asked the Minister of Health whether he can give an estimate of the annual cost imposed upon the public through the emission of smoke from domestic and industrial chimneys whether any steps are being taken to abate the smoke nuisance; and whether he would consider the prohibition of the use of raw coal in certain selected areas as an experiment?
As regards the first part of the question, I am advised that no reliable estimate can be given. As to the second part of the question, many steps with my encouragement are being taken by local authorities, industrial interests and voluntary organisations who are co-operating in the matter, and smokeless methods of using coal are being increasingly developed both for domestic and industrial purposes. The proposal referred to in the last part of the question would require legislation.
In view of the research which the Coal Utilisation Council are now carrying out at the Greenwich Fuel Research Station into smokeless methods of domestic burning of bituminous coal, would it not be undesirable to introduce legislation before that inquiry has been completed?