Whisky Focus - Glenmorangie Distillery To Cut Carbon Emissions By 30%

Glenmorangie Distillery To Cut Carbon Emissions By 30%

6th August 2019
Glenmorangie uses 'virtual gas pipeline' to reduce carbon emissions at the distillery by 30%.

Glenmorangie Distillery Still House.

Glenmorangie is to cut carbon emissions at its Highland Distillery by 30%, as it moves another step closer to its vision of becoming a fully sustainable business. The single malt whisky has consistently innovated in recent years to minimise its impact on the environment. Now it becomes one of the first in Scotland to use a ‘virtual gas pipeline’ to supply its Distillery. This allows Glenmorangie to power its stills with the greener energy of natural gas.

Glenmorangie’s gas, which originates from the North Sea, will be taken from the national gas transmission network at a so-called 'mother station' in Fordoun, Aberdeenshire. There, the gas is transferred into specially designed tankers under high pressure (so-called compressed natural gas – or CNG), and taken to a 'daughter station' which has been constructed a few hundred metres across the A9 road from the Glenmorangie Distillery. The daughter station, built on a disused farm site owned by Glenmorangie, includes two loading bays and gas storage.

Landscaping and tree-planting is planned around the small site to tie in with existing woodland. From the daughter station, which can hold enough CNG to supply the Distillery for around 2.5 days, the gas flows under the A9 via a pipeline. It emerges into the boiler house to feed the boiler, which has been converted from heavy fuel oil to gas. The project has been undertaken in partnership with CNG specialists Air Liquide and CNG Services. Air Liquide will run the daughter station at Glenmorangie.

Glenmorangie, which has been creating its whisky in the Highlands since 1843, is certainly committed to protecting and improving its surroundings which they showed back in 2017 when they commissioned a state-of-the-art anaerobic digestion plant to purify 95% of the water it releases into the nearby Dornoch Firth. One of the plant’s by-products is biogas, which has helped reduce Glenmorangie’s fossil fuel use by 15%. In tandem, Glenmorangie has led a ground-breaking project to restore extinct oyster reefs in the Firth. Reefs will improve biodiversity and filter the remaining organic matter from water released by the Distillery.

Thomas Moradpour, President and CEO of The Glenmorangie Company, said: "We are committed to preserving and improving the world around us, as we meet rising demand for our exceptional single malt whisky around the globe. Cutting our CO2 emissions by 30% is another important step in our quest to become a fully sustainable business."

Ambitious to go further still, Glenmorangie began exploring greener ways to provide power for its signature copper stills, the tallest in Scotland. The Distillery’s boiler has traditionally run on heavy fuel oil. And although natural gas is a much cleaner fuel source, Glenmorangie’s remote Highland location has always prevented it from accessing from the national network.

To overcome this challenge, the Distillery have come up with the ‘virtual pipeline’ to bring gas to Glenmorangie, cutting its greenhouse gas emissions by almost a third. From this month, North Sea gas will be taken from the national gas transmission system, as it runs through Aberdeenshire. The gas will then be transported by tanker to a newly constructed storage facility near the Distillery, before flowing into the boiler house to provide the power needed for distillation. The switch from heavy fuel oil to gas significantly reduces emissions at the Distillery.

You will find the current Glenmorangie whisky range available from specialist online whisky retailers such as The Whisky Exchange, The Whisky Shop and Master of Malt

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