HC Deb 01 March 1991 vol 186 c632W
Mr. Simon Hughes

To ask the Secretary of State for Health what actions have been taken since the appointment of a Minister in his Department to consider the environmental implications of his Department's policies; and if he will make a statement.

Mr. Dorrell

The Department, like all others, has been active in implementing and developing the commitments made in the Environment White Paper "This Common Inheritance", since its publication in September.

The Department has an over riding responsibility to protect the health of the public and this spans a wide range of environmental issues. For a majority of such issues (eg air and water quality) the Department's primary function is to provide advice to Government on the implications for human health of actual or potential environmental hazards. The Department has specific responsibilities for the public health aspects of food safety and for matters concerning communicable diseases.

In the national health service, both regional and district health authorities are well aware of their responsibilities to the environment. We attach particular importance to their meeting the requirements of environmental protection legislation and to energy conservation.

Forward to