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FAQ

What is Single Stream Recycling?

Single stream is simply co-mingling several traditional recycling waste streams at the collection point. All recyclable items can go in one bin; items are then separated at a processing facility.  This type of recycling has made it possible for cities and universities to meet their waste diversion rates.  By utilizing a single recycling container, the process is more efficient. In addition, since the City of Brookings also utilizes a single stream process, it makes collection standardized and efficient.

I find the bin color coding confusing. Can you explain what each color means?

Yellow is for trash. Blue is for recycling. The color codes were implemented to follow the sustainability slogan at South Dakota State University – “yellow and blue make green”. Check out Bins & Dumpsters to help identify each bin.  NOTE: SDSU is in the process of changing recycling bins and dumpsters from green TO blue. During this transition all old green recycling bins are still functioning and used for recycling. Please accept our apologies for any confusion during this period. 

Are our recyclables really recycled?

Yes. The waste collected in the single stream containers is picked up by custodial staff and placed in large outdoor dumpsters. Brookings Dumpster then empties the dumpsters twice a week and hauls the material to Millennium Recycling in Sioux Falls. Please note that the only recycling that ends up in the landfill is the contents of a contaminated bag of recycling or recyclable items placed in the trash.  Please help us prevent this by taking care to put recycling and waste in the correct containers! See Recycling Guide for more details.

What happens once recycling leaves campus?

Brookings Dumpster picks up all recycling material from campus. It is then hauled down to Millennium Recycling in Sioux Falls. Here the items are sorted, prepared, and sent off to companies who will create new materials from the recycled items.