Paper or Styrofoam?

27 02 2008

Paper Cups Versus Styrofoam Cups: Surprise Winner
Eco Joe’s: LINKcoffee

I don’t know if this is legit in the long run, paper eventually biodegrades. If we’re thinking long term, paper might be best, but look at the reasoning behind using styrofoam.

Anyhoo, last week, mi jefe wondered aloud why Cup A Joe uses styrofoam cups instead of paper. I was like dang, I don’t know. So I wrote them an email asking if they’d considered using paper cups, and asking how they could use styrofoam cups when they knew it made Captain Planet weep green tears. I got a quick reply which showed that they had indeed thought of “green” issues when making their business decisions:
Paper Cups Cause More Trash than Styrofoam Cups
It turns out that when Cup A Joe used paper cups, “almost 100% of [their] customers demand[ed] the added cardboard sleeve”, which the styrofoam cups do not require.
Also as well additionally, it turns out styrofoam is an excellent material for recycling. Here’s what Cup A Joe had to say: “We recycle a large percentage of the cups. Many customers return their used cups for that purpose. It is a small expense for us, but worth it.”
Paper Cups Don’t Biodegrade
Well, they do eventually (as does anything, eventually), but it takes much more time than I’d thought for a paper cup to biodegrade. The gubmint says, “Modern landfills are designed to inhibit degradation so that toxic wastes do not seep into the surrounding soil and groundwater. The paper cup will still be a paper cup 20 years from now.”
Paper Cups Use More Raw Materials and Energy Than Styrofoam (And Cost More)
This was a surprise to me…




One response

8 03 2008
Personalized Styrofoam Cups « Bold Lentil

[…] time latter a query for “styrofoam cups”. Plenty of lateral references that could(this link is way cool) be(weird link) linked. Query for “personalized […]

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