Alexander said in a statement: "I am really excited to have developed something that can be part of this big transformation of going strawless." .
According to the Associated Press, scientists estimate 2,000 tons of straws end up in the ocean every year, posing a significant danger to marine life.
In order to render plastic straws needless, Starbucks will be transitioning from the regular flat plastic lids to a new kind of lid with a raised lip to drink from, the company shared in a news release.
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"*Gets rid of plastic straw *Replaced with large plastic sipping lid", wrote one Twitter user. While Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has pledged Canada's support for the global declaration, he stopped short of committing to an outright ban on plastic straws in Canada.
As well as the lid innovation, Starbucks has invested $10 million to conjure the design of a fully recyclable and compostable hot cup. Recipe Unlimited Corporation, formerly known as Cara Operations, and its 19 brands will phase out using plastic straws by the end of March 2019.
While Australia still comes to grips with the single-use plastic bag ban adopted by supermarkets Woolworths and Coles and other retailers, plastic straws have become another battleground for companies looking to reduce waste.
The movement to eliminate single-use plastic straws is gaining momentum globally as consumers are showing an increasing concern for the issue of waste. 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. "As we partner with Starbucks in waste reduction initiatives such as Next Gen Consortium Cup Challenge and WWF's Cascading Materials Vision, we hope others will follow in their footsteps".