§ Mr. Sproat
To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (1) if he will make a statement on the current role of his Ministry in preventing the erosion of the Naze at Walton-on-the-Naze;
(2) by what date he expects to have reached conclusions about providing funds to prevent erosion of the Naze at Walton-on-the-Naze.
§ Mr. Curry
The Coast Protection Act 1949 empowers maritime district councils to carry out works to protect land from erosion and encroachment by the sea. Proposed schemes must be submitted to the Department for approval. To qualify for approval and for grant aid from the Department, schemes must be technically sound, economically worthwhile and environmentally acceptable.
The Department has been awaiting the submission of further documentation from Tendring district council as regards the economic justification for the proposed scheme to reduce the rate of erosion at the Naze. This has now been received. We hope to be able to reach a decision shortly.
§ Mr. Sproat
To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (1) what estimate he has made of the costs of schemes to prevent the erosion of the Naze at Walton-on-the-Naze;80W Government's views about whaling in statements made on my behalf at the commission meetings in New Zealand in 1988, in the Netherlands in 1990 and in Iceland in 1991. I plan to open the 44th meeting of the International Whaling Commission in Glasgow on 29 June.
§ Dr. David Clark
To ask the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food what criteria he uses to establish whether a whale stock is healthy; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Gummer
Responsibility for advising on the states of whale stocks and the impact of catches on them is a matter for the scientific committee of the International Whaling Commission. These are matters currently being addressed by the committee meeting in Glasgow and we look forward to receiving their advice. I have made clear elsewhere the reasons why we cannot contemplate any lifting of the present moratorium on commercial whaling.