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A Scotch Distiller Is Fueling Its Trucks With Whisky Waste

Scotland's whisky industry has collectively announced plans to reach net-zero emissions.

Though whisky is something you would typically not want to associate with driving, one company is using waste products from the distilling process of the strong alcoholic beverage to sustainably power its fleet of trucks, a report by Reuters explains.

Scotch whisky maker Glenfiddich, which sells over 14 million bottles of single malt whisky annually, started modifying its delivery trucks to run on low-emission biofuel, in gas form, made out of waste products from its own whisky distilleries as part of an initiative to curb its carbon emissions.

Glenfiddich stated that it has built fueling stations at its Dufftown distillery in north-eastern Scotland, specially designed to convert whisky production waste and residues into Ultra-Low Carbon Fuel (ULCF). The distiller claims that the biogas reduces the C02 emissions of its trucks by over 95 percent, as well as curbing other harmful particulates and greenhouse emissions by 99 percent when compared to its diesel delivery vehicles. Glenfiddich believes that each of its biogas-fueled trucks will have the capacity to displace close to 250 tons of CO2 in a year. The trucks used by the distiller are modified versions of Italian truck manufacturer Iveco's Stralis NP, which typically run on liquified gas.

Scottish whisky industry aims to reach net-zero by 2040

Glenfiddich, which previously sold the residue from its whisky production process to farmers for cattle feed, aims to eventually recycle all of its waste products as fuel for its fleet of 20 delivery vehicles. It is currently powering three modified delivery trucks with the biofuel, each of which is tasked with transporting whisky from the company's distillery in Dufftown to nearby bottling and packaging sites. The company also claims that its method could be scaled up to be used by other companies, presumably in the case that it has whisky waste biofuel to spare after powering its own fleet of vehicles.

 A Scotch Distiller Is Fueling Its Trucks With Whisky Waste
One of the three modified biogas trucks currently in active circulation. Source: Glenfiddich

Glenfiddich's efforts are a strong step in the Scottish whisky industry's attempts to reach net-zero carbon emission by 2040. At the time of the announcement to reach that goal, Scotland's Energy Minister Anne-Marie Trevelyan said "It’s fantastic that this new strategy is helping one of our most cherished industries also become one of our greenest."

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In January, the UK government announced that it would fund 17 projects in the country to the tune of £10m ($13.8m), with a view to developing technologies that could help to decarbonize distilleries. Glenfiddich's initiative is also another example of the potential for gas to power logistics fleets, as BMW recently announced that it is increasingly powering its fleets of factory vehicles using hydrogen

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