Wales Bill - Report (1st Day)

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 6:15 pm on 14th December 2016.

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Photo of Lord Morgan Lord Morgan Labour 6:15 pm, 14th December 2016

My Lords, I very strongly agree with what the noble Lord, Lord Wigley, has just said. To leave these matters uncertain and vague, and potentially as, yet again, a source of future bitter conflict, is quite contrary to what the Minister is doing in the Bill.

Two points occur to me. First, it seems that giving the Assembly authority over water is fully consonant with what we are doing in the rest of the Bill—that is, strengthening the regulatory powers of the Assembly over the natural resources of Wales. Secondly, and perhaps more fundamentally, we are—perhaps unintentionally —bypassing this enormous emotive issue in Wales. I would like it to be felt and seen by the citizens of Wales, who are not always clear on the point, that devolution is making a difference. I would like it to be felt that devolution means that there will be no more Tryweryns in Wales and no more treating with contempt the small rural communities for the benefit of others. I expect the Minister to listen with sympathy and I hope very much that the amendments of the noble Lord, Lord Wigley, will be supported.