Everyone here at East Sheen Village would love to make East Sheen more environment friendly, and one of the things we all could do is say good-bye to single-use plastic items. We asked several local businesses and they’re all going green by ditching plastic straws and encouraging the use of reusable coffee cups. Are you a local business? Would you like to join? Let us know so we can feature you in our next post!
Throughout January the Evening Standard has campaigned against the use of plastic straws and many businesses have joined their Last Straw pledge. From February, all Young’s pubs in London will stock only biodegradable straws – including our local Hare & Hounds.
You can purchase reusable coffee cups in several shops and cafés in Sheen, including The Robin Café, Artisan and Waitrose. Paper coffee cups are notoriously hard to recycle but Costa Coffee can help with that: they recycle any paper cup, not just their own.
The Robin Craft Café offers a free cup of coffee to those who purchase their Frank Green reusable coffee cups. They also sell reusable canvas bags featuring quirky designs and drinking water in recycled cans.
Artisan have already been offering a discount to anyone bringing their own cup and from the 1st of February they are doubling the discount to 20p off. They sell reusable Keep Cups and have have changed all their straws to be completely biodegradable and compostable. In case you still see plastic straws in the shop: they are running down all their old stock but will not replenish it. Artisan have also changed all their light bulbs to environmentally friendly ones and they always ask if customers if they would like a bag rather than simply giving them one.
11 Coffee & Co will soon be selling custom made Keep Cups and offer 15p off if the customers use any reusable cups. They have ordered biodegradable straws to replace the plastic ones and for takeaways they already use “green” bags and food boxes. Dog friendly café Paws for Coffee offer a 10% discount to users of reusable cups.
It’s not just us and businesses: Richmond Council is looking at initiatives which will encourage and allow their staff to become more responsible in their use of plastics. Some of these initiatives will include switching from disposable plastic bottles to reusable bottles and cups, and they are asking businesses in the borough to do the same.
The Council will work with residents, businesses, partners, schools, local groups and associations across the borough to cut back on the use of plastic, increase the re-use of plastics and improve arrangements for the disposal and recycling of plastic.
In the UK we use more than 13billion plastic bottles a year of which only 57% are recycled; 2.5billion disposable cups with less than 0.25% recycled; 2.3million tonnes of plastic packaging , only 45% recycled and in London alone 1 million straws each day. If this trend continues some 12 billion tonnes will be in landfill or the natural environment polluting our rivers and oceans by 2050.
“Everyone of us has a role to play in limiting single use plastics whether it is buying reusable bottles and cups, stop using plastic straws or just looking around the house to see which plastic packaged products we can do without. So let’s work together and make Richmond the leading borough in eliminating unnecessary use of plastics.” – said Cllr Pamela Fleming, Cabinet Member for Environment at a recent council meeting. She put forward the motion that outlined the Council’s commitment to becoming a leader in reducing the use of plastics.