The 130-year old Bruichladdich whisky distillery on the remote island of Islay already uses Anaerobic Digestion (AD) to generate energy from its waste.

Now the owner of the plant, Mark Reynier, has this week replaced his polluting diesel vehicle with a Nissan Leaf electric car, which he will also power from the AD plant.

Using pot ale, the watery waste product left over from distilling, the AD plant generates enough power to produce electricity for the distillery.

As well as the biogas draff, the drinks industry term for spent barley, is taken by local island farmers to feed cows, whose in turn spread slurry on fields growing the distillery’s barley.

To celebrate the role played by the Leaf, Nissan and the distillery have produced a limited run of bespoke, Leaf-labelled organic whisky.

Mr Reynier said: “It was frustrating to be making such strides in being self-sufficient, when my car still needed the most expensive diesel in the UK from the mainland. The arrival of the LEAF has allowed me to be as truly self-sufficient as possible.

“We are not eco-warriors but we wanted to see how we could do our part, with the addition of the Leaf, we’re happy in the knowledge we’re doing everything we can, whether growing barley here on the island, organically and biodynamically, to be environmentally sympathetic both in our work and home life.”

Luke Walsh

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