HC Deb 20 November 1950 vol 481 cc1-2
1. Mr. Shepherd

asked the Minister of Fuel and Power if he is satisfied that when the programme for new generating stations is completed sufficient coal will be available for the increased number of stations.

The Minister of Fuel and Power (Mr. Philip Noel-Baker)

Yes, Sir.

Mr. Peter Roberts

Has an estimate been made of the extra coal which will be required by these undertakings, and, if so, how much will it be?

Mr. Noel-Baker

A great deal depends on how quickly the British Electricity Authority can replace old plant with modern plant, but it is calculated that they will need about 1,500,000 tons more in each of the next few years.

Colonel Ropner

Can the right hon. Gentleman say whether enough coal is available to keep the existing stations going, thereby reducing the necessity for power cuts?

Mr. Noel-Baker

It is not because the present stations have not enough coal that we have power cuts; it is because the demand for current is in excess of the generating capacity of the stations.

Mr. David Griffiths

Will my right hon. Friend, in view of the acute shortage of man power, appeal to the friends and relatives of hon. Gentlemen opposite to help provide more manpower?