United Nations
Dell Commits to Scaling Commercial Use of Ocean Bound Plastic
by Dell (Private sector)
Two years ago through our relationship with Adrian Grenier, Dell Social Good Advocate, Dell became aware of the challenges facing the oceans. As a consumer of plastic, we identified ocean plastic as an issue where Dell could have a meaningful contribution.

Dell has spent a decade experimenting with and scaling the use of a variety of sustainable materials both in our products and packaging.
1) We have used PCR plastics in our products since 2008 and were first to use closed loop plastics from used electronics and recycled carbon fiber from other industries. In January 2016, we reached our 2020 goal of recycling 50 million pounds of recycled materials into our products.
2) We were first to market with mushroom-based packaging for our servers and wheat straw, bamboo and Air Carbon packaging for our laptops.

Building on this work, in March 2016, Dell began a feasibility study to test whether we could use ocean bound plastic in our packaging portfolio. Our strategy, based on ongoing consultation with leading researchers and advocates on ocean health, is to intercept ocean bound plastics in areas with the highest concentration of the material.

After successful testing of the material and supply chain, in April 2017, we launched our industry’s first ocean bound plastic packaging on the XPS 13 2-in-1, our premier consumer laptop. The pilot program processes plastics collected from beaches, waterways and coastal areas and molds them into recyclable packaging trays. We are currently sourcing from Haiti with the goal of expanding to SE Asia this year. We will use 16,000 pounds of ocean bound plastic this year. The work is open sourced to encourage broad usage of ocean plastic.

In support of UN SDG Goal 14, Dell commits to the following:
1) Dell commits to increase annual use of ocean bound plastic 10x by 2025, based on 2017 baseline.
2) Dell commits to open source our supply chain to encourage and enable broad usage of ocean bound plastic. As a first step, we will convene in partnership with the Lonely Whale Foundation, a cross-industry working group to encourage collaboration and share best practices.
Progress reports
By 2025, prevent and significantly reduce marine pollution of all kinds, in particular from land-based activities, including marine debris and nutrient pollution
Type of commitment
  • Plastics recovery/recycling/reuse
Establish an ocean plastics network in SE Asia
Make available ocean plastics network across industries
Increase ocean plastics usage 10X from 2017 volume
In-kind contribution
Contribution to Lonely Whale Foundation to convene cross-industry ocean plastic working group
Staff / Technical expertise
Resources pulled from Packaging, procurement, sustainability and various other Dell teams as required
Basic information
Time-frame: April 2017 - December 2025
Lonely Whale Foundation, Adrian Grenier
Ocean Basins
  • North Atlantic
  • South Pacific
Beneficiary countries
Other beneficaries
Southeast Asia
Contact information
Carly Tatum, Sustainability Communications Lead, carly_tatum@dell.com, 512-728-1236
Austin, TX USA
Other SDGs
United Nations