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Eco-challenge #5 Results – Coffee Cup Confession

11.16.09 Eco-challenge #5 Results – Coffee Cup Confession

pile of starbucks cups

First of all, I have a confession to make. After writing my last post I went to Starbucks and got a big fat venti mocha in a big fat paper cup and I really really enjoyed it. There I said it.

BUT after that I was a good girl and got back on the stainless steel mug train. Luckily, my regular Starbucks reopened and since the baristas know my drink there was no writing on paper cups just to throw them away. They just said – sure we can make a “dina” in the mug – and they did.

At the  end of the day, despite my best efforts, I only succeeded at using my mug (without them making it in a paper cup at all) 3 out of 11 times! Toward the end I actually just avoided my second cup of the day altogether because it just wasn’t worth the frustration of fighting with them about it. Bottom line is, at least where I live, in order to successfully use a reusable mug on a consistent basis you either have to drink plain old coffee or know the barista. Pretty limiting.

So – what now?  Well, I definitely don’t think I can keep this one up on a regular basis. BUT I do think I’ll try very hard to bring my mug a few times during the week. Here’s why:

  • Cream, Sugar or Chemicals? - Apparently the disposable plastic lids on Starbucks cups are made of #6 plastic, which my friends at MightyNest tell me can leach styrene, a possible carcinogen and hormone disrupter. Yummy.
  • Hot Water Burn Baby - One good thing about the stainless steel mug is that I can drink my coffee safely while pushing a stroller. No more worries of my extra hot beverage slopping out the top of the cup and hurting one of the boys.
  • Small Steps = Mighty Impact -  Even if I only bring my stainless steel mug in 3-4 times a week that’s around 200 less cups, lids and sleeves sitting in landfills per year! Worth a try.

At the very least I will try to reuse the sleeves for a few days in a row. In fact, I just saw the cutest fabric cup sleeves! I think I’m going to treat myself to one. What better incentive than something made of cool fabric? What do you think….the Elizabeth, the Angelina or the Reese? Decisions, decisions.

THE RESULTS...Is this a change I can realistically incorporate into my daily life?

5 stars: SOLD! Where do I sign?

4 stars: Love it. I think I can pull this one off.

3 stars: Not quite sure, but can’t wait to try




2 stars: Sorry guys, probably not gonna happen.




1 star: Gonna take a pass on this one.

Back tomorrow with MightyNest Eco-challenge #6...

Posted in: Recycling
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