Tea is everywhere – it is the second most popular beverage in the world after water, and can be found in almost 80% of US homes. Americans consumed 3.8 billion gallons of the stuff in 2017; mostly black tea. With such high numbers of tea lovers globally, the energy it requires to make a cup of tea starts to matter a great deal.
While you can find enough articles about the energy consumption of gas vs electric vs induction stoves, and all those vs electric tea kettles (with induction burners and electric tea kettles taking the lead on efficiency), one simple fact in this tea bonanza can easily be overlooked.
Are you ready for it?
Drum roll, please…
The trick is...
…boiling only the amount of water you actually need! Just, like, pure simple magic. Or, maybe just pure simple logic. On third thought, probably both.
The next time you go to make a cup of tea – no matter what stove or type of kettle you have – follow these simple steps:
- Measure the amount of water you need by pouring into your mug or cup first.
- Then, pour that water into your tea kettle.
- Boil away! Et voilà – the Earth thanks you.
For those still interested, apparently – with some wholesome tweaks – there’s more you can can do to green up that cup of tea even more. Loading up on loose leaf teas instead of those tea bags and avoid individually wrapped teas is a good place to start. In fact, tea bags have 10x the carbon footprint of loose leaf tea. Adding cow’s milk also significantly increases the carbon footprint of either your cup of tea of coffee.
If you can’t commit to loose leaf tea, then another better option is to choose companies that use compostable paper tea bags (that aren’t made of plastic) and, if the bags do come individually wrapped, then easily recyclable paper wrappers trump difficult to recycle plastic film wrappers.
Move over, coffee, it’s tea time!