§ 34. Mr. G. Longden
asked the Minister of Fuel and Power how much open-cast coal is going to the domestic market.
§ Mr. Longden
How much of this coal is washed before delivery? If a large proportion is unwashed may that not be the reason for the increasing dissatisfaction of householders with the quality of the product they are sold as coal?
§ Mr. Nabarro
Is my right hon. Friend aware that the figure he has given amounts to 1,560,000 tons of open-cast coal going to domestic consumers this year, and as a very high percentage of this coal is unwashed is it not a little unfair to blame the pits for the amount of stone in the household coal, which is largely due to this wretched open-cast method of working?
§ Mr. T. Brown
Will the right hon. Gentleman consider the advisability of reducing the percentage of open-cast coal being mixed with the deep-mined coal? Because of the increased percentage of open-cast mixed with deep-mined coal the miners are being brought into disrepute, as people blame them for the stone and slate in their coal, which really comes from the open-cast working.
§ Colonel Gomme-Duncan
Would my right hon. Friend say what the policy of open-cast production costs in ruination of good agricultural land?