfenced budget for tidal stream energy. This builds on a long and continuing history of government support for the tidal power sector and opens up possibilities for Britain’s marine energy sector to play a key role in strengthening energy security and reducing our dependency on fossil fuels.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
13th Dec 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what initiatives his Department is promoting to encourage investment in green (a) industries, (b) growth and (c) jobs.

Both public and private investment will be crucial to delivering Net Zero. The policies and spending set out in the Net Zero Strategy mean that since the Ten Point Plan, the Government has mobilised £26 billion of government capital investment for the green industrial revolution. Along with regulations, this will support up to 440,000 jobs by 2030, and leverage up to £90 billion of private investment by 2030. For example, the UK Infrastructure Bank will provide targeted support to UK infrastructure projects including in support of net zero, with £12 billion of equity and debt capital and an ability to deploy £10 billion of government guarantees.

The Offshore Wind sector provides a good example of how the government is leveraging private investment, delivering growth and jobs. Announced as part of the Ten Point Plan, the UK’s offshore wind manufacturing industry has already seen almost £1.5 billion of investment unlocked by the £160 million Offshore Wind Manufacturing Investment Support initiative, which aims to further develop the UK’s offshore wind capabilities. This could support up to 3,600 jobs supported across the Humber region.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
13th Dec 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department is taking to reduce the cost of achieving net zero emissions by 2050.

The Government’s landmark Net Zero Strategy, published on October 19, will drive forward our ambition to reach net zero and level up the UK by supporting up to 190,000 jobs in the middle of the 2020s and up to 440,000 jobs in 2030. Affordability is a key pillar of the Government's Net Zero Strategy, and we are working with businesses to deliver deep cost reductions in low-carbon technologies.  For example, we are delivering a Government programme of innovation to enable decarbonisation backed by funding of at least £1.5bn during next spending review period, which will help reduce energy costs for consumers.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
18th Nov 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, when he was first made aware of the concerns about the pricing of wholesale gas.

BEIS and Ofgem monitor a range of wholesale market metrics and frequently engage with both domestic and international stakeholders to share market information.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
26th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will make an assessment of the level of private finance which will be unlocked as a result of the net zero strategy.

The Net Zero Strategy outlines measures to transition to a green and sustainable future, helping businesses and consumers to move to clean power, supporting hundreds of thousands of well-paid jobs and leveraging up to £90 billion of private investment by 2030.

The UK is a world leading financial hub, with access to global capital pools, outstanding professional services, and a robust legal and regulatory framework. As such, the UK financial services industry is poised to enable private capital to flow into our net zero investment needs. For example, targeted public intervention via the British Business Bank (BBB), UK Export Finance and the UK Infrastructure Bank (UKIB) will pull through investment from the private sector.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
20th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent assessment his Department has made of the reasons for the increase in wholesale gas supplies.

As set out by my Rt. Hon. Friend the Secretary of State on 20 September, higher wholesale gas prices have been seen internationally in 2021. A number of factors have contributed to this increase. This increase in global gas prices is reflected in the British wholesale gas market.

There has been an increase in global gas demand as a result of economies rebounding following the removal of measures put in place to contain the Covid-19 pandemic. Combined with low levels of European gas in storage following a cold winter in Europe, this has led to a much tighter gas market with less spare capacity. In addition, high demand in Asia for Liquified Natural Gas (LNG), which is transported globally by ship, and weather events in the US, have meant less LNG than expected has reached Europe.

Gas production has also been reduced, with several planned and unplanned outages, such as in Norway and the US. Other factors include essential maintenance, including projects rescheduled from 2020 due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
15th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what estimate his Department has made of the number of people in paid employment as at 15 September 2021.

For the three months to July 2021, the number of employees was estimated at 27.9 million, with 32.4 million in employment (including self-employed).

Early estimates from HMRC real time payroll data for August showed that the number of payroll employees was 29.1 million, returning to pre-pandemic level.

7th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what estimate his Department has made of the number of people in employment who are members of a recognised trade union.

The Trade Union Membership 2020 Statistical Bulletin, published by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy on 27th May 2021, reports that the number of employees in the UK who are members of a recognised trade union is 6.6 million.

7th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what mechanisms are in place to audit information provided to his Department by (a) regulatory bodies and (b) non-departmental public bodies.

The relationship between an Arm’s-Length Body (ALB) and the Department should be established through a Framework Document. Managing Public Money sets out that:

“3.8.2 The framework document (or equivalent) agreed between an ALB and its sponsor always provides for the sponsor department to exercise meaningful oversight of the ALB’s strategy and performance, pay arrangements and/or major financial transactions, e.g. by monthly returns, standard delegations and exception reporting. The sponsor department’s accounts consolidate those of its ALBs so its accounting officer must be satisfied that the consolidated accounts are accurate and not misleading.”

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/managing-public-money.

A non-departmental public body is required to submit to their sponsoring department, on an annual basis, an annual report and audited accounts prepared in accordance with the relevant statutes and guidelines. The annual report and accounts provide the sponsoring department with the financial and non-financial performance of the non-departmental public body. In addition, they will state if the non-departmental public body has met key performance indicators as set out in their business and corporate plans. The report and accounts are laid in Parliament and, where commercially possible, made available on the non-departmental public body’s website.

1st Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment his Department has made of the potential merits of setting a target for onshore wind ahead of COP26.

Renewable technologies will make a critical contribution to meeting our 2050 net zero commitment, alongside firm low carbon power such as nuclear and gas or biomass generation with carbon capture, usage and storage, and a significant increase in flexibility.

As outlined in the recent Energy White Paper, there is no single optimal mix of technologies to decarbonise electricity generation. Targets can be useful in giving certainty to sectors with long investment horizons, however we do not believe that government should prescribe the proportion of generation that will come from all specific technologies; rather the role of government will be to enable the market to deliver the levels of deployment required whilst minimising emissions at a low overall system cost.

Whilst the Government has not set specific 2030 targets for onshore wind, we recognise that achieving our 2050 net zero target will require increased deployment across a range of renewable technologies, including sustained growth of onshore wind. This is why we announced on 2 March 2020 that onshore wind and other established renewable technologies such as solar PV will be able to compete in the next Contracts for Difference (CfD) allocation round. The round will open in December 2021 and aim to deliver up to double the renewable capacity of last year’s successful round.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
16th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, (a) how many and (b) which countries are being assisted by the UK to procure covid-19 vaccines.

The UK is proud to have joined COVAX, an international initiative to support the discovery, manufacture, and fair distribution of COVID-19 vaccines across the world.

COVAX is an international alliance co-led by the Global Vaccine Alliance (Gavi), the Coalition for Epidemic Preparedness Innovations (CEPI) and World Health Organization (WHO), with participation from over 180 countries.

The UK is one of the largest bilateral donors to the COVAX Advanced Market Commitment (AMC), which will give lower and middle-income countries equitable access to vaccines that are developed. The UK has committed £548 million to the COVAX AMC.

COVAX has so far shipped over 29 million COVID-19 vaccines to 46 countries.

Full details of UK’s GAVI commitments can be found here at https://www.gavi.org/investing-gavi/funding/donor-profiles/united-kingdom.

Full details of COVAX’s rollout can be found here at https://www.gavi.org/covax-vaccine-roll-out.

19th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment his Department has made of the potential effect on post offices of the decision to award the commercial contract for accepting welfare payments to other parts of the financial sector.

The contract for the Post Office card account or its successor scheme is a commercial matter for the Department for Work and Pensions.

Post Office Ltd. is committed to remaining the main channel to ensure individuals and businesses can conveniently access and deposit cash. The Post Office is working with HM Treasury, financial services regulators and the financial industry to make sure that the most vulnerable who still rely on cash, can continue to access basic banking services conveniently and for free.

The sustainability and future success of the post office network remain of the utmost importance to the Government. The £227 million funding the Government has committed through the 2019 Spending Review provides Post Office Ltd with funds to support post offices across the UK and invest in the future of the business.

9th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what his policy is on employers insisting that employees receive a covid-19 vaccination to (a) remain employed and (b) receive employment.

Scientists are united that the vaccine offers the best form of protection against the virus but it is not compulsory - the UK operates a system of informed consent for vaccinations. Demand has been extremely high with more than 13 million people having been vaccinated by 10 February.

20th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how many departmental staff will be attending COP26 in an official capacity with their expenses covered.

The number of departmental staff that will be attending COP26 in an official capacity has yet to be confirmed.

Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
18th Jan 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how many businesses were declared insolvent in each of the last twelve months for which figures are available.

The Insolvency Service publishes insolvency statistics each month on GOV.UK:

Registered Company insolvencies in the UK

1 January 2020 to 31 December 2020

England and Wales

Scotland

Northern Ireland

Jan 20

1,514

72

22

Feb 20

1,348

85

33

Mar 20

1,234

76

30

Apr 20

1,201

45

3

May 20

946

34

5

Jun 20

740

46

9

Jul 20

966

52

10

Aug 20

789

43

4

Sep 20

927

43

11

Oct 20

862

44

8

Nov 20

891

46

8

Dec 20

1228

57

9

The statistics for individual months have not been adjusted to account for seasonality in the data. The Insolvency Service separately publishes quarterly statistics that present seasonally-adjusted data and rates of insolvency per 10,000 active companies that allow for a like-for-like comparison over time. These statistics can also be found on GOV.UK.

10th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what mechanism will replace the Rapid Alert System for dangerous goods on 1 January 2021.

The Office for Product Safety and Standards (OPSS) launched the UK’s own Product Safety Database in November 2019. It allows national and local authorities to notify unsafe products and to access and exchange data securely and effectively to ensure swift and appropriate action can be taken to protect consumers. In addition, OPSS publishes alerts on Gov.uk about unsafe consumer products.

10th Dec 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what UK mechanism will replace the EU Enforcement Database on 1 January 2021.

From 1st January 2021 rights holders will be able to request customs intervention in the UK via the new Application for Action form on the HMRC portal. Customs authorities in the UK will also be able to access information about IP rights in force in the UK via the existing online services provided by the UK IPO.

UK businesses who have IP rights in the EU will continue to be able to use the IP Enforcement Portal to assist in the protection of those rights after 1st January 2021.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
10th Nov 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent assessment he has made of the veracity of the reported £670,000 of expenditure on public relations consultants by the Vaccine Task Force.

Specialist communications support was contracted by the Vaccines Taskforce for a time-limited period, in line with existing public sector recruitment practices and frameworks.

Details of commercial arrangements with all firms and contract labour used by the Vaccines Taskforce will be published in line with the usual transparency arrangements.

Amanda Solloway
Government Whip, Lord Commissioner of HM Treasury
5th Oct 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether his Department plans to establish a banking agency to finance green investments as part of the Industrial Strategy.

Within the decade, my Rt. Hon. Friend the Prime Minister is determined for the UK to be at the forefront of the green industrial revolution as we accelerate our progress towards net zero emissions by 2050. That is why, this year alone, the government has set out billions in support for our low-carbon economy. As set out in the 2019 Green Finance Strategy, this needs to be combined with a focus on mobilising and accelerating flows of private finance into key clean growth sectors to provide good value for taxpayers, such as through providing long-term certainty and using public funds to leverage private capital.

24th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what the outcomes were of the bilateral discussions between UK, German and Dutch Government officials on the Shell proposal to decommission Brent rigs Alpha, Bravo, Charlie and Delta; and whether a record of those meetings will be published.

The meetings with officials from Germany and the Netherlands took place earlier in the year, following the OSPAR Special Consultative Meeting. The meetings were constructive and focussed on possible ways forward to address their concerns. As these meetings were informal, there was no intention to record or publish the discussions.

24th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what response his Department has made to the expert reports commissioned by the (a) German Government and (b) Dutch government on the Shell proposal to decommission Brent rigs Alpha, Bravo, Charlie and Delta tabled at the Special Consultative Meeting of the OSPAR Commission in October 2019; and when he plans to publish that response.

The content of the reports provided by Germany and the Netherlands were supplementary to their objections to the derogation consultation for Brent and were therefore part of the discussion at the OSPAR Special consultative meeting in October 2019. A record of that meeting was published by the chair of OSPAR in early November 2019.

24th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, when he plans to make a formal decision on the decommissioning plans for (a) Brent Alpha, (b) the other Brent platforms and (c) any other similar applications which the UK government may have received seeking derogation from resolution OSPAR 98/3.

In regard to the proposal to leave in-situ the footings of the Brent Alpha steel jacket, we expect to be in a position to make a decision within the next few months.

The decision on the Brent Bravo, Brent Charlie and Brent Delta concrete gravity-based installations is currently being considered, and we are keeping the OSPAR Contracting Parties informed of our progress. We have no detailed timetable and a formal decision is expected to be made in due course.

We are currently considering two Decommissioning programmes where a derogation is likely to be sought.

24th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether the proposed permit conditions relating to the Shell application to decommission Brent oil rigs Bravo, Charlie and Delta in respect of technology development for the management of the structures (a) will consider only in-situ remediation as an option or (b) there will be requirement to invest in technology development for the removal of those contents to shore.

Conditions to be included in the derogation permit for Brent Bravo, Brent Charlie and Brent Delta concrete gravity-based installations are being considered alongside the final decision. We expect to include conditions that would require ongoing analysis and development of technology, consideration of how to remediate the contents of the structure in situ and a management plan for any infrastructure left in situ in perpetuity, which will involve periodic monitoring as well as environmental surveys.

8th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, when he plans to make a decision on the (a) removal of the Brent concrete gravity-based installations and (b) derogation for leaving the footings of the Brent Alpha steel jacket east of Shetland.

The decision on the Brent Bravo, Brent Charlie and Brent Delta concrete gravity-based installations is currently being considered, and we are keeping the OSPAR Contracting Parties informed of our progress. We have no detailed timetable and a formal decision is expected to be made in due course.

In regard to the decision to leave in-situ the footings of the Brent Alpha steel jacket, we expect to be in a position to make a decision within the next 2 months.

29th Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether it remains the Government's policy to comply with the (a) London Convention on the Prevention of Marine Pollution by Dumping of Wastes and Other Matter 1972 and (b) 1996 London Protocol to that Convention following the decision to leave in-situ the (i) steel jackets and (ii) concrete bases underneath decommissioned (A) Bravo, (B) Charlie and (C) Delta east of Shetland Brent oilfield platforms.

Any approval of the derogation permit to leave in-situ the footings of the Brent Alpha steel jacket and the concrete gravity based installations Brent Bravo, Brent Charlie and Brent Delta will be consistent with all our International obligations.

24th Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of extending eligibility for the Retail, Hospitality & Leisure Grant Fund to include all businesses in that sector, irrespective of the premises from which those businesses operate.

Businesses are eligible for the Retail, Hospitality and Leisure Grant Fund if they are based in England with a property that has a rateable value of up to £51,000 and is wholly or mainly being used for the purposes of retail, hospitality and/or leisure. The Government is also providing an unprecedented package of wider support available to businesses in these sectors.

22nd Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, with reference to the covid-19 pandemic, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of taking additional steps to support businesses that employ vulnerable people.

The Government has introduced important social distancing measures for all types of businesses to consider in order to minimise the risk of transmission in the workplace. The Government has been clear that it is vital that all employers follow this guidance, which is clinically led and based on expert advice.

The Government has stated that vulnerable people who are at increased risk of severe illness from coronavirus (COVID-19) need to be particularly stringent in following social distancing measures. Additionally, the government guidance sets out that members of staff who are vulnerable or extremely vulnerable, as well as individuals whom they live with, should be supported by their employers as they follow the required social distancing and shielding measures.

22nd Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how many social enterprises have received a Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan to date.

The British Business Bank does not provide a breakdown on the issuance of loans under the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) to social enterprises. As of 29 April, in total over £4.1 billion worth of loans have been issued under the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) to over 25,262 businesses.

We are working with the British Business Bank, HM Treasury and the lenders on providing transparent and regular data publication going forward.

21st Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of establishing a national office for carbon removal.

There is no doubt that climate change is one of the greatest global challenges we face, and that action is urgently needed in the UK and across the world. The UK already has a world-leading framework for emissions reduction.

The Climate Change Act 2008 was the first of its kind in the world and made the UK the first country to introduce a legally binding, long-term emissions reduction target. The Act introduced our innovative framework of carbon budgets to ensure continued progress towards that target, capping emissions in successive five-year blocks. It also established the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) which independently provides expert advice to the Government on climate change mitigation and adaptation.

In June 2019, the UK became the first major economy to legislate for net zero - a 100% emissions reduction target by 2050 (relative to 1990 levels). The Prime Minister chairs a new Cabinet Committee on Climate Change to oversee this effort and drive forward action across the whole of government.

Through this strong legal framework and ambitious policy action, we have shown that cutting emissions and growing the economy can go hand-in-hand – reducing our emissions by over 40% since 1990 while growing the economy by three quarters. Our carbon budgeting, supported by independent expertise from the CCC, is widely accepted as global best-practice and provides the right framework for the UK to deliver our commitment to net zero.

20th Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what his timetable is for deciding whether to give Shell permission for its proposed plans for the (a) steel jackets and (b) concrete bases underneath decommissioned Brent oilfield platforms (i) Bravo, (ii) Charlie and (iii) Delta east of Shetland.

As part of the Brent decommissioning proposal, Shell propose to leave in-situ the footings of the Brent Alpha steel jacket and the concrete gravity based installations Brent Bravo, Brent Charlie and Brent Delta.

A formal decision is expected to be made in due course.

Any approval of the derogation permit to leave in-situ the footings of the Brent Alpha steel jacket and the concrete gravity based installations Brent Bravo, Brent Charlie and Brent Delta will include permit conditions to continue to develop technology for the management of the structures (including in-situ remediation for the contents of the structures). Shell and the Brent field licensees will remain responsible and liable in perpetuity for any structures left in-situ.

20th Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what Environmental Impact Assessment his Department has made of Shell's proposed plans for the (a) steel jackets and (b) concrete bases underneath decommissioned Brent oilfield platforms (i) Bravo, (ii) Charlie and (iii) Delta east of Shetland.

BEIS officials at the Offshore Petroleum Regulator for Environment and Decommissioning (OPRED) who are responsible for ensuring that all decommissioning in the UK Continental Shelf is carried out in line with current UK regulations and international obligations have considered the Brent decommissioning proposals and reviewed the associated environmental impact assessment including supporting technical documents. The review also took account of the technical, safety, societal and economic aspects and determined that the environmental impact assessment presented by Shell demonstrates that the decommissioning proposals would not have a significant adverse effect on human health, the environment or other users of the sea, and that leaving the footings of the Brent Alpha steel jacket and the concrete gravity based installations Brent Bravo, Brent Charlie and Brent Delta including the cell contents in-situ is the best management solution.

20th Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what recent discussions he has had with his European counterparts on Shell's proposed plans for the (a) steel jackets and (b) concrete bases underneath decommissioned Brent oilfield platforms (i) Bravo, (ii) Charlie and (iii) Delta east of Shetland.

Officials from Offshore Petroleum Regulator for Environment and Decommissioning (OPRED) have met with the OSPAR Contracting Parties to discuss issues around the Brent decommissioning derogation application over the last 6 months.

20th Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what (a) estimate and (b) assessment his department has made of the (i) amount and (ii) composition of materials in the (A) steel jackets and (B) concrete bases underneath decommissioned Brent oilfield platforms (1) Bravo, (2) Charlie and (3) Delta east of Shetland.

The Brent decommissioning proposal conservatively estimates that the cells contained within the concrete gravity based installation contain approximately 640,000 cubic metres (m3) of hydrocarbon contaminated seawater and 40,000 m3 of hydrocarbon contaminated sediments with a total estimated hydrocarbon load of approximately 16,000 tonnes. BEIS officials have reviewed the associated environmental impact assessment including supporting technical documents and have determined that the environmental impact assessment presented by Shell demonstrates that the decommissioning proposals would not have a significant adverse effect on human health, the environment or other users of the sea, and that leaving the cell contents in-situ is the best management solution. The Brent Alpha steel jacket has no materials remaining within it.

Any approval of the derogation permit to leave in-situ the footings of the Brent Alpha steel jacket and the concrete gravity based installations Brent Bravo, Brent Charlie and Brent Delta will include permit conditions to continue to develop technology for the management of the structures (including in-situ remediation for the contents of the structures). Shell and the Brent field licensees will remain responsible and liable in perpetuity for any structures left in-situ.

In addition, drill cuttings piles are present on the seabed at all of the Brent installations and on top of cells of the concrete gravity based installations and BEIS officials have determined that the best management option is to leave the cuttings piles to degrade in-situ.

20th Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment his Department made of the adequacy of funding for decommissioning of redundant offshore oil drilling platform bases in line with the Energy Act 2008.

BEIS officials in the Offshore Petroleum Regulator for Environment and Decommissioning (OPRED) continually consider the adequacy of companies to fund decommissioning and where any risk is identified my officials undertake work to mitigate these risks and where necessary have taken security in the form of letters of credit and entered into Decommissioning security agreements with companies.

Liability for decommissioning is joint and several and all companies who have had a beneficial interest in a licence both past and present are liable.

BEIS officials in OPRED also have a detailed understanding of the Decommissioning security that is in place in the form of commercial Decommissioning security agreements for all fields in the UKCS.

20th Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department has taken to help ensure there are adequate funding arrangements for the decommissioning of redundant offshore oil drilling platform bases constructed before the introduction of the Energy Act 2008.

BEIS officials in the Offshore Petroleum Regulator for Environment and Decommissioning (OPRED) continually consider the adequacy of companies to fund decommissioning and where any risk is identified my officials undertake work to mitigate these risks and where necessary have taken security in the form of letters of credit and entered into Decommissioning security agreements with companies.

Liability for decommissioning is joint and several and all companies who have had a beneficial interest in a licence both past and present are liable.

BEIS officials in OPRED also have a detailed understanding of the Decommissioning security that is in place in the form of commercial Decommissioning security agreements for all fields in the UKCS.

24th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether it is the Government's policy that construction and retail works are not essential workers for the purposes of the Government's response to the covid-19 outbreak.

The Government is committed to supporting people’s jobs and incomes, and we are working with businesses and unions to achieve this.

Retail workers fall within two distinct categories, those who work in non-essential retail such as clothing and electronic stores, and those who work in essential retail such as food, fuel, pharmacy, and post offices. On Monday 23rd March, the Prime Minister announced further measures to reduce social contact and expanded the list of business closures to include non-essential retail. Retail workers who work in the sale of food are considered key workers.

Construction workers play a crucial role in supporting our public services, maintaining the nation’s infrastructure, and providing safe, decent homes for people to live in. Where construction sector workers cannot work from home, they should still go to work unless they are vulnerable.

However, the Government is clear that construction activity should only continue where it can take place in line with the guidance provided by Public Health England. Through the Construction Leadership Council, the construction industry has issued Site Operating Procedures to set out how this can be done.

The Government has published a list of critical sectors which includes those deemed to be key workers, which can be found at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/coronavirus-covid-19-maintaining-educational-provision/guidance-for-schools-colleges-and-local-authorities-on-maintaining-educational-provision

18th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department is taking to ensure retailers do not unnecessarily raise prices of (a) hand sanitiser, (b) hand soap, (c) disposable masks, (d) antibacterial wipes and (e) other anti-bacterial products.

On 5 March, the Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) issued a public statement to reassure UK businesses and consumers that it is monitoring retail practices during the Coronavirus outbreak. The CMA will take direct enforcement action, or advise the Government to take additional measures, if required.

16th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how many exploratory deep sea mining licences the Government has issued.

In 2012 and 2013, the Government sponsored two 15-year exploration contracts for UK Seabed Resources Ltd, a subsidiary of the US corporation Lockheed Martin.

The Government is developing the International Seabed Authority’s deep sea mining code, so future mining is conducted in a safe and environmentally sensitive way.

16th Mar 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, for which oceans have exploratory deep sea mining licences been issued.

To date, the International Seabed Authority (ISA) has issued 29 exploration contracts to entities from 20 countries. The contractors include state-owned enterprises, as well as commercial organisations with a state sponsor.

The two UK exploration licence areas issued by the ISA are in the Clarion-Clipperton fracture zone in the Pacific Ocean.

The Government is developing the ISA’s deep sea mining code, so future mining is conducted in a safe and environmentally sensitive way.

19th Dec 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether her Department will match the £2,860 in funding per household in social housing to improve energy efficiency for people on low-incomes who own their own homes.

Improving home energy efficiency is the most sustainable way to tackle fuel poverty and an important step towards achieving Net Zero. The Energy Company Obligation scheme is currently set at £640 million per year and provides support to upgrade the homes of low income and vulnerable families.

In addition to this existing energy efficiency support, the Conservative Manifesto made new spending commitments for social housing and for Home Upgrade Grants. Further details on these policies will be announced in due course.

23rd Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what targets her Department has set to help achieve the Government's commitments on net zero.

The Government set out how we would meet our commitments in the Net Zero Strategy in 2021 which included a detailed breakdown of actions required across all sectors in the economy. This was updated in 2023 through the publication of ‘Powering Up Britain’.

The UK has halved its emissions, ahead of every other major economy, and we have grown our economy by over 70% since 1990. The UK over-achieved against the first and second carbon budgets, and the latest projections show that we are on track to meet the third.

We have one of the most ambitious decarbonisation targets in the world, and we have set more stretching targets for 2030 than most countries. We plan to cut emissions by 68% by 2030, which is more than the EU, Japan or the United States.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
7th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, if she will make an assessment of the potential merits of introducing an alternative funding scheme to the licence fee for the BBC.

The BBC is a great national institution and we want to ensure it is fit for the present and whatever the future holds.

That is why the Government has launched a review into how the BBC should be funded in the future, supported by a panel of independent experts soon to be announced from across the broadcasting sector and wider business world. It will assess a range of options for funding the BBC, and look at how alternative models could help secure the broadcaster’s long-term sustainability amid an evolving media landscape, increased competition and changing audience behaviour, while reducing the burden on licence fee payers.

The findings will inform the Charter Review, which is where any final decisions on changing the BBC’s funding model will be made by the Government.

10th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions his Department has had with (a) representatives and (b) all members of the Diversity in the Public Realm Commission.

The department has held no recent discussions with representatives or members of the Diversity in the Public Realm Commission.

10th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, whether she has had recent discussions with the Director General of the BBC on impartiality in its coverage of the Israel and Gaza conflict.

The BBC has a duty to provide accurate and impartial news and information. That is particularly important when it comes to coverage of highly sensitive events. The BBC’s accuracy and impartiality is critical to viewer trust.

The events in Israel since 7 October are terrorist acts committed by a terrorist organisation, proscribed in the United Kingdom since 2021 and designated as such by many other governments and international organisations.

The BBC is editorially and operationally independent and decisions around its editorial policies and guidelines are therefore a matter for the BBC.

However, calling these acts what they are, and accurately labelling the perpetrators, helps audiences to understand what has happened, is happening and its context.

That is why the Secretary of State has communicated with the BBC, and with the public, her disappointment that the BBC has refused to describe Hamas as terrorists, or the atrocities it has carried out as terrorism. The Secretary of State made that point to the BBC on multiple occasions since the terrorist attacks on 7 October.

As the external independent regulator of the BBC, Ofcom is responsible for ensuring BBC coverage is duly impartial and accurate under the Broadcasting Code and BBC Charter. Ofcom has been clear that responsibility lies with the BBC to decide the vocabulary it uses to describe unfolding events. The Broadcasting Code does not prevent broadcasters referring to terrorist organisations, nor does it prevent them referring to Hamas as terrorists.

10th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, if she will make an assessment of the adequacy of the level of competition between the BBC and the commercial radio sector.

The BBC has responsibilities set out in its Charter to avoid unnecessary adverse impacts on the market, including on the commercial radio sector. It is for Ofcom, as the independent regulator of the BBC, to hold the BBC to account on this.

However, commercial radio now represents a majority (54% as of Q3 2023, according to RAJAR data) of radio listening in the UK, with BBC stations accounting for 44%.

The Government is currently undertaking the Mid-Term Review of the BBC’s Charter, which will look at how the BBC and Ofcom assess the market impact of the BBC in an evolving marketplace, and how that relates to the wider UK media ecology, including the commercial radio sector. We will publish the results of the review in due course.

1st Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, how many local authority swimming pools have closed in last 10 years.

The government recognises the importance of ensuring public access to swimming pools, as swimming is a great way for people of all ages to stay fit and healthy. The responsibility of providing this access lies at Local Authority level, and the government continues to encourage Local Authorities to support swimming facilities.

At the Spring Budget, the government announced a package of over £60 million to support swimming pools, which is targeted at addressing cost pressures facing public swimming pool providers. It will also help provide investment in energy efficiency measures to reduce future operating costs and make facilities sustainable in the long-term.

Between September 2013 and September 2023, 294 swimming pools closed (across 162 sites owned by Local Authorities). Over a similar period from 2014 to 2023, 256 swimming pools were built by Local Authorities (across 144 sites). Facilities can close for a number of reasons, including being replaced by a new site or to align with the strategic objectives of the local authority.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
9th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport, if she will make it her policy to abolish the BBC licence fee.

We remain committed to reviewing the licence fee model ahead of the next Charter period to explore the potential for alternative ways to ensure the BBC remains appropriately funded over the long-term.

We will set out further detail on our plans regarding the future of the licence fee in due course.

18th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if she will place in the Library of the House correspondence between the Department and the British Museum on the Parthenon Sculptures in the last two years.

The Parthenon Sculptures in the British Museum are legally owned by the Trustees of the British Museum, which is operationally independent of Government. Decisions relating to the care and management of the museum's collections are a matter for the Trustees of the British Museum.

The British Museum is prohibited by law from deaccessioning items from its collection, and we have no plans to change the law.

The only discussions the Department has had on the matter of the Parthenon Sculptures occur within the formal meetings of the Intergovernmental Committee for Promoting the Return of Cultural Property at UNESCO – the last one being attended by Government officials in May 2022.

The Department does not hold discussions on this matter with external parties, including with John Lefas, and consequently does not have additional material to place in the Library of the House.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
18th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions her Department has had with external parties on the Parthenon Sculptures in the last two years.

The Parthenon Sculptures in the British Museum are legally owned by the Trustees of the British Museum, which is operationally independent of Government. Decisions relating to the care and management of the museum's collections are a matter for the Trustees of the British Museum.

The British Museum is prohibited by law from deaccessioning items from its collection, and we have no plans to change the law.

The only discussions the Department has had on the matter of the Parthenon Sculptures occur within the formal meetings of the Intergovernmental Committee for Promoting the Return of Cultural Property at UNESCO – the last one being attended by Government officials in May 2022.

The Department does not hold discussions on this matter with external parties, including with John Lefas, and consequently does not have additional material to place in the Library of the House.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
18th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether her Department has had discussions with John Lefas on the Parthenon Sculptures in the last two years.

The Parthenon Sculptures in the British Museum are legally owned by the Trustees of the British Museum, which is operationally independent of Government. Decisions relating to the care and management of the museum's collections are a matter for the Trustees of the British Museum.

The British Museum is prohibited by law from deaccessioning items from its collection, and we have no plans to change the law.

The only discussions the Department has had on the matter of the Parthenon Sculptures occur within the formal meetings of the Intergovernmental Committee for Promoting the Return of Cultural Property at UNESCO – the last one being attended by Government officials in May 2022.

The Department does not hold discussions on this matter with external parties, including with John Lefas, and consequently does not have additional material to place in the Library of the House.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
18th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what estimate her Department has made of the number of objects in museum collections deaccessioned in the last five years.

The Government does not keep such records as museums and galleries in the UK operate independently of the Government. Decisions relating to the care and management of their collections are a matter for the trustees of each museum.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
18th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what museums are prevented by statute from deaccessioning objects in their collections; and whether she plans to extend those statutes to other institutions.

Some national museums are prevented by law from ‘deaccessioning’ objects in their collections unless, broadly, they are duplicates or unfit for retention. The two exceptions to this are human remains (less than 1,000 years old) and Nazi-era spoliation.

The Acts governing the national museums which have provisions prohibiting the trustees of the museums from disposing of items in their collection are listed below. The provisions are explicit and specific, setting out limited scenarios where disposal would be permitted. The Government has no plans to change these Acts.

Governing Legislation

Organisation

British Museum Act 1963

British Museum National History Museum

British Library Act 1972

British Library

National Heritage Act 1983

Victoria and Albert Museum Science Museum Royal Armouries Kew Gardens

Merseyside Museums and Galleries Order 1986

National Museums Liverpool

Museums and Galleries Act 1992

Tate National Portrait Gallery National Gallery Wallace Collection

Imperial War Museum Act 1920

Imperial War Museum

National Maritime Museum Act 1934

Royal Museum Greenwich (National Maritime Museum)

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
10th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether regulations exist that govern how close to existing residential properties telecommunication apparatus can be installed.

When installing apparatus on both public and private land, operators must follow the provisions contained in the Electronic Communications Code. Further requirements for operators are set out in the Electronic Communications Code (Conditions and Restrictions) Regulations 2003. Operators must also comply with any applicable planning requirements, including any conditions, set out in relevant legislation.

Both fixed-line and mobile operators should also follow the relevant code of practice when deploying telecommunication apparatus so that it is placed appropriately, and local authorities and communities are engaged prior to installation. The codes of practice set out the required notification requirements where new apparatus to be installed by the operator, to indicate to nearby residents the intention to install apparatus as the proposed location.

Through Ofcom’s spectrum licence conditions, operators of radio equipment are also required to comply with the international guidelines for limiting exposure to electromagnetic fields for the protection of the general public; operators are under a legal obligation to operate their radio equipment in accordance with the conditions of their licence.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
9th Jan 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent assessment she has made of the potential merits of returning the Parthenon Sculptures to Greece (a) on loan and (b) permanently.

The Parthenon Sculptures in the British Museum are legally owned by the Trustees of the British Museum, which is operationally independent of Government. Decisions relating to the care and management of the museum's collections are a matter for the Trustees of the British Museum.

The British Museum, along with some other national museums, is prevented by law from deaccessioning objects in its collection. The British Museum has always said that it would consider any request for a loan of the sculptures to Greece – as it would any other object in its collection – as long as its normal conditions for loans are met.

The Government fully supports the position taken by the Trustees of the British Museum and has no plans to change the law.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
21st Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment her Department has made of the adequacy of funding and sponsorship opportunities for the private sector to enable works to be undertaken to properties on Historic England’s Heritage at Risk list; and if she will make a statement.

The Heritage at Risk programme helps the Government to understand the overall state of England's historic sites by identifying places which are most at risk of being lost as a result of neglect, decay or inappropriate development.

There are several organisations which offer funding to private and commercial owners of sites on the Heritage at Risk Register, including Natural England and the National Lottery Heritage Fund. Historic England is also able to fund Heritage at Risk projects, including to fund private owners, where a project meets the eligibility and assessment criteria of its grant schemes.

Historically, approximately 7–10% of Historic England’s grants for Heritage at Risk have been given to private owners, helping with emergency repairs to historic buildings and protecting the livelihoods of skilled craft workers.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
14th Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what the outcome was of discussions she had with the Chief Executive of English National Opera, Stuart Murphy, on 10 November 2022; and if she will make a statement.

My Rt Hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport met Stuart Murphy, the Chief Executive of English National Opera on 10 November at his request. This meeting was to discuss the work of the organisation and its plans for its future.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
2nd Sep 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether she plans to make it her policy to bring forward legislative proposals that will enable the Elgin Marbles to be returned to Greece.

The British Museum, along with some other national museums, is prevented by law from deaccessioning objects in their collection.

We have no plans to change the law.

The Parthenon Sculptures in the British Museum are legally owned by the Trustees of the British Museum, which is operationally independent of Government. Decisions relating to the care and management of the museum's collections are a matter for the Trustees of the British Museum. The Government fully supports the position taken by the Trustees of the British Museum.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
19th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent progress her Department has made on publication of the White Paper following its review of gambling legislation.

The Gambling Act Review is wide-ranging and aims to ensure that the regulation of gambling is fit for the digital age. We will publish a White Paper setting out our conclusions and next steps in due course.

13th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what estimate her Department has made of the number of schools in England that will take part in her gigabit broadband initiative for schools.

To support the delivery of gigabit-capable connectivity for public buildings, including schools, as part of Project Gigabit we are investing up to £110 million into our GigaHubs programme.

As part of this, DCMS has recently announced a joint £82 million investment with the Department for Education (DfE) to connect up to 3,000 eligible schools across England to gigabit-capable broadband. DCMS will connect up to 2,000 of these schools and the DfE will fund up to an additional 1,000 schools as part of their mission to enable every school in England to access high-speed internet by 2025.

Up to 35 primary schools in Dorset and Oxfordshire are also in line for delivery of a gigabit-capable connection through existing GigaHubs projects.

13th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment her Department has made of the financial impact of Channel 4 on the independent television production sector.

The Government consulted extensively on the future of Channel 4, and the views and evidence gathered from a wide range of stakeholders has informed the Government’s assessment of any potential impact of a change of ownership. The Government published its sale impact analysis on 28 April.

Channel 4 has done an excellent job in supporting the UK production sector and thereby delivering on one of its founding purposes. Forty years on, independent production in the UK is now booming, with revenues having grown from £500 million in 1995 to £3 billion in 2019. Companies are increasingly less reliant on Channel 4 for commissions. According to Pact’s 2020 census, only 7 per cent of the UK’s independent production sector revenues come from Channel 4 commissions.

More broadly, the independent production sector is now a mature industry, driven principally by medium sized and larger companies. The majority of revenues flow to a relatively small group of large companies in the independent production sector. Pact’s figures suggest that 63 per cent of sector revenues were captured by companies with £25m+ revenues in 2020, and 34 per cent of revenues were captured by companies with £70m+ revenues.

Under new ownership, Channel 4 will still be required to commission a minimum volume of its programming from independent producers, in line with the quotas placed on other public service broadcasters, ensuring its continued contribution to the sector.

Channel 4 has excellent relationships with independent producers right across the UK and there is no reason this should change. The Government expects a new owner to want to build on and develop those relationships. Ultimately, the Government believes that in the long run the UK production ecosystem will benefit from a more sustainable Channel 4. A change of ownership that improves Channel 4’s access to capital could increase spending on production. For example, Channel 5’s overall content budget increased following its acquisition by Viacom in 2014, with first-run spending up by an average of 7% per year between 2014 and 2018.

13th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how much Project Gigabit funding will be distributed to devolved authorities.

Project Gigabit funding for the planned procurements in the devolved administrations will be determined following thorough market reviews and using a modelled estimate of the costs involved in providing gigabit coverage.

Eligible premises in hard-to-reach communities across the United Kingdom can also get support from Project Gigabit’s £210m UK Gigabit Voucher scheme, which can provide immediate help to communities right now in advance of the wider rollout.

13th Jul 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how much funding his Department provides to primary schools in England for the installation of faster gigabit broadband.

To support the delivery of gigabit-capable connectivity for public buildings, including schools, as part of Project Gigabit we are investing up to £110 million into our GigaHubs programme.

As part of this, DCMS has recently announced a joint £82 million investment with the Department for Education (DfE) to connect up to 3,000 eligible schools across England to gigabit-capable broadband. DCMS will connect up to 2,000 of these schools with a contribution of up to £57 million, and the DfE will be funding up to an additional 1,000 schools.

The majority of the delivery will be for primary schools, although some secondary schools may benefit from this funding, with the number of primary and secondary schools to be confirmed after procurement is complete.

We are also currently investing approximately £900,000 for primary schools in Dorset and Oxfordshire to receive gigabit-capable broadband through existing GigaHubs projects.

20th Jun 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent estimate his Department has made of the number of people over the age of 60 who are unable to access online services.

Earlier this year, it was reported that Ofcom's Media Literacy Tracker Computer-assisted telephone Interviewing survey found that of the 3,143 respondents, 26% of the 75+ did not have internet access at home and 8% of those 65-74 also did not have access.

It is research like this that is behind the government's focus on building a world-leading digital economy that works for everyone. DCMS is responsible for coordinating HMG digital inclusion policy, and aims to ensure that as many people as possible, no matter their age, have internet access and a base level of digital skills.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
18th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what plans his Department has to take steps to reform public service broadcasting.

The Government is determined to ensure that our public service broadcasters (PSBs) can maintain their position as the beating heart of the UK’s hugely successful creative economy.

On 28 April 2022 the government published its broadcasting White Paper – Up Next – which sets out our vision for the sector. Rapid changes in technology, viewing habits and the entrance of global players have introduced new challenges for British broadcasters. Against that backdrop of rapid change, we need to take action to support British broadcasters in meeting the most pressing of those challenges, to protect our mixed ecology, and ensure our PSBs remain at the heart of our plans.

The White Paper details how we will reform decades-old broadcasting laws to boost our PSBs, including by delivering a new public service remit for television and making sure public service content is always carried and easy to find for UK audiences on connected devices and major online platforms. This will support the sustainability of the PSB system, and ensure PSBs continue to provide audiences across the UK with universally available, high quality programming.

We will take forward these measures via a Media Bill when parliamentary time allows.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
18th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps her Department is taking to (a) reform the Information Commissioner’s Office and (b) create new data protection standards.

His Royal Highness The Prince of Wales announced in the Queen’s Speech that a data reform bill will be introduced in this parliamentary session.

DCMS consulted on a range of proposals on how to improve the UK’s data protection framework including reforms to the Information Commissioner’s Office. The consultation response will set out further details and will be published shortly.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
16th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment she has made of the potential impact of forthcoming salary rises at the BBC on the wider television industry.

As the BBC is independent from the government it is responsible for deciding the amount it pays staff, and for demonstrating to the public that it is delivering value for money.

The creative industries in the UK are thriving and there remains a highly competitive market for talent.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
11th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether she plans to amend the Public Records Act so that the statute includes information held, transmitted or recorded through electronic communications.

There are currently no plans to amend the Public Records Act regarding information held, transmitted or recorded through electronic communications. Section 10 (1) of the Act already encompasses not only written records but ‘records conveying information by any other means whatsoever’ including information held and recorded through electronic communications.

Guidance is also provided in Section 46 Code of Practice on the Management of Records issued by me as the Secretary of State for DCMS under the Freedom of Information Act 2000 (FOIA). The Code was updated and published in July 2021 (as outlined in the Written Statement of 15 July 2021, HCWS185). It provides principle-based guidance for relevant public authorities on contemporary information management practice in the modern digital working environment.

There also exists a variety of supporting guidance at both departmental and cross government level that provides advice for ministers, private offices and civil servants on their record keeping responsibilities. This guidance is kept under review and updated in response to changes in technology and ways of working.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
21st Feb 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, when his Department will publish its Gambling White Paper.

The Gambling Act Review is wide-ranging and aims to ensure that the regulation of gambling is fit for the digital age. We will publish a white paper setting out our conclusions and next steps in the coming months.

Chris Philp
Minister of State (Home Office)
26th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent assessment her Department has made of the level of public support for the television licence fee.

The licence fee funding model was last considered as part of Charter Review 2015-16. The BBC Charter Review consultation received over 192,000 responses and found the majority of respondents did not want to see a change in the way that the BBC is funded: 60% thought the current licence fee model did not need to be changed.

As a result, the government has committed to maintain the current licence fee funding model for the duration of this eleven year Charter period, until 2027.

However, as the Secretary of State has said, due to the changing landscape of the broadcasting sector and viewing trends, it is time to begin asking serious questions about the long-term funding model of the BBC. The Government will therefore undertake a review of the overall licence fee model and those discussions will begin shortly.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
17th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what estimate her Department has made of the number of households in the UK that regularly use video on demand to access entertainment.

Ofcom’s Media Nations: UK 2021 report estimates that 74% of UK households use a broadcaster video-on-demand service such as BBC iPlayer or All 4, and 75% of UK households use a subscription video-on-demand service, like Netflix or Amazon Prime Video.

The Government launched a consultation in August 2021 to level the playing field between traditional broadcasters and video-on-demand streaming services, to provide a fair competitive framework and ensure UK viewers receive equivalent standards. We are now considering the response to the consultation and will publish next steps in due course.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
13th Dec 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps her Department is taking to help achieve net zero emissions by 2050.

Our plan for Net Zero will generate thousands of well-paid jobs here in the UK, help us develop thriving, world-leading green industries, strengthen our energy security, and improve our health and well-being. Acting now will put us at the forefront of the large, expanding global Green Technology and Sustainability markets. This will ensure that the UK is driving the technology of the future forward and will allow us to capitalise on export opportunities.

This is why the government's approach will be tech-led using the best of British technology and innovation – just as we did in the last industrial revolution – to help make homes and buildings warmer, the air cleaner and our journeys greener, all while creating thousands of jobs in new future-proof industries.

Our Net Zero Strategy sets out a plan to:

  • Level up our country by supporting up to 190,000 green jobs in 2025 and up to 440,000 jobs across net zero sectors in 2030

  • Build a secure, home-grown energy sector which ends our dependency on volatile foreign gas prices, which will help protect consumers and businesses.

  • Leverage new private investments of up to £90 billion by 2030 levelling-up our former industrial heartlands.

  • The policies and spending brought forward in the Net Zero Strategy mean that since the Ten Point Plan, we have mobilised £26 billion of government capital investment for the green industrial revolution. More than £5.8 billion of foreign investment in green projects has also been secured since the launch of the Ten Point Plan, along with at least 56,000 jobs in the UK’s clean industries.

  • Take a credible and conservative approach to cutting our climate emissions, putting us on track to meet our carbon reduction targets, including our Nationally Determined Contribution (68% reduction by 2030) and Carbon Budget 6 (78% 2035) - building on our successes since 2010.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
25th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if she will make an assessment of the potential merits of mandating full fibre broadband in newbuild properties.

It is a priority for this Government to ensure that new homes are built with fast, reliable and resilient broadband. Following a public consultation supported by evidence, my department set out a policy in 2020 to mandate that new homes get the connectivity they need. We will shortly launch a statutory technical consultation on legislative proposals to amend the Building Regulations 2010 in England, ensuring that new build homes are developed with both gigabit-ready infrastructure and gigabit-capable connections. Following this final consultation stage, we will lay regulations as soon as parliamentary time allows.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
25th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if she will make an assessment of the potential merits of reforming the Electronic Communications Code to increase access to properties to build and maintain broadband infrastructure.

The Telecommunications Infrastructure (Leasehold Property) Act 2021, introduced changes to the Electronic Communications Code (‘the Code’) which will make it easier for telecoms operators to gain access to properties, such as blocks of flats, for the purpose of installing digital connections. A consultation on the implementing regulations closed in August. The consultation response will be published in due course, with regulations laid as soon as parliamentary time allows.

A public consultation on whether further changes to the Electronic Communications Code (‘the Code’) are needed to support digital deployment was carried out between January and March this year. Replies to that consultation are currently being considered and the government’s response will be published in due course.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
25th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if she will make an assessment of the potential merits of using some of the £5 billion allocated to Project Gigabit to create broadband vouchers that will enable network builders to upgrade the non-commercial parts of an exchange area at the same time as they are deploying full fibre to the commercial parts.

The government is investing £5 billion through Project Gigabit so that communities which will not gain gigabit connectivity through commercial roll-out are not left behind. Commercial delivery is going further and faster following announcements by suppliers this year and will reach most UK homes and businesses while Project Gigabit is targeted at the remainder.


As part of Project Gigabit, the government is investing up to £210 million into the Gigabit Broadband Voucher Scheme (GBVS). The eligibility criteria for vouchers was changed in April 2021 when we moved from the previous scheme to the new Project Gigabit criteria which are focused on ensuring we only provide public subsidy in areas which are least likely to get commercial coverage. We will conduct a performance review every six months to monitor the performance and effectiveness of the vouchers scheme, including the eligibility criteria.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
20th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if she will make an assessment of the potential merits of privatising BBC Worldwide.

BBC Worldwide, formerly a BBC commercial subsidiary, was merged with BBC Studios in April 2018 and no longer exists. The new BBC Studios is already a commercial subsidiary of the BBC and therefore receives no public funding. Dividends made by BBC Studios are returned to the BBC’s public service arm, supplementing the BBC’s licence fee income.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
20th Sep 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if she will make an assessment of the potential merits of requiring publicly funded broadcasters to provide all entertainment content on free to access digital platforms 10 years after first transmission.

The government is supportive of a modern system of public service broadcasting (PSB) that remains relevant and can continue to meet the needs of UK audiences in the future.

Ensuring that content is universally available on a free-to-air basis is a core tenet of PSB, and the government is committed to ensuring this remains the case. This means that PSB content should be delivered via technologies that are commonly available, familiar to audiences, and offer a high-quality viewing experience.

As independent organisations, the UK’s two publicly funded broadcasters – the BBC and S4C – are responsible for negotiating the length of time for which entertainment content is available on their platforms with producers and other rights holders. At present, the BBC allows access to most of its programmes for at least one year on the BBC iPlayer and S4C allows access to its programmes for up to 150 days on Clic.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
21st Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what estimate he has made of the depth that HMT Empire Windrush lies at.

The Government has adopted as best practice the Rules set out in the Annex to the 2001 UNESCO Convention on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage. The Rules indicate that the protection of underwater cultural heritage through in situ preservation should be considered as the first option. Consequently, no estimate has been made of the cost of recovering the anchor of HMT Empire Windrush (the wreck of which is understood to lie at a depth of c. 8,500 ft, 23 nautical miles off the coast of Algeria).

21st Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if he will make an estimate of the cost of raising the anchor of HMT Empire Windrush.

The Government has adopted as best practice the Rules set out in the Annex to the 2001 UNESCO Convention on the Protection of the Underwater Cultural Heritage. The Rules indicate that the protection of underwater cultural heritage through in situ preservation should be considered as the first option. Consequently, no estimate has been made of the cost of recovering the anchor of HMT Empire Windrush (the wreck of which is understood to lie at a depth of c. 8,500 ft, 23 nautical miles off the coast of Algeria).

21st Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how his Department enforces the Protection of Wrecks Act 1973 in foreign and international waters.

The powers conferred by the Protection of Wrecks Act 1973 relate to wreck sites located in UK territorial waters. They do not extend to those located in the territorial waters of other nations or in international waters.

Currently, 54 wreck sites located in UK territorial waters adjacent to England, and 1 wreck site located in UK territorial waters adjacent to Northern Ireland, are protected under the terms of section 1 of the 1973 Act (‘protection of sites of historic wrecks’).

Responsibility for the operation of section 1 of the 1973 Act in Scotland and Wales is a devolved matter. The number of wreck sites currently protected under the terms of section 1 of the 1973 Act in UK territorial waters adjacent to Scotland and Wales is understood to be 0 and 6, respectively.

21st Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how many maritime wrecks in overseas waters of (a) historic, (b) archaeological and (c) artistic importance have been designated under the Protection of Wrecks Act 1973.

The powers conferred by the Protection of Wrecks Act 1973 relate to wreck sites located in UK territorial waters. They do not extend to those located in the territorial waters of other nations or in international waters.

Currently, 54 wreck sites located in UK territorial waters adjacent to England, and 1 wreck site located in UK territorial waters adjacent to Northern Ireland, are protected under the terms of section 1 of the 1973 Act (‘protection of sites of historic wrecks’).

Responsibility for the operation of section 1 of the 1973 Act in Scotland and Wales is a devolved matter. The number of wreck sites currently protected under the terms of section 1 of the 1973 Act in UK territorial waters adjacent to Scotland and Wales is understood to be 0 and 6, respectively.

21st Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how many wrecks in UK territorial waters have been designated as of (a) historical, (b) archaeological and (c) artistic importance under the Protection of Wrecks Act 1973.

The powers conferred by the Protection of Wrecks Act 1973 relate to wreck sites located in UK territorial waters. They do not extend to those located in the territorial waters of other nations or in international waters.

Currently, 54 wreck sites located in UK territorial waters adjacent to England, and 1 wreck site located in UK territorial waters adjacent to Northern Ireland, are protected under the terms of section 1 of the 1973 Act (‘protection of sites of historic wrecks’).

Responsibility for the operation of section 1 of the 1973 Act in Scotland and Wales is a devolved matter. The number of wreck sites currently protected under the terms of section 1 of the 1973 Act in UK territorial waters adjacent to Scotland and Wales is understood to be 0 and 6, respectively.

20th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps his Department is taking to support the inbound tourism industry as part of the UK's economic recovery from the covid-19 outbreak.

The Government is taking a number of steps to support inbound tourism’s recovery from the pandemic. In total, at least £25 billion has been provided to the leisure, tourism and hospitality sector so far over the course of the pandemic - saving jobs and businesses across the UK.

The Tourism Recovery plan sets out the Government’s aim to recover domestic overnight trip volume and spend to 2019 levels by the end of 2022, and inbound visitor numbers and spend by the end of 2023 – both at least a year faster than independent forecasts predict. We will work with VisitBritain to welcome back international visitors as soon as it is safe to do so.

We are regularly engaging with travel industry bodies - such as UKInbound and the European Tour Operators Association - to monitor the pandemic’s impact and to further support the sector’s recovery.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
20th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment his Department has made of the effect of the covid-19 pandemic on the (a) inbound tourism and (B) the tourism economy in the UK.

COVID-19 has had a significant impact on inbound tourism and the wider tourism industry. From last March, inbound flight arrivals were down 90% for over a year compared to 2019 levels, hotel occupancy far lower than normal, and the sector was closed for at least six of the last 12 months - more so in some parts of the country subject to local lockdowns last autumn.

We also know that tourism has been the sector most reliant on the government’s unprecedented package of support measures. The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme was crucial in saving tourism jobs, which at its peak supported 87% of hospitality and leisure businesses. In total, at least £25 billion has been provided to the leisure, tourism and hospitality sector so far over the course of the pandemic.

In June, we published the Tourism Recovery Plan to help the sector recover back to pre-pandemic levels and build back better for the future. The plan aims to recover domestic tourism to pre pandemic levels by 2022 and international tourism by 2023; both at least a year faster than independent forecasts predict.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
7th Jul 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what mechanisms are in place to audit information provided to his Department by (a) regulatory bodies and (b) non-departmental public bodies.

All DCMS sponsored bodies are required to prepare their annual reports and accounts in accordance with their governing and other relevant legislation and the accounts directions given by this department and HMT PES papers as long as it does not supersede or affect compliance with their governing legislation.The ALB annual reports are audited and published on their own websites and on gov.uk. Similar to other government departments DCMS produces consolidated group accounts annually which includes all ALBs within its accounting boundary which are audited by the NAO. The most recent set of audited DCMS consolidated group accounts for 19-20 were published on gov.uk in December 2020. The DCMS Group audit for 20-21 is currently in progress and we expect to lay the accounts in parliament later in the year.

25th May 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, when the extension of School Games Organiser contracts is planned to be announced.

Physical education (PE) and school sport plays an important role in supporting children and young people to be physically active, particularly during the current COVID-19 restrictions. The Department is working with the Department for Education and the Department of Health and Social Care on how to support better PE, sport and physical activity provision for all children and young people. This is part of our continuing work to deliver our joint school sport and activity action plan, published in 2019.

I can confirm that the School Games Organisers are now fully funded for the 2021/22 financial year. Funding beyond that point will be subject to future Government Spending Review decisions.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
20th Apr 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what recent communication officials in his Department have had with the Vice President of Global Affairs and Communications at Facebook.

Since the beginning of this year, DCMS officials have communicated with Nick Clegg, Vice President of Global Affairs and Communications at Facebook, in advance of his meetings with the DCMS Secretary of State on 12 January 2021 and 25 February 2021. Additionally, officials were in contact to set up a meeting with the DCMS Director General for Digital and Media in April 2021.

8th Feb 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps his Department is taking to tackle racism on social media platforms.

We are clear that the online racist abuse is unacceptable. We must do all we can to tackle it. We are taking steps through the online harms regulatory framework to ensure that online abuse is addressed. Under a new legal duty of care, companies will need to remove and limit the spread of illegal content, including illegal online abuse. All companies will need to take swift and effective action against such content.

Companies providing high-risk, high-reach services will also need to undertake regular risk assessments to identify legal but harmful material on their services. These companies will need to set clear terms and conditions which explicitly state what categories of legal but harmful material they accept (and do not accept) on their service. Companies will need to enforce these terms and conditions consistently and transparently and could face enforcement action if they do not. The Online Safety Bill, which will give effect to the regulatory framework, will be ready this year.

16th Sep 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what assessment he has made for the implications of his policies of the BBC's publication of salaries paid to presenters this year.

  • The BBC is operationally and editorially independent of Government, and therefore talent pay is a matter for the BBC.

  • However, we expect to see the BBC using its substantial licence fee income in an appropriate way to ensure it delivers value for money for UK audiences.

  • The public deserves to know how their licence fee is being spent, which is why in the Royal Charter the government required the BBC to publish the salary details of all BBC staff and talent paid over £150,000. This was published for the first time as part of the BBC 2016/17 annual report.

10th Jun 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, whether his consent is required under the Public Statues Act (Metropolis) 1854 before the removal of sculptures erected in London.

There is no requirement under the terms of the Public Statues (Metropolis) Act 1854 to obtain the consent of the Secretary of State before the removal of sculptures erected in London.

Nigel Huddleston
Financial Secretary (HM Treasury)
22nd Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what discussions his Department has had with representatives of the social enterprise sector on the effect of the covid-19 outbreak on their businesses.

Ministers and officials are engaging constantly with representatives across the social enterprise sector to ensure a complete understanding of the unique challenges being faced by social enterprises as a result of Covid-19. We have been using, and continue to use, these ongoing insights and data to shape government support for social enterprises during this time of financial difficulty. By engaging with key membership bodies, such as Social Enterprise UK (SEUK), we will be monitoring the effectiveness of support measures in the coming weeks and months.

22nd Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what plans he has to increase access to finance for (a) social enterprises and (b) co-operatives during the covid-19 outbreak.

The government recognises the vital work social enterprises and co-operatives are doing to support communities and ease demands on public services in light of Covid-19. In recognising this, we have put in place a number of emergency measures to support these organisations during this time.

The government’s Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) has been made available to social enterprises and co-operatives. This scheme will provide lenders with a government-backed guarantee of 80% on each loan, ensuring eligible social enterprises and co-operatives gain access to crucial finance with no upfront costs and lower initial repayments. Big Society Capital has established and capitalised a Resilience and Recovery Loan Fund which aims to improve access to CBILS for social enterprises. The initiative has been enabled by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) accelerating the release of previously committed dormant bank accounts money.

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is also available to social enterprises and co-operatives. This scheme allows employers to claim for a cash grant of up to 80% of a furloughed employee's wages. Many organisations are already accessing this support measure.

Additionally, the government announced a £750 million support package earlier this month for charities. A number of social enterprises that are delivering vital work during the coronavirus outbreak will be eligible to apply for this support package.

Over the coming weeks and months, the government will monitor and evaluate the support that has been provided to social enterprises and co-operatives, and it continues to consider what else can be done. This includes examining further initiatives around access to finance for social enterprises and cooperatives.

22nd Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, with reference to the covid-19 outbreak, what assessment his Department has made of the effectiveness of the Government's business support package for social enterprises.

The government recognises the vital work social enterprises and co-operatives are doing to support communities and ease demands on public services in light of Covid-19. In recognising this, we have put in place a number of emergency measures to support these organisations during this time.

The government’s Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) has been made available to social enterprises and co-operatives. This scheme will provide lenders with a government-backed guarantee of 80% on each loan, ensuring eligible social enterprises and co-operatives gain access to crucial finance with no upfront costs and lower initial repayments. Big Society Capital has established and capitalised a Resilience and Recovery Loan Fund which aims to improve access to CBILS for social enterprises. The initiative has been enabled by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) accelerating the release of previously committed dormant bank accounts money.

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is also available to social enterprises and co-operatives. This scheme allows employers to claim for a cash grant of up to 80% of a furloughed employee's wages. Many organisations are already accessing this support measure.

Additionally, the government announced a £750 million support package earlier this month for charities. A number of social enterprises that are delivering vital work during the coronavirus outbreak will be eligible to apply for this support package.

Over the coming weeks and months, the government will monitor and evaluate the support that has been provided to social enterprises and co-operatives, and it continues to consider what else can be done. This includes examining further initiatives around access to finance for social enterprises and cooperatives.

22nd Apr 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps his Department has taken to support social enterprises during the covid-19 pandemic.

The government recognises the vital work social enterprises and co-operatives are doing to support communities and ease demands on public services in light of Covid-19. In recognising this, we have put in place a number of emergency measures to support these organisations during this time.

The government’s Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS) has been made available to social enterprises and co-operatives. This scheme will provide lenders with a government-backed guarantee of 80% on each loan, ensuring eligible social enterprises and co-operatives gain access to crucial finance with no upfront costs and lower initial repayments. Big Society Capital has established and capitalised a Resilience and Recovery Loan Fund which aims to improve access to CBILS for social enterprises. The initiative has been enabled by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) accelerating the release of previously committed dormant bank accounts money.

The Coronavirus Job Retention Scheme is also available to social enterprises and co-operatives. This scheme allows employers to claim for a cash grant of up to 80% of a furloughed employee's wages. Many organisations are already accessing this support measure.

Additionally, the government announced a £750 million support package earlier this month for charities. A number of social enterprises that are delivering vital work during the coronavirus outbreak will be eligible to apply for this support package.

Over the coming weeks and months, the government will monitor and evaluate the support that has been provided to social enterprises and co-operatives, and it continues to consider what else can be done. This includes examining further initiatives around access to finance for social enterprises and cooperatives.

23rd Jan 2020
To ask the Minister of State, Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of national museums charging for specific exhibitions.

It is government policy to maintain free entry to the permanent collections of the national museums. However, DCMS-sponsored museums are entitled to charge for temporary specific exhibitions. Such exhibitions, in addition to helping generate income, are a vital part of the museums’ visitor offer. At any one time, the public will be able to enjoy a range of free and paid-for exhibitions.

Helen Whately
Minister of State (Department of Health and Social Care)
8th Jan 2020
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps she is taking to ensure the accuracy of content loader information on social media.

We published the Online Harms White Paper in April last year, setting out plans for world-leading legislation to make the UK the safest place in the world to be online.

Our proposals would establish a new statutory duty of care on companies towards their users, overseen by an independent regulator. The duty of care will ensure companies have appropriate systems and processes in place to deal with harmful content on their services to keep their users safe

23rd Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what targets her Department has set to help achieve the Government's commitments on net zero.

The department sets out its plans to set targets to meet net zero in ‘Sustainability and Climate Change: a strategy for the education and children’s services systems’, which was published in April 2022 and can be viewed here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/sustainability-and-climate-change-strategy/sustainability-and-climate-change-a-strategy-for-the-education-and-childrens-services-systems.

The department is on track to set science-based targets from 2025, ensuring the department plays its part in reducing public sector emissions by 50% by the end of Carbon Budget 5 in 2032 and by 75% by the end of Carbon Budget 6 in 2037, against a 2017 baseline.

To support the monitoring of targets, the department is developing a 2017 baseline for schools and maintained early years settings. The department has supported the publication of a standardised reporting framework for higher and further education, and the standardised reporting framework for nurseries and schools is due to be published this year.

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Education)
6th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many employment tribunals were brought by employees of their Department in the last 12 months.

Details of all employment tribunal decision outcomes are available at: https://www.gov.uk/employment-tribunal-decisions.

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Education)
5th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps she is taking to help prevent children taking part in anti-Israel demonstrations during school times.

While the department wants all want young people to be engaged in the issues that affect them and the wider world, the government is crystal clear that missing school for political activism is unacceptable and should not be condoned.

The department has been monitoring events closely and has written to all schools and local authorities supporting headteachers and teachers in taking firm action. Schools and local authorities should set clear expectations to parents on attendance, confirming that absence for this kind of activity should be treated as unauthorised. The department has been clear that school leaders and local authorities should be enforcing attendance policies, and they should take immediate action where these policies have been breached. In the most egregious cases this can mean fines or prosecution. The department has shared this communication with Ofsted to ensure all inspectors are clear on the position.

This does not mean shutting down appropriate and sensitive discussions about these issues. It is important that children are taught about global events and that they are encouraged to think about how these events affect them and their communities. Schools offer children the opportunity to do that in a safe and controlled environment, but the law is clear that schools must remain politically impartial. Schools must not promote partisan political views and should ensure the balanced treatment of political issues. The department has published clear and comprehensive guidance which should help those working with and in schools to better understand legal duties on political impartiality. The guidance can be found here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/political-impartiality-in-schools.

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Education)
5th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps she is taking to tackle anti-semitism in schools.

The government unequivocally condemns the recent terrorist attacks by Hamas and stands in solidarity with Israel in its hour of need. Antisemitism has no place in our society.

The government is committed to ensuring that all schools and colleges prepare children for life in modern Britain. Every school and college should actively promote the shared values of democracy, the rule of law, individual liberty, mutual respect, and tolerance for those of different faiths and beliefs.

The department has published guidance to support schools and colleges to monitor bullying incidents and evaluate the effectiveness of their approaches, which is available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/preventing-and-tackling-bullying.

Where behaviour extends into antisemitism or other discriminatory bullying, the department expects schools to deal with it head on, in line with their behaviour policy.

My right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Education, and her Ministers visited a Jewish school to show her support and has written to school and college headteachers on 17 October 2023 to remind them of their relevant responsibilities, including the need to challenge intolerance and actively respond to discrimination, as well as outlining their duties under the Prevent programme. The department’s Educate Against Hate website provides a range of resources and support to challenge discrimination and intolerance, and how to respond where you have concerns. This is available at: https://www.educateagainsthate.com/.

In the Autumn Statement, the government announced £7 million to support schools, colleges and universities to identify and tackle antisemitism. The department is preparing to issue an invitation for interested organisations to tender in due course.

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Education)
4th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what recent estimate her Department has made of the number of children who have (a) received a Statement of Special Education Needs and (b) do not have access to the necessary funding to support those needs.

There were 517,049 children and young people with an Education, Health and Care (EHC) plan in England at January 2023. EHC plans replaced statements of Special Educational Needs following the introduction of Special Educational Needs and Disability provisions in the Children and Families Act 2014 on 1 September 2014.

Local authorities are responsible for securing the special educational provision specified in the EHC plans they maintain. Children and young people with an EHC plan are supported and funded from local authorities’ high needs budgets.

High needs funding is increasing to over £10.5 billion next year (2024/25), which is an increase of over 60% from the 2019/20 allocations. This funding will help local authorities, schools and colleges with the costs of supporting children and young people with EHC plans.

David Johnston
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
4th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if she will make an estimate of the number and proportion of children who were given special arrangements to sit (a) GCSE and (b) A Level examinations in each of the last three years in England.

This is a matter for Ofqual, the Office of Qualifications and Examinations Regulation. I have asked its Chief Regulator, Dr Jo Saxton, to write to the hon. Member for Hendon, and a copy of her reply will be placed in the Libraries of both Houses.

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Education)
4th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether her Department holds information on the economic status of families of children who have special learning requirements in primary schools.

The department does not hold information on the economic status of families of children who have special learning requirements in primary schools.

David Johnston
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
22nd Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps she is taking to (a) promote and (b) improve lifelong learning.

The government understands the importance of lifelong learning, adult education and the need for adults to be able to train, re-train and upskill throughout their lives.

The department recognises that clear information and guidance is essential for learners, education providers and employers alike to navigate the government’s skills and adult education offer.

The department has launched the Skills for Life strategy and website, which is designed to support people to access the education and training they need and signposts them to the appropriate programmes. It targets adult learners in priority sectors to help them to access the skills they need to get the job they want, whatever their stage in life. The site showcases hundreds of government-funded skills opportunities to raise awareness and boost understanding among adults and help maximise uptake across the country.

The National Careers Service provides free, up-to-date, impartial information, advice and guidance on careers, skills, and the labour market in England. It offers intensive support for low-skilled adults without a qualification at Level 3, as one of six priority groups for the service. Professionally qualified careers advisers can support customers to explore the range of learning routes to determine the best route for them and to develop a careers action plan.

The government is committed to investing £2.5 billion across the financial years from 2022 to 2025 (£3 billion when including Barnett funding for devolved administrations) as a part of the department’s skills reforms to help adults learn valuable skills and prepare for the economy of the future.

The Adult Education Budget (AEB) provides £1.34 billon in the 2022/23 financial year to fund skills provision for adults to help them gain the skills they need for work, an apprenticeship or further learning. The department’s ‘essential skills’ legal entitlements, funded through the AEB, provide the opportunity of free study for adults who do not have essential literacy and numeracy skills up to and including Level 2 and digital skills up to and including Level 1.

Community Learning plays a vital role within AEB provision of supporting those furthest from the workplace, and in improving the health and well-being of learners. It is an important stepping-stone for learners who are not ready for formal accredited learning, or who would benefit from learning in a more informal way, particularly for (post-19) disadvantaged learners. It is a flexible and wide-ranging offer, responding to local needs and is delivered in nearly every local authority area across England through adult education services, further education colleges, Institutes of Adult Learning and Community Learning.

The Free Courses for Jobs offer gives eligible adults the chance to access high value Level 3 qualification for free, which can support them to gain higher wages or a better job. There has been strong uptake of over 45,000 cumulative enrolments between April 2021 and April 2023.

Skills Bootcamps offer free, flexible courses of up to 16 weeks, giving people the opportunity to build up sector-specific skills with a job interview upon completion. The department delivered 40,040 Skills Bootcamps starts in the 2022/23 financial year and has invested £550 million across the financial years from 2022 to2025 to significantly expand Skills Bootcamps further with a target of 64,000 learner starts a year in the2024/25 financial year so that more adults can get the skills they need for good jobs.

Apprenticeships are available for everyone over the age of 16 and provide a unique opportunity for people to develop the knowledge and skills needed to start, enhance, or change careers. There are high-quality apprenticeship routes into more than 680 occupations and the department is providing £2.7 billion of funding by the 2024/25 financial year to support employers to take up these opportunities. The Autumn 2023 Statement also announced a £50 million investment in a two-year apprenticeships pilot to explore ways to increase apprenticeship opportunities in growth sectors, and address barriers to entry in high-value apprenticeships.

From the 2025/26 academic year, the department will introduce the Lifelong Learning Entitlement (LLE). This is a transformation of the student finance system which will provide individuals with a loan entitlement equivalent to four years of post-18 education to use over their working lives (£37,000 in today’s fees). The LLE will be available for both full years of study at Levels 4-6 as well as, for the first time, modules of high-value courses, regardless of whether they are provided in colleges or universities. Under this flexible system, people will be able to space out their studies and learn at a pace that is right for them, including choosing to build up their qualifications over time, within both further education and higher education providers.

Robert Halfon
Minister of State (Education)
22nd Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps she is taking to tackle antisemitism in higher education.

The department is deeply concerned about the increase in antisemitic incidents on campuses since the horrific 7 October 2023 terrorist attacks against Israel. This government takes antisemitism extremely seriously. That is why on 22 November, my right hon. Friend, the Chancellor of the Exchequer, announced in his Autumn 2023 Statement an additional £7 million over 3 years to tackle antisemitism in education.

My right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Education, and I wrote to all schools, colleges and universities on 11 October, urging them to respond swiftly to hate-related incidents and actively reassure Jewish students that they can study without fear of harassment or intimidation. I wrote again to Vice Chancellors on 16 November, further emphasising the use of disciplinary measures against perpetrators and the importance of police engagement, as well as the suspension of student visas where the student is a foreign national. This was one of the key actions I set out in the five-point plan for tackling antisemitism in higher education, which was published on 5 November. Details of the plan can be found here: https://educationhub.blog.gov.uk/2023/11/05/how-were-protecting-jewish-students-on-university-campuses/.

On 21 November, the Secretary of State and I attended a round table hosted by the Union of Jewish Students, at University College London, where we heard directly about the impact of antisemitism on campus.

The department continues to remind providers of their obligations under the Prevent duty, where they should be working to prevent people from being drawn into or supporting terrorism. Departmental officials have assessed evidence of antisemitism and racial hatred linked to incidents at English universities. There is an online ’Reporting Extremism’ form where members of the public can raise concerns to the department directly. Where concerns have arisen, officials have reached out to the relevant universities to understand what actions they have taken, including reporting issues to the police where appropriate.

Robert Halfon
Minister of State (Education)
10th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what information her Department holds on which universities have not ratified the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of anti-Semitism.

As of 13 October 2023, the Office for Students’ (OfS) list of higher education providers that have adopted the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) definition of antisemitism stands at 245 providers in England. This includes the vast majority of universities. The OfS’s list of providers is based on publicly available information and confirmation of adoption from providers. The latest list can be accessed at: https://www.officeforstudents.org.uk/advice-and-guidance/student-wellbeing-and-protection/prevent-and-address-harassment-and-sexual-misconduct/tackling-antisemitism/.

Robert Halfon
Minister of State (Education)
17th Oct 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether her Department has published guidance on the recognition of neurodiversity conditions at Further and Higher Education facilities.

The department wants to provide all young people with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND), including those with neurodiverse conditions, with good opportunities which allow them to transition from education into a fulfilling adult life.

We know that with the right preparation and support, the overwhelming majority of young people with SEND are capable of sustained, paid employment. All professionals working with them should share that presumption and should provide the career advice and support that help young people to develop the skills and experience, and achieve the qualifications, that they need to succeed in their careers.

Further education (FE) providers must use their best endeavours to secure the special educational provision called for by the student’s Special Educational Needs (SEN). In addition, FE providers also have duties and obligations under the Equality Act 2010 to ensure that they are acting inclusively and not discriminating against disabled students. They are obliged to make reasonable adjustments to prevent disabled students being placed at a substantial disadvantage.

Furthermore, under the SEND Code of Practice, FE providers should ensure there is a named person with oversight of SEND provision in every FE setting. They are responsible for co-ordinating, supporting and contributing to the strategic and operational management of the setting. Curriculum and support staff in an FE setting should know who to go to if they need help in identifying a student’s SEN, are concerned about their progress, or need more advice.

The government expects all higher education (HE) providers to fulfil their responsibilities under the Equality Act 2010 to be making reasonable adjustments for all students, including students with neurodiverse conditions, and disabled HE students, not just those in receipt of Disabled Students’ Allowance (DSA).

In terms of funding, DSA is available in addition to the standard support package to help students with the additional costs they may face in HE because of their disability, including long-term health conditions, mental health conditions, or specific learning difficulties such as dyslexia.

DSA is not means tested and does not have to be repaid. It is available to full-time and part-time students at undergraduate and postgraduate level, alongside support available from HE providers, and in line with the recommendations of the student’s DSA Needs Assessment. There is no list of approved disabilities: to receive DSA, any student must be eligible for the main support package and disabled in line with the definition contained in the Equality Act 2010.

Wherever possible, disabled students and students with neurodiverse conditions should expect to have their needs met through inclusive learning practices and individual reasonable adjustments made by their HE providers.

Robert Halfon
Minister of State (Education)
8th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if she will make an assessment on the adequacy of her Department’s free school meals policy across England.

Since 2010, the number of pupils receiving a free school meal (FSM) has increased by more than two million. This increase in provision is due to the introduction of Universal Infant Free School Meals and protections put in place as benefit recipients move across to Universal Credit. Over a third of pupils in England now receive FSM, compared with one in six in 2010.

The Department believes that the current eligibility threshold level, which enables pupils in low income households to benefit from FSM while remaining affordable and deliverable for schools, is the right one. The Department does not have plans to change the current eligibility conditions for FSM. The Department continues to keep eligibility under review to ensure that these meals are supporting those who most need them. The Department also continues to monitor the consequences of the rising cost of living and is working with other Government Departments to provide support to disadvantaged families.

8th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if she will make an assessment of the potential impact of extending eligibility for free school meals on (a) the economy, (b) health and (c) education.

Since 2010, the number of pupils receiving a free school meal (FSM) has increased by more than two million. This increase in provision is due to the introduction of Universal Infant Free School Meals and protections put in place as benefit recipients move across to Universal Credit. Over a third of pupils in England now receive FSM, compared with one in six in 2010.

The Department believes that the current eligibility threshold level, which enables pupils in low income households to benefit from FSM while remaining affordable and deliverable for schools, is the right one. The Department does not have plans to change the current eligibility conditions for FSM. The Department continues to keep eligibility under review to ensure that these meals are supporting those who most need them. The Department also continues to monitor the consequences of the rising cost of living and is working with other Government Departments to provide support to disadvantaged families.

4th Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how many pupils are eligible for the Pupil Premium in Hendon constituency.

The Government provides additional funding through the Pupil Premium to support disadvantaged pupils. The Pupil Premium rates have increased by 5% for 2023/24, taking total Pupil Premium funding nationally to almost £2.9 billion.

As of June 2023, 5931pupils were eligible for Pupil Premium in Hendon constituency this year, equating to £7,566,158 in funding. The Department publishes Pupil Premium allocations, including at constituency level, here: https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/pupil-premium-allocations-and-conditions-of-grant-2023-to-2024.

1st Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what estimate her Department has made of the number of looked after children who live in unregulated accommodation in England.

Information on children looked after in England, including the number of children in unregulated accommodation (independent living or placements in semi-independent accommodation) is published in the annual ‘Children looked after including adoptions’ national statistic: https://explore-education-statistics.service.gov.uk/find-statistics/children-looked-after-in-england-including-adoptions.

David Johnston
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
1st Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what data her Department holds on the ages of looked after children who have died whilst living in (a) regulated and (b) unregulated care placements in the last 10 years.

Every death of a child or young person is a tragedy, and the following information is sensitive in nature. Figures for the number of deaths of children looked after in regulated and unregulated accommodation by age in the last ten years are shown below.

Number of deaths of children looked after[1] whilst living in regulated or unregulated[2],[3] accommodation by age group[4], for the ten-year period 1 April 2012 - 31 March 2022[5]

Coverage: England

Age group

Regulated Accommodation

Unregulated Accommodation

Under 1 year

100

0

1 to 4 years

70

0

5 to 9 years

40

0

10 to 15 years

110

0

16 years and over

80

50

Total

390

50

Source: Children looked after data return (SSDA903)

[1] Figures exclude children looked after under a series of short-term placements.

[2] Regulated accommodation includes children in the following placement types: Foster placements, Secure Children’s Homes, Children’s Homes subject to Children’s Homes Regulations, residential care home, National Health Service (NHS)/health trust or other establishment providing medical or nursing care, Young Offender Institution (YOI), and all residential schools. Unregulated accommodation includes children in the following placement types: Independent living or placements in semi-independent accommodation not subject to children’s home regulations.

[3] Excludes the following placement types which do not fall into either the regulated or unregulated category: placed for adoption, placed with own parent(s) or other person(s) with parental responsibility, residential employment, family centre or mother and baby unit, other placement.

[4] Age is as at the date the episode of care ceased.

[5] Numbers have been rounded to the nearest 10. Totals may not add up due to rounding.

David Johnston
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
1st Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what estimate her Department has made of the number of looked after children who have died whilst living in (a) regulated and (b) unregulated care placements in the last 10 years.

Every death of a child or young person is a tragedy, and the following information is sensitive in nature. Figures for the number of deaths of children looked after in regulated and unregulated accommodation by age in the last ten years are shown below.

Number of deaths of children looked after[1] whilst living in regulated or unregulated[2],[3] accommodation by age group[4], for the ten-year period 1 April 2012 - 31 March 2022[5]

Coverage: England

Age group

Regulated Accommodation

Unregulated Accommodation

Under 1 year

100

0

1 to 4 years

70

0

5 to 9 years

40

0

10 to 15 years

110

0

16 years and over

80

50

Total

390

50

Source: Children looked after data return (SSDA903)

[1] Figures exclude children looked after under a series of short-term placements.

[2] Regulated accommodation includes children in the following placement types: Foster placements, Secure Children’s Homes, Children’s Homes subject to Children’s Homes Regulations, residential care home, National Health Service (NHS)/health trust or other establishment providing medical or nursing care, Young Offender Institution (YOI), and all residential schools. Unregulated accommodation includes children in the following placement types: Independent living or placements in semi-independent accommodation not subject to children’s home regulations.

[3] Excludes the following placement types which do not fall into either the regulated or unregulated category: placed for adoption, placed with own parent(s) or other person(s) with parental responsibility, residential employment, family centre or mother and baby unit, other placement.

[4] Age is as at the date the episode of care ceased.

[5] Numbers have been rounded to the nearest 10. Totals may not add up due to rounding.

David Johnston
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Education)
19th Jul 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what estimate her Department has made of the average spend on energy per year by schools in the maintained sector in England.

Information on Local Authority maintained school expenditure is collected in Consistent Financial Reporting (CFR) returns and relates to expenditure in the financial year. This information is subsequently published on the schools financial benchmarking website, which can be accessed here: https://schools-financial-benchmarking.service.gov.uk/. This information is also published in the annual Local Authority and school expenditure official statistic, which is accessible here: https://explore-education-statistics.service.gov.uk/find-statistics/la-and-school-expenditure. Spending on energy is identified in the line ‘E16: energy’ in the CFR return. National figures for school expenditure on energy for recent years can be found at: https://explore-education-statistics.service.gov.uk/data-tables/permalink/a8a474ba-c470-45a3-bb48-08db839e0283.

In considering the affordability of the recent teachers’ pay award, the Department has assumed schools’ energy costs for the 2023/24 financial year to be approximately £750 million higher than in the 2021/22 financial year, which represents a 125% increase.

In July this year, the Department announced an additional £525 million of funding to support schools with the teachers’ pay award in 2023/24, and £900 million in 2024/25. This is on top of the additional £2 billion in each of 2023/24 and 2024/25 already announced at the Autumn Statement last year. This additional funding means that school funding will be over £59.6 billion next year, the highest ever level in real terms per pupil, as measured by the Institute for Fiscal Studies. This additional funding will enable head teachers to continue to invest in the areas that the Department knows positively impact educational attainment, including high quality teaching and targeted support to the children who need it most. It will also help schools to manage higher costs, including higher energy bills.

19th Jul 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what school capital funding streams are available to improve the sustainability of maintained schools in England.

As committed to in the Department for Education’s Sustainability and Climate Change Strategy, the Department will produce a progress report on the implementation of this strategy. ​ The report is anticipated to be published in December 2023.

Accountability arrangements are already in place through the Department’s official governance.

£170 million has been allocated to the Sustainability and Climate Change portfolio between 2022/23 and 2024/25. Of this, £138 million (81%) is part of the Department’s innovate, test, invest process to identify measures to make education buildings more sustainable or more resilient to climate change. This will ensure evidence is at the heart of decision making.

The remaining 19% is focused on cross cutting initiatives to drive systems change, including the National Education Nature Park, support to schools and colleges to put in place climate action plans and setting up systems to assess the risk of climate change and report emissions.

The Department also continues to work with the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero to help schools and colleges access the £1.4 billion Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme to improve sustainability. From October 2022, up to £635 million has been made available through Phase 3b of the scheme for installing low carbon heating and energy efficiency measures in public buildings over the 2023/24 and 2024/25 financial years, with a minimum of 30% going to schools and colleges. This will help to cut emissions and save on energy bills. Phase 3b closed on 31 October 2022 and Phase 3c is expected to open for applications in autumn 2023.

New school buildings delivered by the Department, such as through the School Rebuilding Programme, are designed and fully funded to be net zero carbon in operation and more resilient to the effects of climate change.

Capital funding is also allocated every year to improve the condition of school buildings, including improving energy efficiency. The Department allocated £1.8 billion for financial year 2023/24, including funding for Local Authorities to allocate to their maintained schools.

In 2022 to 2023, eligible schools and sixth-form colleges received an allocation from an additional £447 million of capital funding to improve energy efficiency. This is part of an additional £500 million of capital funding for schools and further education institutions in England.

Capital allocations are available at: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/school-capital-funding.

19th Jul 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what funding her Department has allocated to implementing the Sustainability and Climate Change Strategy.

As committed to in the Department for Education’s Sustainability and Climate Change Strategy, the Department will produce a progress report on the implementation of this strategy. ​ The report is anticipated to be published in December 2023.

Accountability arrangements are already in place through the Department’s official governance.

£170 million has been allocated to the Sustainability and Climate Change portfolio between 2022/23 and 2024/25. Of this, £138 million (81%) is part of the Department’s innovate, test, invest process to identify measures to make education buildings more sustainable or more resilient to climate change. This will ensure evidence is at the heart of decision making.

The remaining 19% is focused on cross cutting initiatives to drive systems change, including the National Education Nature Park, support to schools and colleges to put in place climate action plans and setting up systems to assess the risk of climate change and report emissions.

The Department also continues to work with the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero to help schools and colleges access the £1.4 billion Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme to improve sustainability. From October 2022, up to £635 million has been made available through Phase 3b of the scheme for installing low carbon heating and energy efficiency measures in public buildings over the 2023/24 and 2024/25 financial years, with a minimum of 30% going to schools and colleges. This will help to cut emissions and save on energy bills. Phase 3b closed on 31 October 2022 and Phase 3c is expected to open for applications in autumn 2023.

New school buildings delivered by the Department, such as through the School Rebuilding Programme, are designed and fully funded to be net zero carbon in operation and more resilient to the effects of climate change.

Capital funding is also allocated every year to improve the condition of school buildings, including improving energy efficiency. The Department allocated £1.8 billion for financial year 2023/24, including funding for Local Authorities to allocate to their maintained schools.

In 2022 to 2023, eligible schools and sixth-form colleges received an allocation from an additional £447 million of capital funding to improve energy efficiency. This is part of an additional £500 million of capital funding for schools and further education institutions in England.

Capital allocations are available at: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/school-capital-funding.

19th Jul 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, whether she plans to publish an update on progress made against the Sustainability and Climate Change Strategy commitments.

As committed to in the Department for Education’s Sustainability and Climate Change Strategy, the Department will produce a progress report on the implementation of this strategy. ​ The report is anticipated to be published in December 2023.

Accountability arrangements are already in place through the Department’s official governance.

£170 million has been allocated to the Sustainability and Climate Change portfolio between 2022/23 and 2024/25. Of this, £138 million (81%) is part of the Department’s innovate, test, invest process to identify measures to make education buildings more sustainable or more resilient to climate change. This will ensure evidence is at the heart of decision making.

The remaining 19% is focused on cross cutting initiatives to drive systems change, including the National Education Nature Park, support to schools and colleges to put in place climate action plans and setting up systems to assess the risk of climate change and report emissions.

The Department also continues to work with the Department for Energy Security and Net Zero to help schools and colleges access the £1.4 billion Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme to improve sustainability. From October 2022, up to £635 million has been made available through Phase 3b of the scheme for installing low carbon heating and energy efficiency measures in public buildings over the 2023/24 and 2024/25 financial years, with a minimum of 30% going to schools and colleges. This will help to cut emissions and save on energy bills. Phase 3b closed on 31 October 2022 and Phase 3c is expected to open for applications in autumn 2023.

New school buildings delivered by the Department, such as through the School Rebuilding Programme, are designed and fully funded to be net zero carbon in operation and more resilient to the effects of climate change.

Capital funding is also allocated every year to improve the condition of school buildings, including improving energy efficiency. The Department allocated £1.8 billion for financial year 2023/24, including funding for Local Authorities to allocate to their maintained schools.

In 2022 to 2023, eligible schools and sixth-form colleges received an allocation from an additional £447 million of capital funding to improve energy efficiency. This is part of an additional £500 million of capital funding for schools and further education institutions in England.

Capital allocations are available at: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/school-capital-funding.

19th Jul 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, when she plans for the accountability arrangements for the Sustainability and Climate Change Strategy to become operational.