Reduce Reuse Recycle: A Practical Example To Start Today

A Practical Guide To The Reduce Reuse Recycle System
An example of how you can apply the reduce, reuse, recycle system to minimise your environmental impacts with a small change to your lifestyle.

6 Quick Tips To Reduce Waste Today

Subscribe to our newsletter and get our FREE guide to cutting your waste.

This post may contain links to affiliate products where we will earn a small commission if you choose to purchase.

The Reduce, Reuse, Recycle System

The Reduce, Reuse, Recycle system is a powerful way we can minimise the negative environmental impacts of our everyday living. We all consume products on a daily basis that often require raw materials and energy to create and which create waste when we are finished with them. This ongoing consumption affects our environment.

By employing the reduce, reuse, recycle system we can begin to lessen these impacts by making small changes to our lifestyle.

Have you bought a takeaway coffee recently? If you have then it probably came in a disposable cup. These require paper, plastic and energy to create and we throw them away after just one use.

This is a huge waste of resources and energy which also creates 30,000 tonnes of coffee cup waste in the UK every year. Our takeaway coffee cups create the equivalent weight of over 2,370 double decker buses!

Reusaboo | Reduce Reuse Recycle | Coffee Cup Waste Infographic

By applying the reduce, reuse, recycle system to this problem we can see how we can minimise these environmental impacts.

Step 1: Reduce How Much We Are Using

Reduce is the first stage in the system because it is the most effective way to minimise the environmental impacts we create. The less materials and energy we use and waste we create the less demands we place on the environment.

So if we want to reduce the environmental impacts of our takeaway coffee cups we can use less of them. This will decrease the energy and raw materials we are using as well as the waste we create. Hurrah!

But does that mean we can’t have a coffee on the go any more? No! That is where the reuse stage of the reduce, reuse, recycle system comes in.

Step 2: Reuse What We Can

Reuse is next most important stage in the system as using something multiple times is much more sustainable than getting a new one every time we need it.

In our takeaway coffee cup scenario we can replace our disposable cup with a reusable coffee cup instead.

These lightweight cups can be carried with you and used in any cafe or coffee shop instead of a takeaway cup. Most high street and independent coffee shops also offer a discount for bringing your own cup.

Pret A Manger customers enjoy a discount of 50p for bringing their own reusable cup. This saved four million disposable cups from being used in 2018 and saved customers a total of £2m.

So a reusable coffee cup is not only more eco friendly but can also save you money as well.

At Reusaboo, we create bold and striking reusable bamboo coffee cups. Our mission is to fight waste and rebel against single-use, disposable culture.

We love bamboo because it’s fast growing, renewable, absorbs large amounts of CO2 and produces more oxygen than other plants. That’s why we think this makes it a perfect raw material for reusable cups.

Step 3: Recycle What Cannot Be Reused

Recycle is the final stage of the reduce, reuse, recycle system as it is the best solution when we can no longer reuse something.

Unfortunately the vast majority of our disposable coffee cups cannot be recycled. Indeed, only 1 in 400 of our takeaway coffee cups are actually recycled.

The problem is the waterproof plastic lining you see on the inside of the cups. These cannot be removed at standard recycling centres so our disposable cups usually go to landfill or Waste for Energy (WfE) schemes.

So unfortunately takeaway coffee cups fail at all three stages of the reduce, reuse, recycle system.

Our reusable bamboo coffee cups are biodegradable in just one to three years. This means that, unlike takeaway coffee cups, they can be easily disposed of when you are finished with them.

Applying The Reduce, Reuse, Recycle System

Now you have seen the reduce, reuse, recycle system in action you can take the next step by applying it yourself. Start where you feel you can make the biggest changes to your environmental impacts.


If you’d like to change your takeaway coffee habits then explore how our reusable bamboo coffee cups can help you make those first steps.

Share post

Share on facebook
Share on twitter
Share on linkedin
Share on pinterest
Disposable Coffee Cups Litter Bin | 6 Quick Tips To Reduce Waste Today | Reusaboo

6 Quick Tips To Reduce Waste Today

Subscribe to our newsletter and get our FREE guide to cutting your waste.

Popular articles

If you are trying to cut down the amount of plastic, paper and other disposable materials you’re using there are many eco-friendly bamboo products you can use instead. Our list of eco-friendly bamboo products has sustainable swaps to cut down plastic when you’re on the go, in the kitchen, bathroom or around the home.


Reusaboo are fighting waste and rebelling against single-use, disposable culture with our naturally sustainable, reusable and zero waste bamboo products.

Reusable Coffee Cup Savings Calculator | Reusaboo

How Much Could You Save With a Reusable Coffee Cup?

Find out with our savings calculator.
Coffee Cup Waste | Reusaboo

How Much Coffee Cup waste do you create?

Find out with our waste calculator.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *


Become part of the Reusaboo community to get sustainable living and zero waste tips, first access to new products, exclusive discounts and more. Sign up for our mailing list and follow us on social media.