Distillers Beat Government Targets On Energy Efficiency

31 Oct 2011

The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DEEC) latest results reveal that the 71 sites participating in the Spirits Energy Efficiency Company's (SEEC) scheme improved their energy efficiency by 25% since 1999, more than meeting the Government's target for the sector. Sixty-six of the sites are Scotch Whisky distilleries.

Meeting the energy efficiency target allows companies to benefit from a 65% reduction in the Climate Change Levy (CCL). This will lead to a saving of about £2.6 million a year for the UK spirits sector.

Julie Hesketh-Laird, the Scotch Whisky Association's Operational and Technical Affairs Director, said:

"This outstanding result has been achieved by investments in energy saving technologies across the board, including the construction of new distilleries and investments in efficiency measures at existing sites.

"We welcome the Government's commitment to extend the CCA scheme for another ten years from April 2013. We believe there is scope to improve the scheme to deliver further energy savings. In our sector we have long-called for our bottling operations to be eligible for inclusion in this effective climate change scheme. It's odd, illogical and inequitable that the bottling of other drinks can qualify for a CCA, but not the bottling of spirits at large stand-alone sites. This must be addressed.

"The industry is committed to energy saving and this forms a key part of its ambitious Environmental Strategy which has a number of targets, for example deriving 80% of the Scotch Whisky industry's energy from non-fossil fuels by 2050."

Notes to editors

The DECC figures, which have just been announced cover the fifth target period - 1 October 2009 to 30 September 2010 - of the Government's Climate Change Agreements (CCA). The results are at:

DECC's 8-week consultation on simplifying the CCA scheme closed on 28 October.

The CCA scheme is open to energy-intensive processes on a site-by-site basis. While distillation qualifies, the industry's stand-alone bottling operations, which are integral to Scotch Whisky production, are not deemed to be intensive enough to be eligible. Click here for more information on the Scotch Whisky industry's Environmental Strategy:

For further information, please contact Rosemary Gallagher, Communications Manager, Scotch Whisky Association on 0131 222 9230/0743 260 5385/rgallagher@swa.org.uk