§ The Lord Privy Seal (Mr. R. A. Butler)
If the hon. Member has in mind possibilities of preventing or controlling the rate of fall-out of radio-active particles which already exist in the upper atmosphere, the answer is that there are, so far as is known, no means.
§ Mr. Mason
Is the right hon. Gentleman not aware that this is a very disturbing reply indeed? We have already received a traceable amount of radio-strontium. There is a concentration of radio-activity in the atmosphere 200 times greater than what has already fallen. Does the right hon. Gentleman not agree that, without any more atom or hydrogen bomb tests over the next few years, because of that much which 1431 is already falling, we shall already have received a high percentage, I think a dangerously high percentage, of radio-strontium?
§ Mr. Butler
That raises rather a different issue, because that is set out in the Medical Research Council's Report which has just been published. I have to give the hon. Gentleman an answer which the best scientists in this country say is true, namely, that there is no method, so far as is known, of controlling radio-active fall-out in the manner suggested by the hon. Gentleman.
§ Mr. Butler
The words chosen by the Medical Research Council were very carefully chosen, and it would not be right for me to enlarge upon them. There is, of course, a degree of danger set out in the Report.
§ At the end of Questions—