I have regular discussion with the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions on a range of issues.
In winter 2006-07 we made 1,028,120 winter fuel payments to people in Scotland. Figures are not yet available for this winter, but we expect the numbers to be similar.
In addition, we are currently undertaking a fuel poverty partnership pilot with the energy industry which aims to increase the uptake of energy efficiency measures. The pilot is targeting 250,000 pensioners in receipt of pension credit throughout Great Britain, including 16,500 pensioners in Scotland alone.
In the event of sustained freezing temperatures, eligible customers, generally those in receipt of income-related benefits, may be entitled to cold weather payments.