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So where does this energy come from? Whisky!

Posted on 02 February 2016.

A consortium of Scotch whisky distilleries in the Speyside area is using whisky residues to produce energy.

We generate eight megawatts of electricity an hour– enough to supply 20,000 people in 8,000 homes.

Located in the UK, in the Scottish Highlands, Speyside is home to a number of whisky distilleries - Glen Grant, Glenfiddich, Tormore... In fact, half of Scottish whisky production comes from this region!

There are four working distilleries in Rothes: Speyburn, Glen Grant, Glenrothes and Glen Spey. Together they have formed a consortium that has given birth to a recycling plant: the Combination of Rothes Distillers – otherwise known as CoRDe.

This consortium has partnered with the distillery John Dewar & Sons, a subsidiary of Bacardi, one of the largest spirits companies in the world.

What’s the idea of this alliance? To recycle whisky by-products and so produce sustainable electricity.

"A large number of whisky producers came together to find ways of dealing with the by-products from our distilleries," explains Iain Lochhead, Operations Director for John Dewar & Sons (John Dewar & Sons Helps Power Thousands Of Scottish Homes).

Frank Burns, who heads the CoRDe plant, gives an idea of the scale of what has been accomplished: "We generate eight megawatts of electricity every hour. We use a little more than a fifth on site and export the rest - enough for 20,000 people in 8,000 homes.". All the local communities – within a radius of 50 kilometers - and are supplied by the plant.

But that’s not all! The CoRDe plant is able to process other waste from whisky production – like some whisky distillation residues - into animal feed for farms in the region. Even the ash from the boiler process goes back to the land as fertilizer.

For this region of Scotland it’s vital. By giving back to nature some of what is taken from it to produce whisky and by not exhausting it, plants like CoRDe help protect a very beautiful environment.