Olivia Blake Portrait

Olivia Blake

Labour - Sheffield, Hallam

First elected: 12th December 2019


Energy Bill [HL]
17th May 2023 - 29th Jun 2023
Animals (Low-Welfare Activities Abroad) Bill
1st Mar 2023 - 8th Mar 2023
Worker Protection (Amendment of Equality Act 2010) Bill
16th Nov 2022 - 23rd Nov 2022
Shadow Minister (Climate Change and Net Zero)
4th Dec 2021 - 15th Jun 2022
Shadow Minister (Environment, Food and Rural Affairs)
14th May 2021 - 4th Dec 2021
Animal Welfare (Kept Animals) Bill
3rd Nov 2021 - 18th Nov 2021
Public Accounts Committee
2nd Mar 2020 - 13th Jul 2021


Division Voting information

During the current Parliament, Olivia Blake has voted in 725 divisions, and never against the majority of their Party.
View All Olivia Blake 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
Victoria Prentis (Conservative)
Attorney General
(16 debate interactions)
Katherine Fletcher (Conservative)
(10 debate interactions)
Boris Johnson (Conservative)
(9 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
Department of Health and Social Care
(33 debate contributions)
Home Office
(29 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
Legislation Debates
Energy Act 2023
(7,456 words contributed)
Illegal Migration Act 2023
(1,963 words contributed)
Nationality and Borders Act 2022
(1,056 words contributed)
View All Legislation Debates
View all Olivia Blake's debates

Sheffield, Hallam 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

The Government must exercise its power under s.23 of the Gender Recognition Act to modify the operation of the Equality Act 2010 by specifying the terms sex, male, female, man & woman, in the operation of that law, mean biological sex and not "sex as modified by a Gender Recognition Certificate"

It has been reported that the Government may amend the Equality Act to "make it clear that sex means biological sex rather than gender." The Government has previously committed to not remove legal protections for trans people, an already marginalised group, but this change would do so.

Mark Avery , Chris Packham and Ruth Tingay (Wild Justice) want the opening of the Woodcock shooting season to be pushed back to 1 December. 160,000 Woodcock are shot for fun across the UK whilst their population is declining. The Defra Secretary of State has powers to vary the shooting season.

The Government should prohibit the sale, use and manufacture of free-running snares under the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981, putting them in the same category as self-locking snares, which are already illegal.

Ensure any ban fully includes trans people and all forms of conversion therapy.

Join other nations in providing a route to safety for refugees. Waive all visa requirements for Ukrainian passport holders arriving in the UK.

Reform the GRA to allow transgender people to self-identify without the need for a medical diagnosis, to streamline the administrative process, and to allow non-binary identities to be legally recognised.

Now the hedgehog has been listed as vulnerable to extinction in the UK, we are calling on the Government to move hedgehogs to schedule 5 of the Wildlife & Countryside Act 1981 to allow them greater protection.

Chris Packham, Ruth Tingay and Mark Avery (Wild Justice) believe that intensive grouse shooting is bad for people, the environment and wildlife. People; grouse shooting is economically insignificant when contrasted with other real and potential uses of the UK’s uplands.

The Government's manifesto stated “we will make intentional trespass a criminal offence”: an extreme, illiberal & unnecessary attack on ancient freedoms that would threaten walkers, campers, and the wider public. It would further tilt the law in favour of the landowning 1% who own half the country.


Latest EDMs signed by Olivia Blake

21st March 2024
Olivia Blake signed this EDM on Tuesday 26th March 2024

Teachers’ Pension Scheme and universities

Tabled by: Mary Kelly Foy (Labour - City of Durham)
That this House notes that employers’ contributions to the Teachers’ Pension Scheme (TPS), of which approximately 58,000 university staff are members, are soon to increase by 5% in England and Wales; further notes, with concern, that while schools and colleges will receive additional funding from the Department for Education (DfE) …
21 signatures
(Most recent: 22 Apr 2024)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 16
Independent: 2
Green Party: 1
Democratic Unionist Party: 1
Scottish National Party: 1
22nd March 2024
Olivia Blake signed this EDM on Friday 22nd March 2024

Office of National Statistics and mandatory attendance at workplaces

Tabled by: Chris Stephens (Scottish National Party - Glasgow South West)
That this House expresses support and solidarity with the 1,200 Public and Commercial Services Union (PCS) union members working for the Office of National Statistics (ONS) in Newport, Titchfield, London, Darlington, Manchester and Edinburgh who are currently balloting for industrial action over mandatory attendance at workplaces; notes that there was …
30 signatures
(Most recent: 19 Apr 2024)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 21
Scottish National Party: 6
Independent: 1
Democratic Unionist Party: 1
Green Party: 1
View All Olivia Blake's signed Early Day Motions

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Olivia Blake, 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.


Olivia Blake has not been granted any Urgent Questions

1 Adjournment Debate led by Olivia Blake

Thursday 17th June 2021

2 Bills introduced by Olivia Blake


A Bill to make provision for and in connection with offences relating to verbal and physical abuse of public-facing workers in the course of their employment.

Commons - 40%

Last Event - 2nd Reading
Friday 6th May 2022

A Bill to Require the United Kingdom to achieve climate and nature targets; to give the Secretary of State a duty to implement a strategy to achieve those targets; to establish a Climate and Nature Assembly to advise the Secretary of State in creating that strategy; to give duties to the Committee on Climate Change and the Joint Nature Conservation Committee regarding the strategy and targets; and for connected purposes.

Commons - 20%

Last Event - 1st Reading
Wednesday 10th May 2023

Latest 50 Written Questions

(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
7 Other Department Questions
12th Jul 2023
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what recent steps the Government has taken to close the (a) gender, (b) ethnicity and (c) disability pay gaps.

Over the last decade the gender pay gap has fallen by approximately a quarter and mandatory gender pay gap reporting has helped motivate employers to improve workplace gender equality. To accelerate progress we have supported legislation to: enhance flexible working, extend redundancy protection for those on maternity leave, and introduce carer’s leave.

On ethnicity pay gaps; in April this year we published guidance for employers on how to voluntarily calculate and publish their ethnicity pay gaps. This will allow businesses to report accurately and in a consistent manner, and to address any unfair ethnicity pay gaps within their workforce.

With regard to the disability pay gap, we recognise that one of the greatest challenges is opening up opportunity in the workplace. In March 2023, the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) published Transforming Support: The Health and Disability White Paper. This sets out how DWP will: support more disabled people to start, stay and succeed in work.



Maria Caulfield
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)
3rd Nov 2022
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what assessment she has made with Cabinet colleagues of the potential merits of implementing the recommendations of the Expert Advisory Group to the Scottish Government on Ending Conversion Practices in England.

The Government has been liaising with territorial offices and the devolved administrations including the Scottish Government, Welsh Government and the Northern Ireland Executive on this important issue.

Officials will continue to work with their counterparts across the devolved administrations to discuss the UK Government’s approach to protecting everyone in England and Wales from conversion therapy practices.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
3rd Nov 2022
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what discussions she has had with her international counterparts in (a) Malta, (b) France, (c) Canada, (d) New Zealand, (e) Greece and the relevant regional and state governments in (i) the USA, (ii) Spain and (iii) Australia on conversion therapy regulations in those jurisdictions.

The Government has engaged with a wide range of international counterparts including Canada, Australia, New Zealand, France, and Malta, to understand the approaches they have taken to ban conversion therapy. We will continue to engage with counterparts around the world that are committed to protecting everyone from conversion practices to share insight and develop our approach.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
3rd Nov 2022
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what discussions her Department has had with (a) NHS England, (b) NHS Wales, (c) the Royal College of GPs, (d) the Royal College of Psychiatrists, (e) the British Psychological Society and (f) the British Association of Counselling and Psychotherapy on transgender conversion practices.

The Equality Hub Ministers and officials have met with healthcare professionals in developing the policy approach to protecting all individuals from conversion practices. Many such organisations responded to the public consultation that closed in February 2022.

We will continue to meet with healthcare professionals to inform our approach and will respond to the consultation in due course.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
3rd Nov 2022
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what discussions she has had with relevant stakeholders on the Government's plan to exclude transgender people from its ban on conversion therapy practices.

Equality Hub Ministers and officials have engaged widely on the issue of conversion practices with victims, LGBT groups, healthcare professionals, faith groups, groups advocating for sex-based rights and parliamentarians. This engagement was an important part of developing proposals for the public consultation that closed earlier this year and many such organisations responded to that consultation.

We are carefully considering all the responses to the consultation and will respond in due course. We will continue to work closely with a full range of stakeholders.

Stuart Andrew
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Culture, Media and Sport)
25th Oct 2022
To ask the Minister for Women and Equalities, what steps she is taking to ensure that women are not forced out of the labour market because of childcare costs.

Over the last decade we have seen strong growth in the number of women in full-time work, and we are committed to ensuring that every woman is able to reach her full potential in her working life.

In June to August 2022, 19.2% of people (1.7 million people) were economically inactive as a result of looking after family/home and of working age (16 to 64 years). This is part of a long-term declining trend since comparable data started to be collected June to August 1993 when it was 34.6% (3 million people). We continue to carefully monitor these figures.

The UK has some of the highest quality childcare provision in the world, but we recognise that it is also one of the biggest costs facing working families today. Improving the cost, choice and availability of high-quality childcare and early education remains a key priority for this government.

That is why we have spent over £3.5bn in each of the past three years on our early education entitlements to support families with their childcare costs.

At the Spending Review on 27 October 2021, we announced that we are investing additional funding for the early years entitlements worth £160m in 2022-23, £180m in 2023-24 and £170m in 2024-25, compared to the 2021-22 financial year. This is for local authorities to increase hourly rates paid to childcare providers.

On 21 September, the then Business Secretary additionally announced a new Energy Bill Relief Scheme to support eligible schools and businesses large and small, including early years providers, with their energy costs.

Maria Caulfield
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Business and Trade) (Minister for Women)
14th Dec 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what assessment he has made of the implications of the Stannington gas flood in Sheffield Hallam constituency for his policies on emergency responses to a major incident; and if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of creating a single consolidated priority register for all utility providers.

The Central Government Concept Of Operations provides clear guidance on the levels of emergencies as well as responsibilities for response and recovery activities. The Civil Contingencies Act 2004 places duties on gas distributors and other utility companies (as Category 2 responders) to cooperate and share information with other local responders with regards to emergency planning and response.

Regarding the priority register, it was announced in the recent Autumn Statement, that the Government will consult on strengthening the economic regulation of the energy, water and telecommunications sectors, with proposals that include a consolidated Priority Services Register so that vulnerable people can be confident their status is recognised by all their utilities providers and support will be provided when needed.

Alex Burghart
Parliamentary Secretary (Cabinet Office)
12th Jul 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, whether his Department is taking steps to prevent public contracts being awarded to companies that blacklist workers.rs.

The Employment Relations Act 1999 (Blacklists) Regulations 2010 prohibit the compilation, usage, sale or supply of blacklists. The Public Contracts Regulations 2015 contain exclusion grounds which allow contracting authorities to exclude suppliers from procurements where their tender does not comply with labour law or where the supplier is guilty of grave professional misconduct. A breach of the Blacklists Regulations on a particular tender would render the supplier liable to exclusion and a breach more widely may amount to grave professional misconduct.

In all cases, individual departments and other public sector bodies are responsible for their own decisions on these matters

The Procurement Bill introduced by the Government, currently in the final stages of debate in Parliament, builds on and clarifies the exclusions measures in the existing regime. This includes specific measures enabling the exclusion of suppliers for labour market misconduct and professional misconduct.

Alex Burghart
Parliamentary Secretary (Cabinet Office)
17th May 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many people were employed in offshore roles in the oil and gas industry in each year since 2010-11.

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

A response to the Hon. Member's Parliamentary Questions of 17 May are attached.

17th May 2023
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, how many people were employed in offshore roles in the wind industry in each year since 2015-16.

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

A response to the Hon. Member's Parliamentary Questions of 17 May are attached.

15th Apr 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, with reference to his Department's recent announcement that students will not be permitted to return to their term time address until 17 May 2021, what plans he has to ensure that students register for postal votes at their term time accommodation; and what assessment he has made of the potential merits of extending the deadline for students to register for postal votes.

There are three ways to vote at elections in the UK: in person at a polling station; by postal vote; or by proxy vote. These will all be available to voters at the elections in May 2021 and it is for individual electors to decide the appropriate method of voting for themselves, depending on their circumstances.

The Government has no plans to change the deadline for postal vote applications. Moving the deadline closer to polling day would reduce the time for postal ballot papers to be issued to and returned by postal voters, and could lead to the votes of some postal voters not being received in time to be counted.

5th Feb 2021
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, what representations his Department has received from Sage on the safe holding of local elections in May 2021 during the covid-19 outbreak.

I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to PQ 147911 on 9 February 2021.

Julia Lopez
Minister of State (Department for Science, Innovation and Technology)
4th Jun 2020
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps he has taken to communicate covid-19 support and guidance to people whose first language is not English.

Working to ensure that public information on COVID-19 is accessible and reaches all those who need it is a high priority for the Government.

Important health guidance, for example on social distancing and symptoms, has been translated into a range of languages and formats. Key Covid-19 content in alternative formats is available on the Public Health England's Campaign Resource Centre for health bodies, Local Authorities and voluntary sector organisations to access, share and use.

17th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Business and Trade, whether she is taking steps to ensure that the National Minimum Wage applies to all staff on vessels working from UK ports in the supply chains of offshore wind farms in the UK Exclusive Economic Zone.

National Minimum Wage (NMW) legislation applies to those who work or ordinarily work in the UK, as well as to some workers on UK-registered ships. We have a proud record of extending the NMW to seafarers.

In October 2020, legislation came into force to extend the minimum wage to all seafarers on domestic voyages in the UK territorial sea or UK section of the continental shelf.

Kevin Hollinrake
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
30th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, when the London Energy Security Conference will take place.

Government now intends to hold the Energy Security Conference in 2025. The Secretary of State will discuss energy security with her international counterparts at events including the International Energy Agency meeting in Paris, the G7 in Turin, and bilateral meetings.

Andrew Bowie
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
29th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what discussions she has had with her international counterparts on the Offshore Petroleum Licensing Bill.

My Rt Hon Friend, the Secretary of State, and I regularly meet with a wide range of stakeholders to discuss issues relating to energy security and net zero. This includes numerous recent discussions on the Offshore Petroleum Licensing Bill, including with international counterparts.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
29th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, whether it is her policy to advocate for the phase-out of fossil fuels at COP29.

At COP28 the Government championed the need to phase out unabated fossil fuels, and the Global Stocktake set a clear direction, with countries agreeing to transition away from fossil fuels in energy systems to achieve net zero in keeping with the science. However, there is still a considerable way to go, and we will continue to push for further ambition in 2024 and to persuade other countries to join the UK on a Net Zero pathway.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
29th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, whether the Government plans to seek UK membership of the Beyond Oil and Gas Alliance.

I refer the hon Member to the answer I gave to the hon Member for Brighton, Pavilion (Caroline Lucas) today to Question UIN 11295.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
29th Jan 2024
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what steps her Department plans to take to help support workers affected by the transition away from oil and gas towards renewable energy sources.

The oil and gas sector supports over 200,000 jobs and is critical to a successful energy transition. That is why the Government is providing certainty to industry through the introduction of the Offshore Petroleum Licensing Bill as well as agreeing the North Sea Transition Deal with industry. This includes the development of an industry-led skills passport to enable workers to move between sectors, protecting jobs and ensuring their skills, which are vital for the transition, are not lost.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
14th Dec 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what assessment her Department has made of the implications of the Stannington gas flood in Sheffield Hallam constituency for her policies on (a) the potential impact of public infrastructure on households energy security and (b) levels of investment in the maintenance of infrastructure to prevent further crisis.

The Government works closely with industry to continually improve and maintain the resilience of old and new energy infrastructure, networks and assets, to reduce vulnerabilities and ensure an effective response to actual or potentially disruptive incidents. Ofgem ensures that Gas Distribution Networks have sufficient funding to invest in the resilience of their infrastructure, manage risk on their networks, and meet their statutory obligations, via their price control settlement.

Andrew Bowie
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
13th Nov 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, what her Department's timescales are for completing its review of the UK's membership of the Energy Charter Treaty; and if she will make a statement.

On 1 September 2023, the UK announced it would be reviewing its membership of the ECT if the modernised Treaty was not adopted by November 2023. The Government is considering the views of stakeholders in business, civil society, and Parliament as part of this process. Parliament will be informed at the earliest opportunity.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
26th Jun 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, if he will publish a strategy on retrofitting homes and training and recruitment for that labour force.

The Heat and Building Strategy set out the actions the Government is taking to reduce carbon emissions from buildings in the near term. It provides a clear long-term framework for industry to invest and deliver the transition to low-carbon heating.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
19th Jun 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, pursuant to the Answer of 8 June 2023 to Question 186793 on Energy: Local Government, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of requiring local authorities to report on (a) whether they generate their own power, (b) how much energy they generate per annum and (c) the mode of generation.

Whilst the Government recognises the important role that local authorities play in delivering net zero, the Government has no plans to require them to report on energy they may generate.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
2nd Jun 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, pursuant to the answer of 24 May 2023 to Question 185627 on Offshore Industry: Skilled Workers, what recent discussions he has had with (a) employers and (b) trade unions in the offshore wind sector on the effectiveness of the Wind Energy Access Portal in facilitating re-training (a) for offshore oil and gas workers and (b) generally; and whether officials in his Department were involved in the design of the Portal.

The Wind Energy Access Portal has been developed by the offshore wind sector and is partnered with RenewableUK, Global Wind Organisation, G+ and SafetyOn.

Officials are engaging with industry through the Offshore Wind Industry Council on how industry is facilitating the transition of skilled workers into the offshore wind sector.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
24th May 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy Security and Net Zero, how much energy is generated in total by councils and local authorities per annum; and if he will publish (a) a list of the councils and local authorities which generate their own power and (b) a breakdown of the amount of energy generated per annum by each of those authorities.

The information requested is not available, as local authorities are not required to report on these matters to national government.

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 he will make an estimate of the average cost to an offshore oil and gas worker of re-training for employment in the offshore wind sector.

The Department does not hold information on the cost of oil and gas workers re-training for employment in the offshore wind sector.

Through the Offshore Wind Sector Deal, the sector has committed to making it easier for workers to move between offshore renewables and oil and gas sectors, and it is working on the development of an Energy Skills Passport. In 2022, the sector launched a Wind Energy Access Portal which sets out clear information on training requirements to access work in the offshore wind industry.

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 he will make an estimate of the number of workers in (a) England, (b) Scotland, (c) Wales and (d) Northern Ireland who hold valid certification to work in both the offshore (i) oil and gas and (ii) wind industries in the latest period for which figures are available.

The Government does not hold information on the number of workers who hold valid certification to work in both the offshore oil and gas and wind industries.

The offshore oil and gas sector’s trade body Offshore Energies UK produces an annual Workforce Insight Report that includes estimates of total numbers of offshore oil and gas workers. Their 2022 report can be found here: https://oilandgasuk.cld.bz/Workforce-Insight-2022-OEUK.

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 discussions he has had with representatives of the offshore wind industry on recognising the energy skills passport being delivered by OPITO.

No such discussions have taken place. Under the Offshore Wind Sector Deal, the Offshore Wind Industry Council committed to explore passporting of qualifications between different offshore sectors. The sector is developing an Energy Skills Passport to support workers moving between offshore renewables, oil and gas, and maritime contracting.

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 many full-time equivalent hours officials in (a) his Department and (b) the predecessor Department have spent working on the alignment of training standards between the offshore (i) oil and gas and (ii) wind sectors in each year from 2018 to date.

The Department does not hold this information. Skills and training standards are not a primary responsibility of the Department, and instead this falls to the Department for Education and is a devolved matter in Scotland and Wales.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
1st Sep 2023
To ask the Secretary of State for Science, Innovation and Technology, what steps she is taking to protect vulnerable customers during the transition from (a) analogue to (b) digital landlines.

I thank the Hon. Member for her question, and would like to refer her to the answer I gave on 13 June 2023 to Questions 189332, 189333, 189334, 189336.

20th Dec 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking to support residents in flats with communal boilers who are not covered by the energy price cap.

Energy suppliers to communal heat networks use commercial contracts. The Energy Bill Relief Scheme (EBRS) provides a price reduction to eligible Heat Suppliers. The EBRS Pass-through Requirement (Heat Suppliers) Regulations 2022 requires eligible heat suppliers to pass on the benefits of the discount to heat customers in a just and reasonable way.

Support provided via the EBRS is in addition to other help available, such as the Energy Bills Support Scheme (EBSS) which gives all domestic electricity customers in Great Britain £400 off their bills.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
17th Nov 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the implications for his Departments position on the UK's membership of the Energy Charter Treaty of the withdrawal of (a) Germany, (b) France, (c) the Netherlands, (d) Spain, (e) Poland, (f) Slovenia and (g) from that treaty.

The Government is monitoring developments closely in the Energy Charter Treaty as part of its engagement with the Treaty’s modernisation process.

Graham Stuart
Minister of State (Department for Energy Security and Net Zero)
26th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether he plans to consult (a) civil society organisations representing people (i) with disabilities, (ii) by age groups and (iii) with other protected characteristics and (b) the public in the preparation of the equalities impact assessment for the heat and buildings strategy.

The Government considers the equalities impacts of all its individual policies, including preparing an equalities impact assessment wherever appropriate, once those policies reach a suitable point in their development. That is the case for the policies set out in the Heat and Buildings Strategy.

Engagement with industry and civil society groups was undertaken during the development of the Heat and Buildings Strategy, including through the process of policy consultation.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
26th May 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will provide details of the equalities impact assessment which will be undertaken for the heat and buildings strategy.

We consider the equalities impacts of all our individual policies, including preparing an equalities impact assessment wherever appropriate, once those policies reach a suitable point in their development. Equality analyses to fulfil the requirements of the Public Sector Equalities Duty are living documents that are updated as policies develop, and therefore, it is not common practice that these are shared publicly. However, as individual policies develop, impact assessments, which include consideration of public sector equalities duties, are published at an appropriate time in the policy lifecycle (for example, during a consultation).

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
18th Feb 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what discussions he has had with representatives of energy providers on sharing smart meter data with local and central government.

The smart metering Data Access and Privacy Framework permits proportionate access to energy consumption data from smart meters by authorised parties while safeguarding consumers’ privacy.

As the smart meter rollout progresses, the Government will continue working with industry and consumer groups to assess further potential benefits of sharing smart metering data to address policy challenges, subject to appropriate privacy safeguards. The Framework ensures that consumers have control over who can access their energy consumption data and for what purposes, except where this is required for regulated purposes (for example, billing).

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
18th Feb 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the potential role of smart meter data, beyond influencing the behaviour of energy companies and consumers, in the better regulation of building energy efficiency and reaching net zero.

The Department recognises the role that smart metering and smart metering data can play in improving building energy efficiency. The BEIS-funded Smart Meter Enabled Thermal Efficiency Rating Innovation Competition developed, demonstrated and assessed new methods for measuring the thermal performance of homes using smart meter and other data.

The Department is continuing to work with industry to assess how smart meter metrics can be used to support the delivery of net zero emissions from heating and powering homes.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
18th Feb 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will set out his plans for supporting the community energy sector in the future.

The Government recognises that community energy groups have a role to play in the Department’s efforts to decarbonise the economy.

Through the introduction of UK-wide growth funding schemes, such as the Towns Fund, the Government is enabling local areas to tackle net zero goals in ways that best suit their needs. The Government encourages community energy groups to work closely with their local authority to support the development of community energy projects within these schemes.

The Government also plans to reintroduce the Community Energy Contact Group to strengthen engagement with the sector.

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
25th Jan 2022
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, with reference to his Department's press release of 25 January 2022 entitled £60 million boost for floating offshore wind, what the local content requirements stipulated by the match-funded projects are.

Lead applicants to the Floating Offshore Wind Demonstration Programme needed to be UK-based registered with Companies House. One of the criteria that applications to this innovation and R&D programme were assessed upon was their ability to deliver new and disruptive UK supply chain content. I am pleased that a Doncaster-based ropes manufacturer are partners in two of the successful projects, which serves of a great example of how Yorkshire is benefiting from this Government's programme creating jobs in their constituency

Greg Hands
Minister of State (Department for Business and Trade)
3rd Dec 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, in the context of relocating his Department's policy official roles from Sheffield to London in 2016, what assessment he had made of the implications for (a) staff welfare and (b) value for money of the decision to begin relocating 1,350 BEIS roles out of London.

I am unable to comment on the decisions taken by the former BIS Department, to close the Sheffield office as part of the BIS 2020 programme and relocate policy roles to London, as this was taken by senior officials from a legacy department. Following the EU Exit referendum in 2016, the consequential machinery of government change that brought about the formation of the new BEIS department, also brought an end to the BIS 2020 programme and since then, BEIS policy roles have not been confined to London only.

BEIS’ contribution to the Government’s Places for Growth agenda was agreed in 2019/20 and forms part of the overall 22,000 roles that are being relocated, of which our commitment is 1350 roles outside London by 2025. Support is in place for line managers and members of staff working in these new locations, including managing cross-site teams. As the organisation becomes less London-centric, we will see a cost saving for the Department.

3rd Dec 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what the total cost was to close the Department's Sheffield Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) office in 2016, including redundancy payments made to civil servants.

I am unable to comment on the decisions taken by the former BIS Department, to close the Sheffield office as part of the BIS 2020 programme and relocate policy roles to London, as this was taken by senior officials from a legacy department.

25th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what representations he has received from representatives of the life sciences sector on the upcoming Spending Review.

A range of representations from the Life Sciences sector on their Spending Review priorities were formally submitted to HM Treasury for consideration.

In addition, the Government has continued to engage with the sector throughout the Spending Review process. There was also broad engagement with the sector in co-developing the Life Sciences Vision, published in July 2021, which sets out the Government’s priorities for the sector and informed work on the 2021 Spending Review.

25th Oct 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what discussions he has had with the Chancellor of the Exchequer on increasing Innovate UK funding in the upcoming spending review.

At the Spending Review yesterday, the Government announced a record £39.8 billion for BEIS R&D for 2022/23 to 2024/25.

The Spending Review secures at least £2.5 billion over the SR for core Innovate UK programmes, a 60% rise in funding between 2021/22 and 2024/25, to ensure it can support business in bringing innovations to market and drive economic growth.

The money will boost private sector investment across the whole of the UK, creating the right conditions for all businesses to innovate and giving them the confidence to do so.

This spending review demonstrates the government’s commitment to delivering the Innovation Strategy, with UKRI playing a central role by unleashing business, investing in talent, strengthening our institutions, and developing cutting-edge technology.

17th Jun 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will make an assessment of the potential merits of making businesses based in (a) non-commercial and (b) non-rateable premises eligible for the covid-19 Restart Grant.

The £5 billion Restart Grant Scheme announced by my Rt. Hon. Friend Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer on 3 March 2021 are one-off grants to businesses in the non-essential retail, hospitality, leisure, personal care and accommodation sectors, to support businesses to reopen as Covid-19 restrictions are relaxed.

Strand One of the Restart Grants aims to support non-essential retail with grants of up to £6,000. Strand Two is to support hospitality, accommodation, leisure, personal care and gym businesses, with grants of up to £18,000.

There are currently no plans to change the eligibility criteria for the Restart Grant scheme.

However, further funding has been made available via the Additional Restrictions Grant (ARG) to support those businesses that have had their trade adversely affected by the local and national restrictions.

The ARG is a discretionary fund and is also administered by Local Authorities to support businesses in the way they see fit. More than £2 billion of funding has been made available via the ARG, £1.6 billion on Nov 2020 and further £425 million on April 2021.

Businesses should consult their Local Authority to determine whether they might be eligible for ARG support.

10th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of introducing a skills framework in consultation with trade unions and professional bodies to develop the skills of construction workers working on green retrofit projects.

The Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) launched a £6.9m skills competition in September to provide training opportunities for energy efficiency and low carbon heating supply chains to deliver works and scale up to meet additional consumer demand. Funding is provided to support training individuals with existing skills and those new to the sector in energy efficiency and clean heat measures, along with support for installation companies to gain the required PAS 2030 standards or Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) accreditation, including possible contribution to certification costs.

A number of training providers have now started training, offering free or subsidised courses covering a wide range of skills and certifications across both energy efficiency and clean heat measures. More information regarding the skills competition can be found here, with a webpage with links to training provider websites here.

The Government is investing in the UK workforce to ensure that people have the right skills and qualifications to deliver the low-carbon transition and thrive in the high-value jobs this will create. BEIS and the Department for Education (DfE) are jointly leading work to consider the skills and jobs needed to help deliver net zero, including green retrofit skills. The Green Jobs Taskforce is working with industry, unions and providers to develop solutions and recommendations that will be refined into a shortlist of high impact actions that will make up a final Green Jobs Action Plan (February 2021 to April 2021).

Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
10th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps he is taking to ensure that construction workers involved in green retrofitting are given adequate on the job training.

The Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) launched a £6.9m skills competition in September to provide training opportunities for energy efficiency and low carbon heating supply chains to deliver works and scale up to meet additional consumer demand. Funding is provided to support training individuals with existing skills and those new to the sector in energy efficiency and clean heat measures, along with support for installation companies to gain the required PAS 2030 standards or Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) accreditation, including possible contribution to certification costs.

A number of training providers have now started training, offering free or subsidised courses covering a wide range of skills and certifications across both energy efficiency and clean heat measures. More information regarding the skills competition can be found here, with a webpage with links to training provider websites here.

The Government is investing in the UK workforce to ensure that people have the right skills and qualifications to deliver the low-carbon transition and thrive in the high-value jobs this will create. BEIS and the Department for Education (DfE) are jointly leading work to consider the skills and jobs needed to help deliver net zero, including green retrofit skills. The Green Jobs Taskforce is working with industry, unions and providers to develop solutions and recommendations that will be refined into a shortlist of high impact actions that will make up a final Green Jobs Action Plan (February 2021 to April 2021).

Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)
10th Mar 2021
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of (a) increasing the level 2 NVQ qualification required for construction workers working on green retrofit and (b) mandating that a higher level technician be required onsite.

The Department of Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS) launched a £6.9m skills competition in September to provide training opportunities for energy efficiency and low carbon heating supply chains to deliver works and scale up to meet additional consumer demand. Funding is provided to support training individuals with existing skills and those new to the sector in energy efficiency and clean heat measures, along with support for installation companies to gain the required PAS 2030 standards or Microgeneration Certification Scheme (MCS) accreditation, including possible contribution to certification costs.

A number of training providers have now started training, offering free or subsidised courses covering a wide range of skills and certifications across both energy efficiency and clean heat measures. More information regarding the skills competition can be found here, with a webpage with links to training provider websites here.

The Government is investing in the UK workforce to ensure that people have the right skills and qualifications to deliver the low-carbon transition and thrive in the high-value jobs this will create. BEIS and the Department for Education (DfE) are jointly leading work to consider the skills and jobs needed to help deliver net zero, including green retrofit skills. The Green Jobs Taskforce is working with industry, unions and providers to develop solutions and recommendations that will be refined into a shortlist of high impact actions that will make up a final Green Jobs Action Plan (February 2021 to April 2021).

Anne-Marie Trevelyan
Minister of State (Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office)