Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Say goodbye to paper cups!

The rise in popularity of carrying around purchased bottled water throughout the 1990s and into the new century has led to an environmental travesty as millions of plastic bottles were disposed of around the world. This has currently begun to change as people have become more aware of the environmental and social problems surrounding bottled water and in response have begun to carry around their own reusable water bottles.

However, this environmental tragedy is now seen in the millions of paper coffee cups purchased, carried around and disposed of every bleary eyed morning and throughout the day. A common misconception that surround the paper coffee cups is that they are recyclable, when actually it is only the cardboard sleeve (also completely unnecessary) that is the only recyclable bit. Since the coffee cups are lined in wax, you can not throw them in with regular paper recycling.

Fortunately, people are discussing taxing these cups, much like plastic bags: Say goodbye to paper cups?

What annoys me is when I do order a coffee and ask for it in a ceramic mug, it is often still given to me in a paper cup. An alternative is to carry your own reusable coffee mug (or just keep one at your desk or wherever you usually drink coffee), much like the reusable water bottle you should be carrying around now...

1 comment:

Rob said...

I would argue some of these points. Paper cups are becomming ever more popular for a coffee cup medium due to buyer perception of item quality. There does however need to be a more concerted effort to recycle the rubbish from these cups. They need proper recycling and sorting in order to be environmentally friendly.