HC Deb 22 March 1955 vol 538 cc1853-4
18. Mr. Nabarro

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland how much Scottish peat was cut and used in 1954 in the United Kingdom for domestic fuel purposes; and, in view of the increased and increasing shortage of house coal in all parts of the country, what steps he is taking to increase the output and popularise the use of peat as domestic fuel.

Mr. Henderson Stewart

I regret that information is not available as to the quantity of peat cut and used for domestic fuel. A Committee under the chairmanship of Sir Edward Appleton has reviewed possible uses of peat, and it is doubtful whether it could be marketed at an economic price in most of our towns. The matter is, however, being kept under review.

Mr. Nabarro

I suggest that my hon. Friend takes steps to get the information. [Hon. Members: "Question."] Is my hon. Friend aware of the high and rising price of coal for domestic purposes, and the fact that this country has had to import 4 million tons of coal this year, mostly for domestic use? Would it not be well worth while considering the development of Scottish peat resources, which would be very welcome in England, which is extremely short of domestic coal?

Mr. Stewart

With respect, I suggest that my hon. Friend should read the Report of the Appleton Committee.