Australians throw out 2.7 million single-use or disposable coffee cups every single day. This adds up to 1 billion coffee cups thrown out every year. It's no surprise then, that disposable coffee cups are a major contributor to litter on our streets and in our waterways.
According to the Department of the Environment, Climate and Communications in Ireland, 45% of Ireland's greenhouse gas emissions come from the manufacture of materials associated with single-use products and their production.
So, in a bid to become the world's first country to eliminate disposable coffee cup use, the Irish government has approved The Circular Economy Bill, which aims to phase out single-use products in Ireland, including the 200 million disposable coffee cups used every year.
The bill introduces a mandatory 20c 'latte levy' for disposable coffee cup use, with a compete ban introduced for dine-in customers using disposable coffee cups. With the introduction of this bill, cafes will be asked to display a range of prices: the cost of a coffee in a reusable cup, the cost if a single-use cup is used and the cost of a dine-in beverage. Cafes and restaurants will also be encouraged to offer a discount to customers who use a keep-cup.
All money raised from the levy will be invested in environmental initiatives such as programmes to tackle litter and waste.