CSU declares war on coffee cups

Tuesday 29 Aug 2017

Charles Sturt University (CSU) has set its sights on the takeaway coffee cup in its ongoing efforts to reduce the amount of landfill waste.

CSU Green Manager Mr Ed Maher said, "The University's War on Waste campaign targeting disposable coffee cups is our latest sustainability initiative.

"Charles Sturt University's previous campaigns have targeted the diversion of paper, cardboard, co-mingled recyclables, batteries, toner cartridges and fluorescent lamps. Throwaway cups are now in our sights."

Figures from CSU Green reveal the University throws out 667 disposable coffee cups every working day across its five larger CSU campuses, including Albury-Wodonga, Bathurst, Dubbo, Orange and Wagga Wagga.

However in the third week of this campaign in August, 46 per cent of coffee sales at the University's food and beverage outlets involved a reusable cup, avoiding 1 534 disposable cups from ending up in landfill.

"Our campaign to minimise the number of disposable coffee cups sold is another step in the right direction. Charles Sturt University remains Australia's only certified Carbon Neutral tertiary institution, and this initiative supports this award," Mr Maher said.

"Coffee cups have long caused challenges by being a common source of contamination in recycling streams due to confusion about whether or not a coffee cup can be recycled.

 "As highlighted in the ABC series, War on Waste, the disposable coffee cup is not readily recyclable.

"We are strongly encouraging all our staff, students and visitors to 'make the change' and bring their own KeepCup or reusable mug."

The University's Healthy Eating, Entertainment and Retail Services group or CHEERS has joined the Responsible CafĂ© network and is offering discounts to customers with a reusable cup.  

"We are look at a variety of other initiatives as part of our own War on Waste including progressing towards banning single-use plastic bags and minimising the use of disposable food containers."



Media contact: Fiona Halloran , (02) 6933 2207

Media Note:

CSU Green Manager Mr Ed Maher is in Wagga Wagga. He is available for interview.

Photo: Dolcee (2017) by CSU Green graphic designer Ms Kerri Anne Chin. It is made from 75 used disposable coffee cups, lids and pods to highlight the landfill produced by using these non recyclable products. It is being modelled by CSU Green sustainability advisor and veterinary science student Ms Sophie Kingston.

Photo by Mitchell Lamm.