Multi-million funding will help Angus distillery move to net zero goal

A distillery near Montrose has moved a step closer to becoming net zero thanks to a multi-million-pound green energy investment.

Arbikie’s hydrogen power plan has been boosted by £3 million of government funding granted to UK renewables company Locogen in partnership with hydrogen technologies specialist Logan Energy.

The funding comes from the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy’s (BEIS) Net Zero Innovation Portfolio through its Green Distilleries Competition.

This will see the two firms work with Arbikie to install an onsite wind turbine and electrolyser that will generate green hydrogen - replacing the oil currently used by the distillery to raise steam for the distillation process.

The firms will work with Arbikie to install an onsite wind turbine and electrolyser that will generate green hydrogen - replacing the oil currently used by the distillery to raise steam for the distillation process. Picture: Andy Loudon

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Andy Lyle, chief executive of Locogen, said: “This is a fantastic result for Arbikie and presents a great opportunity to demonstrate how distilleries, and the wider process industries, can use new technologies to create cleaner, sustainable businesses.”

The project will showcase the technical feasibility of using hydrogen as an alternative fuel in distillation and other process heat applications. It could act as a catalyst for creating green hydrogen opportunities in the wider Angus area.

Bill Ireland, chief executive of Logan Energy, said: “With the demand to switch to net zero technologies greater than ever, this project is a further example of the innovative ways hydrogen can meet the energy-solution challenges, like commercial heating, faced around the world - starting at home with one of Scotland’s most renowned exports.”

Iain Stirling, director at Arbikie Distillery, added: “We are delighted to have won through to Phase 2 with Locogen and Logan Energy. We aim to be one of the world’s most sustainable distilleries so being able to use green hydrogen power will be another significant step in our sustainability journey.”

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The project will comprise a single wind turbine on Arbikie’s farmland, which will export the electricity generated to a green hydrogen hub via a dedicated private wire. The hub will be based at Arbikie Distillery and comprise an electrolyser, compressor and storage.

Green hydrogen will be created by the electrolyser and a direct pipe will take the stored hydrogen from the storage vessel to the existing plant room.

Arbikie is owned by the Stirling brothers whose family have been farming for more than 400 years.

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