• Ellie Chadwick


Most people can’t start their day without a morning coffee and I’ll admit some days that includes me.

Although there’s one small problem, which also comes in medium or large with buying your morning coffee and the answer is in your hands.

Yes that’s it, your cup!

The one that’s made from cardboard, some are made from recycled paper but all “paper cups” are lined with polyethylene and/or have polystyrene lids which contains up to 5% plastic.

Making them non-recyclable.

Even those bio-degradable ones aren’t going to save the planet.

I was entertained by Elsa Evers account of a debate about paper cups in the Greenpeace office titled Which Bin Do I Put My Coffee Cup In?

Think about it, if you buy a coffee or a chai, you non-caffeine drinkers aren’t getting away with this one either.

So you’re buying a hot beverage every morning, that’s 7 cups a week and every week for a month that’s about 30 cups and every month for a year? 365.

Math was never my strong point but this one's quite simple to work out.

Now I’m not saying you buy a cup of coffee every single day, every year but you can’t deny those long days and nights at uni or in the office when you ducked out for your third coffee for the day.

You're starting to get the picture now, every person buying coffee every day and throwing away the cup is creating waste.

A lot of waste.

In Australia we throw away 1 billion disposable takeaway coffee cups a year!

To combat this unnecessary waste and still enjoy your kick-starter every morning you have a few options.

One alternative to reduce your waste is to sit down and enjoy your coffee, surely you can spare 10 minutes and eliminate wasting a paper cup for the day.

You can make instant coffee in the office but if you’re after that exotic blend and perfect froth then I suggest invest in buying yourself a re-usable coffee cup.

I use Keepcup which are re-useable, silicon, barista approved cups you can use everywhere.

And when the temperature drops you can keep soup warm in it too!

To put things into perspective 1 Keepcup contains the same amount of plastic as 20 “paper cups”.

It only takes 15 coffees (or chais) to break even with paper cups, saving water, trees and energy.

Use it for 3 years then recycle it, you’ll only be using 86 grams of plastic compared with 2.7kgs of plastic in disposable takeaway cups in the same amount of time.

More facts can be found at the Keepcup Vs fact page.

Let’s reject our current throw away culture and cheer for a reusable, sustainable one instead.

Continue to learn and change your daily habits to contribute to a better more sustainable future.

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