Coffee shops are not doing enough to deal with the billions of disposable cups that are thrown away in the UK each year, an influential committee of MPs has been told. The environment audit committee heard that the phenomenal growth of on-the-go coffee meant that 2.5bn disposable cups are thrown away annually in the UK, a number expected to rise to about 3bn by 2025. Only 1% are recycled. The committee’s chair, Mary Creagh, said this “massive increase” was having a damaging environmental impact and insisted it was time the big coffee chains did more to address the waste they produce. “These coffee shops have a big responsibility under the the producer responsibility obligations to provide proper recycling facilities and they are in breach of them.” The runaway popularity of coffee shops shows no sign of slowing down. There are currently about 20,000 outlets in the UK and the committee heard that figure is likely to increase to 30,000 by 2025. This would result in millions more coffee cups being thrown away each day. Although the majority of people believe that any disposable cups put into a recycling bin will be broken down and the material reused, the committee heard… Read full this story
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