Veolia has come up with recycling plant for the solar panels in Europe. It is Europe’s first solar panel recycling plant. Veolia is a French water and waste group. Veolia aims to build more such plants in future as it believes that tonnes of solar panels are about to reach the end of their lives.

This Europe’s first solar panel recycling plant is present in Rousset in the southern part of France. The plant affiliates with PV Cycle France to recycle about one thousand and three hundred tonnes of solar panels in the year 2018. PV Cycle France is the solar energy recycling organisation. It is being said that these one thousand and three hundred tonnes of solar panels will reach the end of their life in France this year itself. The plant is all set to ramp up around four thousand tonnes of solar panels by the year 2022.

Gilles Carsuzaa, “This is the first dedicated solar panel recycling plant in Europe, possibly in the world.” Gilles Carsuzaa is the head of electronics recycling at Veolia.

Veolia conveyed, “The first ageing photovoltaic (PV) panels – which have lifespans of around 25 years – are just now beginning to come off rooftops and solar plants in volumes sufficiently steady and significant to warrant building a dedicated plant.”

Till now, the aged or the broken solar panels have undergone recycling under the general-purpose glass recycling facilities. These glass recycling facilities retrieve only glass and aluminium frames. The speciality glass leftover is mixed with other glass types. Whatever remains after the completion of the recycling process, finds its fate in cement ovens.

In the year 2016, a study on solar panel recycling was worked out. IRENA said, “In the long term, building dedicated PV panel recycling plants makes sense. It estimates that recovered materials could be worth $450 million by 2030 and exceed $15 billion by 2050.” IRENA stands for International Renewable Energy Agency.

IRENA concludes, “Global PV waste streams will grow from 250,000 tonnes end 2016 – less than one per cent of installed capacity – to more than five million tonnes by 2050. By then, the amount of PV waste will almost match the mass contained in new installations.”