Fun fact: Halifax doesn’t recycle paper coffee cups. Fun fact number two: if you bring your own mug to the Galley you save 25 cents on a cup of coffee.
When you use your own travel mug you’re not just helping the environment, you’re saving money too.
For the past two months, student society Sustainability King’s has been fleshing out an idea to bring back the same travel mugs that were included in the frosh packs in 2012.  

(Photo: Nick Holland / The Watch)
(Photo: Nick Holland / The Watch)

The plan is to sell the mugs at the Galley for five or six dollars, which would include a free coffee upon purchase.
Sustainability King’s hopes to get the word out about excessive waste and to get students to stop buying the non-recyclable coffee cups.
“There’s no way the Galley should be selling all these cups,” said Matthew Green, sustainability commissioner with the KSU and fourth-year student. Green heads up Sustainability King’s.
The Galley charges $1.50 to fill your travel mug with coffee. The usual cost, disposable cup included, is $1.75. Green feels a restructuring of the price system is the best way to influence students to bring a mug. He thinks there should be a price for coffee and a price for the cup, instead of getting the discount on coffee with a mug. In the end, students would still pay the same amount but are forced to think about their purchase of the cup.
“Hopefully this will be a step towards eliminating a lot of the paper cups that people are buying now,” Green said.   
The project of procuring the travel mugs will be funded by Sustainability King’s and the KSU, to keep the Galley from shouldering the additional costs. Profits from the travel mugs will go back to the KSU and Sustainability King’s.
Erica Guy is an employee of the Galley and said travel mugs are fairly popular, especially among professors. She said since the King’s bookstore started selling King’s mugs, students have been using them more as well.
Guy feels that getting rid of paper cups would be beneficial to both the environment and the café.
“In theory I really like the idea of getting rid of the paper cups,” said Guy.” “It would take care of a couple problems: one being waste and two the issue of ordering cups, which can be kind of stressful.”
Sustainability King’s continues to work out pricing and logistics for purchasing the mugs. No date has been set for when they hope to get the travel mugs on Galley shelves.
The plan to sell travel mugs is just one part of a larger campaign to revamp the Galley’s waste policy.
Members of Sustainability King’s created large signs to go over the three waste bins in the Wardroom. They will have pictures of the specific objects sold at the Galley and where they are supposed to go. These signs will be posted in the near future.

By David J. Shuman

David is the current editor-in-chief of The Watch and writes on student issues and events. Find him on Twitter: @DavidJShuman

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