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Clean Air Act, 1956

Volume 645: debated on Tuesday 25 July 1961

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asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government and Minister for Welsh Affairs what progress has been made in the five years to 30th June, 1961, in securing implementation of the provisions of the Clean Air Act, 1956, notably in the establishment of Smoke Control Areas in black areas denoted in the Beaver Report.

In the black areas of England and Wales, over 623,000 premises and over 102,000 acres are now covered by confirmed smoke control orders. Over 128,000 more premises and over 29.000 more acres in these areas are covered by orders submitted for confirmation. These figures, which are correct to 30th June, indicate a substantial start, but continued vigorous use of all the Act's provisions is needed.

While this is impressive progress in the first five years, will my hon. Friend recognise that the whole of the policy for clean air is being vitiated by the fact that no progress is being made in the abatement of diesel oil exhaust fumes? As there is divided executive responsibility between the Ministers of Transport and Housing and Local Government, cannot we have a combined policy to rid us of this public menace?

I cannot accept that the clean air policy is being vitiated for this reason, but consultations are taking place on the subject.