§ Mr. Leslie Huckfield
asked the Minister of Power what further consideration has been given by his Department to the conditions under which opencast mining will be permitted following the publication of the White Paper on fuel policy.
§ Mr. Freeson
While policy is kept under review, it remains the case that during conditions of general coal surplus, the Government have decided not to give authorisations for new sites except in special cases where, because of quality or location, the coal to be produced is not in competition with coal from deep-mines. These are the fuel policy considerations218W which will guide decisions on new sites, though from time to time there may be factors outside fuel policy which favour opencast working and will need to be taken into account.
§ Mr. Speed
asked the Minister of Power (1) what account he takes of the local level of undistributed stocks of coal before giving his decision on opencast mining applications;
(2) what account he takes of the effect on existing coal mines within the same area before giving his decision on opencast mining applications.