HC Deb 25 October 1976 vol 918 cc90-1W
Mr. Michael Latham

asked the Prime Minister why he detached the Department of Transport from the Department of the Environment; and what instructions he has given to ensure that environmental aspects of transport policy, including road construction and pricing of fares, are fully taken into account before decisions are announced by the Government.

The Prime Minister

I set up the Department of Transport because of the importance of transport in the development of the economy and in social and environmental questions. In making decisions, my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Transport will have regard to all these factors. There will be full consultation with the Department of the Environment on the environmental aspects of transport policy. In addition, the Secretaries of State for Transport and the Environment will jointly appoint inspectors to hold inquiries into trunk road and national motorway schemes in England; the inspectors will report to them jointly and they will jointly decide. The existing system of regional offices, which cover planning, transport, housing and environmental issues, will be maintained and will provide a joint service to both Secretaries of State.

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