This week the Federal Government announced a proposal for solar panel recycling regulation, joining the Smart Energy Council in taking action on solar PV waste.
It’s crucial for government and industry to co-develop the right solar panel recycling policy for the smart energy industry and the environment.
The Smart Energy Council’s Solar Panel Recycling Pilot launched in March, the first stage of the trial focused on the recycling scheme’s design, engaging stakeholders and modelling a mix of locations.
The second stage will commence in the latter half of 2023, with on-ground collection, recovery and processing of solar panels.
The Federal Government’s ‘Wired for change‘ consultation follows the Smart Energy Council’s leading work, with the Queensland Government and The Activ Group, in facilitating Australia’s first industry-led Solar Panel Recycling Pilot.
At the end of the trial we expect to have collected between 12,000 and 24,000 panels; determining how many were recycled and how many could be re-used.
The Federal Government released their discussion paper on PV and e-product recycling: Regulation for small electrical products and solar photovoltaic system waste.
“Roughly $430 million worth of Australian e-waste ends up in landfills each year including solar panels, we’re glad the Federal Government is developing a national approach,” said Smart Energy Council CEO John Grimes.
“Our Queensland pilot is shifting into phase two, we are working directly with the solar industry to begin the recovery and recycling stage of our pilot.
“Our consultative committee meets regularly to ensure the Stewardship Scheme’s design is functional and applicable to developing a state-wide and national scheme.
“We hope the Smart Energy Council’s Solar Panel Recycling Pilot will better inform the Federal Government’s national approach.
The Federal Government is calling for feedback on the ‘Wired for Change’ discussion paper; the Smart Energy Council will provide advice on the learnings from our pilot.