World First: Captured Carbon Upcycled into Beauty Packaging
With 71% of global carbon emissions produced by just 100 companies (Carbon Majors Report, 2017), offsetting and reducing these greenhouse gases is now a key sustainability focus for brands. Tackling this, US biotech start-up LanzaTech and French energy group Total have collaborated with personal care giant L’Oréal on the world’s first sustainable packaging made from carbon output.
Cosmetic plastic bottles can now be made from recycled carbon emissions as a result of the innovative partnership. LanzaTech captures industrial carbon emissions and converts them into ethanol. Total then converts this into ethylene before polymerising it into polyethylene, which has the same technical characteristics (for example, durability and flexibility) as its fossil fuel equivalent. L’Oréal then uses this polyethylene to produce sustainable packaging that has the same quality and properties as regular plastic.
“This partnership is based on a shared goal of creating a cleaner planet for everyone,” said LanzaTech’s chief executive Jennifer Holmgren. “We are grateful to both L’Oréal and Total for their commitment to reducing the carbon intensity of their activities. Together, we can reduce the carbon footprint of packaging by converting carbon emissions into useful products, making single-use carbon a thing of the past.”
As we explore in our Beauty Sustainability Round-Up: September 2021, sharing solutions will generate real change. This world-first collaboration demonstrates the great potential of brand partnerships in developing a sustainable circular economy, and paves the way for cross-industry exploration of the ripe opportunities surrounding the reuse of industrial carbon emissions.
For more on how brands can reduce their carbon emissions, see our Three-Minute Trend: Cracking Down on Carbon. For more carbon innovations, look out for our upcoming cross-directory Carbon Curbing Initiatives report.