HC Deb 08 May 1950 vol 475 c23W
115. Sir H. Roper

asked the Minister of Transport whether he is aware of the nuisance being caused along the coast of North Cornwall by the pollution of its beaches by oil discharged from ships; and whether he will take urgent steps to stop it, in view of the approaching holiday season.

Mr. Barnes

I have received no recent complaints of oil pollution in the North Cornwall area. The discharge of oil within British territorial waters is an offence under the Oil in Navigable Waters Act, 1922, and I do not hesitate to prosecute whenever I obtain adequate evidence. Outside territorial waters the problem requires the co-operation of the principal maritime nations, but shipowners of this and a number of other countries have agreed not to discharge oil within 50 miles of any coast, and from time to time our owners are reminded of this and asked to prevent its happening within that limit.