The brand new digital waste administration guidelines mandate that producers accumulate and retailer waste modules until 2034-35 and keep a listing on the Central Air pollution Management Board’s portal, and a scientific launch and implementing these guidelines will permit India to realize a round photo voltaic financial system, write CEEW’s Akanksha Tyagi & Neeraj Kuldeep.
2022 is a vital 12 months for the photo voltaic vitality sector in India. In the case of renewables, the nation is specializing in all the things underneath the solar – manufacturing, deployment, and now, waste. The 12 months started with the Union Price range allocating an INR 19,500 crore production-linked incentive (PLI) scheme for home manufacturing of high-efficiency photo voltaic photovoltaic (PV) modules. And because the 12 months attracts to a detailed, the Ministry of Surroundings, Forest and Local weather Change (MoEFCC) introduced the principles for managing digital waste (E-waste), bringing photo voltaic PV cells, panels and modules underneath its purview. , which can be efficient. from April 2023. With the notification of those guidelines, India turned the third nationwide jurisdiction worldwide, after the EU and the UK, with a devoted regulatory framework to handle photo voltaic PV module waste.
The Central Electrical energy Authority (CEA) now predicts that renewable vitality will substitute coal by 2026, and solar energy is main the way in which. India has already commissioned 61 GW of photo voltaic capability, making it the fifth largest on this planet. With one other 44 GW of photo voltaic capability within the pipeline, India will quickly attain the high three. However what concerning the photo voltaic waste that can also be produced? It’s typically assumed that photo voltaic waste solely happens after 25 years of module life. Nevertheless, varied analyzes recommend that vital quantities of module waste are generated yearly from manufacturing scrap, module damages (transportation, pure occasions), and early finish of life.
Right here, we talk about the significance of those guidelines for the photo voltaic sector and the way the trade ought to put together for them.
What do the brand new photo voltaic waste guidelines imply?
The brand new E-waste administration guidelines are based mostly on the prolonged producer accountability (EPR) framework that directs photo voltaic module producers for accountable waste administration of their merchandise. Producers are entities that introduce a product to the Indian market by manufacturing and promoting, distributing, rebranding, or importing. Due to this fact, these guidelines place accountability for waste administration on everybody from photo voltaic cell and/or module producers to solar energy plant builders who import photo voltaic PV modules.
Put together for assortment and storage
The regulation mandates that producers accumulate and retailer waste modules until 2034-35 and keep a listing on the Central Air pollution Management Board’s portal. It additionally paves the way in which for necessary recycling of waste photo voltaic cells and modules. So, producers ought to begin growing reverse logistics for their merchandise to return waste modules from shoppers and prepare storage amenities for waste. As well as, finally, producers should channel this waste for reuse, restore or recycling in response to EPR targets.
Waste administration funding
The brand new photo voltaic waste guidelines come into impact in April 2023, when a good portion of future photo voltaic waste will come from India’s present photo voltaic capability. Most probably, producers don’t account for the price of waste administration in modules or initiatives. Moreover, there isn’t any industrial recycling facility photo voltaic module waste administration, so we have no idea the overall value of assortment, storage and recycling in Indian context. Within the present state of affairs, producers have to know financing mechanisms to handle their waste. This additionally requires factoring within the waste administration prices of latest photo voltaic capacities deliberate.
Use of hazardous supplies in photo voltaic cells and modules
The brand new guidelines require producers to fabricate and promote modules with out hazardous supplies reminiscent of lead and cadmium or hold the concentrations under the set limits of 0.1 and 0.01 % by weight in homogeneous kind. Whereas some producers supply photo voltaic modules with out hazardous supplies, the market continues to be dominated by modules containing these metals. Due to this fact, producers ought to concentrate on growing new photo voltaic cell and module applied sciences that adjust to these necessities. It will enhance the security of those merchandise and make the photo voltaic trade extra sustainable.
India’s photo voltaic ambitions should additionally embody waste
With these new guidelines on digital waste administration, the MoEFCC is sending a transparent sign to the trade that the enlargement of unpolluted vitality in India should occur sustainably. A scientific rollout and implementation of those guidelines will permit India to realize a round photo voltaic financial system. The photo voltaic trade ought to use it time to construct infrastructure, expertise and monetary capability to handle waste. Recovering strategic minerals, reminiscent of copper, silicon and silver, will assist the nation construct sturdy provide chains and safe India’s photo voltaic ambitions.
– The authors, Akanksha Tyagi, a Program Affiliate, and Neeraj Kuldeep, a Senior Program Lead, on the Council on Vitality, Surroundings and Water (CEEW), an impartial, non-profit analysis institute.
(Edited by: CH Unnikrishnan)
First Printed: December 31, 2022 11:20 AM THE