Scotch Whisky Used to Power Delivery Trucks in Scotland

Over the years, cars have been fueled by all sorts of resources. We’ve driven with steam engines, gasoline combustible ones, and even something we never thought we’d see, which is an electric school bus. There’s also been coal technology and hydrogen-fueled ones, which all have their benefits toward fuel economy

According to Autoblog, there’s another alternative out there. One you probably never would have thought of. This time it’s alcohol, but we’re not talking about ethanol mixed into gas. We’re talking about whisky, or instead, it’s waste products. 

What is Glenfiddich scotch whisky?

Glenfiddich 12-year-old whisky at the Rooster Grill Bar in Kiev, Ukraine
Glenfiddich whisky | Igor Golovniov/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Glenfiddich is an alcohol company selling bourbon, scotch, and whisky products that have been adequately prepared and aged to perfection. The company was founded in 1886 when William Grant and his children began to build a distillery using their own hands. It only took approximately one year, and the building was ready for business. 

The distillery remains family-owned today and will likely stay that way for a long time to come. Over the years, improvements were made, and Glenfiddich only got stronger, despite some unfortunate incidents, like the prohibition of the 1920s and a roof collapse in 2010 from heavy snow, according to the Glenfiddich website. 

During the distilling process of scotch whisky, waste products are separated and set aside for use in cattle feed. However, that’s no longer the case. It turns out the product leftover from production helps the environment. 

Autoblog reports that the biogas formed from the waste cuts CO2 emissions by 95 percent. It also reduces other particulates by 99 percent, which you want to see in a green vehicle. Because of that, the company decided to convert its delivery trucks to run on biogas byproduct from the whisky distillation process instead of the liquefied natural gas it was previously using.

Did you know that there’s also a scotch whisky-fueled car?

Currently, Glenfiddich has three delivery trucks already running on the biogas formulation. Each one is fitted with a converted system to handle the waste product. However, another company, Celtic Renewables Ltd, came up with a way to fuel a car with biofuel, or, as it’s also called, biobutanol. 

According to the BBC, the world’s first car fueled by biofuel was able to run on the alternative gas without any engine modifications. To get biobutanol, Celtic Renewables took the waste residue from the whisky distilling process and came up with its fermentation system, which creates the biofuel. 

In 2017, the car took its first journey with the specially made whisky waste biobutanol with one of BBC’s reporters at the time. She traveled a short distance but was impressed that the car she drove was as smooth as if it was fueled with regular petrol. She didn’t even notice any difference between the standard gas and the alternative biofuel. 

What are the plans for the future of vehicles and alcohol?

Celtic Renewables Ltd received a grant to construct a commercial plant near Falkirk to advance the possibilities for the whisky-based fuel to power cars and trucks alike. They also plan to target other countries, like Japan, India, and the United States, because those are whisky-producing places. 

Glenfiddich has plans to increase the number of delivery trucks within its company that run on its biofuel. It also wants to expand the technology to hit trucks from other companies, so the environment is more protected from the emissions caused by regular gasoline.

So far, biofuel hasn’t exactly taken off, but it certainly could in the future. Just don’t think you can take your bottle of whisky and dump it into an empty tank and expect it to take you to the nearest station. The fuel needed to work would have to be specially formulated from the byproducts of the distilling process. 

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