Global beauty brand Coty, who own Max Factor, have announced that it has started production of the ‘world’s first’ perfume made using carbon captured ethanol. Global Cosmetics News reports that the fragrance is being manufactured in Spain, and the finished product could be commercially available within months.
Most perfumes currently rely on ethanol as a major ingredient. Ethanol production is energy intensive, and uses corn, which is a natural absorbent of carbon dioxide. When it is burned, it releases CO2 and other greenhouse gases into the atmosphere.
However, technology has now been developed which captures the carbon dioxide during the fermentation process, and converts it into a liquid. This can then be piped to a deep underground location, and stored on a permanent basis.
Dr. Shimei Fan, Chief Scientific Officer at Coty, said: “Coty’s accelerated release of fragrances made using carbon-captured ethanol represents the ground-breaking sustainability progress that I joined Coty to lead.”
He added: “This exciting step forward in Coty’s sustainability journey demonstrates our ability to meet and exceed the ambitious clean and green roadmaps we have set for the future. We are now on course to integrate carbon-captured ethanol into a majority of our fragrance portfolio ahead of our ambitious 2023 goal .”
Harvest Public Media reports that there are currently 30 ethanol plants in Iowa, Nebraska, Minnesota, North Dakota and South Dakota in the US which are part of a scheme to produce carbon captured ethanol. The project is run by Summit Carbon Solutions, who predict that up to 12 million tons of CO2 could be captured each year.
While there will always be some non-green energy involved in the production and distribution of ethanol, the ability to extract and store the CO2 is estimated to cut its carbon footprint by half. This is significant, as ethanol is not only important for the cosmetics industry, but it is widely used as a fuel and food additive.
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