Volunteers from a Lichfield group are trying to help local businesses cut down on their plastic waste. Members of Transition Lichfield, supported by Low Carbon Lichfield (LoCaL), are surveying food and drink companies to determine the types of single-use plastics being used. They then hope to help companies look at ways to reduce the usage or use alternative products. Melbourne Coffee in Bolt Court and Bird Street is one of the Lichfield companies that has already ditched plastic items. Owner Deb Pease said: “We have always used compostable lids and cups for takeaway coffees, we don’t give out stirrers, and napkins are only given on request – we encourage customers to bring their reusable cups in exchange for a discount and are happy to fill up water bottles. “We have had aggressive patrons who don’t understand why we don’t sell bottled water and carbonated beverages. “When we first opened we handed out 140 reusable cups to business owners in Lichfield, to act as Environmental Champions and we hoped they would encourage others to make the switch. “We will continue to try and make a difference but it is the big chains who need to bring about change in their use of plastics.” Transition and LoCaL are offering their support to those who would like to learn more about what they can do to cut the use of plastics. On June 6, LoCaL’s Anthony Walters will deliver a talk at the George IV pub about developing a ‘circular economy’ for Lichfield. The idea would see maximum reuse of consumables. Philippa Birch, chair of LoCaL, said, “The long term goal is to build an alliance of businesses and consumers with a strong social responsibility who want to see Lichfield as the first plastic free city.”
A new initiative has also seen businesses across the city sign up to the South Staffordshire Water tap water refill scheme.
The project sees a blue ‘Refill’ sticker in the window of participating retailers to indicate they will top up your water bottle.
For more details on the Lichfield Transition group email firstname.lastname@example.org. Businesses can get Refill stickers by emailing email@example.com.