Lancashire’s Dewlay Cheese is just a couple of weeks away from running its entire 18-acre site on power generated by a huge wind turbine – one of the largest onshore turbines in Great Britain.

Installed earlier this month, the 126-metre structure is nearing the end of its 40-day test period before being fully commissioned in October, when it set to reduce the company’s annual carbon emissions by almost 3,000 tonnes.

“We have been working on this project for quite some time so it is really exciting to see it finally come to fruition,” said Dewlay’s operations director, Nick Kenyon.

“When the turbine is fully operational it will meet all of our energy needs for the dairy. It will not only be cleaner and greener but will also allow us to stabilise energy supply, which is vital in protecting our business for the future.”

Although plans for the turbine were originally rejected, Delway and their partners in the project – Wind Direct, who built, installed and financed the scheme – successfully appealed local authorities in 2009 and construction went ahead.

The turbine will be seen by many as a poignant symbol of an organisation which already has proven environmental values. The company claim to only source milk from local suppliers and use only recyclable film on their cheese.

Nick continued: “The dairy industry as a whole accounts for a high proportion of the UK’s carbon emissions, so we are confident that our wind turbine will lead the way for the rest of the industry.”

Dewlay’s initiative has already been applauded by Dairy UK – the industry mouthpiece – as a welcomed example of the industry’s continuous efforts to meet ambitious green targets by 2015.

Frances Karki, of Wind Direct, added: “This project emphasises Dewlay’s commitment to protecting the environment. It is a clear symbol of their green credentials and further strengthens the company’s competitive standing in the dairy industry.”

As part of its commitment to the local area, Dewlay claim the company will also be launching a number of initiatives to support other environmental projects in the region, as well as acting as an educational resource for local schools and groups in the Northwest.

Sam Plester

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