“Celsius Sustainable Distillery Research Centre” to breathe warmth into former Cornish Landfill Site

By Cornwall Geothermal Distillery Company - 11th March 2021

A pioneering research centre for developing green technologies using waste heat and power from the UK’s first geothermal energy plant for heat intensive distillery processes is a step closer with outline plans at a former landfill site submitted to Cornwall Council today.

The team behind proposals for a unique deep geothermal rum maturation and distillery project have designed a separate “Celsius - Sustainable Distillery Research Centre” on the hard edge of the former United Downs landfill site, adjacent to where Geothermal Energy Ltd will be producing zero carbon, renewable power in 2022.

Waste heat will be piped from the geothermal energy plant directly into the Celsius centre – where technology developed by Cornish Geothermal Distillery Company and engineers Buro Happold will boost its temperature using innovative heat pump technology. This will operate a copper still for distilling rum and a small facility to mature rum in casks – creating the template for one of the most sustainable carbon neutral distillery projects in the UK.

This research and development project has already won the largest single award from Round 1 of the UK Government’s Green Distilleries Competition and is well-placed to gain support from Round 2 – with its emphasis on quality green job creation and revolutionising sustainability in the distillery sector and beyond.

CGDC Founder Matt Clifford says, “Our green technologies are key to the success of future projects not just in the distillery sector but with application for enterprises to use waste heat from other industrial processes too.

“This opportunity to harness waste geothermal heat, in particular, creates a truly sustainable source of renewable power which for us is a “holy grail” of technological research.”

The “Celsius – Sustainable Distillery Research Centre” is a separate scheme from CGDC’s pioneering Rum Cask Maturation Facility designed for another Cornwall Council-owned site nearby - the outline plans for which await consideration by Cornwall Planners.

The Celsius Centre is a £4million project which will have no biome or visitor centre and no public access, with 6 full-time distillery-related and research jobs within a simple wooden clad, sedum roofed eco-building.

Nick Boid, Associate at Buro Happold, says, “The technology we’re developing here has the potential to be truly revolutionary for sustainability in the distillery sector.

“Bringing forward the Celsius Sustainable Distillery Research Centre would allow us to prove the potential to utilise waste industrial heat in the heat intensive distillation processes – paving the way for the industry to make vast improvements in energy efficiency.”

Our green technologies are key to the success of future projects not just in the distillery sector but with application for enterprises to use waste heat from other industrial processes too.

- Matt Clifford, CGDC
News on a tablet illustration