Ireland’s first zero-emissions distillery opens its doors in Co. Galway
Ahascragh Distillery, Ireland’s first energised zero-emissions distillery has officially opened the doors of its state of the art distillery. Built within a restored nineteenth century mill, guests will tour this state-of-the-art distillery, exploring whiskey and gin production from grain to glass and the history of an old mill.
A key differentiator for Ahascragh Distillery is the company’s goal to be zero-emissions. The eco-distillery is powered by renewable energy – wind, solar and coming soon, hydro, using very high temperature heat pump technology and an energy efficient storage system. As no fossil fuels or gas will be used to drive the production process, there will be no carbon emissions from the energy supply side of the distillery. This is a first for the industry. As a result, the spirit to flow from Ahascragh Distillery can be classified as zero emissions, minimising the impact to the local environment.
With an overall investment of €10 million, this project has created over 20 direct jobs in the rural village of Ahascragh and surrounding areas. The company will also support a further 60-70 indirect jobs through local supply chains.
Ahascragh Distillery was granted €500,000 capital support by the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland to complete construction of the eco-distillery and visitor experience. The company engaged FDT Consulting Engineers and Project Managers Ltd and decarbonisation specialist Astatine to deliver substantial reductions in the utility demands of the distillery using an energy efficient storage system and optimal heat recovery within the process.
Some key features of the new distillery:
- Unlike other distilleries in Ireland, the heat delivered to the distillery will not require the combustion of any fossil fuels, and will utilise green electricity
- Heat will be provided to the distillery through heat pumps which means that there will be no flue related emissions, or impacts on the local environment
- The heat pump design, heat recovery and thermal storage means that the energy inputs to the distillery are a third than that of traditional technology
- The building itself has been protected with much of the original machinery and wooden beams being restored and reused.
Gareth McAllister, Founder of Ahascragh Distillery said “The opening of Ahascragh Distillery as Ireland’s first energised zero-emissions distillery, marks a step forward for the whiskey industry and a commitment to a greener future. The distillery will attract whiskey and gin enthusiasts but people will also be very interested in our zero-emissions technology. This is new and innovative technology for the industry and really sets Ahascragh Distillery apart.”
Michelle McAllister added “Over the past two years, we have watched the building come back to life. We have restored the stonework, salvaged the mill equipment and protected the buildings charm. It has been a labour of love, not only for Gareth and I, but for our entire team and the community. The visitor experience will celebrate the history and future of the building. We are excited to showcase the distillery, the village and our award-winning whiskeys and gin to the world!”
For more information or to book a tour, visit www.ahascraghdistillery.com