HC Deb 26 March 1964 vol 692 cc635-6
10. Mr. Millan

asked the Minister of Power what consultations he has had with the Central Electricity Generating Board on the Powell Report; and if he will make a statement.

11. Mr. W. Hamilton

asked the Minister of Power what discussions he has had with the Central Electricity Generating Board on the kind of reactor to be used in the next series of nuclear power stations.

Mr. Erroll

The Central Electricity Generating Board has been fully consulted during the consideration of the future nuclear power programme.

Mr. Millan

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that there is some mystery surrounding the Powell Report and the Government decision on the next generation of nuclear power stations? Will he give an assurance that, when the Government's decision is announced, a White Paper will be published enabling hon. Members to know the views of the Central Electricity Generating Board and the Atomic Energy Authority whereby we may judge whether the decision is right or not? Can we have the maximum information about this? At the moment, we have none.

Mr. Erroll

My right hon. Friend the Prime Minister, on several occasions in reply to Questions recently, has said that a statement will be made.

Mr. Hamilton

This House is being continually frustrated by lack of information not only on this subject but on many others. If we have to work in the dark we are not able to criticise effectively what the Government are doing. This will be a very serious decision affecting the nation's power supplies for generations. It is, therefore, important to get the decision right. We must have the information available so that we can form our opinion of the efficacy and intelligence of the Government's eventual decision.

Mr. Erroll

I appreciate the hon. Gentleman's concern, but I ask him to await the statement.

Mr. Skeet

Is my right hon. Friend aware that it would be extremely useful to have a technical report as well as the statement? Someone will try to make a general analysis of the information and the House will be in some difficulty if such technical information is not available. We should be much better placed if it were made available to us.

Mr. Erroll

I appreciate my hon. Friend's concern, but I ask him also to await the statement.

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