I WAS attending the launching of new commercial client solutions laptops by Dell EMC Philippines and the laptops are something to drool about, they are top of the line in performance, functionality, and overall user experience. But, even my awe at the full range of new models they unveiled couldn't compare with my awe at Dell EMC's Legacy of Good corporate social responsibility.

Thus, while the sample laptops were tugging at me to check them out, I couldn't help but gawk at the packaging instead. Whoever even notices the packaging? I never did, until Elizabeth Pabunag of Dell EMC Corporate Communication told us about their Legacy of Good corporate social responsibility program.

The plastic component of the laptop packaging has several materials used: recyclable and biodegradable.

The one with the whale embossed on it is made of 100% recycled plastics of which 25% is plastic collected from the ocean.

As presented by Pabunag before the Dell EMC New Commercial Client Solutions launch last April 18, 2018, 8-million tons of plastic enter the ocean every year and that 90% of all the trash flowing on the ocean surface is plastic.

"We will turn 8 tons of ocean-bound plastic into packaging for the XPS 13 2-in-1 this year, with a goal of using 10 times that amount by 2025," Pabunag told a group of journalists and bloggers at their office in Bonifacio Global City in Taguig City.

The plastics are collected from waterways, shorelines and areas near the coast before these are aggregated and sorted. The plastics are then refined and mixed with recycled HDPE plastics, the type of plastic used in making bottles and food storage containers. The mixture is molded into packaging trays for Dell XPS notebooks. These trays found inside the laptop box are curbside recyclable and are thus bound for infinite rounds of recycling process when properly disposed.

As we have witnessed just last week, a pygmy sperm whale that beached and died in Bucana, Panacan, Davao City, was found to have ingested to much plastic, it could no longer feed itself with the proper nutrients it needs. This has been the case too in many marine turtles that have been found dead in our coastal villages.

Beyond just plastics, Dell EMC is into recycling e-wastes, recovering precious metals from electronic products and recycling them into new components.

"Since 2012, Dell has recycled more than 50 million pounds of post-consumer recycled materials into new products. As part of Dell’s Legacy of Good Program, the company has pledged to recycle 100 million pounds of recycled content into its product portfolio by 2020," its press release said.

Pabunag said that e-waste as it is has more gold than the gold that is being mined these days.

"A ton of old circuit boards can contain as much as 800 times more gold than a ton of ore," she said.

Recycling these causes 99% less environmental damage and avoids $1.6 million in natural capital costs.

Dell EMC is the first to recycle gold from old computers and using these to make new motherboards. They were able to 'mine' 2.27 kilos of gold from discarded computers and made connectors for 6-million new motherboards.

Currently only 12.5% of e-waste is recycled into other products, the Dell EMC press release said, thus in the US alone, Americans throw away $60 million in gold and silver every year through unwanted phones.