HC Deb 05 February 1963 vol 671 cc216-7
23. Mr. Wade

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government and Minister for Welsh Affairs whether in his consultations with the Minister of Power before confirming further smoke control orders, he ascertains whether smokeless fuel supplies are not only available but also suitable for the particular local conditions.

Mr. Corfield

My right hon. Friend consults his right hon. Friend the Minister of Power on the basis of the local authority's estimate of fuel requirements in the prospective smoke control area.

Mr. Wade

Does the Minister agree that if the clean air policy is to succeed it is important that the hardship and distress caused by the change-over should be minimised as far as possible? Is he aware that many protests have been made in my constituency, particularly by elderly people, about the timing of the order and the cost aid suitability of the fuel available? Is he satisfied that there is adequate consultation between his Ministry, the Ministry of Health and Ministry of Power before an order is confirmed?

Mr. Corfield

Yes, Sir. I assure the hon. Gentleman that no smoke control order is confirmed unless my right hon. Friend the Minister of Power advises that adequate supplies of the necessary fuels are available.

Mr. Hocking

Will the hon. Gentleman give an undertaking that there will not be an extension of smokeless zones until there has been a vast increase in the amount of premium smokeless fuels available?

Mr. Corfield

I do not think that I can give that undertaking. The under-taking I can give is that every smoke control order will be considered in the light of the availability of fuels in the particular area.