§ Mr. Pickthall
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if he will make a statement on the European Commission proposal to amend Directive 96/82/EC on the control of major accident hazards involving dangerous substances. 
§ Mr. Nicholas Brown
The Seveso II Directive on the control of major accident hazards involving dangerous substances aims to prevent major accidents and limit their consequences for human health and the environment. Pressure to amend the Directive follows a number of recent accidents involving dangerous substances.
The House of Commons European Scrutiny Committee recommended that the UK's handling of two of the provisions within the European Commission proposal should be subject to a debate by European Standing Committee A. This was due to take place on 15 October, but has been postponed.
Political Agreement to a Council Common Position on the proposal will be reached at the Environment Council on 17 October.