in the village of Dufftown, northeast ofScotlandGlenfiddich Distillery workers dump soaked barley grains—the remnants called spent grains—into the back of the truck, where they make a smoke stack.
These grains will then be combined with a pale, beer-like liquid known as “pot ale”, another residue from the manufacture of whiskeyUsed as a biofuel, before undergoing anaerobic digestion to produce low-carbon biogas.
“We now have vehicles that can transport our goods and spirits across the country using a very low-carbon renewable energy source,” says site manager Kirsty Deegan.
The gas produced, primarily methane, is stored in a tank in the yard on a street corner, where the company’s three customized trucks can arrive to ensure the transportation of spirits at all stages of its production before refilling. Production.
The idea for this biofuel made from spent grains and “pot ale” came from researchers at Napier University in Edinburgh, who announced they had developed it in 2010.
The discovery was praised by the environmental association WWF at the time, because unlike other biofuels such as palm oil, the fuel could be made without harming forests and wildlife. Each of the three customized trucks that use the new biofuel prevents emissions of about 250 tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere, Christy Deegan has estimated.
According to William Grant & SonsThe distillery’s parent company, biogas, largely reduces greenhouse gas emissions compared to diesel and other fossil fuels. This widely used process is the first time a distillery has been applied to supply its own trucks.
Glenfiddich Distillery’s three customized trucks will transport its whiskey from its production site in Dufftown to different bottling and packaging sites in central and western Scotland. The company plans to extend this technology to all 20 of its trucks and eventually to the rest of its production.
“If you take into account the cost of purchasing the truck, its operation and maintenance throughout its lifetime, as well as the cost of fuel, the cost of biogas is the same as that of diesel,” said company director Stuart Watts. distillery. “It’s a compelling argument for companies like ours to use biogas trucks instead of traditional diesel trucks.”
At the point of refueling, the driver carefully inserts a nozzle into the gas tank. It takes roughly the same amount of time to refuel for diesel and the range is the same, he explains enthusiastically, before raising sails to roam the highlands in the rain.
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