GOOD

Spring Cleaning: You've Got a Latte to Improve on

Tips on greening your java and consuming more conscientiously.

This challenge is in partnership with Levi's ®


Caffeine is a fix that Americans show no sign of foregoing. The United States consumes one-fifth of the world’s coffee. To make a single cup of coffee, the process of farming and production requires the use of about 55 gallons of water. And due to climate change, we’re seeing a reduction incoffee yield for even higher prices. Before you guzzle your next latte, read our tips on greening your java and consuming more conscientiously.

Home is where the joe is. Basic math: If you buy just two cups of coffee per week at around $3.00 a pop, you’re spending more than $300 a year on your buzz. Buy beans instead. Use a French press. Or buy a reuseable coffee filter for your coffee machine or your pour-over. You save paper and money. Plus, who needs a milk steamer?

No more paper cups. If you’re not just addicted to the drink but to the coffee shop experience, bring your own mug. Some shops will even cut you a small discount. Get a cheeky paper cup look-a-like if you’re attached to your to-go aesthetic.

Buy organic and fair trade. Organic means your cup will be free of additives, pesticides, and genetically engineered crop. Fair Trade supports farmers and guarantees fair wages.

Buy shade-grown coffee. Coffee beans naturally grow best shrouded in shade, but over the years, leafy forests have been chopped down, coffee bushes crowded together and doused with chemicals to make them grow faster, and ecosystems forever altered. Look for beans that are Rainforest Alliance Certified, and learn more on the certification process at the Sustainable Agriculture Network. Follow GOOD’s guide to eco-friendly coffee labels.

Good even after the last drop. Coffee grounds are a great addition to compost piles!

Photo via (cc) Flickr user libraryman.

To learn more about how you can save water every day, click here and take the Water<Less Challenge.


Articles
via Douglas Muth / Flickr

Sin City is doing something good for its less fortunate citizens as well as those who've broken the law this month. The city of Las Vegas, Nevada will drop any parking ticket fines for those who make a donation to a local food bank.

A parking ticket can cost up to $100 in Las Vegas but the whole thing can be forgiven by bringing in non-perishable food items of equal or greater value to the Parking Services Offices at 500 S. Main Street through December 16.

The program is designed to help the less fortunate during the holidays.

Keep Reading Show less
Communities

For more than 20 years. Sen. Susan Collins (R-ME) has served the citizens of Maine in the U.S. Senate. For most of that time, she has enjoyed a hard-fought reputation as a moderate Republican who methodically builds bridges and consensus in an era of political polarization. To millions of political observers, she exemplified the best of post-partisan leadership, finding a "third way" through the static of ideological tribalism.

However, all of that has changed since the election of Donald Trump in 2016. Voters in Maine, particularly those who lean left, have run out of patience with Collins and her seeming refusal to stand up to Trump. That frustration peaked with the nomination of Brett Kavanaugh to the Supreme Court.

Keep Reading Show less
Politics
via Truthout.org / Flickr and Dimitri Rodriguez / Flickr

Bernie Sanders' presidential campaign looks to be getting a huge big shot in the arm after it's faced some difficulties over the past few weeks.

Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, a leading voice in the Democratic parties progressive, Democratic Socialist wing, is expected to endorse Sanders' campaign at the "Bernie's Back" rally in Queens, New York this Saturday.

Fellow member of "the Squad," Ilhan Omar, endorsed him on Wednesday.

Keep Reading Show less
Politics
Photo by HAL9001 on Unsplash

The U.K. is trying to reach its goal of net-zero emissions by 2050, but aviation may become the biggest source of greenhouse gas emissions in the U.K. by that same year. A new study commissioned by the Committee on Climate Change (CCC) and conducted at the Imperial College London says that in order for the U.K. to reach its target, aviation can only see a 25% increase, and they've got a very specific recommendation on how to fix it: Curb frequent flyer programs.

Currently, air travel accounts for 2% of global greenhouse gas emissions, however that number is projected to increase for several reasons. There's a growing demand for air travel, yet it's harder to decarbonize aviation. Electric cars are becoming more common. Electric planes, not so much. If things keep on going the way they are, flights in the U.K. should increase by 50%.

Nearly every airline in the world has a frequent flyer program. The programs offer perks, including free flights, if customers get a certain amount of points. According to the study, 70% of all flights from the U.K. are taken by 15% of the population, with many people taking additional (and arguably unnecessary) flights to "maintain their privileged traveler status."

Keep Reading Show less
The Planet