Coffee is one of the most consumed drinks in Canada and across the world. In fact, over two billion cups of coffee are consumed worldwide every day. From instant or soluble coffee to coffee capsules and a variety of brews, we have a plethora of options to choose from for that kick of caffeine.

But how often do we think about the carbon footprint these tiny cups of coffee leave behind? The life cycle of coffee, starting from its production, moving through manufacturing and consumption, and ending with the waste generated, leads to carbon emissions on a daily basis.

Today in The Conversation Canada, Luciano Rodrigues Viana, Charles Marty, Jean-François Boucher and Pierre-Luc Dessureault from the University of Québec at Chicoutimi talk about the role of each individual in limiting the carbon footprint of coffee.

These researchers say that while the process of coffee production greatly contributes to its carbon footprint and it is crucial to streamline those processes, it is also important to monitor individual coffee consumption habits that can amplify emissions when replicated by billions of people daily.

Also today:

Freny Fernandes

Assistant Editor, Environment + Energy

Scientists say that wasting coffee and water while making a cup of coffee has a larger carbon footprint than using coffee capsules. (Unsplash)

Here’s how your cup of coffee contributes to climate change

Luciano Rodrigues Viana, Université du Québec à Chicoutimi (UQAC); Charles Marty, Université du Québec à Chicoutimi (UQAC); Jean-François Boucher, Université du Québec à Chicoutimi (UQAC); Pierre-Luc Dessureault, Université du Québec à Chicoutimi (UQAC)

Coffee capsules aren’t the biggest carbon culprits. It’s better to use a capsule than to waste coffee and water.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau speaks during a news conference as a member of his RCMP security detail stands by on Bowen Island, B.C., in July 2022. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

The lack of RCMP protection officers is a risk to Canada’s national security

Sean Spence, University of Portsmouth

The status quo in terms of Canada’s protection of public officials is untenable and poses a serious risk to the country’s national security.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Defence Minister Anita Anand join U.S. officials in a NORAD briefing at the North American Aerospace Defense Command and United States Northern Command Headquarters in Colorado Springs, Colo., in June 2022. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

Amid tumultuous times, NORAD needs a consistent Canada-U.S. commitment

Andrea Charron, University of Manitoba

NORAD is having a moment in the wake of growing tensions between the United States, China and Russia. Will it last?

The term ‘neurodiversity’ comes from autistic communities and means that all brains and ‘bodyminds’ work in diverse ways. (Shutterstock)

What exactly is ‘neurodiversity?’ Using accurate language about disability matters in schools

Michael Baker, University of Manitoba

Language used to speak about disability changes over time, and preferences shift due to advocacy and allyship, legal proceedings and empirical research.

La Conversation Canada

Les femmes sont moins nombreuses dans les postes de direction qu'avant la pandémie. Plusieurs facteurs l'expliquent, mais le fait que les femmes privilégient le télétravail n'aide en rien à leur promotion. Shutterstock

Direction d'entreprise : les femmes perdent du terrain. Elles doivent être stratégiques, mais la culture doit aussi changer

Louise Champoux-Paillé, Concordia University; Anne-Marie Croteau, Concordia University

Loin de progresser, la place des femmes dans les postes de direction régresse dans les entreprises. Plusieurs facteurs post-pandémie sont à l’œuvre, mais tant les hommes que les femmes y perdent.


Culture + Society