WHISKY FUEL GALORE!
Tuesday, 15 September 2015 12:31
MSP hails DfT grant enabling energy firm to build first ever whisky residue biofuel plant
Angus MacDonald MSP has tabled a parliamentary motion congratulating the clean energy enterprise, Celtic Renewables, upon their being awarded funding to help build the world’s first plant dedicated to producing sustainable biofuel from whisky industry residues.
This dynamic new production centre is to be built in Grangemouth, part of Mr. MacDonald's constituency of Falkirk East.
Entitled, "Celtic Renewables to Build World’s First Whisky Residue Biofuel Plant", Holyrood motion number S4M-14222 reads:
"That the Parliament congratulates Celtic Renewables on winning an £11 million grant from the Department for Transport to help build the world’s first plant dedicated to the production of an advanced biofuel from the residues of the whisky industry; understands that the firm announced in March 2015 that it had achieved a world first in producing a viable biofuel, bio-butanol, from waste products generated from Scotland's £4 billion-a-year malt whisky industry; further understands that bio-butanol can be used as a direct replacement for petrol, or as a blend, without the need for engine modification; believes that the process, which uses bacterial fermentation to produce advanced biofuels from carbohydrates such as starch and glucose, was originally devised in the UK at the start of the last century to produce acetone for explosives in the First World War but was phased-out in the 1960s due to competition from the petrochemical industry; understands that the firm will build its first demonstration facility in Grangemouth, which will be operational by December 2018, and wishes the firm every success with what it considers this exciting new venture."
A number of fellow parliamentarians have rallied round to back Angus's motion. So far, supporters include Adam Ingram, John Mason, Kenneth Gibson, Graeme Dey, Richard Lyle, Mike MacKenzie, Stuart McMillan, Michael Russell, Jamie McGrigor, David Torrance, Nigel Don and Aberdeen Central MSP, Kevin Stewart.
With its £11 million award, Celtic Renewables is the biggest winner in a biofuel production competition run by the Department for Transport. The company is one of three advanced biofuel producers to share in a £25million funding pot. The winners were announced by Andrew Jones, the UK Transport Minister at the headquarters of Celtic Renewables’ in Edinburgh's Napier University.
A spin-off company from the Biofuel Research Centre at Napier University, Celtic Renewables has spent the last 18 months developing its process as part of a £1million programme funded by the Department for Energy and Climate Change under its Energy Entrepreneurs Fund. When completed in December 2018, the Grangemouth-based plant should be able to annually produce at least one million litres of biofuel capable of powering cars.
Commenting, Angus MacDonald MSP said, "I warmly welcome these plans for a whisky-based biofuel plant in Grangemouth and wish Celtic Renewables every success in their cutting edge endeavours."
"It is terrific news both environmentally and economically speaking: a win-win situation, not only for my constituency of Falkirk East, but also for the nation as a whole. This ecological enterprise fits perfectly with the Scottish Government's clean, green policy of reducing greenhouse gas emissions and decarbonising transport."
"To coin a phrase, it'll be great to see 'whisky fuel galore' in Grangemouth!”