Smoke Abatement.

Oral Answers to Questions — Public Health. – in the House of Commons on 26th November 1936.

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Photo of Mr Emanuel Shinwell Mr Emanuel Shinwell , Seaham

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?

Photo of Sir Kingsley Wood Sir Kingsley Wood , Woolwich West

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.

Photo of Mr Emanuel Shinwell Mr Emanuel Shinwell , Seaham

In view of the prolonged inquiry and the research into this matter, would the right hon. Gentleman now consider the promotion of legislation?

Photo of Sir Kingsley Wood Sir Kingsley Wood , Woolwich West

I am afraid that there is already a very heavy Parliamentary programme before the House.

Photo of Mr James Griffiths Mr James Griffiths , Llanelly

Could the Minister not urge that anthracite coal produced in this country should be used for this purpose?

Photo of Mr David Logan Mr David Logan , Liverpool Scotland

Is that why the unemployed at Liverpool are not getting any coal this winter?

Photo of Colonel Harold Mitchell Colonel Harold Mitchell , Brentford and Chiswick

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?