Economy Campaign.

Oral Answers to Questions — Fuel and Power. – in the House of Commons on 28th July 1942.

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Photo of Mr Arthur Colegate Mr Arthur Colegate , The Wrekin

asked the Minister of Fuel and Power whether he is aware that there is a widespread feeling that the cam- paign to effect economy in the consumption of fuel is not being conducted with sufficient drive; and whether he will make any statement as to the further steps he proposes to take with regard to this matter?

Photo of Major Lawrence Kimball Major Lawrence Kimball , Loughborough

asked the Minister of Fuel and Power what measures he has taken in the publicity campaign to reduce domestic fuel consumption; whether those measures have been successful and to what extent; and what further measures he intends to take?

Major Lloyd George:

As the reply is rarther long I will, with the permission of my hon. Friends, have it circulated in the OFFICIAL REPORT.

Following is the reply:

It was on Sunday, 28th June, in a broadcast that I launched the fuel economy campaign which I am conducting in co-operation with my right hon. Friend the Minister of Information. Whilst it is too early to gauge its effect, there is ample evidence that the public generally are already alive to the urgent need for economy. The B.B.C. are co-operating on a generous scale. The importance of fuel economy has been constantly stressed by announcers and other speakers, and hints on fuel economy are included almost daily in the Kitchen Front talks. Advertising has been started in the Press, both national and provincial, and in general there has been strong editorial support all over the country for which I am most grateful. The possibilities of the films as a vehicle for propaganda are being taken into account; as a beginning, during the week ended 13th July, a series of "Fuel Flashes" began in all cinemas. Two special exhibitions on fuel economy have recently been started and more are to be opened in the near future. A series of posters will shortly appear on hoardings throughout the country.

In the industrial sphere, which is certainly no less important that the domestic, the Fuel Efficiency Committee of my Department has been in close touch for the last nine months with all the big industries through their Trade Associations, and advisory committees are being set up in all regions, with panels of combustion experts whose advice will be available to all industrial consumers. The Committee's own staff of combustion engineers are also doing valuable work in this sphere. A training scheme has been inaugurated with the collaboration of the Board of Education at some 45 universities and colleges throughout the country; over 4,000 men received training under the initial scheme, and it is likely that over 10,000 men will be trained as the scheme develops; the students are drawn from the engineering and boiler house staffs of industries.

All these activities in the industrial field are being constantly strengthened and extended and a memorandum on fuel economy, with a covering note by my right hon. Friend the Minister of Production, is now being printed for circulation to some 30,000 factories.

As regards future plans, it is the intention that the campaign shall be intensified week by week until the climax is reached with the approach of the colder weather. Full use will be made of all practical publicity methods.

An effective publicity campaign requires careful planning; experience proves that the value of propaganda is cumulative. It is essential that this campaign shall be well thought out. It is not enough merely telling people to save fuel. The public are entitled to know exactly how to save and when, and it is my intention, in close cooperation with my technical and scientific advisers, to give them all the help possible.