Seattle Says No to Paper Cups

May 23, 2011

Coffee lovers in the city that started it all now want to end a coffee culture staple. The growth in popularity of espresso drinks was aided by the use of disposable paper cups that have enabled our favorite hot beverage to be bought quickly and taken on the go. But on-the-go coffee has been too successful as far as the environment is concerned, as 56 billion cups per year can testify. Now, according to Sandi Doughton in the Seattle Times, environmentalists and some coffee chains are trying to change this. We previously reported on the discounts given by many chains to those who bring their own cups. In addition to that drive, a campaign has been launched in Seattle to help people kick the paper habit. Endorsed by the city council president, the drive encouraging participants to carry reusable coffee mugs with them to take to coffee shops. The comment was made that Americans are somewhat used to bringing reusable shopping bags with them to save on the plastic and paper in bags, so why not cups? To help in the transition to ceramic or reusable mugs, there will be an online platform – New World Habits – where participants can go, sign up for the three-week challenge and start re-filling their mugs. A three-week time-frame was chosen because psychologists say that habits can be changed in three weeks. Seattle is pumped and they think they can light a fire under other communities to kick the paper habit too. Do they feel somewhat responsible for the billions of cups needlessly wasted every year? Whatever the basic motivation, more power to them. It’s a worthy endeavor and hopefully other cities will rise to the challenge and meet or beat Seattle’s goals. Due to the choices for cool-looking reusable mugs on ROASTe, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t be getting those refillable discounts. With 10 to 25 cents a cup discount, it won’t even take that long to pay off the reusable mug.



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