Central Kentucky Fiber Resources, LLC   847 Angliana Ave  Lexington,KY40508   (859) 225-8100

What is Single-Stream Recycling?

What is Single-Stream Recycling?

If your community offers curbside recycling services, then you're likely handed a recycling bin upon taking up residency. Then, over the course of a week, you pitch aluminum cans, glass jars, plastic bottles, cardboard and newspaper into said plastic bin, put it on the curb next to your trash on garbage day and wait for it to be picked up. 

If you've ever paid close attention to the recycling truck, you'll see that the workers literally just dump your bin's contents into it, then carry on to the other homes along the route.

Now, it's obvious that newspaper isn't recycled the same way that glass is, so in order to effectively reprocess the items in your recycling bin — and all the bins that are collected throughout your neighborhood — recyclables are first manually sorted into appropriate categories once the truck returns to the recycling center. Only then can the process truly continue.

This type of recycling, where all recyclables are placed in a single bin to be sorted and reprocessed later, is known as "single-stream recycling." And while it's the most popular municipal recycling method, it's also a viable method for industrial recycling.

The Benefits of Single-Stream Recycling

Single-stream recycling was originally conceived as a means of recycling that would offer unprecedented convenience for people. The thinking was that if residents weren't required to sort recyclables, and could merely just toss them into a bin, more people would be enticed to participate. In addition to the convenience benefit of single-stream recycling, collection costs have also proven to be much cheaper, although processing costs are a tad higher.

In addition to the convenience benefit of single-stream recycling, collection costs have also proven to be much cheaper, although processing costs are a tad higher.

Single-Stream vs. Dual-Stream Recycling

The other most popular recycling method is dual-stream, which is a system where residents separate their recyclables into two piles/bins — one is usually for aluminum and glass and the other is usually intended for paper and cardboard. Via this method, there's little manual sorting that needs to be done at the processing center, which helps to save on processing costs. The downside, however, is that it's not quite as convenient for residents as the single-stream method.

Both single-stream and dual-stream, or really any type of recycling process, is nothing but positive, however. It keeps reusable materials and products out of landfills, conserves natural resources and is able to help in the creation of goods and products that are cheaper than those made with virgin materials.

Contact Us Today

Here at Central Kentucky Fiber Resources, we specialize in recycling whether for all different types of materials. For more information on all of our offerings, and to schedule a consultation to start an industrial recycling program with us, contact us today at 859-225-8100.