Starbucks, citing ocean threat, is ditching plastic straws

Starbucks

The coffee giant said Monday that it will replace the ubiquitous plastic straw with recyclable "strawless lids", as well as straws made from biodegradable materials, as part of a no-plastic-straws movement that has gained momentum in recent years.

Today, July 9, Starbucks has announced plans to eliminate all single-use plastic straws globally by 2020.

Last week, Seattle became the country's first major city to ban single use plastic straws. Unlike straws, the new lid can be recycled, the company said.

WATCH: Plastic straw ban? Some offer more environmentally friendly alternatives, such as straws made of paper, bamboo, steel, even Twizzlers. Seattle is believed to be the first major US city to ban single-use plastic straws and utensils in food service, according to the Seattle Public Utilities.

Other cities, like Fort Meyers, have banned plastic straws as well.

Several dead, injured after train derailed in Turkey
Local governor Mehmet Ceylan told the NTV channel that helicopters had already taken numerous injured away from the scene. Tekirdag governor Mehmet Ceyhan said the area where the derailment happened was muddy from heavy rain and hard to reach.

Starbucks will start the transition away from plastic straws in Seattle and in Vancouver in the fall, before launching a phased rollout in the U.S.in its fiscal 2019.

The company previously announced a $10 million effort to develop and introduce a "fully recyclable and compostable hot cup", according to the news release.

Starbucks said cold beverages in which a straw is typically included make up 50 percent of the drinks its sells, up from just 37 percent five years ago.

"For our partners and customers, this is a significant milestone to achieve our global aspiration of sustainable coffee, served to our customers in more sustainable ways", Starbucks CEO Kevin Johnson said in a statement. Straws add up to about 2,000 tons of the almost 9 million tons of plastic waste that ends up in waters around the globe each year.

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