Skip to main content

Bent Paddle wants to help save the environment with this new beer

Climate change is already affecting your beer.

If you like beer, you should probably listen to all those reports and studies about how a warming planet is ruining the Earth.

The main ingredients in beer – grain, hops, yeast, and of course water – are already in high demand because of the growing craft beer industry around the country. Throw strange weather patterns in the mix, and it can really impact what goes into your beer and how it tastes.

It's with that in mind that Bent Paddle Brewing has a beer to help stop climate change.

The Duluth-based brewery released Climate Generation Black IPA this week. Five percent of proceeds from the limited-release beer go to Climate Generation – a group that's dedicated to engaging people and their communities to find solutions to climate change, a news release says.

The 750ml bottles are available at liquor stores across the state, as well as at the brewery, local bars and restaurants.

"We hope that this beer brings people together to discuss what we can do now to address the threat of climate change over a pint of Climate Generation Black IPA," Laura Mullen, co-founder of Bent Paddle, said in the release.

This is the latest effort in Bent Paddle's sustainability mission. The brewery has pushed for clean water initiatives, and works to reduce its carbon footprint. It also uses local equipment and ingredients plus energy-efficient lighting, and donates its spent grain to local cattle farmers.

Here's a look at how changing weather patterns are already affecting your beer:


Beer is made up of at least 90 percent water, so naturally water is a major concern for breweries. Without access to a large supply of clean water, your beer could taste a bit funky.

For example, the years-long drought in California is forcing breweries to rely on groundwater because supplies from the Russian River are restricted, NOAA explained earlier this year.

But groundwater often has a lot of minerals in it, so it's been changing the taste of the beer – and not in a good way, NPR News reported in 2014. Some California brewers have moved their operations where more fresh water is available, or have turned to different brewing methods to save water.

Plus, without water, farmers can't grow the other ingredients in beer. (More on that next.)


We got a preview last year of what climate change can do to a hop harvest.

The majority of American hops (about 73 percent) are produced in Washington, but last year the warmer- and drier-than-average winter reduced snow pack in the region, which led to a drought, NOAA said.

This limited the availability of aroma hops (they've become the more popular type of hop with many breweries), while bitter hops thrived. And because warmer winters are likely the new normal for the Pacific Northwest, the future of certain hop varieties could be in jeopardy.

If a brewery has to resort to using different hops, it could change the flavor of your beer.

And if there are fewer hops available, breweries will be paying more for them – and it could mean you'll be paying more, Eater explained. The price for hops has gone up 250 percent in the past decade due to rising demand and lower yields, CERES said.

What else breweries are doing

Scarcer clean water resources and the threat to American-grown hops are just some of the reasons breweries across the country (including Bent Paddle) have signed the CERES Brewery Climate Declaration. It's a pledge that they will find sustainable ways to make beer in hopes of preventing further damage to the environment – and save the future of beer.

The video below explains how breweries are making changes, including reducing their carbon footprint, using renewable energy, cutting transportation emissions, and becoming LEED certified, to name a few things, a news release said.

Next Up


Jason and Carly Zucker sell Edina home for $4.18M

The property was bought in 2020, months after Jason Zucker was traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins.

Legacy Lot Random (1 of 6)

Gallery: Luxury living is par for the course here

Cragun’s Golf Resort Communities Offer Stunning Views Along with Resort-Style Living

Screen Shot 2022-08-18 at 8.10.56 AM

Restrictions in place as Emerald Ash Borer found in Sherburne County

The county is now the 36th in the state with a confirmed presence of the invasive insect.

Fire, firefighters

Home that was scene of June standoff engulfed in fire

Authorities arrived to find the home fully ablaze.

Rosland park bridge

Crosstown Hwy. 62 reopens as footage emerges of truck hitting bridge

The westbound lanes were closed in Edina from Tuesday afternoon to Wednesday night.

Screen Shot 2022-08-17 at 8.31.42 PM

Flash flooding as torrential rain hammers Cambridge

Flooding and damage from a non-severe storm Wednesday evening.

Screen Shot 2022-08-17 at 4.02.18 PM

Minneapolis nonprofit celebrates anonymous donor's $1.5M gift

Appetite For Change is building sustainable, local food systems in North Minneapolis.

police lights

On the lam since 2007, suspect in MN murder case arrested in Florida

The suspect is one of three men connected to a fatal drive-by shooting on St. Paul's West Side.

Deer on road

Motorcyclist in collision with deer dies from injuries

The 55-year-old from Princeton died at a hospital a day after the crash.


Burnsville approves measure that will make its landfill much taller

The expansion will increase the landfill's allowable height by an additional 268 feet.

michael carbo

Northern MN man found guilty in 1980s cold case murder

Nancy Daugherty was found dead in the afternoon hours of July 16, 1986.


This new beer will help the bees

And it's brewing legend Todd Haug's final Minnesota beer.

Modist's new beer series being brewed with its biggest fans

This first in the series is the second booziest beer Modist has ever made.

Surly is releasing a new beer this weekend in honor of the Minnesota United

There's a pregame party Sunday – and you could get a free beer.

Indeed's new series of unique beers is all about collaboration

The first beer in the series will be released Friday.

A bar with 100 beers on tap is opening in Minneapolis

None of that cheap beer pong beer – they're focusing all on craft.

New year, new beer! Here's what 2017 will taste like

Expect more barrel-aged and sour beers – after the past year was dominated by IPAs.