HC Deb 11 July 1955 vol 543 cc1550-1
4. Mr. Philips Price

asked the Minister of Fuel and Power whether he will make a statement as to the extent to which the National Industrial Fuel Efficiency Service has achieved the degree of fuel economy necessary in this country; to what extent the Pilkington Committee's estimate that a saving of one million tons could be achieved in the first year after that organisation was established has proved to be correct; to what extent the Government loan scheme for fuel efficiency equipment is proving effective; and what is the value of new equipment installed under the scheme up to date.

Mr. Geoffrey Lloyd

The Service has made excellent progress since it was established last year, and the loan scheme has proved increasingly effective in financing firms which otherwise would not have installed fuel-saving equipment. But I hope to make a fuller statement on this and other matters raised by the hon. Member at an early date.

Mr. Price

Will the right hon. Gentleman consider further measures in the near future in addition to those I have mentioned in my Question?

Mr. Lloyd

I always have the matter under review to ascertain whether we can make progress.

8. Mr. Palmer

asked the Minister of Fuel and Power if he is aware that recent work done by the Fuel Research Station of the Department of Scientific and Industrial Research shows the improved solid fuel domestic grate recommended by his Department to have a practical thermal efficiency not substantially different from the common pre-war style grate; and if he will revise his recommendation.

Mr. Geoffrey Lloyd

I see no reason to revise my recommendations. Thermal efficiency is only one of the considerations that should be taken into account and, with the improved open fire, the rate of burning can be much better controlled and coke used satisfactorily.

Mr. Palmer

Is it not a fact that this fuel efficiency campaign which the right hon. Gentleman is sponsoring is having little real effect on the saving of coal? Is it not about time a more realistic and vigorous approach to the whole problem was made?

Mr. Lloyd

The standards of the improved fires have been raised as much as is practicable, that is, as much as it has been found possible to get the improved fires. They have been installed in very large numbers and have undoubtedly meant a saving of coal, although in some cases people have used them to increase the amount of heat rather than to save coal.

Mr. P. Noel-Baker

Can the Minister tell us how many have been installed, because everything turns on that?

Mr. Lloyd

I could not give the latest figures, but the figures I gave some time ago showed a very great increase indeed.

Mr. Noel-Baker

But it would take 20 or 30 years for the country to be equipped with them.

Mr. Lloyd

I would have to refer to that, but I would think that that is much too long a period.

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