Bruichladdich Distillery Announces £2.65M Funding to Partner with Protium and Jericho Energy Ventures on Major Step Towards Decarbonisation Distillation
Distillery to receive funding for HyLaddie project that will pioneer sustainable green hydrogen energy technology
Bruichladdich Distillery has today announced a significant step forward in its bold ambition to decarbonise their distillation process by 2025, with major funding secured to pioneer industry-first technology. Innovative hydrogen combustion technology will be installed to heat the stills used to create Bruichladdich’s renowned Scotch, as well as their artisanal gin, The Botanist, thus removing a major contributor to the brand’s overall carbon emissions. The pilot project will demonstrate the ability to switch from fuel oil to sustainable hydrogen energy technology, and is a vital step towards decarbonising in the long term. The technology operates with zero greenhouse gas emissions, and is an example for distilleries across the globe to follow suit in reducing their carbon footprint.
The funding of £2.65m comes from the Green Distilleries Competition, funded through the Department for Business, Energy & Industrial Strategy (BEIS) Net Zero Innovation Portfolio, and follows an initial feasibility study completed in the spring of 2021. It will allow Bruichladdich, and its energy partner Protium, to install an on‐site Dynamic Combustion Chamber™ (DCC™), a zero-emission hydrogen boiler patented by Jericho Energy Ventures’ (TSX-V: JEV; OTC: JROOF) wholly owned subsidiary Hydrogen Technologies LLC and licenced to Protium’s subsidiary, Deuterium, as a mechanism to meet heating requirements.
Dubbed HyLaddie, the project must navigate the installation of state-of-the-art technology within a fully operational Victorian distillery on the island of Islay, just off Scotland’s west coast. As a certified B Corp, Bruichladdich continually invests in its local community and hopes the project will demonstrate the capability of hydrogen to encourage commercialisation across Islay. A sustainable solution for the island’s remote location and infrastructure challenges, the heating technology has the potential to be integrated beyond distilling and into residential spaces, local government buildings, schools, hospitals, and beyond. In keeping with Bruichladdich’s industry-leading progressive practices, HyLaddie will also lay significant groundwork for similar-sized spirits producers across the world to up their own decarbonisation initiatives.
Douglas Taylor, CEO of Bruichladdich Distillery, comments, “Sustainability is in our DNA and is at the heart of everything we do. The funding for HyLaddie is a huge step towards our ambition of full decarbonisation and we can’t wait to bring the project to life with our partners at Protium. Many distilleries across Scotland are making serious steps forward in decarbonising their energy requirements, and we fully believe that hydrogen has a future in the Scotch industry. Our hope is that our proof of concept can extend to commercialisation across the island, and beyond, helping us hit the Scotch Whisky Association’s targets of net zero by 2040.”
This project marks the inaugural deployment of DCC™ in the UK following a feasibility assessment. The revolutionary technology is the only zero-emission, closed loop boiler that generates high temperature steam, using only oxygen and hydrogen that is reacted in a vacuum. The DCC™ does not require a smokestack or any other energy dissipating exhaust, eliminating any emissions of CO2, NOx and SOx. The only by-product of the reaction is water that can be recycled.
“We’re thrilled to work together with Bruichladdich, one of our first Scottish clients, to decarbonise their distilling process and introduce hydrogen energy technology to the Isle of Islay,” remarked Chris Jackson, CEO of Protium. “Not only can Bruichladdich and the Botanist implement this technology to act as a beacon for sustainability in the spirits industry, but their deep community ties across Islay present an exciting opportunity to mobilise an entire island as an example for decarbonisation across the globe.”
As the first B Corp certified distillery in the UK, Bruichladdich has a long history of progressive sustainability practices that go beyond energy and into agriculture, community, packaging and waste. The distillery prioritises a higher purpose that benefits society and the environment, and is an industry leader in demonstrating business as a force for good.
In line with HyLaddie and the sustainability initiatives from Bruichladdich, the news comes on the heels of an announcement from its parent company, the Rémy Cointreau Group, who recently shared strategic insight on their commitment to combat climate change and to achieve worldwide carbon neutrality in 2021/2022 through the launch of project #APlanetOfException.