HC Deb 05 February 1969 vol 777 cc134-5W
Mr. Dalyell

asked the Minister of Technology if he will publish a White Paper setting out guidelines of his policy for the development of the marine sciences and marine environment.

Mr. Benn

The review of Marine Science and Technology by an interdepartmental working party has been completed.

The review has shown that British research into the marine environment has developed satisfactorily under the aegis of the Natural Environment Research Council and the Secretary of State for Education and Science.

When published, this review will set out the guide lines for future Government policy on these subjects.

In order to foster technological development in the marine environment, an interdepartmental advisory Committee on Marine Technology has been established. The Ministry of Technology provides the Chairman and the Secretariat of this Committee, and the permanent members are provided by the Ministry of Defence (Navy), the Ministry of Technology and the Natural Environment Research Council (N.E.R.C). It has also proved useful to have a representative of the National Research Development Corporation at the meetings of the Committee, and other Government Departments attend as necessary when subjects within their responsibility are discussed. Cross representation with N.E.R.C. Committees has been arranged.

The Committee on Marine Technology has been set up to review activities in marine technology in consultation with the appropriate authorities, to identify economically promising projects to stimulate users to define their technological requirements and recommend to the appropriate authorities technological programmes to meet their needs. The Committee provides means of bringing together scientists, technologists, administrators, and industrialists to examine the opportunity across the whole span of marine technology, and to consider what action the Government could take in furthering commercial enterprise.