Starbucks has made the decision to eliminate plastic straws in their cafes by the year 2020. This elimination of the straws is a response to both customers and partners request to do so. The Vice President of Starbucks made a statement addressing this elimination saying, “This move is an answer to our own partners about what we can do to reduce the need for straws,” she said. “Not using a straw is the best thing we can do for the environment.”
Starbucks has roughly around 28,000 stores worldwide and all of them will be eliminating the plastic straws. This effort by Starbucks will eliminate more than 1 billion straws a year. The damaging results of plastic waste is especially a big problem for our oceans. Every year millions and millions of plastic waste get dumped into our oceans, affecting the marine life and water quality. Nicholas Mallos Director of Ocean Conservancy's Trash Free Seas program was reached for comment saying, “Starbucks’ decision to phase out single-use plastic straws is a shining example of the important role that companies can play in stemming the tide of ocean plastic. With eight million metric tons of plastic entering the ocean every year, we cannot afford to let industry sit on the sidelines.”
Originating from a super green city like Seattle, Washington, Starbucks has already taken steps towards helping the environment before their decision to remove plastic straws. They have invested lots of money in the "NextGen Cup Challenge" which is an effort to develop a fully recyclable and compostable hot cup. In addition, they encourage their customers to bring their own tumblers or cups to the stores to fill up on coffee. Then Starbucks does sell reusable cups for $1 each.
I don't know about anyone else, but I'm going to miss the plastic straws. Those are clutch! Who wants paper straws that get soggy? Ugh! I'll be hoarding plastic straws now for my iced coffee. I'm all about helping the environment but can we just leave the straws alone and enforce recycling? We have 2 years people to stock up on those straws! At least from Starbucks...other coffee shops might follow.