Greenpeace lost a case against the U.K. government and BP in Scotland's highest civil court, allowing BP to continue offshore drilling operations at the Vorlich site off the coast of Aberdeen, Scotland. Drilling began at the site, located in the North Sea, in late 2020 at a rate of 20,000 barrels per day. The permit approved a total of 30 million barrels of oil (Bloomberg).
The Scottish government is proposing to establish four new marine protected areas (MPAs) to provide special protections for minke whales and basking sharks in feeding grounds around Scotland. The proposed areas are located at the southern trench in the outer Moray Firth, north-east Lewis, the Sea of the Hebrides, and Shiant East Bank, and would cover 5,000 square miles of sea. The government aims to complete Scotland's MPA network by the end of 2020. For the full story, see https://www.bbc.com/news/uk-scotland-48542985.
Scotland announced on October 8, 2015, that it is extending the ban on shale gas imposed in January to include a moratorium on underground coal gasification (UCG). UCG is a process where gas is extracted through the injection of oxidants into underground coal deposits, followed by heating them to temperatures that permit the gases to escape. Scotland is planning to delve into an in-depth investigation of both shale gas fracking and UCG. After the investigations, slotted to be completed in 2017, the Scottish government will determine whether or not to retain bans on shale gas and UCG.