Single steam recycling allows you to commingle all of your recyclables in one receptacle rather than sorting them.
For instance, Rumpke is an example of a waste management service that provides single stream recycling.
Single stream recycling is made possible by Material Recovery Facilities (MRF). To better understand MRF, please watch the video.
It is important that individuals who use single stream recycling know what materials are recyclable by MRF. Not all recycled materials are processed by MRF. Therefore a material that is not MRF acceptable can slow down the entire process causing MRF to operate inefficiently.
I recommend that you go to your recyclers website to find out what recyclables they accept (Rumpke offers a list and a video to help people make the most of Rumpke's services. Additionally, here is a great visual that offers general info about single stream recycling.)
Finally, watching the MRF video helped me to realize how important the first 'R' of the Three R's is - REDUCE! MRF uses a lot of energy and manpower to operate, thus if we all thought twice about the materials we throw away (recyclable or otherwise), we would be doing our beautiful earth a huge favor.