HC Deb 15 February 1973 vol 850 cc1435-6
10. Mr. Dalyell

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food if he will now introduce legislation for penalties for those found guilty of polluting the North Sea.

Mr. Anthony Stodart

As my right hon. Friend and I have said in answer to previous Questions by the hon. Member, the legislation will be introduced as soon as parliamentary time permits.

Mr. Dalyell

As this is the first anniversary of seven Questions put at consecutive intervals, and on each occasion "as soon as parliamentary time permits" has been the answer, when will parliamentary time permit?

Mr. Stodart

I should have thought that would depend upon how swiftly parliamentary business proceeds.

Mr. Laurance Reed

Is my hon. Friend aware that this is not only the first anniversary of one of seven Questions; it is the first anniversary of the Oslo Convention to prevent dumping of wastes at sea? Does my hon. Friend accept the advice of the Royal Commission on the Environment that the implementation of the convention should be brought into effect without delay and as a matter of priority?

Mr. Stodart

Yes. Both my hon. Friend and the hon. Member for West Lothian (Mr. Dalyell) know precisely what are my hopes about this. They are well aware that the arrangements for the business of this House are not for me. I will, of course, again draw my right hon. Friend's attention to what has been said.