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£5m GIB Fund for Whisky Distillery Biomass Boilers

Yesterday the UK Green Investment Bank announced £5m of funding to finance the installation of biomass boilers in a number of Scottish whisky distilleries. Replacing inefficient oil boilers, they will help reduce the energy costs and greenhouse gas emissions of the distilleries; and will also be used to produce steam, which is necessary for several parts of the whisky production process.

The Aberfeldy distillery in Perthshire will be taking advantage of the funding, and it is estimated that the project could reduce the carbon footprint of the distillery by up to 90%.

Rob Cormie, Group Operations Director of the UK Green Investment Bank said: “Projects like this can help distilleries to save money and reduce their greenhouse gas emissions. I would encourage other distilleries to install a biomass boiler or other energy saving technology – an investment to make long term savings and to help to meet the industries ambitious green targets. Our ‘spend to save’ model means that companies don’t need to find the capital upfront and can start saving money from day one.”

Stuart Lowthian, the Global Technical Director of Bacardi (who own Aberfeldy distillery) said: “We are excited to be implementing a sustainable energy solution for our Aberfeldy distillery which will reduce our carbon footprint by around 90%. This will be our second investment in biomass solutions for energy generation in the UK. The first was in our Bombay Sapphire gin distillery at Laverstoke Mill, and we will be following up with a similar biomass investment in our tequila distillery in Mexico later this year. These investments underline our “Good Spirited” global sustainability initiative to work with partners to build a sustainable future. We are hoping to make further investments in sustainable power in Scotland in the future.”

The new biomass boilers will be fuelled by sustainably sourced wood pellets from manufacturer Balcas, and the project managed by Equitix.