Metrication

House of Lords written question – answered on 25th July 2012.

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Photo of Lord Stoddart of Swindon Lord Stoddart of Swindon Independent Labour

To ask Her Majesty's Government, further to the Written Answer by Lord Taylor of Holbeach on 12 July (WA 279) concerning Thames Water leakages, why they used metric rather than imperial measures, and whether, in future, they will use only imperial measures or quote both measures.

Photo of Baroness Wilcox Baroness Wilcox The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills

Metric units of measurement were adopted as the primary system of measurement by the public sector and for the majority of trade uses on 1 October 1995. Failure to adopt the metric system would have had a negative effect on the UK's international competitiveness. However, imperial units can continue to be used as supplementary indications alongside metric units for as long as businesses or the public find them useful. Whether to use imperial units alongside metric ones is a decision for the public sector organisation or business concerned, taking into account the needs of the audience and the business case. I understand that there are no plans to report leakage in imperial measures.

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