The waste from its production is now used by a distillery to fill its delivery trucks with less polluting fuel.
In the village of Dufftown in north-eastern Scotland, workers at the Glenfiddich distillery dump soaked barley – the leftover grain – into the back of a truck, where they make a smoke stack.
These grains will then be combined with a pale, beer-like liquid called “pot ale”, another residue from whiskey making, before undergoing anaerobic digestion to produce low-carbon biogas, which can be used as biofuels. is done as.
“We now have vehicles that can transport our goods and spirits across the country using a very low-carbon renewable energy source,” site director Kirsty Dagnan told AFP.
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.
save the forest
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, Kirsty Dagnan told AFP.
According to the distillery’s parent company William Grant & Sons, biogas reduces greenhouse gas emissions in a big way 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 life-long operation and maintenance, as well as the cost of fuel, biogas costs about the same as diesel,” said company director Stuart Watts. distillery. “It is a compelling argument for companies like ours to use biogas trucks instead of conventional 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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