Accolade Wines installs wind turbine in UK business first

Accolade Wines, the UK’s No 1 wine company, has achieved a UK first with the installation of a 2.5MW wind turbine to provide power at its Avonmouth-based distribution centre, Accolade Park.

The 130m high wind turbine will transform kinetic energy into electrical energy, saving 2,540 tonnes in CO2 equivalent emissions every year and meeting over fifty per cent of Accolade’s on-site electricity consumption.

Working in partnership with energy specialists CleanEarth, Accolade Wines is the only UK business to achieve this under a tenant, not landlord agreement. On-site wind generation has historically been implemented by those that own their own property and Accolade Wines required the approval of both the local planning authorities and the site owners. Getting a wind turbine up on mainland England is a feat in itself but to change the standard is truly exceptional and this landmark case is paving the way for other businesses to source renewable energy.

Despite the restrictive regulations that govern onshore wind development in England, Bristol’s planning authority quickly recognised the contribution that the turbine would make to the city’s ambitious carbon reduction targets (they recently committed to achieving carbon neutrality by 2030). With strong support from the local community, there were also no major barriers to granting planning consent.

Richard Lloyd, General Manager, European Operations and Supply Chain at Accolade Wines, comments: “We’re committed to identifying and delivering sustainable operations at our 80,000 sqm site. The need to source renewable electricity is very evident and having our own wind turbine is a significant part of the solution. We were all determined to make it happen.”

Lloyd continues: “The wind turbine is a significant step in our journey to create a sustainable business and builds on significant emissions reductions already achieved at Accolade Park, resulting in us being recognised as The Sustainable Manufacturer of the Year 2018.”

Other Accolade Park initiatives include implementing lighting improvements within their certified energy management system. It has also just completed its first full year of zero waste to landfill and its transport related CO2 emissions associated with products sold in the UK has been reduced by more than a third.

Ade McKeon, Regional Managing Director, UK and Ireland, says: “As the largest wine warehouse and distribution facility in Europe, our objective is to lead the way in sustainable wine production. Many customers are recognising the need to reduce carbon emissions across the supply chain by sourcing from sustainable businesses and we are proud to be on this journey with them.”