Each year millions of trees are cut down and billions of gallons of water are used to create 500 billion humble disposable coffee cups used globally per year.
‘With campaigns like ‘Keep the cup’ it seems that many La Trobe staff and students are kicking the disposable coffee cup habit, but we still need your help,’ says La Trobe Environmental Operations Officer John Hassall.
‘More than 700,000 disposable coffee cups were used at La Trobe's Bundoora campus last year and less than half were recycled. Each day coffee vendors on campus sell only one or two BYO cups of coffee for every ten coffees sold. That’s a whole lot of waste!
‘La Trobe is reducing this waste offering mixed (co-mingled) recycling bins on all campuses accepting disposable coffee cups for recycling. However, paper cups are often lined with plastics making them more difficult to recycle and take years to degrade.
‘But, there is still hope for all those coffee lovers, where the coffee is sweeter and the chai spicier- the reusable coffee cup.’ adds Mr Hassall who encourages staff to simply try their coffee in a reusable cup.
‘Having a reusable coffee cup to grab a fair trade coffee in the morning is a really easy way to do your bit to reduce waste on campus. For a small investment up front we can all share the environmental benefits of reducing our waste’, says Mr Hassall.
It is estimated the break even rate with disposable cups to be as low as 15 uses over the life cycle of the reusable cup which includes cleaning.
Reusable cups are available at Image La Trobe, The Coop Bookshop and Student Union. So make sure next time you feel like a caffeine hit you think before you drink.
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