Direct from Keurig's website: Answer The challenge of protecting the freshness of roasted coffee while using environmentally friendly packaging is one that both Keurig and the coffee industry are committed to overcoming. We are very sensitive about the waste created by the K-Cup® packs and are investigating alternative materials. Finding a solution for this is a priority for us, and one we hope to have before long.
They appear to be, they are molded light polyethelene with a synthetic foil top. Invented by the Swiss who are known for their green footprint. I'm not with the EPA, but I would say they are far more eco-friendly than the mercury vapor light bulbs we all have to purchase.
The k cups for the Keurig Vue machine are recyclable and the coffee bag & coffee are compostable, but you have to manually separate them when they cool off. I also empty the regular (ie not Vue) pods and put the coffee grounds in my compost, but those pods are not recyclable plastic.
Certainly. I regularly blend the cups, the used grounds, their foil tops and their internal mini "Mr. Coffee" style paper filters into a fine powder and add them to my seaweed and wild mushroom smoothies, adding a splash of imported Moldavian rutabaga juice and an ounce of gluten-free, fair-trade Venezuelan synthetic goat soy protein powder.
If I'm not hungry that day (or blocked up from the previous day's fare) I simply add the used K-cups to the 4-meter high pile of 750ml plastic bottles left from my automatic delivery of Acqua di Cristallo Tributo a Modigliani water I have FedExed in from France.
Sometimes I just throw them into the trash, however, and they simply go "away."