HC Deb 20 April 1994 vol 241 c873
5. Mr. Bayley

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment on how many occasions in the past year the departmental green Ministers have met together.

Mr. Atkins

Green Ministers have regular bilateral meetings. The last full meeting took place in October 1993, and the next one will take place in May.

Mr. Bayley

Do the green Ministers realise that the forest sales programme is eating away at the heart of the national forest? Will they explain how their stated aim of expanding forest cover, as set out in the document "Sustainable Forestry", will be achieved if they allow private investors to buy the public forest instead of planting their own forests? When will the forest review report finally appear?

Mr. Atkins

That report is currently in front of Ministers and in due course the hon. Gentleman and the House will hear the results of those deliberations.

Sir Donald Thompson

Will my hon. Friend the Minister explain what are green Ministers?

Mr. Atkins

Green Ministers are those Ministers from various Departments who, under the tutelage of my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for the Environment, take various actions in their Departments to ensure that the use of materials, recycling, energy use and other matters are regularly reviewed and that the Government estate benefits in the same way as everyone else.