Rare 15-metre whale spotted off the coast of Scotland

They are very rarely seen by humans and are an endangered species.

In early June, tourists on the Scottish island of Lewes from Tiumpan Head Lighthouse spotted the rare seiwhale, also known as the willow whale, swimming nearby in the ocean. These animals were a prime target for whalers until the 1970s and so became rapidly extinct. In 1976, these whales were placed under international protection and are now an endangered species.

It is reported that only about ten sei whales have been sighted off the coast of Scotland in the last 50 years, so the appearance of this whale was a great joy not only for tourists but also for conservationists.

Scottish government urges poultry farmers to strengthen farm biosecurity

The Poultry Site, an international industry resource, reports that the Scottish government has confirmed an outbreak of highly pathogenic avian influenza caused by the highly pathogenic subtype of the H5N1 virus. The bird mortality was registered in the Levan region of the eastern Fife district – on a farm where about 14 thousand pheasants and other game species were raised and subsequently released into the wild. All livestock in the epizootic focus were killed in a humane way. In a protection zone with a radius of three kilometers and a surveillance zone in a 10-kilometer radius around the contaminated site, preventive measures are being taken. There are bans on the movement of eggs, live individuals and poultry meat, the removal of used bedding and droppings from poultry farms. The health service estimates the risk of human exposure to avian influenza A (H5N1) as very low. The outbreak in Levan was the second in the past few months. The previous outbreak of avian influenza, where a virus of another subtype (H5N8) was detected, arose in mid-December 2020 on the island of Sunday in the Orkney archipelago (northeast of Scotland). Scotland’s chief veterinarian, Sheila Voas, has called on farmers, poultry owners and poultry breeders to strengthen biosecurity, noting its vital importance in the current situation. At the slightest sign of a threat to livestock, you should immediately contact the veterinarian, she reminded, and all the necessary practical can be obtained from the offices of the Agency for the Protection of Animal and Plant Health. Scottish poultry farmers are required to follow the rules set out in the order, which entered into force on December 14, 2020: to prevent poultry from contacting wild fauna and to ensure the high biosecurity of farms. Scotland’s Environment and Rural Development Minister Ben Macpherson said the poultry regulation is in line with all UK and EU regulations when an epidemic is threatened. Scots are asked to be vigilant and urgently inform the veterinary service when carcasses of dead birds are found, in no case touching them.

Scottish startup to develop large electric SUV

Glasgow-based ATAE to launch Munro Mark 1 SUV with full frame construction and permanent four-wheel drive

Scottish startup ATAE (All Terrain All Electric) from Glasgow is developing a large electric SUV called the Munro Mark 1, which is due to prototype in 2021.

The ATAE Munro Mark 1, which will be based on a classic ladder frame, will receive permanent all-wheel drive, differential locks and a dual-band transfer case.

The SUV will be almost entirely built from existing third-party components. For example, the body and chassis will be provided by Ibex Automotive. The car will be driven by an electric motor developing 215 hp. and 350 Nm of torque.

It will be powered by a 52 kWh battery pack, which will allow it to travel about 240 kilometers without recharging under normal conditions. With the help of a special fast system, the reserve of batteries from 0 to 80% can be replenished in half an hour.

The first running prototype will be prepared towards the end of this year, after which the model will undergo lengthy road tests. The first SUVs are expected to be delivered to customers in 2022. The Scots note that the design of the model provides for various modifications, including a three-axle version with six wheels.

Glasgow’s council pledges £10.5m for hydrogen-powered bin lorries

GLASGOW is set to have the largest fleet of hydrogen-powered bin lorries in the world after councillors agreed a £10.5 million funding package.

The council will buy 19 hydrogen refuse collection vehicles, using £7m from a climate emergency fund.

It is part of plans to push forward the council’s ambition for a fleet of zero-emission vehicles.

Two electric minibuses will be purchased with £420,000 from SP Energy Networks.

And Transport Scotland has provided £200,000 for batteries, which will capture power generated by solar panels set to be installed on Duke Street car park. It has also supplied £290,000 for charging points.

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More than £2.5m of Smart Cities Scotland funding will be used on smart technology, to support the management of the fleet, including fuel and waste systems.

It is hoped the council’s commitment to hydrogen will encourage other fleet operators to reduce carbon emissions.

Over 100 new electric cars have already been delivered to the council and work is underway to convert 20 smaller lorries to dual fuel hydrogen.

George Gillespie, an executive director at the council, said decarbonising the council’s fleet was “vital” to plans to be carbon neutral by 2030.

“We have taken tremendous strides with the implementation of our zero-emissions fleet strategy,” he added.

“Glasgow is now very much at the forefront of changes that aim to remove carbon from our transport system.

“We can see the market responding to the lead the council is taking and it was always our aim to use the council’s size and status to build confidence that wider change is possible.”

He continued: “Committing to using hydrogen for our heavier vehicles was always a big breakthrough in our approach to decarbonising our fleet.

“I am particularly pleased that such significant investment is being made in modernising our cleansing service with the purchase of 19 hydrogen-powered refuse vehicles.

“The technology we are introducing into our vehicles will also help make our services as effective and efficient as possible and will ensure we are best placed to meet the challenges of the climate emergency.”

A car graveyard with old Lada found in Scotland. There is almost no rust on them

A half-abandoned dump of old cars, among which there were several copies of the Russian car industry – “Niva” and “Samara” in a semi-disassembled form – was found on the outskirts of the Scottish town of Glasgow

As we found out, the old cars belong to the local auto dismantling yard. The Lada found at the test site were right-hand drive. And one of them – “Samara” – and at all from the limited version of the Sedona with a golden body.

AVTOVAZ began supplying its cars to Scotland and Great Britain in 1974. In the 1980s, Soviet cars were very popular there – every year local residents bought tens of thousands of Lada cars.

However, already in the early 1990s, the demand for Russian-made cars began to decline. And by 1997 it was decided to stop exporting.

При этом до сих пор в Шотландии и Великобритании можно встретить довольно много российских автомобилей. Причем многие из них – в отличном состоянии.