§ 10. Mr. Gwynfor Evans
asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food whether he takes rainfall into account in assessing the tonnage of lime per acre required by the soil of Wales.
§ The Joint Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (Mr. John Mackie)
When advising on liming our staff always take into account leaching and local climatic conditions.
§ Mr. Evans
Is the Minister aware that the great water resources of Wales, which are plundered and exploited by English industrial conurbations, exist because of the heavy weight of water which descends on our land in rainfall and washes the lime out of the land? Is he aware that in any case the tonnage of lime applied per acre in England over the past 10 years was 16 per cent. higher than in Wales, and will he allow that situation to be reflected in the lime subsidy paid in Wales?
§ Mr. Mackie
I shall not delve into the early part of the hon. Member's supplementary question. It would be very difficult administratively to allow for the varying conditions all over the British Isles. I should not like to go into the technical details, but I am almost certain that even the low rainfall in Norfolk might on light land cause more leaching than occurs in some of the areas of which the hon. Member thinks in Wales. It 1691 would be too difficult to allow for climatic conditions in this variable island of ours in administering the lime subsidy—even for a Welsh Nationalist Government.