Kenya Breweries Limited to cut carbon emissions with launch of new biomass steam plant

KENYA – Kenya Breweries Limited (KBL), a step-down subsidiary of multinational alcoholic beverage Diageo, through East African Breweries Limited (EABL), has commissioned a biomass steam plant.

The biofuels facility, located at its Tusker brewing plant is expected to reduce its direct carbon emissions by 95% (about 42,000 tonnes of carbon a year).

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“Among other sustainability efforts, we have recently invested in a new Ksh5 billion (US$42.9M) biomass plant, one of the biggest in the region and its completion soon will help us achieve net-zero status reducing our carbon emissions by 48,000 tonnes annually,” said EABL Managing Director Jane Karuku

Ivan Menezes, Chief Executive, Diageo plc, joined the KBL team lead by John Musunga, Managing Director at Kenya Breweries Limited, to inaugurated the project.

“Converting our energy source from heavy fuel oils to sustainability sourced biomass reaffirms our commitment to substantially increase our share of renewable energy use and do our part in reversing the adverse effects of climate change,” stated Musunga.

The biomass project is part of KBL’s parent company Ksh 22 billion (US$199m) investment plan aimed to facilitate its transition to use of green energy by 2030.

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The manufacturer and distributor of Tusker, Chrome, Jonnie walker brands mulls to entirely shift from use of electricity from the national grid, Kenya Power and generate its own power from solar.

EABL targets to generate at least 9.3 megawatts at its Ruaraka plant and 2.4-megawatt from solar power in Kisumu.

Also, it seeks to set up a power generation plant with an estimated capacity of 2.2 megawatts (MW) at its subsidiary, East Africa Maltings Limited, supplier of quality brewing raw materials in the form of malt, barley and sorghum to the brewing units of the EABL group.

Sustainability targets by 2030

The drive to go green is in line with Diageo’s global sustainability ambition of attaining Net zero direct carbon emissions, 50% reduction in supply chain carbon emissions and switching to 100% renewable energy to power its operations by 2030.

This is part of the British drinks maker’s Society 2030 Strategy, a10-year comprehensive action plan aimed to help the company create a more inclusive and sustainable world. 

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It includes targets towards promoting a positive role for alcohol, championing inclusion and diversity, preserving the natural resources and making a positive contribution to the communities where they operate.

In quest to promote positive drinking, EABL has spread positive messaging, knowledge and awareness to over 13 million people in the region so far.

On championing Inclusion & Diversity, over 500 youth have been trained on business and hospitality skills over the past year and equipped with skills to improve their employability and ability to start their own entrepreneurial journey. Additionally, 0ver 5,000 bartenders trained in the Diageo Bar Academy.

Towards pioneering Grain to Glass Sustainability, between 2020 –2021,198,000m3 of water used on EABL sites was replenished and reused. B

Between 2016 to date, a total of 1,006,138 m3 of water has been replenished, this represents 30.6% of the company’s target to replenish 3,282,463 m3 by 2026.

Tackling global climate change is also a key deliverable for EABL and they have ensured that their sites across Kenya, Uganda and Tanzania utilise an average of 82% renewable energy.

EABL also provides 60,000 farmers across Kenya, Tanzania and Uganda with agricultural skills and resources to support sustainable farming practices.

On occupational health and safety, the company has witnessed a 36% reduction in total safety incidents and 100% pass in safety audits.

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