§ Mr. Nelson
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what was the amount spent by local authorities and harbour authorities over the latest 12-month period for which figures are available on dealing with oil pollution on beaches.
§ Mr. Denis Howell
English local authorities reported a gross expenditure in the financial year 1973–74 of about £58,000 on clearing oil from inshore waters and from beaches. After payment of claims from tanker owners and grant 373W from my Department the net cost was about £27,000 Local authorities spent a further £30,000—£15,000 net—on purchasing equipment in readiness for dealing with pollution.
Figures are not available for expenditure by harbour authorities and could not be obtained without disproportionate cost.