£10 million fund to help UK’s world-famous distilleries go green by switching to low carbon fuels such as hydrogen.
Whisky and spirit lovers are raising a glass to the delivery of new government funding that will ensure they can enjoy their favourite tipple without it costing the earth.
Producers in one of the UK’s most iconic industries will be playing their part in reducing carbon emissions, with 17 distilleries today receiving the first phase of £10 million government funding to go green.
Eleven distilleries across Scotland and a further six in England will be able to kick-start green innovations thanks to the government backing, helping them harness energy sources such as low-carbon hydrogen, biomass and repurposed waste to power their operations.
The successful distilleries will receive between £44,000 and £75,000 in the first phase of funding, helping them boost decarbonisation research and development, with schemes including the use of hydrogen and biofuel boilers and geothermal energy in their production processes.
The funding will help prevent pollution equivalent to taking 200,000 cars off the road.
Energy and Clean Growth Minister, Kwasi Kwarteng, said:
In 2019, the UK distilleries industry grew by 20%, highlighting the opportunity for the sector to be at the heart of the UK’s green and resilient recovery from coronavirus.
The Scotch whisky industry supports 40,000 jobs across the UK, with more than 10,000 people directly employed in Scotland.
With 7,000 of these jobs in rural Scottish areas, today’s funding will drive forward support for net-zero innovation in some geographically remote parts of the UK, creating more jobs and skills and providing opportunities for distilleries to develop their fuel transportation and storage technologies.
The announcement is another example of government commitment to build back greener and work towards the UK’s goal of reaching net zero by 2050 and comes in addition to the ambitious green targets announced in the Ten Point Plan and Energy White Paper.
UK government Scotland Minister, Iain Stewart said:
Dagmar Droogsma, Director of Industry at the Scotch Whisky Association, said: