Plastic coffee pods are hell on the environment. Here’s what you can do to fight back.

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How about, I don’t know… not using them?


At 50 cents a pod that’s about as cheap as I’ve seen pods. Of course it’s still a lot more than not using pods


Unfortunately, there’s a problem with all those pods. Despite being made of recyclable plastic, they’re too small to be picked out by sorters in most recycling plants, meaning many of those pods just end up in world landfills.

What does that spell for plastic bottlecaps?

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There’s a lot of “ifs” before a compostable plastic can really compost. Most of these will end up in landfill, and can’t be composted except in large industrial composters. The first rule is still “Reduce”, not “try and continue with no change to your lifestyle”.

Considering all the various coffee making methods BB has promoted over the years, it’s odd to see them push a wasteful method of producing inferior coffee.


I used to use something like this, with ground coffee:


Eventually I just went back to using a French press, and that quantity lasts me all morning.


Surely if you’re drinking coffee for the taste, you’d be drinking something other than pod coffee?


the single-cup quick-and-easy pod brewing systems have taken over every kitchen and workplace breakroom on the planet.

Every? EVERY?? Everywhere on the planet???
FFS - just fuck off with your over-exaggerated BBShop bullshit marketing verbiage.
Credibility zero - which is not a good look for a sales site.


Plastic in landfill is carbon sequestering. Lots of value in the hydrocarbons in the ground, too much value to believe that it’s going to stay in the ground- and alot of that value has already been spent. Will those C’s be released to the atmosphere, or will they be used in products that can then be easily return the C’s into the ground? (ocean dumping and burning is shit terrible- definitely worse that recycling, but landfills with lots of plastic is a good thing. – possibility of contaminated ground around landfills due to things leaching out? maybe, but that’s a contained problem that can be dealt with locally as opposed to a global problem). Have to pick your focus and global climate change really has to be prioritized-- stop keeping plastic out of landfills, stop reducing plastic use, start working for cleaner plastics that are environmentally inert and hang on to those carbons. Make oil more valuable to use it in these inert products instead of burning it.

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That makes no sense. The best thing for the environment would be to simply leave as much of the petroleum in the ground as possible, not convert it into plastic products that we don’t even need just to shove it off into a landfill.

Humanity has been successfully brewing coffee without disposable plastic pods since the 15th century. We can do it again.


Be off with you and your crazy talk!


Enter Easy Serving Espresso, an open standard designed by Illy and soon followed by other coffee brands.
Is made with paer and coffe so it’s by design compostable, and most of E.S.E. coffe machines have also an adapter to make coffee using plain old ground coffee.

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That’s the kind of thing I use. I just load it up with freshly ground coffee the night before, run the machine before I head to work (or, these days, start working from home) and take my coffee to go. Then I clean it out when I get home so it’s ready for the next day.

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I watch the local SUV/F-150 posse drive past my window every morning one-way and then back 15 minutes later the other with their to go latte in hand.

I have a drip machine. I broke out the big capitalism and bought a entry level burr grinder a few years ago after I thought how at least I’m not burning petrol to have my morning coffee.

I believe their copywriter is either an algorithm or a cat. But yeah they be the worst at words.

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There’s even an estimate that there were enough coffee pods in landfills to circle the world about 12 times

Huh, so how many are in the stomachs of sea creatures, I wonder?

Yeah, I was gonna say. In some ways they’re worse, as they can’t, even in theory, be recycled, they won’t break down in household compost, and even under ideal, commercial composting conditions, they don’t necessarily break down. So, realistically, they’re just landfill like all the rest.

It’s because it’s not a Boing Boing, but a Boing Boing Shop, post.

What, even after all those offers for “amazing savings” that were selling things at or above the usual retail price? (I especially liked that recent offer for a refurbished Surface Pro that was “50% off” yet somehow still managed to cost more than a brand new unit from most retailers.)

Given the enormous amount of greenhouse gasses emitted in the process of extracting, refining, shipping, and processing it into plastic (then shipping, manufacturing and disposing of that), that’s a damned silly thing to say. (Especially since that doesn’t even get into the other pollutants produced.) The amount of fuel Texas is burning in flares at their oil wells is greater than their whole residential demand. Flaring alone represents about a tenth of the total the greenhouse gases of the oil and gas industry, before the oil is even out of the ground, and that’s 100% waste.


Yes, but by not using pods you’ll expose yourself to real, potentially dangerous and clearly unauthorized coffee. Who knows if it is safe? Who might have touched it. Don’t forget that it might come from South America or even Africa!
Pods, however, contain something that’s at least 60% coffee and 40% authorized additives and are wrapped in sterile and controlledly safe plastic. Think of your and your childrens’ safety! Eat more plastic!


While I agree with the rest of your arguments I feel pedantic enough to correct what might else be seen as first world arrogance: Coffee was brought to Europe in the 15th century by the turks. First records of coffee as a beverage date back to 9th century Ethiopia.


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