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    Diageo announces hydrogen-powered glass furnace to help reach net zero goals

    Diageo and glass manufacturer Encirc today announced a partnership to create the world’s first net zero glass bottles at scale by 2030.

    Encirc plans to build a new furnace at its Elton, Cheshire, plant which will “change the face of glass”. The furnace will:

    • Reduce carbon emissions by 90 per cent, with an energy mix of green electricity and low carbon hydrogen. It is expected that carbon capture technology will capture the remaining carbon emissions by 2030
    • Be powered by zero carbon electricity and hydrogen, from the Vertex (HyNet)plant in Cheshire
    • Be fully operational by 2027
    • Produce up to 200 million Smirnoff, Captain Morgan, Gordon’s and Tanqueray bottles annually by 2030

    Decarbonising glass packaging will be a key part of the UK government’s commitment to reach net zero by 2050 and this is an example of UK leading companies partnering to be innovative in using green energy to manufacture at scale. The hydrogen used to power the new furnace will come from Vertex Hydrogen, a partner of the government-backed HyNet North West cluster – the UK’s leading industrial decarbonisation project.

    Glass Futures, based in St Helens, is also playing a key role in supporting the glass industry’s decarbonisation and is a key partner for Encirc. It will be instrumental in trialling sustainable fuels on furnaces and developing the future furnace technology required to support Encirc and the wider glass industry in its goals.

    Low-carbon alternative energy sources are an essential part of the solution for net zero. Hydrogen has the potential to be a crucial clean energy source for businesses and industries across the UK and global economies.

    “We are really excited to be a part of this world leading announcement which forms part of our commitment to halve our Scope 3 carbon emissions by 2030,” said Ewan Andrew, President, Global Supply & Procurement and Chief Sustainability Office at Diageo. “All renewable energy options are important to us and we’d like to see Government and industry further accelerating the direct supply of green energy as a mainstream option. Ultimately, we look forward to a world where people can enjoy their favourite drinks from zero carbon glass bottles.”

    The use of the zero-carbon furnace will contribute towards Diageo’s commitments in its ESG action plan Society 2030 to reduce carbon emissions across its supply chain by 2030.

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