Tuesday, 17 July, 2018

Starbucks Will Eliminate Plastic Straws Globally by 2020

Courtesy of Starbucks Courtesy of Starbucks
Elijah Vega | 11 July, 2018, 02:00

Alexander said in a statement: "I am really excited to have developed something that can be part of this big transformation of going strawless." .

News of the Starbucks move comes as Seattle recently enacted a ban on the use of straws in the city. For Frappucinos (and upon request), there will be compostable plastic straws and paper straws in stores.

Starbucks has made a decision to do away with plastic straws by 2020 over evidence that they damage the environment, the company said Monday. According to a report by Swiss non-profit World Economic Forum, by the year 2050, there will be more plastic in the ocean than fish.

While plastic pollution has always been the target of environmental groups, the impact of straws on marine life has recently moved to the centre of plastic-banning efforts.

Starbucks already is offering the new lids in some Spokane stores, including a downtown location at Main Avenue and Post Street. McDonald's is also actively working on eliminating plastic straws and is now testing alternative straws in the United Kingdom and Ireland, where a ban on plastic straws will go into effect next year.

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"There are several of these single-use items the public is realising, hey, we don't actually need these, " said Denise Hardesty, a scientist with Australia's Commonwealth Scientific and Industrial Research Organisation, which studies plastic pollution.

Bobby Enslow, owner of Indaba Coffee, said he plans to implement eco-friendly straws and lids similar to Starbucks this fall. Straws are lower-hanging fruit in the battle against plastic, but hopefully it provides the motivation Starbucks needs to keep fighting in all the ways that count. Oakland and Berkeley, California, and other cities have also banned the use of disposable straws.

Seattle, where Starbucks is headquartered, passed a ban on plastic straws and utensils that went into effect earlier this month. The campaign to reduce the use of straws gained steam in 2015 with a graphic viral video showing scientists pulling a plastic straw from a sea turtle's nostril. Phased rollouts within the United States and Canada will then follow.

Starbucks said it hopes other major retailers will make the same move away from plastic. "With eight million metric tons of plastic entering the ocean every year, we can not afford to let industry sit on the sidelines", he continued.

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