Decommissioned solar panels are subject to the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act — a federal law governing the management of hazardous waste. At NREL, he specializes in analyzing the environmental impacts of energy systems, using the tools of life cycle assessment, air quality engineering and sustainability analysis. With all of the solar panel company advertising, the information and talks at the EPA on solar power, and as a concerned citizen who tries to conserve energy and be a smart shopper, it makes perfect sense to explore solar power. Google maps for solar panels. How cool is this? 381 0 obj <>/Filter/FlateDecode/ID[<566A1A18B7397042B97D0FBD74908490>]/Index[365 23]/Info 364 0 R/Length 83/Prev 420490/Root 366 0 R/Size 388/Type/XRef/W[1 2 1]>>stream Her professional career includes a wide range of experience developing and evaluating programs on energy and conservation. He has more than two years of experience in end-of life electronics and solar sales for both residential and commercial customers, as well as nationwide business development. Waste Container Options. Call us at (877) 200-2029. The EPA describes universal waste as subject to a “streamlined” set of standards compared to other types of hazardous waste. Volume-to-Weight Conversion Factors (PDF). If you live in San Francisco or Boston, you can see the solar panels in your neighborhood on a map. Solar energy demand in California is expected to remain high in the coming years, due in large part to the state’s ever-growing framework of laws and policies aimed at promoting the use of clean energy (including, notably, the adoption of new building standards that require solar-powered systems to be installed on nearly all new … He holds a bachelor’s degree in psychology from Viterbo University. Regardless, solar panel waste disposal is a problem that needs to be addressed. Termination of Lease. %%EOF California has been a leader in the installation of solar energy with nearly 40 percent of the country’s total solar capacity and 50 percent of the solar energy systems installed in the U.S. The solar industry cannot claim to be a clean energy source if it leaves a trail of hazardous waste. EPA supports the growing green power market by purchasing and generating renewable energy in a variety of forms. Nowadays, there are a few organizations working to make solar panel recycling both complete and mainstream: Veolia This is needed to prevent toxic compounds from leaching into the environment, as well as to avoid disposal of valuable and finite resources into landfills. "Tenant" is the solar facility owner. �щ�� �- "Landlord" is the land owner. Jennifer Martin of the Illinois Sustainable Technology Center of University of Illinois, identifies and tracks emerging issues and research needs related to energy, waste, public health and the environment. See EPA’s, Shining the Light on Solar Panel Recycling - A Status Update, Introductory Slides for the August 22, 2019, Webinar (PDF), PV Modules End of Life Management Setting the Stage (PDF), A Survey of U.S. Policies and Initiatives (PDF), State Considerations for Solar Energy End-of-Life Management (PDF), Environmentally Responsible Solutions: Solar Panel Recycling (PDF). ISTC launched this initiative to lead efforts to prepare the state for a glut of end-of-life solar panels and ensure they are recycled and/or repurposed or disposed of properly. EPA Director Circular Economy Kathy Giunta said the investment in recycling through this Circular Solar grants program would help NSW meet its commitment of net zero CO2 emissions by 2050. The toxic metals used in PV modules can leach into groundwater if the modules are disposed improperly. Environmentally Responsible Solutions: Solar Panel Recycling Author: Casey Hines Dynamic Lifecycle Innovation - if you need access to this resource due to a disability, please contact the author. h�b```�V%A��1�AVAaA��������|�������=�bl��=�O�63��N �b��!�Ǔ�r��?�I�Ź��u��jA>��A�^�,GC�d� 2�;X#�:�\ƌ|�m�e`=�����F! Prior to joining SEIA, she managed UL’s global solar business for over 15 years. Contact Us to ask a question, provide feedback, or report a problem. At least, that is what my husband and I thought in the summer of 2010. An official website of the United States government. The Recycling Process of PV Modules at a Glance: Solar panels can be and are recyclable. (480) 482-7050 About Us ET. A 2018 report from the Institute of Energy Research suggests imposing a recycling fee on solar panel purchases. April 2016. Posted in Our Planet, Our Home, Posted on February 22, 2011 | Tagged alternative fuel campaigns, green technology, recycling, solar panel installation The solar energy market has grown significantly in the past few years. A new initiative by Recycle PV Solar … Recycling vs. disposal of PV panels As current PV installations reach the final decommissioning stage, efficient recycling and material recovery are preferable to disposing of panels in landfills. But, with the increase in solar panel use has come a new realization, the world is heading towards a new crisis when it comes to the safe disposal of solar cells. Evelyn Butler is the Senior Director of Codes and Standards at the Solar Energy Industries Association (SEIA). Solar–powered school buses. In 2010, China unveiled the first solar … Solar panels are mostly glass and metal, both of which are easily recyclable materials. Promoting reuse and recovery is certainly one of the goals of RCRA; however, this goal does not take precedence over ensuring the proper management of hazardous waste. Hines began his career with Dynamic Lifecycle Innovations in Information Technology asset disposition, focusing on memory and processors. Solar Panel Waste: The Dark Side of Clean Energy Tons of solar panels installed in the early 2000s are reaching the end of their lifecycles, posing a serious problem for the industry to contend with. 387 0 obj <>stream As of Jan. 1, a new California law became effective allowing for the management of decommissioned solar panels through recycling which will make recycling far more economical than before. A town in Wisconsin is using solar panels to charge hybrid electric school buses. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. Reuse, recycling, and reclamation should be viewed as ways of managing hazardous wastes which, if properly conducted, can avoid environmental hazards, protect scarce natural resources, and reduce the nations reliance on raw materials and energy. See EPA’s About PDF page to learn more. He holds a doctorate in Energy and Resources from the Energy and Resources Group of the University of California (UC), Berkeley. Solar panels are in a period of rapid growth. U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. 365 0 obj <> endobj Prior to his experience in the recycling industry at Dynamic Lifecycle Innovations, Hines worked with at-risk youth for six years at an alternative education school. This webinar covers the basics of the solar panel technology design and explores the impact of these solar panels on the waste management and recycling systems of today. Video: Shining the Light on Solar Panel Recycling - A Status Update Exit, Garvin Heath is a senior scientist in the Strategic Energy Analysis Center of the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL). U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. In a nod to environmental concerns, many owners of spent solar panels are already having them recycled rather than landfilled—and thereby harvesting residual value from old equipment that would otherwise be thrown away. EPA does not endorse any non-government websites, companies, internet applications or any policies or information expressed therein. But, absent a cogent PV recycling policy, the U.S. risks sending millions of solar modules and tons of toxics to landfill in the coming years. He also holds a Master of Science  in Environmental Engineering from UC Berkeley. 0 United States Environmental Protection Agency, Garvin Heath's webinar presentation slides, Garvin Heath's additional webinar presentation slides, Evelyn Butler's webinar presentation slides, Jennifer Martin's webinar presentation slides, You may need a PDF reader to view some of the files on this page. Jennifer’s work has been fundamental in the development and implementation of solar training workforce strategies, which are now helping to build a more robust solar energy market in the Midwest. Thursday, August 22, 2019, from 1:00 - 2:30 p.m. Current solar panel disposal practices are far from being environmentally friendly. Producing electricity with solar panels has gained popularity in recent years because the panels have become lighter and more efficient. You can get expert advice here to help you with that. When these panels enter landfills, valuable resources go to waste. Solar panels or parts that are not recycled and are slated for disposal may still be considered hazardous waste and subject to hazardous waste standards. endstream endobj 366 0 obj <. h�bbd``b`3�#��|Dԃ��� 1H������� n'�`�b ��[���&F�? Solar Panels Solar panels, also known as photovoltaic (PV) modules, present a looming expense to homeowners responsible for their removal and disposal at the end of their useful lives, as well as a potential environmental hazard. While solar panel recycling is not yet widespread in the United States, organizations are busy laying the important groundwork to build the necessary collection, management and recycling systems. California’s novel universal waste (UW) rules for disposing spent photovoltaic (PV) solar panels, which take effect Jan. 1, are raising uncertainty about how fast they may spur new in-state recycling facilities for the hazardous material, while solar industry and other groups are eyeing “cleanup legislation” to relax some of the new requirements. A federal disposal and decommissioning fund would then dispense funds to … While solar panel recycling is not yet widespread in the United States, organizations are busy laying the important groundwork to build the necessary collection, management and recycling systems. Solar panels have traditionally been recycled at general purpose glass recycling facilities, where the metal frames and glass parts are salvaged but the remaining parts are disposed of or burned. Recently passed legislation authorizes DTSC to adopt regulations to designate used/spent solar panels that are hazardous wastes as universal waste. In this case, California is allowed to include solar panels in its universal waste regulations because EPA has approved the changes to California’s universal waste program earlier this year. EPA’s regulations under RCRA include provisions for handling universal wastes, but, currently EPA’s regulations do not treat decommissioned solar panels as universal waste. The universal waste designation only applies to solar panel waste handled in California. Solar panels can be recycled, but the costs and the possible environmental impacts have stood to bar efficient and widespread recycling. Office of Resource Conservation and Recovery. Casey Hines  is a recycling sales executive at Dynamic Lifecycle Innovations. ��1�a�1�:��̗����Yz���-.�clvK�43�� ܻ�l� It also includes insights into efforts by state governments to address solar panels in the waste stream and the trends they are seeing. The new classification affects how long solar panel waste can be held on site before it is required to be transferred to another facility and reduces requirements for testing for certain hazardous materials. On average, silicon-based PV modules are 76% … Solar Panel Recycling Initiative. According to the Solar Energy Industries Association, solar energy has had an annual growth rate of 50% in the past decade and it is projected to continue growing.While solar panels are often considered to be sources of clean energy for 30+ years, their disposal requires some specialized processes. Subject: EPA Sustainable Materials Management Webinar presentation slides Created Date: 20190822132600Z EPA (2016a). This document provides best practices unique to siting solar PV on landfills for solar developers and landfill owners as well as federal, state and local stakeholders. endstream endobj startxref ��( � �zA He also has several years of experience as a recycling account manager and inside sales representative. %PDF-1.6 %���� His previous professional experience includes service as an environmental engineer at the U.S. EPA, in addition to various assignments with researchers at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory and the Environmental Defense Fund. (7 pp, 318 KB, About PDF) EPA (2016b). She is the lead staff liaison for several member groups on the following topics: Codes & Standards, including corrosion protection; Mounting Systems Manufacturers; the PV Recycling and End-of-Life Management; Operations and Maintenance; Quality Assurance, including best practices development; and Installer Safety & Workforce Development. Evelyn leads SEIA's strategy, proposal development, member engagement and policy advocacy efforts for SEIA’s technical areas. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has released a brief paper outlining difficulties the U.S. will face when recycling and safely disposing of materials used for green energy technologies.. Until the new regulations are adopted, solar panels that exhibit characteristics of hazardous waste must be managed … You may need a PDF reader to view some of the files on this page. Washington State is the only U.S. state that requires the manufacturer to develop a recycle plan, but the state requirement does not address the cost of recycling. He currently resides in Boulder, Colorado, where he also holds an adjunct research position at the University of Colorado at Boulder. Last updated on February 21, 2016. Solar panels are composed of photovoltaic (PV) cells that convert sunlight to electricity. 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