NEW YORK (CBSNewYork/AP) — Plastic straws seem to be becoming a thing of the past and Starbucks is joining the trend.
The coffee chain announced Monday that it would be eliminating all single-use plastic straws by the year 2020.
Instead, Starbucks said it will use a strawless lid that it designed, developed, and manufactured. It will become the standard for all iced coffee, tea, and espresso beverages.
If you’re bent on still using a straw for your drink, don’t worry, Starbucks says it will begin offering straws made out of alternative material for customers upon request.
The company cited environmental threats to the ocean and estimated this move will get rid of more than one billion plastic straws per year.
Just a week ago, Seattle banned plastic drinking straws and utensils. Similar proposals are being considered in places like New York and San Francisco.
The push to ban plastic straws gained traction after a viral video in 2015 showed rescuers removing a plastic straw from a sea turtle’s nose in graphic detail.
While plastic drinking straws have become one of the more high-profile environmental issues, they make up only about 4 percent of the plastic trash by number of pieces, and far less by weight. Straws add up to about 2,000 tons of the nearly 9 million tons of plastic waste that ends up in waters around the globe each year.
In February, Dunkin’ Donuts said it would eliminate polystyrene foam cups from its stores by 2020.
McDonald’s also said this year that it would use only recycled or other environmentally friendly materials for its soda cups, Happy Meal boxes and other packaging by 2025.
The strawless lids will begin to appear in Seattle and Vancouver Starbucks this fall, with phased rollouts within the U.S. and Canada next year. A global rollout of the strawless lids will follow, beginning in Europe where they will be used in some stores in France and the Netherlands, as well as in the United Kingdom.
(© Copyright 2018 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)