HL Deb 24 July 1973 vol 344 cc1763-4

[References are to Bill 154 as first printed for the Commons]

[No. 1]

Clause 1, page 1, line 16, at end insert— ( ) the provision of advice for the Secretary of State or any other Minister on the development and implementation of policies for or affecting nature conservation in Great Britain;".


My Lords, I beg to move that this House doth agree with the Commons in their Amendment No. 1. This Amendment was inserted at the Report stage in another place, following an undertaking which the Minister gave in Committee that he would seek to make it a function of the new Council to advise the Secretary of State upon a national policy of nature conservation. In Committee in another place, during a discussion on an Amendment which would have given the Council the function of designing and fostering a national policy for the conservation of nature, my right honourable friend made it clear that the policy must remain the responsibility of the Secretary of State. However, this Amendment also makes it possible for the new Nature Conservancy Council to give to other Ministers advice on the development and implementation of policies affecting nature conservation; for example, in the case of agricultural policy. This is specifically covered because if reference were made simply to advice to the Secretary of State on nature conservation policies this might be held to inhibit the Council from giving advice to other Ministers on their policies in so far as they affect nature conservation. The advice which the Council can give to local planning authorities and other bodies is not in any way inhibited by this Amendment.

Moved, That this House doth agree with the Commons in the said Amendment.—(Baroness Young.)