In Scotland Advanced Biofuels from the By-products of the Malt Whisky Industry

Lagavulin Distillery in Port Ellen (Scotland)
Lagavulin Distillery in Port Ellen (Scotland)

A Scottish energy start-up commercialises a process for producing a superior next generation biofuel (and other high value sustainable products) from the by-products of biological industries. The company – Celtic Renewables is its name – is initially focused on the £4 billion Scottish Malt Whisky industry as a ripe resource for developing bio-butanol – a next generation biofuel.  Biobutanol has 25% more energy per unit volume than bioethanol; it has a lower vapour pressure and higher flashpoint (making it easier to store and safer to handle); it can be blended without requiring modifications in blending facilities, storage tanks or retail station pumps; in sharp contrast to ethanol, it can run in unmodified engines at any blend with petrol and may also be blended with diesel and biodiesel; it is less corrosive than bioethanol and can be transported using existing infrastructures.  Biobutanol was legally recognised as a biofuel by incorporation in the 2009 amendment to the Road Transport Fuel Obligation (the UK implementation of the EU Renewable Energy Directive, which dictates that 5% of the UK’s transport fuel comes from a renewable source by 2013, and 10% by 2020).

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