Lonza to invest CHF 12 million in CO2 reduction at Visp facility

10 Feb 2020

Lonza will invest CHF 12 million (USD 12.3 million) in a catalytic convertor at its Visp manufacturing site to reduce annual emissions of carbon dioxide by 600,000 tons or 98%, the Switzerland-based contract development and manufacturing organisation (CDMO) said Monday.

Nitrous oxide emissions were first detected at Visp when a DeNOx catalyser was changed and Lonza started working on a technical solution immediately after consulting with the Swiss Federal Office for the Environment (FOEN).

Lonza to invest CHF 12 million in CO2 reduction at Visp facility

Lonza received a building permit from the canton and municipality last month and now expects to complete installation of the catalyzer within around 18 months.

Lonza said that while nitrous oxide does not present a health risk, it has significant global warming potential, accounting for 6% of all greenhouse gases, which has attracted increasing attention since the revision of the CO2 Act in 2012.

Nitrous oxide (N2O), which is more commonly known as laughing gas, is a colourless gas and an oxide of nitrogen used in medicine as an anaesthetic. It does not present a risk to health for humans or animals, meaning there are no legal or regulatory limits regarding handling the substance.

Lonza said it does not require nitrous oxide to manufacture any products and does not deliberately produce it; the substance is a waste-product in the manufacture of the vitamin niacin.