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Environment minister Michael Meacher this week told MPs that it would cost the taxpayer £40M to dispose of the mountain of disused fridges in the UK under the latest EU regulations.

The taxpayer is set to help fund the £8.7bn removal of redundant North Sea oil rigs over the next decade.

Companies are allowed to offset the cost of removal against profits, meaning that less tax will be paid.

A proposed £30M relief road between Dorchester and Weymouth has had a £1M alteration to avoid a protected bat colony.

Plans by the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors to burn beacons for the Queen's Jubilee were criticised by a Dartmoor preservation group last week, amid fears that permanent damage will be caused to ancient stone cairns.

Lloyd's of London, the insurance market, last week announced losses of £3.1bn. The figures include the largest loss event of all time - the £1.98bn World Trade Center disaster.

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