Thursday, October 29, 2015Portraits

Claude Grison: from cleaning up mining sites to producing green cosmetics


Claude Grison is a ‘bio-inspired’ chemist. She has been working on a new concept to recycle and recover mining waste since 2008: ecological catalysis is an innovative form of green chemistry which ensures sustainability and offers an alternative to the substances banned by REACH. And it is now drawing the attention of the cosmetics and perfume industry. We met Claude Grison at the Cosmetic 360 show.

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Winner of the CNRS Medal of Innovation in 2014 and rewarded by the French National Research Agency (ANR) at the 8 th edition of Ecotechnology Days, Claude Grison is a professor and the Director of the Laboratory of Bio-inspired Chemistry and Ecological Innovations of the University of Montpellier/CNRS/Stratoz, in the south of France. She is also the manager of innovative projects combining chemistry and ecology for the first time. These two traditionally opposed fields are actually complementary, as chemistry might become the driving force of ecological restoration.

Together with her team, she developed the first plant-derived catalysts. Designed for polluted soil remediation, they also help produce new molecules with a high added value. 25 patents were registered by the CNRS, and several degraded sites were approached: in France (Saint-Laurent le Minier, in southern France), in New Caledonia, but also in China, Greece, or Sardinia. The chemical industry is interested and several cosmetics applications are already under development.

Interview by CosmeticOBS at the Cosmetic 360 show, where Claude Grison came to present her project to the cosmetics industry players

First step: rehabilitation of contaminated ecosystems

As a university professor, I supported students preparing for a competitive examination to enter major engineering …

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