Monday, October 17, 2011

My Coffee Is Destroying the World. Whoops. My Bad.

As I drink my fourth cup of coffee this morning, I'm reading some rather disturbing news:  I'm totally destroying the environment.  Whoops.

It's not like I thought coffee was an environmentally friendly product.  Even buying the organic, free-trade stuff, there's a lot of energy involved to get that cup of coffee to me.  It's not like coffee can be grown in Iowa - oohh... a potential use for Iowa if it could - but instead, it requires shipping, then roasting, then packaging, then shipping again.  Then, I have to use a nifty appliance to make it potable because research scientists have not found a faster way for the caffeine to enter my bloodstream.

Still... at work, we have the 2 gallon pot of nasty black stuff that requires creamer before I'd consider drinking it, and the free Keurig machine with its gourmet selections of exotic and fair trade coffee.  Newman's Own, organic coffees from Sumatra, life is excellent.  Hook me up.

What I never seem to notice before drinking my coffee (which is, pretty much, everything), is that those little single-serve coffee filter systems add up, and none of them get recycled.  CBS News is reporting that Clean Water Action is getting after Keurig for making a pretty environmentally awful product.  *Sigh*  They are right - you take a traditional coffee brewing process where an unbleached filter and coffee grounds can go directly into the compost pile, and you replace it with a plastic system made from too many components to be separated.  I guess I'll be buying a reusable filter and my own coffee now.  Thanks a lot, environmental lobbying organization.  How dare you make me want to do the right thing!  :-(

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