HC Deb 25 June 1997 vol 296 cc517-8W
Mr. Llew Smith

To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions if he will review progress made to date in cleaning contaminated mine water; and what plans he has to enhance the current clean-up programme. [4919]

Ms Angela Eagle

Last year, the Environment Agency and the Coal Authority identified for further study a priority list of 35 serious mine water discharges from abandoned coal mines in England and Wales which need remedial pollution treatment, and which are being monitored by the Environment Agency during 1997. Following discussions with the Environment Agency and the Scottish Environmental Protection Agency, the Coal Authority has undertaken 14 detailed feasibility studies on the most environmentally damaging discharges and allocated over £2 million principally to tackle four priority sites during 1997–98. I am reviewing the need for further action to clean-up contaminated mine water sites.