Waste360 is part of the Informa Markets Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them. Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

Need to Know

Single-Stream Recycling Is Easier for Consumers, But Is It Better?

Article-Single-Stream Recycling Is Easier for Consumers, But Is It Better?

Single-stream recycling seems so simple. There is a bin. You put everything that's not trash—whether it's paper, plastic or metal—into that bin. The city comes and takes that bin away. Easy.

The first communities to use this system, in the 1990s, were in California. By 2005, about a fifth of all U.S. communities with recycling programs used it. By the beginning of this decade, that number was more like two-thirds.

Single-stream recycling has two main advantages: Since it's so much easier than sorting out recyclables for individuals, it increases household recycling rates, and since it's easier to dump one can of stuff into a collection truck with one compartment, it saves cities money. But someone, eventually, does have to sort out the paper from the containers and the glass and cans from the plastic and the different types of plastics from one another.

Continue reading at The Atlantic

Hide comments


  • Allowed HTML tags: <em> <strong> <blockquote> <br> <p>

Plain text

  • No HTML tags allowed.
  • Web page addresses and e-mail addresses turn into links automatically.
  • Lines and paragraphs break automatically.