Producer responsibility and recycling solar photovoltaic modules
Rapid expansion of the solar photovoltaic (PV) industry is quickly causing solar to play a growing importance in the energy mix of the world. Over the full life cycle, although to a smaller degree than traditional energy sources, PV also creates solid waste. This paper examines the potential need for PV recycling policies by analyzing existing recycling protocols for the five major types of commercialized PV materials. The amount of recoverable semiconductor material and glass in a 1Â m2 area solar module for the five types of cells is quantified both physically and the profit potential of recycling is determined. The cost of landfill disposal of the whole solar module, including the glass and semiconductor was also determined for each type of solar module. It was found that the economic motivation to recycle most PV modules is unfavorable without appropriate policies. Results are discussed on the need to regulate for appropriate energy and environmental policy in the PV manufacturing industry particularly for PV containing hazardous materials. The results demonstrate the need to encourage producer responsibility not only in the PV manufacturing sector but also in the entire energy industry.
References listed on IDEAS
Please report citation or reference errors to , or , if you are the registered author of the cited work, log in to your RePEc Author Service profile, click on "citations" and make appropriate adjustments.:
- Klaassen, Ger & Riahi, Keywan, 2007. "Internalizing externalities of electricity generation: An analysis with MESSAGE-MACRO," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(2), pages 815-827, February.
- Jeffrey A. Dubin & Geoffrey S. Rothwell, 1990. "Subsidy To Nuclear Power Through Price-Anderson Liability Limit," Contemporary Economic Policy, Western Economic Association International, vol. 8(3), pages 73-79, 07.
- Tsoutsos, Theocharis & Frantzeskaki, Niki & Gekas, Vassilis, 2005. "Environmental impacts from the solar energy technologies," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 33(3), pages 289-296, February.
- Fthenakis, Vasilis M., 2000. "End-of-life management and recycling of PV modules," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 28(14), pages 1051-1058, November.
- van Sark, W.G.J.H.M. & Brandsen, G.W. & Fleuster, M. & Hekkert, M.P., 2007. "Analysis of the silicon market: Will thin films profit?," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(6), pages 3121-3125, June.
- Kenny, R. & Law, C. & Pearce, J.M., 2010. "Towards real energy economics: Energy policy driven by life-cycle carbon emission," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(4), pages 1969-1978, April.
- Owen, Anthony D., 2006. "Renewable energy: Externality costs as market barriers," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 34(5), pages 632-642, March.
- Jäger-Waldau, Arnulf, 2007. "Photovoltaics and renewable energies in Europe," Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, Elsevier, vol. 11(7), pages 1414-1437, September.
- Mathews, John, 2007. "Seven steps to curb global warming," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(8), pages 4247-4259, August.
- Sinha, Parikhit & Kriegner, Christopher J. & Schew, William A. & Kaczmar, Swiatoslav W. & Traister, Matthew & Wilson, David J., 2008. "Regulatory policy governing cadmium-telluride photovoltaics: A case study contrasting life cycle management with the precautionary principle," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 36(1), pages 381-387, January.
- Sterner, Thomas, 2007. "Fuel taxes: An important instrument for climate policy," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 35(6), pages 3194-3202, June.
- Eyre, Nick, 1997. "External costs : What do they mean for energy policy?," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 25(1), pages 85-95, January.
- Branker, K. & Pearce, J.M., 2010. "Financial return for government support of large-scale thin-film solar photovoltaic manufacturing in Canada," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 38(8), pages 4291-4303, August.
- Roth, Ian F. & Ambs, Lawrence L., 2004. "Incorporating externalities into a full cost approach to electric power generation life-cycle costing," Energy, Elsevier, vol. 29(12), pages 2125-2144.
- Flavin, Chris & Lenssen, Nicholas, 1992. "Policies for a solar economy," Energy Policy, Elsevier, vol. 20(3), pages 245-256, March.
When requesting a correction, please mention this item's handle: RePEc:eee:enepol:v:38:y:2010:i:11:p:7041-7047. See general information about how to correct material in RePEc.
If references are entirely missing, you can add them using this form.