§ Mr. Barnes
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions if he will re-open the consultative period on the proposed extended Mineral Planning Guidance Note 11, to allow environmental groups and other relevant interests who were not contacted as potential consultees to have their submissions considered; and if he will make a statement on the progress of his review. 
§ Ms Beverley Hughes
The consultation document was published on 8 May 2000, with comments requested by 31 July 2000. It was circulated to a wide range of interests and notified to the relevant planning and minerals press and the consultation document was accessible on the internet. There were also a number of articles in the national press that referred to the consultation on MPG 11. However, although the consultation period has formally ended, the Government will consider any submissions made to it in respect of this consultation document until such time as it goes to press for publication of the revised MPG 11. The consultation draft of MPG 11 received markedly different reactions from a number of parties. In the light of these my officials will be arranging to discuss the way forward with the major interests from the minerals industry, minerals planning authorities and the environmental sector in the next few weeks. We will then proceed towards finalising the MPG for publication.
Meanwhile, we remain open to representations from any interested parties in respect of MPG 11. It can be found on the internet at www.planning.detr.gov.uk/consult.