- Ceramic or Paper Cups? : TreeHugger:
[A study] concludes that you would need to use your ceramic mug 1,600 times for it to break even, in energy terms, with paper cups. This is due to the fact that kilns use incredible amounts of energy, as do dishwashers, whereas plastic cups are recycled quite efficiently in the UK.For me that's nearly 7 years of workdays... although these figures are pretty hard to tally up. We've been having a similar discussion at work recently. Our new office has no shared crockery, to support One Degree (our carbon neutral program). We find that logic a bit weird as it means everyone has to wash up their brought-from-home cup separately, which must use more water and detergent than our previous office's shared dishwashing regime. I'm yet to take in the cup, detergent, sponge and tea towel that will be required to make this work (I avoid shared office sponges since the time I saw someone clean up a spill on the floor, then throw the sponge back in the sink). In the meantime, all my take-away cups and water bottles go into recycling.
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