Colorado Beer Brewers Model Energy Efficiency
Colorado craft beer brewers are setting the bar when it comes to sustainability efforts, according to a Rocky Mountain Institute blog post. The post cites New Belgium Brewing in Fort Collins and Left Hand Brewing Company in Longmont as particularly good examples of what beer brewers, as well as other energy-intensive industries, can do to reduce their energy consumption.
New Belgium is the first brewery to power 100 percent of its electrical needs from wind power. It has committed to reduce its energy intensity to 10 percent below 2008 levels by 2018 and has invested in equipment to help it meet that goal. Rather than heating the brew kettle to heat water, New Belgium uses a Steinecker Merlin Brew Kettle, which has an internal boiler plate. The kettle cuts the boiling time in half, thus allowing the company to reduce its natural gas consumption. The kettle also reduces the amount of water lost due to evaporation. New Belgium recycles waste heat from the kettle to preheat the incoming product. In 2010, it installed a 200 kW solar PV array and joined the FortZED Smart Meter program, working with the local utility to reduce peak energy demands. To help fund future energy-efficiency projects, the brewery has instituted an internal per kWh tax on any purchased electricity.
Left Hand Brewing Company installed a 4.8 kW solar PV array in 2009, which powers the brewery’s tasting room, offices and retail coolers. Its boiler incorporates a flash steam recovery system that uses captured heat for brewing and cleaning. As a result of this and other energy-efficiency measures, the brewery reduced its per barrel energy consumption by 13 percent from 2012 to 2013.
Photo via Shutterstock.
- Existing Building Technologies Combine for Increased Savings
- 2014 Environmental Leader Product and Project Awards
- NAEM 2015 EHS and Sustainability Software Buyers Guide
- Improve Your Company's Environment and Energy Performance
- Combined Heat and Power
- Unlocking the Value of Energy & Operational Data
- Let's Do The Math for DR
- Smart Companies Utilize Integrated Energy Solutions
- Increase the Value of Demand Response Through Automation
- Best Practices in Electricity Procurement
- Connected Buildings, Connected People: A Look to the Future
- Cut Costs and Improve Facility Operations with Energy Data
- Energy Procurement Strategies for Winter 2014 and 2015
- Energy Efficiency Requires Engineering Efficiency
- Integrated Building Optimization: A Crucial Convergence of Demand-side and Supply-Side Energy Management Strategies