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31 Jan 2003 : Column 1071W—continued

Environment Agency

Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the Environment Agency budget has been in each year since 1994. [93680]

Mr. Meacher: The Environment Agency became operational on 1 April 1996.

The total annual budget of the agency for each year since then, ending 31 March, is as follows:

Total annual budget for Environment Agency

£ million
1997581
1998610
1999612
2000640
2001655
2002707
2003(4)760

(4) Forecast.


Norman Baker: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many (a) full-time and (b) part-time staff have been employed at the Environment Agency in each year since 1994. [93706]

Mr. Meacher: The Environment Agency became operational on 1 April 1996.

The numbers of staff employed by the agency in each year since then, ending 31 March, are as follows:

Number of staff employed by Environment Agency

(a) full-time(b) part-time
19968,325522
19978,502621
19988,586487
19999,163544
20009,699597
20019,862614
200210,372445
200310,195(5)698

(5) At 31 December 2002


31 Jan 2003 : Column 1072W

Farm Statistics

Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the average annual direct subsidy receipts were for farmers in each EU member state from (a) 2000 to 2002, (b) 1997 to 1999 and (c) 1994 to 1996. [93571]

Mr. Morley [holding answer 29 January 2003]: Based on available data, the following table gives the average level of CAP direct subsidy paid by EU member state.

Average level of CAP direct subsidy paid by EU member state

2000–02 (f)1997–991994–96
Euro millionEuro/ecu millionecu million
Belgium320270230
Denmark745670550
Germany4,2153,5202,830
Greece2,2952,2902,050
Spain4,1903,6703,055
France6,7106,0855,150
Ireland900785605
Italy3,5803,2652,600
Luxembourg201515
Netherlands245215175
Austria(6)515450250
Portugal440370325
Finland(6)365250120
Sweden(6)540445215
UK3,3253,2702,245
EU28,40525,57520,130

(6) The 1994–96 average for Austria, Finland and Sweden covers only 1995 and 1996.

Note:

Figures are rounded to the nearest 5 million Euro/ecu.

Source:

Commission data.


Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many farms in each member state are (a) under 50 hectares, (b) between 51 and 150 hectares, (c) 151 to 250 hectares, (d) 251 to 350 hectares, (e) 351 to 450 hectares, (f) 451 to 550 hectares and (g) 551 hectares and over. [93572]

Mr. Morley [holding answer 29 January 2003]: The most recent results available on farm sizes across member states are from the 1997 Farm Structure Survey, are shown in the table. Results from the 2000 survey are expected to be released by Eurostat later in 2003.

Holdings by size classes of agricultural area

Size classes of the holdings (hectares agricultural area)
<2ha2-<5ha5-<10ha10-<20ha20-<50 ha30-<50 ha50-<100ha>=100haTotal
Number of holdings (1,000 holdings)
EU 152,376.81,524.9929.2757.7386.9415.1372.2226.36,989.1
Belgium12.19.593511.58.49.45.611.167.2
Denmark1.21.110.313.58.611.012.05.663.2
Germany85.182.977.990.457.465.053.322.3534.4
Greece382.4244.3116.153.813.48.12.70.5821.4
Spain329.1318.1197.8149.359.755.551.547.31,208.3
France96.685.861.875.060.598.4125.776.1679.8
Ireland2.19.018.440.129.128.216.64.2147.8
Italy1,187.0566.7273.2151.053.542.527.414.12,315.2
Luxembourg0.40.30.30.20.20.40.90.23.0
The Netherlands18.016.517.319.314.314.96.61.1107.9
Austria33.146.639.446.821.414.55.72.8210.1
Portugal207.1110.048.726.58.56.34.25.4416.7
Finland2.25.714.527.417.815.97.01.191.4
Sweden3.49.415.918.210.912.713.16.089.6
United Kingdom17.119.028.434.723.232.339.938.6233.2

Source:

1997 EU Farm Structure Survey


31 Jan 2003 : Column 1073W

Flooding

Patrick Mercer: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what measures are in place to prevent the flooding of properties along the Trent in Nottinghamshire; and what financial provision has been made for flood defence in Nottinghamshire in 2003–04. [92858]

Mr. Morley: This Department provides grants for flood and coastal defence capital works, and associated studies, which meet essential technical, economic and environmental criteria and achieve an appropriate priority score Operational responsibility for flood management measures rests with the local operating authorities, normally the Environment Agency (EA) and local councils, who decide which projects to promote and their timing.

I understand that there are approximately 250 km of flood defences along the Trent and its tributaries which have been constructed by the Environment Agency and its predecessors. The Agency spends some £1.5million per year on the maintenance of these flood defence systems.

Defra encourages operating authorities to take a strategic approach to flood and coastal defence problems and to consider the need for schemes and develop proposals within an overall strategy for catchment areas so as not to create problems elsewhere. The Agency has commissioned consultants to prepare a strategy which will inform flood defence options for the River Trent between Stoke-on-Trent and Newark. Defra is providing grant aid for related studies. It is expected that the strategy will be published this Autumn. The Agency then plan to prepare a strategy for the tidal reach of the River between Newark and the Number Estuary. Defra will consider any capital works emerging from these strategies against the criteria above.

Fly-tipping

Mr. Lindsay Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will make a statement on changes in the rate of fly-tipping in the last three years. [93709]

Mr. Meacher: Data on the level of fly-tipping is not currently collected centrally. Anecdotal evidence suggests that fly-tipping may have increased recently, but the Government have no firm evidence. We intend to carry out some further work in this area to ensure that we have a firm data base to inform future policy development.

Future of Farming and Food Report

Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what plans she has to review the recommendations laid out in the Report on the Future of Farming and Food and her Department's response to it in the light of the recent proposals for common agricultural policy reform. [93742]

Mr. Morley [holding answer 29 January 2003]: The European Commission's proposals for reform of the common agricultural policy (CAP), published on 22 January 2003, are based closely on proposals in their

31 Jan 2003 : Column 1074W

discussion document of 10 July 2002. Therefore, we see no need to review the Government response to the independent Policy Commission, published alongside the Strategy for Sustainable Farming and Food for England on 12 December 2002.

The Commission's proposals are a positive step towards reform and will benefit farming. The Government will engage positively in negotiations, working to ensure a fair package for the UK.

Recycling

Mr Ian Liddell-Grainger: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how much farm waste was used in recycling across the UK in 2002. [93126]

Mr. Meacher: Agricultural waste is currently excluded from waste management controls in Great Britain by section 75(7)(c) of the Environmental Protection Act 1990. No data are therefore held centrally of either the total amount of agricultural waste produced annually in the UK or the amount recycled. The same position applies under Northern Ireland legislation.


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