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Joan Ruddock: The Department of Energy and Climate Change has an ongoing programme of work on what a low carbon future for the UK might look like, including strategies for delivering a low carbon economy.
As part of this, DECC has conducted and commissioned a range of research, including to model scenarios for reducing energy system CO2 emissions, and worked with partners on analysis of possible technology options for the future of energy supply and demand.
In addition, research has been carried out in other Departments to support policy development in this area. As part of its work to understand the costs and benefits of the Climate Change Act, DEFRA commissioned analysis of the costs of meeting the UKs climate change targets; and the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills commissioned a report to support the development of the Governments low carbon industrial strategy, which will be published in the summer.
Jim Cousins: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change which areas will be covered by the Community Energy Savings Programme; and what the delivery mechanisms for the programme will be. 
Proposals for the delivery mechanisms for the community energy saving programme (CESP)
and which areas to target were set out in the CESP consultation document published on 12 February. The consultation closed on 8 May.
Mr. Kidney: Since DECCs inception, BERR and DEFRA manage the Departments estate. Given that, I refer the hon. Member to the answers given by my hon. Friend the Minister for Natural and Marine Environment, Wildlife and Rural Affairs on 23 April 2009, Official Report, column 816W, and by my right hon. Friend the Minister for Employment Relations and Postal Affairs at the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform on 31 March 2009, Official Report, column 1180.
Mr. Dai Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change whether his Department has drawn up a shortlist of potential special advisers on the development of national policy statements on (a) wind farms and (b) nuclear power plants; what remuneration will be provided to such advisers; and what criteria will be used to select them. 
Mr. Kidney: We have not drawn up a shortlist of potential special advisers on the development of national policy statements on (a) wind farms and (b) nuclear power plants and currently have no plans to do so.
Mr. Hurd: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what guidance his Department has issued to staff on claiming for travel in first class carriages on trains if there are no seats available in standard class. 
when travelling with a colleague entitled to first class travel
when no standard class seats (except on suburban lines) are available
when there is a genuine business need.
Gregory Barker: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change when the report of the Special Representative of the Prime Minister on International Energy Issues on global energy trends and the implications for Britain's energy security will be published; and if he will make a statement. 
It is important to reach the right balance so that consumers have enough information but are not obstructed by too much or poorly presented information. Ofgem has recently held a public consultation on proposals for new obligations on suppliers relating to consumer information, in order to take the various views of interested parties into account. We look forward to seeing results from that process in order to get the best result for consumers.
Robert Neill: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how much has been spent in respect of the British Gas council tax rebate scheme for energy efficiency measures; what criteria are used for the allocation of such funding; and what proportion of the costs of the scheme is met by local authorities. 
Mr. Kidney: The scheme in question is not managed, funded or monitored by this Department. The information requested is held by British Gas and their associated local authorities and cannot be provided by DECC.
DEFRAs Policy Analysis and Projections, published in July 2008, contains such an assessment. It also sets out how the efficiency of products will need to improve in order to meet the Governments targets of annual savings of 3.6-11 million tonnes of CO2 from efficient products by 2020, as set out in May 2007s Energy White Paper.
In line with the Governments commitment to consult annually on these projections, the analysis will be issued for a second consultation in summer 2009. The second consultation will contain updated projections of the CO2 savings resulting from the introduction of energy-efficient products for both the domestic and non-domestic sectors.
Mr. Kidney: I welcome the progress being made on the development of the internal energy market, especially the recent agreement of texts for the third liberalisation package. This legislation will come into force early in 2011 and will benefit consumers through the development of more competition, especially between member states, and by enhancing security of supply. In order to improve the operation of the market, the UK is encouraging member states to implement early and on a voluntary basis those elements of the package related to transparency and co-operation between national regulators and system operators.
Tim Farron: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what steps his Department is taking to meet the Government's 2010 target to eradicate fuel poverty in (a) vulnerable households with a disabled person and (b) all vulnerable households. 
Mr. Kidney: Tackling fuel poverty is a priority for the Government. Our present policies and programmes, in particular with the changes announced in recent months, underline our commitment to do all that is reasonably practicable to ensure that vulnerable households do not live in fuel poverty.
Since 2000 we have assisted over 2 million households in England in the private sector through the Warm Front Scheme by fitting insulation and heating improvements for households in receipt of means-tested or disability-related benefits. The scheme now has a budget of over £950 million for the spending years 2008-09 to 2010-11.
The Government's programmes also assist vulnerable households through the provision of income-based policies. We have increased the winter fuel payments, which helped keep 12 million people warm last winter, by an extra £50 for pensioners aged 60-79 and £100 for those over 80, and this will continue next winter. We have also increased cold weather payments from £8.50 to £25 per week and made 8.4 million payments worth £210 million between November 2008 and March 2009.
To ensure as many households as possible are eligible for assistance we have arranged for benefit entitlement checks to be carried out through Warm Front. To date
some 48,000 checks have been completed. The average increase in income for applicants identifying new benefits is £30.64 per week or £1,590 per year.
A review of our fuel poverty policies is under way. The review is examining whether existing measures to tackle fuel poverty could be made more effective, and whether new policies should be introduced to help us make further progress towards our goals, particularly in light of market conditions and our aims to reduce carbon emissions.
Mr. Donohoe: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what recent discussions his Department has had with the management of Longannet power station on recruitment of engineering contractors during the shutdown for maintenance. 
Mr. Kidney [holding answer 24 April 2009]: The Department has had no discussions with Longannet power station management about the recruitment of engineering contractors during the recent shutdown for maintenance.
Danny Alexander: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change if he will undertake to provide sufficient funding to provide grants to all solar photovoltaic technology applications under phase 2 of the low carbon buildings programme which meet the eligibility criteria and which are submitted between 23 March 2009 and September 2009. 
Mr. Kidney [holding answer 16 June 2009]: The Government have committed a further £45 million to the Low Carbon Buildings Programme (LCBP) in the recent Budget. This now brings support for the programme to over £130 million. The new funding will help to support more solar PV installations, alongside other renewable and low carbon technologies. Since December 2008 we re-allocated £9 million funds from within the Low Carbon Buildings Programme to solar photovoltaic and we recently announced that a further £5 million of the £45 million would be transferred to immediately support solar PV applications.
We have put in place plans to extend Low Carbon Buildings Programme Phase 2 to support the full range of microgeneration technologies, including solar PV, from 1 July 2009. Further information is available from the Low Carbon Buildings Website:
Mr. Kidney [holding answer 18 June 2009]: Following the announcement of the £45 million in the Budget 2009 we allocated £5 million to phase 2 of the Low Carbon Buildings Programme (LCBP) to support solar photovoltaic applications.
Mr. Evans: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change whether he has held discussions with (a) the Russian government and (b) the European Commission on recent statements of Russian Prime Minister Vladimir Putin that there were emerging risks surrounding stable gas supplies to Europe this winter. 
Mr. Kidney [holding answer 22 June 2009]: The Government are working closely with EU partners to avoid a further interruption to European gas supplies. My right hon. Friend the Prime Minister discussed the matter with President Barroso on 4 June 2009 and there has been subsequent discussion at both the Energy Council on 12 June 2009 and the European Council on 18 and 19 June 2009.
While the UK has had bilateral contacts at official level with both Russia and Ukraine, the first priority should be to establish the facts of the situation and the Government strongly supports the recent European Commission mission to Moscow and Kiev for this purpose.
Dr. Kumar: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills on the creation of apprenticeships in the construction of the next generation of nuclear power stations. 
The National Skills Academy for Nuclear, launched in January 2008, has the responsibility for co-ordinating existing training provision on a regional and national basis, and aims to deliver 1,200 apprenticeships to the industry by the end of 2011 through a number of initiatives.
In addition Cogent, the sector skills council for the nuclear industry, has commissioned in-depth research on the nuclear labour market. This is scoping the demand for skilled workers, including apprentices, in the supply chain for new build, which includes in manufacturing
and construction. This will further assist in identifying the training and skills interventions required to be put in place.
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