By SASHA FOOT
Local businesses in the Eastern Suburbs are initiating a sustainable movement for coffee culture in Bondi by banning takeaway cups for a week.
Over forty local cafes have signed up for the initiative taking place from 31 July-8 August.
Responsible Cafés, the non-profit behind Bondi BYO Cup Week, addressed the positive impacts that the campaign will have on the environment.
“These 40 or so cafes banning takeaway cups for the week will save more than 35,000 cups from landfill,” a Responsible Cafés spokesperson said.
Cafés will provide customers with sustainable options that include bringing a keep-cup from home, using the cafe’s ‘mug library’ or choosing to sit in at the café.
Waverley Council is supporting the ban by providing a $2,500 grant to the organisers of the BYO Cup group and has encouraged the community to get involved in the campaign.
“Plastic Free July and the BYO Cup Week are easy solutions to adopt simple lifestyle changes to help us individually reduce our impact, and be a part of the solution to reduce plastic waste,” a Waverley Council spokesperson told City Hub.
As part of the Council’s Second Nature Program, driven to make sustainability in the community second nature, Waverley Council is implementing Plastic Free July.
The Council has also assured that using keep cups will not interfere with COVID-19 regulations.
“There is no legislation prohibiting the use of BYO cups and containers during COVID-19 or otherwise in NSW,” the Council spokesperson said.
Local swimming group Salties saw the first-hand impact of excessive coffee cup use in Bondi.
“As our community grew, so did the number of takeaway cups we used,” Salties member Henry Meagher told City Hub.
Showing support for the removal of takeaway cups, Salties have made use of a growing collection of donated mugs offered by bRU Coffee in Bondi.
“After you’ve been living and swimming in Bondi for as long as we have, there is an inner urge to want to give back and take care of the place that brings you so much joy,” Henry said.
Bondi BYO Cup Week is a group initiative launched by local Sondra Beram and climate ambassador Sarah Wilson.
Wilson has long been outspoken about the need for community-led action to minimize cafe waste.
In response, bRU Coffee owner Sondra Beram worked alongside Wilson to launch Bondi’s BYO Cup Week.
“I wanted to do something as a café community. I believe in the power of numbers and that a community can do much more rather than just one café,” Beram said.
BYO Cup Week also hopes to set a Guinness World Record as part of the initiative.
“Bondi will become the first council locality in the world to go 100% takeaway coffee cup-free,” BYO said.
With the campaign beginning in late July, BYO Cup Week representatives are still calling on café owners in Bondi to register their establishment for the campaign.