HC Deb 16 October 1973 vol 861 cc34-5W
Mr. Pink

asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what action her Department is taking to combat the rapid growth of "Japanese Seaweed" to avoid serious blocking of the British coastline.

Mrs. Thatcher

The Natural Environment Research Council has given grants to Portsmouth Polytechnic for a preliminary study of the distribution of Sargassum Muticum and, through the Nature Conservancy, for continued work on eradication. The council is at present considering a further proposal from Portsmouth Polytechnic for a more extensive study of this seaweed and the factors leading to its establishment around the British coastline. Any interference with fishing, shipping and coastal amenities is a matter for my right hon. Friends the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food and the Secretaries of State for Trade and Industry and the Environment.