Celebrating 30 years of collaboration with the Sustainability External Advisory Council

With an outside-in perspective, we can better understand the needs of the world we live in.

sun shining through a tree in Australian forest

Through continued collaboration, we are helping to facilitate the world’s transition to a more circular economy.

Bringing diverse perspectives to the table is an important way to help us think critically and unlock new opportunities. This is especially evident in the world of corporate social responsibility, where robust thinking and dialogue help shape a more sustainable world. Dow’s Sustainability External Advisory Council (SEAC) is a good example of a long-standing advisory board that has shaped our sustainability journey for the past 30 years.

At its inception, it was a first-of-its-kind council in the petrochemical industry when launched in 1992 by Frank Popoff, former Dow CEO and chairman, and David Buzzelli, former board member and executive vice president of Dow. The SEAC provides an independent, outside-in perspective on critical issues relating to sustainability and environmental policies that impact both Dow and our global community, such as climate change, ecosystem services, circularity and sustainable chemistry.

These thought leaders represent the best in academia, government and non-governmental organizations, and bring together a diverse, global perspective on a wide variety of vital and current issues. This approach and diverse set of stakeholders enable us to best address global challenges to drive sustainable and inclusive growth.

As we look back on three decades of collaboration with the SEAC, the impact they have had on our Company is evident. Through their challenging and thought-provoking feedback, we have pushed boundaries and made strides in bigger and bolder ways

Making an impact

Notably, the SEAC had a hand in shaping our decade-long Environment, Health, Safety, and Sustainability Goals. As we crafted our 2005, 2015, and most recent 2025 goals, the SEAC challenged us to be bold, to be ambitious, and to be a leader in sustainability. With the council’s guidance, each successive set of goals was elevated and designed to have broader reach and impact. For example, with our 2025 Valuing Nature Goal, the SEAC served as a sounding board and thought partner and helped us incorporate nature into business decisions. To date, we are about three-quarters of the way to deliver $1 billion in value, primarily through avoided costs, from projects that are both good for business and for ecosystems. And through continued collaboration, we are helping to facilitate the world’s transition to a more circular economy. To do so, the council encouraged us to be bold in our actions and to seek new partnerships, such as through the Alliance to End Plastic Waste.

What’s to come

As we pause to celebrate three decades of collaboration and growth with the SEAC, we’re also looking ahead. The SEAC will continue to bring external perspectives that will guide us through many aspects of sustainability, from policy and advocacy to regulatory frameworks, consumer dialogue and the financial view on sustainability. As in the past, we will continue to learn and benefit from their industry expertise. Because of and in partnership with the SEAC, we recognize our purpose to deliver a sustainable future for the world through materials science and in collaboration with our partners.

 Eunice Heath, Corporate Director of Sustainability