HC Deb 10 December 1986 vol 107 cc202-3W
Mr. Gould

asked the Secretry of State for Energy if, in respect of the statistics kept and published by his Department, he will publish in the Official Report any changes since 1979 in (a) the statistical series which are published, including those which have been introduced and those which have been dropped, (b) the basis on which any elements in the statistics are estimated, calculated or presented, (c) the periods over which, and the dates on which the series are collected or published and (d) any other respects in the ways in which the statistics are collected, recorded, presented, evaluated or published; and if he will explain the reasons for any such changes.

Mr. Peter Walker

[pursuant to his reply, 3 December 1986, c. 674]: My Department publishes energy and fuel statistics in "Energy Trends" each month, in the "Digest of United Kingdom Energy Statistics" annually and in my annual report on the "Development of the Oil and Gas Resources of the United Kingdom"—the Brown Book. The most important changes to the published series since 1979 are set out below, but there have been many other small changes.

Fuel Prices Introduction of a new industrial price series for electricity. Changes to the domestic electricity price series to cover different consumption levels. New price series introduced for petrol and DERV motor fuels. Industrial fuels price series revised on two occasions following changes to the survey panel.

Oil New statistics and changes to existing statistics of North sea activity to reflect growth in North sea trade and operations. Detailed monthly statistics of oil stocks introduced.

Gas Some statistics of town gas manufacture deleted. Revisions to gas production statistics. Introduction of stock change statistics following the use of the Rough gas field as a storage facility.

Electricity Revisions to some annual electricity tables to simplify presentation and avoid duplication with other sources. Series for foreign trade in electricity re-introduced.

Solid Fuels Reduction in the statistics for coal industry operations and finance. Coal stocks data deleted from annual publication to eliminate duplication with similar data published monthly. Analysis of external trade in coal by grade introduced.

Energy Revisions of format of annual energy balances with addition of greater detail. Foreign trade in electricity introduced. Certain graphs presented as tables to save space.

Where necessary these changes were mentioned in the relevant publications at the time of the change. Changes in the basis of compilation, presentation and publication of statistical series are made in response to the Government's requirements for statistical information, changes in the statistics provided by the fuel industries and the administrative systems on which some series are based. Changes also result from the development of new statistical techniques, revisions to systems of classifications and technological developments affecting the compilation and dissemination of statistical data.