Deliver To:

  • Afghanistan
  • Albania
  • Algeria
  • Amer.Virgin Is.
  • American Samoa
  • Andorra
  • Angola
  • Anguilla
  • Antarctica
  • Antigua Barbuda
  • Argentina
  • Armenia
  • Aruba
  • Australia
  • Austria
  • Azerbaijan
  • Bahamas
  • Bahrain
  • Bangladesh
  • Barbados
  • Belarus
  • Belgium
  • Belize
  • Benin
  • Bermuda
  • Bhutan
  • Bolivia
  • Bonaire, Saba
  • Bosnia-Herz.
  • Botswana
  • Bouvet Island
  • Brazil
  • Brit.Ind.Oc.Ter
  • Brit.Virgin Is.
  • Brunei Daruss.
  • Bulgaria
  • Burkina Faso
  • Burundi
  • C. African Rep.
  • Cambodia
  • Cameroon
  • Canada
  • Cape Verde
  • Cayman Islands
  • Chad
  • Chile
  • Christmas Islnd
  • Coconut Islands
  • Colombia
  • Comoros
  • Congo
  • Cook Islands
  • Costa Rica
  • Cote d'Ivoire
  • Croatia
  • Curacao
  • Cyprus
  • Czech Republic
  • Dem. Rep. Congo
  • Denmark
  • Djibouti
  • Dominica
  • Dominican Rep.
  • Ecuador
  • Egypt
  • El Salvador
  • Equatorial Guin
  • Eritrea
  • Estonia
  • Ethiopia
  • Falkland Islnds
  • Faroe Islands
  • Fiji
  • Finland
  • France
  • Frenc.Polynesia
  • French Guiana
  • French S.Territ
  • Gabon
  • Gambia
  • Georgia
  • Germany
  • Ghana
  • Gibraltar
  • Greater China (Chinese Mainland)
  • Greater China (Hong Kong SAR)
  • Greater China (Macau SAR)
  • Greater China (Taiwan)
  • Greece
  • Greenland
  • Grenada
  • Guadeloupe
  • Guam
  • Guatemala
  • Guinea
  • Guinea-Bissau
  • Guyana
  • Haiti
  • Heard McDon.Isl
  • Honduras
  • Hungary
  • Iceland
  • India
  • Indonesia
  • Iraq
  • Ireland
  • Israel
  • Italy
  • Jamaica
  • Japan
  • Jordan
  • Kazakhstan
  • Kenya
  • Kiribati
  • Kosovo
  • Kuwait
  • Kyrgyzstan
  • Laos
  • Latvia
  • Lebanon
  • Lesotho
  • Liberia
  • Liechtenstein
  • Lithuania
  • Luxembourg
  • Madagascar
  • Malawi
  • Malaysia
  • Maldives
  • Mali
  • Malta
  • Marshall Islnds
  • Martinique
  • Mauritania
  • Mauritius
  • Mayotte
  • Mexico
  • Micronesia
  • Minor Outl.Isl.
  • Moldova
  • Monaco
  • Mongolia
  • Montenegro
  • Montserrat
  • Morocco
  • Mozambique
  • Myanmar
  • N.Mariana Islnd
  • Namibia
  • Nauru
  • Nepal
  • Netherlands
  • New Caledonia
  • New Zealand
  • Nicaragua
  • Niger
  • Nigeria
  • Niue
  • Norfolk Island
  • North Macedonia
  • Norway
  • Oman
  • Pakistan
  • Palau
  • Panama
  • Pap. New Guinea
  • Paraguay
  • Peru
  • Philippines
  • Pitcairn
  • Poland
  • Portugal
  • Puerto Rico
  • Qatar
  • Reunion
  • Romania
  • Russian Fed.
  • Rwanda
  • S. Sandwich Ins
  • S.Tome,Principe
  • Saint Helena
  • Saint Lucia
  • Samoa
  • San Marino
  • Saudi Arabia
  • Senegal
  • Serbia
  • Seychelles
  • Sierra Leone
  • Singapore
  • Sint Maarten
  • Slovakia
  • Slovenia
  • Solomon Islands
  • Somalia
  • South Africa
  • South Korea
  • Spain
  • Sri Lanka
  • St Kitts&Nevis
  • St. Vincent
  • St.Pier,Miquel.
  • Suriname
  • Svalbard
  • Swaziland
  • Sweden
  • Switzerland
  • Tajikistan
  • Tanzania
  • Thailand
  • Timor-Leste
  • Togo
  • Tokelau
  • Tonga
  • Trinidad,Tobago
  • Tunisia
  • Turkey
  • Turkmenistan
  • Turksh Caicosin
  • Tuvalu
  • Uganda
  • Ukraine
  • United Kingdom
  • United States
  • Uruguay
  • Utd.Arab Emir.
  • Uzbekistan
  • Vanuatu
  • Vatican City
  • Venezuela
  • Vietnam
  • Wallis,Futuna
  • West Sahara
  • Yemen
  • Zambia
  • Zimbabwe
An introduction to the materials ecosystem
Materials Ecosystem

Unlocking the Value of Waste

Dow’s approach for a better way to make, use and reuse plastics.

What is the materials ecosystem?

By definition, waste is unwanted, requires disposal and is not always valued. However, when science and economics find a way to take this unwanted material, break it down into its basic building blocks and turn those building blocks into something useful again, plastic waste is transformed and takes on value.

A materials ecosystem is developing around plastic and renewable waste to deliver its total value. The materials ecosystem adds value to plastic waste through recycling technologies and circular solutions.

By repeatedly converting plastic waste into new products, less waste ends up in landfills, incinerators or as environmental leaks.

How does the materials ecosystem function and support transformation?

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Waste transformation counts on the materials ecosystem elements working together, from infrastructure to partners and technologies.

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Influences such as consumer behavior and the regulatory landscape are complex and affect the materials ecosystem at local, regional, and global levels.

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Disconnects in the materials ecosystem present opportunities to innovate and collaborate.

Explore the elements of the materials ecosystem

Mechanical Recycling

Mechanical recycling is a process by which plastic waste is turned into new products without the structure being significantly altered. Plastic manufacturers can use this material in applications with less performance needs, such as trash bags, rigid plastic containers and building materials.


Featured collaborations

Advanced Recycling

To enable broader use of recycled plastic, Dow is investing in advanced recycling. Advanced recycling offers massive, untapped market potential and the ability to bring circularity to previously incompatible areas such as food-grade and medical-grade packaging by using the same material for reuse.


Featured collaborations


To produce new plastic materials that are more sustainable — and reduce the use of fossil feedstocks and the carbon footprint associated with them — it will take a combination of feedstocks produced from recycled plastic waste and bio-circular materials. Dow focuses on non-edible renewable resources.


Featured collaborations

Collecting, Cleaning & Sorting

There is a gap between downstream demand for circular plastics and available supply. The local players in waste management, recycling, design and manufacturing are essential to waste reaching its full potential through local recycling options, infrastructure, education and incentives.


Featured collaborations

Design for Circularity

Design is indispensable to supporting markets in transforming materials use for less environmental impact. Brand owners and manufacturers must consider tradeoffs between cost and performance while ensuring that product integrity remains intact. Learn how we can meet targets to enable recyclability.


Featured collaborations

Consumer & Business

Improving recycling requires understanding what drives behavior and creating conditions that support the recycling behavior we seek. Dow’s environmental nonprofit partners — including the Alliance To End Plastic Waste, The Recycling Partnership, Delterra and others — are demonstrating that behavior change is possible.


Featured collaborations


Dow is investing approximately $1 billion annually to drive growth & decarbonization of our manufacturing assets by replacing end-of-life, carbon-intensive assets with more carbon-efficient and carbon abatement technologies, such as circular hydrogen, nuclear and carbon capture and storage. 


Featured collaborations


Policymakers, investors, and non-profit organizations are the global tailwinds enabling circular supply chains.


Featured collaborations


Dow’s perspective on the materials ecosystem 

The dynamics of waste are changing. Read how.  

Published in October 2023 

How do we transform waste into a valuable resource?

The world demands a better way to make, use and reuse plastics. Dow sees a way.


The materials ecosystem: Unlocking the value of waste

We’re talking about the materials ecosystem and Dow’s approach for a better way to make, use and reuse plastics. Learn how a materials ecosystem is developing around plastic and renewable waste to deliver its total value.

"Plastic circularity requires many stakeholders - and understanding how they interact, what influences them. Systems thinking helps us find solutions to keep used plastics out of the environment and in the circular economy." 
Rob Kaplan, CEO and Founder, Circulate Capital 

Collaborating to drive progress

It takes every stakeholder working together to make change happen, including new technologies to transform waste into products; recycling infrastructure that delivers on the ecosystem's ability to collect, clean and sort waste; policy that enables systems to scale and succeed; brands and manufacturers designing for circularity; and consumers having the confidence that their efforts to return used plastic to the system will pay off.

Drone point of view of a single lane road passing next to a coast.

Stay informed on circular polymers

Learn more about the latest innovations and technologies capturing the value of plastic for a more sustainable world.

Contact Us 

Get in touch to collaborate with us