Here are the most Earth-friendly beers

Non-profit Ceres had 21 breweries pledge to adhere to sustainable practices

Published March 10, 2015 8:59PM (EDT)

    (<a href='url to photographer'>S_Photo</a> via <a href=''>Shutterstock</a>)
(S_Photo via Shutterstock)

Are you a beer drinker who wants to do everything you can to make sure there is a planet on which you can drink beer? Me too. It turns out the ingredients beer uses are threatened by climate change. Barley is threatened by heavy rain and drought, while hops have been struggling due to global warming.

Fortunately, the non-profit Ceres analyzed the manufacturing and distribution practices of a number of top breweries and put together a list of the companies most concerned about enforcing sustainable practices, which they've demonstrated by signing Ceres' Brewery Climate Declaration.

In signing the declaration, breweries pledge to measure their greenhouse gas emissions, use renewable energy, recycle steam, capture methane, cut transportation and become LEED Certified if they aren't already.

Think Progress' Emily Atkin reports:

The list includes Guinness, whose parent company Diageo brews St. Patrick’s Day favorites like Kilkenny, Harp Lager, Smithwick’s. According to Ceres, Diageo’s St. James’s Gate brewery in Dublin uses a combined heat power system to reduce energy usage and lower CO2 emissions; offsets all its carbon emissions from business air travel; and reuses or composts 100 percent of its solid waste.

It also includes Red Hook, which is funding a project to capture and reuse the biogas it creates while brewing; Smuttynose, which has a LEED Gold-certified brewery; and Kona Brewing Company, which gets 50 percent of its electricity from a roof-mounted solar panel system. Ceres’ full list of breweries can be found here.

"Beer is near and dear to people's hearts. It's part of people's everyday activity," said Jenn Vervier, director of strategy and sustainability at New Belgium Brewery, which also signed on. "I think when people see their favorite brands speaking out, it gives them courage to speak out. I think it makes it relatable for people."

By Joanna Rothkopf

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Alcohol Beer Breweries Drink Environment Food Organic Food Sustainable Food Sustainable Practices