Why You Should Start Using a Travel Mug
There are so many reasons why the popularity of reusable travel mugs have soared over the past few years. Be it due to latte levy or people just want to reduce plastic waste, it’s a step in the right direction. Furthermore, many coffee shops and cafés have begun incentivising their patrons by offering discounts for those who bring their own coffee cup.
According to various environmental groups and agencies, about 25 billion throw away cups are being used annually across the globe. Disposable cups have adverse effects on the environment. While they are recyclable, most of them end up in landfills, incinerators and bodies of water. What makes them convenient and easy to use is also the reason why they’re difficult to recycle. Paper cups are lined with a plastic material called polyethylene. Polyethylene makes the cups waterproof so they could hold liquid. Unfortunately, it would take thousands of years for these cups to decompose. Eventually, they would break down into smaller pieces which are called microplastic. Microplastics pose a serious threat to animals living in the wild. If mistaken as food and ingested, animals could choke and die.
The production of disposable paper cups have its own set environmental ramifications. Millions of trees are being felled for their virgin pulp which is then turned into paper cups. It takes years for trees to grow and yet the products that came from them only last as long as their contents.
Styrofoam cups are not much better than disposable paper cups. Most waste treatment plants reject them because they are made from polypropylene which makes them difficult to recycle. Like most paper cups, they end up in landfills and littering our oceans. Animals ingest them daily and these waste have already caused death in marine life population.
Then there’s the health risks from using disposable cups. As previously stated, disposable cups are lined with a plastic material called polyethylene which makes them waterproof. When polyethylene is subjected to high temperature, it dissolves and releases toxic chemicals like BPA or bisphenol-A which then leach into your beverage. BPA is hormone-disruptor and widely considered as carcinogenic and often linked to other serious health problems like hypertension.
So why should you use a travel mug? If it’s not obvious at this point, we’ll break it down for you.
They’re good for the environment because they are mostly made from sustainable and eco-friendly materials like glass, bamboo and stainless steel. Stainless steel is probably the most popular followed by tempered glass as a close second. They are designed to be reused and durable enough to last for years. Using them instead of throw-away cups could help you reduce your plastic waste.
Unlike disposable cups, travel mugs do not leach any nasty chemicals into your drink. So you would not have any worries every time you take a sip of your favourite coffee. And honestly, beverages taste much better in these reusable cups.
Yes, the initial investment of switching from paper cups to travel mugs is high but they are totally worth it. They bring plenty of benefits for you and the environment without not much downsides.
RELATED: What Are Some of the Most Popular Travel Mugs