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May 27, 2018  |  Login

Bring a Reusable Coffee Mug

An easy way to help ease our waste problem, using your own mug will also save you money.

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Mmm, coffee. Millions of Americans enjoy a fresh cup every morning (sometimes two or three)—many purchased from a coffee shop such as Starbucks. Ever think about the environmental (and financial) costs involved in all those paper cups?

220 billion paper cups are used per year worldwide, and 130 billion of those are used in the United States alone. 16 billion are used for coffee, the production of which is equal to over 6.5 million trees cut down, 4 billion gallons of water wasted, and enough energy used to power nearly 54,000 homes for a year. Not to mention the millions of pounds of waste in landfills. You can save money and reduce damage done by a seriously harmful source of trash by carrying your own stylish mug.

Bringing your favorite travel mug to your local coffee shop is an easy and convenient way to make a difference. If you’re staying to enjoy your drink, ask to have it served in the café’s own ceramic mug. Of course, the greenest, cheapest coffee option is to brew your own at home.

Starbucks now offers all customers who bring in a reusable mug a 10-cent discount on their beverage. That may not sound like a huge savings, but it adds up, and Starbucks has seen some impressive results: customers brought reusable mugs to Starbucks 22 million times in 2008, saving almost a million pounds of paper.

Once you find your perfect reusable mug, you will no longer want to drink out of those chintzy cups that don’t keep your coffee hot. And you’ll feel good about keeping that cup out of the trash – which will just enhance your coffee buzz.


Take Action / Next Steps
  • Learn the facts about recycling all kinds of waste in ecomii's Waste and Recycling Guide.
  • While you're at it, why not carry a reusable water bottle as well? Get the info on plastic water bottles from this ecomii Tip.


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Did You Know?

Click below for more facts about this tip.



1.Environmental Defense Fund. "Starbucks Paper Project." Available from: [28 July 2009]

2.Grishchenko, Gregory. "Winner's Cup." Paper 360 (June/July 2007). Available from: [28 July 2009]

3.Starbucks: Global Responsibility. Available from: [28 July 2009]

4."The Basic Problem with Coffee Cups." Available from: [28 July 2009]

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