§ Dr. Cable
To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will list the actions his Department, its agencies and non-departmental public bodies are taking to comply with the requirements of the Control of Asbestos at Work Regulations 2002; whether he has made an estimate of the cost of compliance; and if he will make a statement. 
§ Mr. Caplin
The Ministry of Defence has always managed asbestos in MOD buildings in accordance with legislation and has strict procedures for ensuring compliance. These are contained in the MOD Health and Safety Handbook (JSP 375) leaflet 54. Additional guidance is contained in the Defence Estates, Design and Maintenance Guide 16—Asbestos Based Materials. Copies of the publications mentioned have been placed in the Library of the House.
Actions taken by the department include:Policy on Asbestos has been revised to reflect the changes in the Control of Asbestos at Work Regulations 2002.Design and Maintenance Guide 16—Asbestos Based Materials, is being revised to incorporate the requirements of the new Regulations.A programme of non-invasive assessments is to be carried out on all MOD buildings in order to establish whether or not asbestos may be present. Further more intrusive surveys may be undertaken and management plans generated depending on the results of the survey.
It has not been possible to determine the cost of the implementation of these Regulations. There are in excess of 40,000 buildings with associated infrastructure. The costs of the survey will vary from establishment to establishment depending upon such factors as the number, type, age and use (past and present) of the buildings.