§ Mr. Trippier
No national assessment has been made of the environmental impact of quarrying limestone for the limestone-gypsum flue gas desulphurisation process. My Department has commissioned a research project into high purity limestone resources and the demand for non-aggregate uses. The report will also discuss environmental and planning issues and will be published later this year.
The CEGB has indicated that the complete 12GW retrofit programme would account for less than 2 million tonnes of limestone per year (less than 2 per cent. of current production).
The board also announced in August 1987 that it would not take limestone from quarries in national parks for the power stations selected for retrofitting with the flue gas desulphurisation process. The board went on to state that it hoped to follow a similar policy when obtaining limestone for new stations. That assessment was made in the knowledge of the Government's policy on mineral working in national parks set out in the statement by my then hon. Friend the Member for Bristol, West (Mr. Waldegrave) on 9 April 1987 (HC 393/394). I understand that the board's policy towards limestone supply has not changed since its August 1987 announcement.