We all lead busy lives, and sometimes choosing a quick service meal is a great option. Fast food drive-thrus have become a convenient go-to, offering quick meals options to anyone that could use a break, or are on the move. Unfortunately, the convenience often comes with a hefty side of waste. From disposable cups to excessive packaging, the environmental toll of fast food drive-thrus is undeniable. But fear not! Here are four practical and easy solutions we can all implement to reduce this waste in Colorado.

Bring Your Own Reusable Items:

Picture this: you’re cruising through the drive-thru, but instead of adding to the mountain of single-use waste, you whip out your own reusable cup, container, and utensils. This simple act can reduce trash and set a powerful example for others. Keep these items handy in your car or go bag so you’re always prepared to make the sustainable choice. Moreover, ask about discounts, as many restaurants offer coupons to those who bring their own cups!

Use Recycling Bins:

Next time you find yourself at a fast food joint, keep an eye out for recycling bins. Reduce waste by separating recyclable items like paper cups, cardboard containers, plastic bottles, and aluminum cans from your other trash. Sometimes businesses have specific guidelines to ensure that your efforts do not go to waste (literally.) And if recycling bins are nowhere to be found, take those recyclables home for proper disposal.

Choose Restaurants with Sustainable Practices:

Supporting businesses that prioritize sustainability is a powerful way to drive change. Seek out fast food establishments that offer compostable packaging or implement recycling programs. By voting with your dollars, you send a clear message that environmental responsibility matters to you. Plus, it’s a win-win—you enjoy your meal guilt-free!

Opt for Minimal Packaging:

When placing your order, think twice about the extras. Do you really need that ketchup packet or napkin? If you are taking it home, can you skip the plastic utensils? Making conscious choices to minimize packaging waste can have a significant impact. Avoiding unnecessary extras reduces trash and helps conserve resources in the process. So, next time you’re asked if you want that extra straw, say no and save the planet one sip at a time.

As Coloradoans, we have the power to drive positive change right from the fast food drive-thru. By following these four easy tips, we can significantly reduce waste and pave the way for a cleaner future. Together, we can make a difference—one drive-thru at a time.