I am back at Chan Chich, with one goal before I start focusing on my plan to go to graduate school. A recurring theme in my work for La Paz Group, especially at Xandari, has been the intersection of birds and coffee. And now I have some months to think about how this may relate to what I will study in graduate school. One of the programs I am considering applying to is the Masters in Environmental Management at the Yale School of Forestry. Can I link what I have learned while working to what I would study there? If so, maybe I could link that to what I do after grad school.
This other post today reminds me of the value of geeking out from time to time. Most of my attention to coral reef comes from Phil Karp’s posts on this platform and I admit to preferring stories featuring real people and their entrepreneurial approaches to conservation. But science is the other best friend of conservation. Today my attention is turning to coffee, in advance of the arrival this week of an intern coming from Cornell University’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.
Just one of the many topics for an intern, with science and research on her side, to help us tackle over the next ten weeks, bird-friendly coffee has been on been on my mind since last year but I have been waiting for the perfect moment to focus. Nothing like the arrival of an intern to focus your mind. And so today in my task-oriented wanderings I came across this website (click the banner above), which I loved immediately for sharing this news on capsules, but the rest of the site is a great resource for present purposes as well:
A short round-up of coffee news.
- Keurig is finally designing a more eco-friendly K-cup, Washington Post. I have written many times about K-Cups: the excess waste, when the company said they were recyclable but they really weren’t, as well as the high cost and better alternatives. This article announces the same old story: by 2020 K-Cups will be recyclable, they say this time by changing the plastic composition. The 2020 goal has been in place for many years. This article quotes the company as saying, “The consumer is going to brew it, peel and empty it, and pop the pod into the recycling bin in the same behavior they would do with a yogurt cup.” First, many people will NOT go to the trouble of peeling off the foil top and cleaning out the grounds. Second, the plastic will now be polyproplene (“#5”), a type of plastic which is still not accepted by many curbside services, especially if not in tub or bottle form. Sigh.
- Other single-serve pods used in these brewers also tout their sustainability. The Consumerist, in the article Ad Watchdog: These ‘100% Compostable’ Coffee Pods Don’t Go In Your Backyard Compost Pile, warns people to be careful of these kinds of claims.
- A Strong Case Against a Pesticide Does Not Faze E.P.A. Under Trump, New York Times. Chlorpyrifos is one of the common pesticides used on coffee. Buy organic. Everything.
- Colombian Coffee Growers Adapt to a Changing Climate, The Ecologist.