§ Sue Doughty
To ask the Solicitor-General what proportion of(a) paper and (b) other goods purchased by her Department was recycled paper in each year since 1997; what the annual total cost of these purchases was; what plans there are to increase these proportions; and if she will make a statement. 
§ The Solicitor-General
In relation to the Departments for which the Attorney General is responsible, the information available is as follows:
The Crown Prosecution Service has a policy of purchasing recycled paper wherever possible. The paper provided under the Department's central contract for office use is 100 per cent. recycled—approximate cost £500,000. Of the products supplied under the central contract for supply of other paper-based products, in 2001–02 82 per cent. by volume (approximate cost £80,000) contained an element of recycled content (ranging from 35 per cent. to 100 per cent. pre- and post-consumer waste).
The Department does not hold information on recycled paper usage back to 1997.
The Treasury Solicitor's Department is able to reply only in general terms, as records have not been, and are not, kept in such a way as to provide this information.
Since 2000, 100 per cent. of white paper purchased has been from recycled stock. The Agency budgeted £100,000 for paper in each of the last two financial years and although the spend on white paper cannot be separately identified, it does make up the bulk of the figure.
Other recycled products bought are not on record, though contracts specify that suppliers should have regard to environmental factors when providing goods to the agency. There are at present no specific plans to increase the proportion of recycled goods procured but the Agency is always ready to consider means of "greening" its operations when it can do so in an efficient and cost-effective way.
The Legal Secretariat to the Law Officers, is small and paper usage is comparatively low. Although recycled paper has been used in the past, purchases must be made on a best value for money basis. Until recently, the cost and quality of recycled paper did not provide this compared to virgin paper from sustainable resources. However, recycled paper appears to have improved in both quality and price and the Department has recently recommenced the purchase of recycled paper.
The Serious Fraud Office does not currently purchase recycled paper but will consider the matter again in the light of improvements in price and quality.