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Solar Collection

CPSC SOLAR PANEL STEWARDSHIP 

CPSC is leading several solar panel recovery projects and policy development in California that expand circular solar energy systems with reduced cost-burden on local government and rate payers through producer engagement.

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WHY CARE ABOUT SOLAR PANELS

Solar panel installation is on the rise across the country, with California taking the lead, and are play an essential role in the country's net-zero emissions goals. However, solar panels have a life expectancy of 20-30 years, with factors such as weather events leading many panels to be replaced even sooner. As solar panels are being removed, lack of recycling and proper end-of-life management leads to solar contractors stockpiling these panels. 

HOW TO FIND OUT IF YOUR PANELS CAN BE REUSED 

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For working panels, recycling is not preferred as the waste hierarchy promotes reuse over recycling. Reuse can serve as a form of source reduction and equity as more people can have access to low-cost panels. In order for panels to be reused, they must pass certain safety certifications. The California Energy Commission maintains a list of PV modules available for purchase which shows information about the PV modules such as manufacturer, model number, as well as information regarding safety certifications.

Review the Full List of PV Models.

THE FUTURE OF SOLAR PANEL RECYCLING

Many states across the country, including California, have changed the classification of solar panels from Hazardous Waste to Universal Waste. This classification makes solar panels disposal and recycling easier and less expensive. For a full list of states that classify solar panels as Universal Waste, visit thState Universal Waste Programs Web page

To create a proper end-of-life management plan for solar panels, the International Renewable Energy Agency suggests creating one based on the extended-producer-responsibility (EPR) principle, which holds producers responsible for the environmental impact of their products through to end-of-life and provides incentives for the development of greener products with lower environmental impacts and contributes funds to finance proper collection, treatment, recycling and disposal systems.

FREE SOLAR PANEL COLLECTION OPPORTUNITIES IN CALIFORNIA

CPSC has completed the solar pilot projects in the City of Santa Monica and Butte County. Read more about the pilot projects in the City of Santa Monica and Butte County and opportunities for engagement.

For more information, email: info@calpsc.org

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Solar Panel Recovery Opportunities with CPSC

Email info@calpsc.org for information

INFORMATION ON SOLAR PANEL PILOT PROJECTS IN CALIFORNIA

Below is a short, 15-minute video explaining CPSC's role in solar panel regulations in California, an explanation of the active pilot projects, and how you can get involved with CPSC to push solar panel recovery systems in California.

CPSC SOLAR PILOT PROJECTS

Watch the videos below to learn about CPSC's partnership with CalRecycle, Butte County, and the City of Santa Monica to pilot a first-in-the-state solar panel reuse and recycling program. 

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SONOMA COUNTY SOLAR PILOT PROJECT

View the presentation below to learn about Zero Waste Sonoma's Solar Panel Pilot Project in partnership with CalRecycle, and Conservation Corps North Bay. Learn more: https://zerowastesonoma.gov/materials/solar-panels 

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