05/27/2014 02:24 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Kids Stoppin' Styrofoam at Dunkin' Donuts

The following petition was written by 4th and 5th graders Kaori, Sami, Hannah, Lauren, Becca, and Maya. These girls and their recess "Styrofoam Club" at The Park School in Brookline, MA, are passionate about helping the planet and came up with this idea.

A few years ago a similar group of my students took on the not-so-green Universal Pictures Lorax movie website with a petition and won. Now Park School kids are setting their eyes on the 1 billion toxic foam cups served up at Dunkin' Donuts each year. Come on Dunkin', we know your better than that! If MacDonald's can make the switch, you can, too!

Read more below about the problems of Styrofoam and to learn from these committed and caring kids. They're hoping you agree with their thoughts and sign their petition at to get Dunkin' Donuts to stop using Styrofoam cups by Earth Day 2015.
We know for sure that Dunkin' Donuts is a great place! We love having a Munchkin snack and a hot cocoa after school. However, we are deeply concerned about the Styrofoam cups they use. Many people don't realize that styrofoam is that bad, and they might think that Dunkin' Donuts doesn't use many styrofoam cups. But the ugly truth is that they sell more than 1.7 billion coffees a year, and most of them come in styrofoam. We have come to a conclusion, these cups are really affecting our lives, your life, and everything you care about. We're going to prove to you that Dunkin' Donuts has to stop using styrofoam or else there will be big consequences. Dunkin' Donuts should stop using it because, first of all, it's bad for the environment. Secondly, it's bad for animals. And lastly, because it causes human health issues. So, if you work at Dunkin' Donuts, or if you are connected to Dunkin' Donuts, please stop using Styrofoam cups by Earth Day, April 22, 2015.

First of all, these cups are bad for the environment. There is a chemical used in making styrofoam called hydrofluorocarbons that can trap up to 1,000 times more heat than CO2. And if there's too much hydrofluorocarbons in the sky, global warming will be a bigger problem. Another reason that styrofoam is bad for the environment is because it takes up 25% of our landfill space! Styrofoam is really bad for the environment.

Dunkin" Donuts Styrofoam Song (Frozen Melody) from Ted Wells on Vimeo.

Styrofoam is bad for the environment, so it is also bad for animals. It takes 500 years to break down, and in those 500 years, some animals will to eat it. When animals eat styrofoam, it prevents digestion causing starvation, leading to death. Another reason that styrofoam is bad for animals, is that there is a giant blob in the Pacific Ocean called The Great Pacific Garbage Patch. It is a humungous mound made out of garbage that people littered or got carried away by the currents. Researchers estimate that it is about the size of Texas.There is a lot of styrofoam in The Garbage Patch that animals eat, or get injured by, that leads to death.

Styrofoam is bad for the environment, it's bad for animals, but it also causes human health issues. 90,000 workers making it could be harmed. The effects are usually irritated skin, eyes, stomach effects, and common cold. If an worker is constantly having contact with styrofoam, it can cause hopelessness, headaches, sleepiness of body, weakness, or small effects on the kidney. Another shocking reason is that, drinks held in a styrofoam cup soak up a bit of something from the styrofoam. Scientists found this out by weighing a brand new styrofoam cup, and weighed the same cup after someone drank out of it. The cup was lighter!

On Dunkin' Donuts' website they say they are committed to our planet, "We recognize that everything we do has an impact on the environment. From the materials we use, to the way we construct and operate our stores, we are committed to adopting better, more sustainable approaches whenever possible." We admire this commitment, but believe it is time for Dunkin Donuts to do their part towards saving the world.

Dunkin" Donuts Styrofoam - Help from Ted Wells on Vimeo.

There are so many reasons why Dunkin' Donuts shouldn't use styrofoam cups. It's bad for the environment, it's bad for animals, and it causes human health issues. What this whole thing is about is if you guys would rather have a hotter coffee and save a few minutes, you'd have to be willing to risk your environment and your best friend and your family? If you would, that's too bad, but think about it. Please help us ask Dunkin' Donuts to switch to paper cups by Earth Day, April 22, 2015.