Absurdly Driven looks at the world of business with a skeptical eye and a firmly rooted tongue in cheek. 

There's a little hemorrhoidal tension when a company led for many years by a man of stoutly liberal principles seems to flout one of those liberal principles.

After all, it's an odd quirk of existence that it's liberals who seem to want to save the Earth, rather than some conservatives.

Many people might, on finishing their large Starbucks cup of milk with some coffee attached, think they can just toss it in the recycling.

The truth, however, is that these cups are very hard to recycle. Mostly because they're covered in a thin layer of plastic that keeps your drink warm.

Finally, Starbucks has announced that it's going to do something about it.

"Today, we are declaring a moon shot for sustainability to work together as an industry to bring a fully recyclable and compostable cup to the market, with a three-year ambition," the company announced.

Starbucks says it's committing $10 million "in partnership with Closed Loop Partners and its Center for the Circular Economy to establish a groundbreaking consortium to launch the NextGen Cup Challenge."

The coffee chain says its dream is to see its cups composted and turned into a napkin or even a chair.

Please imagine the joy of wiping your mouth, turning to your lover as you do, and saying: "And to think I'm wiping my mouth with an old Starbucks cup. The Earth is saved. Let's have babies."

Can Starbucks get there in three years? 

If it did, it still might just miss a potential run for president from its emotional core, Howard Schultz.

Still, this isn't the first idea Starbucks has recently tried with respect to environmental protection.

In January, it began to experiment with charging customers for cups.

Which the life-addled feared was merely a way to make a little more money.

Indeed, it's not as if just making an announcement is going to please everyone.

Please enjoy this quote offered to me by Todd Paglia, executive director of pressure group Stand.earth.

"Starbucks today agreed to solve its 4 billion disposable cups per year problem, putting it on the right side of history for forests and climate--we think," he said.

Ah, why's your cappuccino so dry, Todd?

"This is the third such commitment Starbucks has made, and if they follow through, it will change the impact of its cups and the worldwide cup market," concluded a marginally optimistic Paglia.

The third commitment? 

Aren't third marriages really successful?

Published on: Mar 20, 2018
The opinions expressed here by Inc.com columnists are their own, not those of Inc.com.