The answer depends on the material of the coffee cup.
Scientists say it will take about 500 years for one styrofoam cup to dissolve. That’s half a millennium! Not only does Styrofoam take such incredible amounts of energy to break down, this material consumes 25 percent of our landfill space.
For an idea of how long it takes a paper cup to break down, a piece of paper takes about 3 months to decompose. In the ocean environment, it may take about 2 months for a cardboard to break down.
The coffee cup and the fact that it isn’t biodegradable has been a blight for both coffee drinkers and coffee shop owners everywhere. In fact, the lining of the cup, which is responsible for keeping the beverage hot, cannot be recycled. However, there is now a new option, the green coffee cup, which is produced by International Paper and will soon be serving up Green Mountain coffee. But while the cup is 100% biodegradable, the lid still poses environmental problems.
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