It’s Earth Day…
In the face of the now very real threat of global climate change, this year’s recognition of Earth Day carries with it a certain sense of urgency. It’s time to change some habits. Permanently. The good news? Greening up your coffee cup doesn’t mean sacrificing the quality of your coffee! Here’s some tips to get you started…
- Enough of the paper filters, already. If you enjoy your coffee in a press pot, good on you, you’re already there. But if you’re making a drip cup, consider some alternatives to your paper coffee filters. The gold standard of reusable drip filters are made by SwissGold, and they have a product line that covers most every filter basket style — from Mr. Coffee to Bunn to Melitta-styled cone filters — used in auto-drip machines today.
- Enough of the bottled water, too. I’ve written quite a lot about the importance of good water for good coffee. So by all means, use great water, but make it great yourself. Start with water from your own tap and filter it with any number of great filtration products (I like Brita, and PUR.) You’ll save oodles of money, and save oodles of carbon emissions from all the shipping that bottled water requires.
- Heat your water on-demand. Long-time readers will know that I’ve proclaimed my love for Bunn coffee makers in the past… but I have to tell you, that relationship is over. Home coffee makers that keep water hot 24 hours are energy hogs, pure and simple. Instead, use a water kettle to boil up only exactly as much water as you need. Chances are it’ll take no more time than your Bunn ever did.
- Take your mug on the road. If you’re heading to your local coffee house, take your mug with you! There’s thermal travel mugs and tumblers of every sort to make sure you don’t spill a drop on your commute, and chances are your coffee shop will thank you! (One of a coffee shop’s biggest costs is paper, and the lion’s share of that is paper cups.)
- Choose Fair Trade Certified™ and Organic coffee. Yes, you really can make a difference by choosing coffee with eco-friendly bona fides. And you have been! Sales of Fair Trade coffee rose ten-fold between 2000 and 2005, and Fair Trade and Organic coffee sales are right now seeing accelerating double-digit growth. Keep it up! These coffees are ecologically sound, sustainable, and make for safer, healthier coffee-growing communities.
Visit TreeHugger.com for still more ideas to green up your cup.