2008

222439 – Waste Management: Consultants – 9 Oct 2008

Steve Webb: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs which organisations were consulted in the course of his Department’s research project, “Balances and Energy Impacts of the Management of UK Wastes”, published in December 2006; and what criteria were used to select these organisations for consultation.
Hilary Benn: An inception workshop was convened early in the project working programme, involving senior representatives from a range of organisations with expertise and knowledge in strategic waste management planning and life cycle assessment. Invitations were sent out to 42 organisations and 25 delegates met on 14 December 2005 in Birmingham. The following organisations attended the workshop: Biffa, Cory Environmental, Yorwaste, Shanks (all nominated through the Environmental Services Association), Associated British Foods, Asda, NHS, MOD, British Glass, Kraft, BAA, WRAP, DEFRA, EA, SEPA, Westminster Council, SEEDA, ERM, Golder Associates, Future Foundation, Brook Lyndhurst.

222495 & 222852 – Wood: Waste Disposal – 9 Oct 2008

Bill Olner: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment he has made of the merits of the recommendations for incinerating waste wood put forward in his Department’s research and development project on carbon balances and energy impacts of the management of UK wastes.

Hilary Benn: The findings of the study helped to inform the conclusion, set out in our waste strategy in May 2007, that wood has relatively low embodied energy (energy consumed in extraction) but high calorific value. While for some kinds of wood waste re-use or recycling are better options, its use as a fuel generally conveys a greater greenhouse gas benefit than recovering the material as a resource (and avoiding primary production).

Nick Harvey: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether he plans to consult recyclers of waste wood on the recommendations for incinerating waste wood put forward in his Department’s project on carbon balances and energy impacts of the management of UK wastes.

Hilary Benn: DEFRA has a project to take forward the policy on waste wood set out in the Waste Strategy 2007. As an initial step, DEFRA published an information report ‘Waste Wood as a Biomass Fuel’ in April 2008, prepared in consultation with waste wood recyclers and other stakeholders.

243369 – Biofuels: Wood – 16 Dec 2008

Mr. Roger Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change if he will consider withholding planning consent for wood biomass energy plants of 50 megawatts and over except in cases where guarantees to source wood exclusively from overseas are in place.

Mr. Mike O’Brien: No. Previous biomass generating stations consented by the Secretary of State have included conditions covering the sustainability of the fuel to be used rather than its origin. Government also propose to include a sustainability reporting requirement for generators using biomass to generate electricity with a net capacity greater than 50kW, to take effect from 1 April 2009, as part of the reform of the renewables obligation.

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