HC Deb 04 May 1966 vol 727 cc1596-7
11. Mrs. Joyce Butler

asked the Minister of Transport if she will seek power to require manufacturers to fit devices to control car exhaust fumes emission.

Mr. John Morris

It is already unlawful for a motor vehicle to discharge excessive smoke or vapour. Existing powers would enable my right hon. Friend to strengthen the regulations on this if current studies show that further control is necessary.

Mrs. Butler

In view of the health hazards from a concentration of carbon monoxide and sulphur dioxide in the exhaust fumes, and as our manufacturers will increasingly have to fit anti-pollution devices to cars for export to countries which recognise these health dangers, will my right hon. Friend use her power to make sure that these devices are fitted to all future models?

Mr. Morris

I can assure my hon. Friend that British manufacturers, with the encouragement of the Ministry, are actively and urgently investigating means of reducing pollution from vehicle emissions and are ensuring that all the appropriate steps are taken to deal with any health hazards.

Sir G. Nabarro

Is the hon. Gentleman aware that next Monday is the tenth anniversary of the passing of the Clean Air Act and that all the beneficial effects of the Statute have been offset by the increasing concentration of carbon monoxide in the atmosphere from the exhausts of motor vehicles?

Mr. Morris

I am sure that the hon. Gentleman will be well aware—I know his interest in the Clean Air Act and I had a little to do with it when I was at the Ministry of Power—that the Council of Europe sub-committee on air pollution has suggested that there should be more research before further steps are taken.