Alcohol giant Diageo has operated three sites in Scotland without emissions permits. This breach of climate regulations resulted now in a serious fine.
The Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA) operates the Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS) in Scotland to cut carbon emissions and pollution in the country. The ETS is a crucial step towards achieving Scotland’s goal of a 75% reduction in CO2 emissions by 2030 and net zero emissions by 2045.
The basic mechanism of the ETS is to put a cost on carbon and other forms of emissions. The ETS works under a ‘cap and trade’ principle. Total emissions in a region, country, or industry are capped. Organizations can only emit a certain amount of pollutants in any given year unless they buy additional permits from other companies. The cap is reduced over time, making a contribution to achieving Net-Zero.
Operators in the ETS scheme are required to hold a permit and accurately monitor and report all qualifying emissions on an annual basis.
The SEPA found that Diageo has been operating three sites in Scotland without ETS permits for six years.
The sites are reportedly the Speyside distillery Roseisle Maltings, Burghead Maltings in Elgin, and Glen Ord distillery in the Scottish highlands.
SEPA initially fined Diageo £1.4 million for the company’s violation of the ETS. But this was reduced to £1.2 million (US$1.5 million) after Diageo’s plea appeal was successful.
Diageo is a British multinational alcohol company, with its headquarters in London, UK. The alcohol giant was the world’s largest liquor maker until being overtaken by China’s Kweichow Moutai in 2017.
Jamie McGeachy, Carbon Reduction, Energy and Industry Manager for SEPA described the penalty as “non-negotiable”, and stated that “participation and full compliance is not optional”.
These civil penalties demonstrate SEPA’s commitment to enforcement of obligations under ETS,” said Jamie McGeachy, Carbon Reduction, Energy and Industry Manager for SEPA as per The Drinks Business.
Our message is clear: if you do not follow the regulations designed to protect and improve our environment, there are consequences.”Jamie McGeachy, Carbon Reduction, Energy and Industry Manager, Scottish Environment Protection Agency (SEPA)
The Drinks Business: “Diageo fined £1.2 million after ‘administrative error’ led to climate regulation breach“
Just Drinks: “Diageo fined US$1.5m for lack of pollution permits“