Biofuel firm’s plans for Grangemouth

Celtic Renewables founder Professor Martin Tangey with the first sample of bio-butanol. Picture: Ashley Coombes
Celtic Renewables founder Professor Martin Tangey with the first sample of bio-butanol. Picture: Ashley Coombes

A company renowned for using residues from the whisky industry to produce biofuel capable of powering cars wants to come to Grangemouth.

Edinburgh-based Celtic Renewables Ltd has lodged a proposal of planning application with Falkirk Council to build a plant facility in the town’s Earls Gate Park and plans to hold public consultations concerning its proposals for the site next month.

Celtic Renewables has made no secret of its desire to build a production facility in Grangemouth ever since it made the breakthrough to produce bio-butanol from the by-products of whisky fermentation.

At the time company founder Professor Martin Tangney said: “Showing the world our first sample of biofuel produced from whisky by-products is a proud moment for everyone involved.

“We have successfully taken a defunct technology and adapted it to current market conditions, attracting the investment and partners required to scale-up to industrial production and prove that this works at scale.

“This historic sample could herald a new era in sustainable biofuel and the birth of a UK industry worth £100 million a year.”

The Acetone-Butanol-Ethanol fermentation process was first developed in the UK a century ago, but died out in competition with the petrochemical industry.

Now the bio-butanol it produces is widely recognised as an advanced biofuel and a direct replacement for petrol.