Diageo & Clearfleau Bio-energy Project wins 2013 Scottish Green Energy Award

Diageo and Clearfleau have been recognised with two Scottish environmental awards for the bio-energy plant located on Diageo’s Dailuaine distillery in Speyside.  This on-site anaerobic digestion facility won the prestigious Best Project Award at the Scottish Green Energy Awards, announced on 5th December.  On the 26th November, the Dailuaine project was runner-up in the VIBES Awards, in the Environmental and Clean Technology Category.

The innovative bio-energy plant was built by Clearfleau on the Dailuaine distillery, near Aberlour.   It treats whisky co-products to produce cleansed process water, while generating renewable energy for the distillery.  On a daily basis the plant (a replacement for an aerobic bio-plant) converts over 1,000m3 of dilute co-products into green electricity and heat for the distillery.

To meet international demand, Diageo is expanding whisky production in Scotland.  This has required investment in bio-plants that handle production residues and co-products.  This included the plant that serviced the Dailuaine distillery and other local distilleries (plus an adjacent site producing cattle feed).  The bio-energy plant was installed during 2012, following a tender awarded to Clearfleau, a British company with an innovative on-site anaerobic digestion technology.

Clearfleau designs and builds anaerobic systems that digest a range of liquid residues from food, dairy and drinks processing sites, cutting effluent treatment and energy costs, while generating revenue from the energy produced. Diageo’s treatment facility was designed to accommodate planned increases in production and to reduce the distillery’s environmental impact.

On receiving the Project Award at the Scottish Green Energy Awards Ceremony, at the National Museum of Scotland, Clearfleau Director, Richard Gueterbock said:

“We are delighted to share the Best Project Award with Diageo.  The project is a great example of Anaerobic Digestion on an industrial site – converting co-products into green energy for use on-site.  As an emerging British company, Clearfleau looks forward to delivering more Scottish projects in the food and drink sector.  We expect to employ more people in Scotland in 2014.”

Commenting on the Award, made on 5th December, Diageo Technical Manager Sean Pritchard said:

“At Diageo we are committed to making our business as sustainable as possible everywhere we operate around the world. We’re very proud here in Scotland to be making great strides in introducing innovative renewable energy solutions in our Scotch whisky operations. The Dailuaine bio-energy plant is a leading example of this and we’re very pleased to see it recognised in this way.”

Diageo is looking at other renewable energy projects as part of its major investment project in Scotland and Clearfleau is working on a number of projects in the food and beverage sectors in Scotland.  The on-site system can handle a range of materials including sugars, oils and fats, as well as reject product or ingredients. It is also able to provide solutions for businesses affected by the ban on disposal of food residues to landfill that is being introduced by the Scottish Government between 2014 and 2016.