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New Dell Program Converts Ocean Plastics Into Product Packaging

Dell has often led the tech industry on environmental initiatives. This one, although still small, marks an important first step in addressing ocean plastic pollution.

Here's the company press release:

According to some estimates, there are more than 86 million metric tons of plastics in the oceans right now – more than 5 trillion pieces in total. The vast majority of those pieces are less than 5 mm in size.

That’s because the plastics break down into ever smaller pieces (despite what you may have heard, it never breaks down completely).

ocean plastics

The numbers are nearly unfathomable and the effects are far reaching:

  • 8 million tonnes of plastic enter the ocean every year
  • In some places, plastic particles outnumber plankton 26 to 1 (PlasticOceans)
  • Anyone who consumes an “average amount” of seafood ingests c. 11,000 plastic particles per year (BBC)

Dell wants to help break this cycle by keeping plastics in the economy and out of the ocean. To those ends, we are creating the first commercial-scale global ocean plastics supply chain. We are processing plastics collected from beaches, waterways and coastal areas and using them as part of a new packaging system for the XPS 13 2-In-1 laptop globally. This initial pilot project will start by keeping 16,000 pounds of plastics out of the ocean.

Also, here's a link to an organization doing good work on the Ocean Plastics issue, with numerous more recent articles and links: https://www.idiveblue.com/oceana-plastics-environmental-disaster/