Your morning coffee and the war on waste

BY Rachael Pearson


3 July 2017

Reading Time: 2 minutes

It’s 7am, your alarm wakes you up and you start to get ready for work. What’s your first craving? For most, that answer is easy, it’s a cup of coffee. You’re busy trying to get ready and cram some breakfast in your system, the last thing you have time to do is make a coffee. You know there’s that hipster cafe right next to your work and you can get a coffee from there quick and easy, in a cup that you can throw out after, no washing required. Perfect, right? Problem solved!

In reality, while that is a fix to your morning coffee problem, it’s actually causing a much larger issue, one that not many people knew about until recently.

It was reported a couple of weeks ago that those disposable coffee cups are actually NOT disposable! Obviously, people just assumed (I know I did) that because they’re made of paper, they’re recyclable. While this is true for the outside of the cup, the inside of the cup is lined with plastic – making them leak-proof and heat resistant. There are ways of getting around this. If you were to rip off the paper coating from the plastic (no easy task) you could recycle the paper and bin the plastic to be melted down. Of course, this doesn’t happen much.

With approximately 5 billion cups being produced every year and most of these going straight to landfill. Wasting the paper coating attached to the plastic (it can’t be recycled while it is attached) and using energy, plus releasing carbon emissions to melt down the plastic, they’re a huge hassle for our environmentally focused friends!

So my suggestion to all of you, and something that we are implementing here at Digital Noir, is to buy a travel coffee cup and use that instead for your morning caffeine hit. You can still grab your coffee from that hipster cafe, just bring your cup along with you, and remember to give it a rinse afterwards – it’ll take 2 seconds!

Since the release of this news, heaps of people have gotten on board, not realising how big the problem actually was and it really is great to see so many people making an effort to help. Some cafes and coffee spots are even providing a discount to people who bring their own cup in!

This problem isn’t going to go away straight away, and as an avid coffee drinker (and I mean avid…) I feel awful for having contributed to this predicament but I think it’s awesome we can all feel better knowing that we are paving the way to clearing landfills and helping out the environment.

Thanks guys for reading, I hope you enjoyed it and go and have fun finding the prettiest travel cup you can!

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