HC Deb 17 November 1981 vol 13 cc119-20W
Mr. John MacKay

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if he is satisfied with the arrangements for dealing with oil spillage in the event of an accident to an oil tanker in passage down the coast of Argyll.

Mr. Rifkind

Strathclyde regional council, like other regional and islands authorities, maintains a contingency plan for dealing with spills on or threatening its coastline. The Department of Trade, which is responsible within the Government for dealing with oil spills at sea, and the Scottish Office provide advice and support, and would co-ordinate remedial action in the event of a spill too large for locaal authorities to deal with effectively. This voluntary framework of co-operation between local and central government has so far worked satisfactorily, but is now being reviewed in the light of recommendations of the Royal Commission on environmental pollution's recent report on oil pollution of the sea.