Single-Stream Recycling and Processing

recyclable itemsSingle-stream recycling refers to a system in which consumers mix recyclables rather than separate items by type. This method eliminates the step of sorting recyclables into categories such as paper, metal, and plastic.

These mixed recyclables may be placed in recycling carts or totes by those with curbside recycling service or dropped-off at collection sites throughout Macon County.

Curbside Single-Stream Recycling Drop-Off Single-Stream Recycling

After single-stream recyclables are picked up at the curb by a hauler or dropped-off at a collection site, the recyclables are transported to a material recovery facility where a series of sorting lines separate the items by type. Each separated material is then baled for shipment to another facility where it is processed further or made into new products. View a virtual material recovery facility here.

Single stream recycling has allowed for increased recycling, which in turn has lowered the amount of waste sent to local landfills. When materials are recycled and made into new products, large amounts of energy and resources are conserved and jobs are created. To learn more about the economics of recycling, click here for a link to the Recycling Economic Information Study by the Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity.