NREL Research Points to Strategies for Recycling of Solar Panels

Researchers at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL) have conducted the first global assessment into the most promising approaches to end-of-life management for solar photovoltaic (PV) modules.

PV modules have a 30-year lifespan. There is currently no plan for how to manage this at end of their lifespan. The volume of modules no longer needed could total 80 million metric tons by 2050. In addition to quantity, the nature of the waste also poses challenges. PV modules are made of valuable, precious, critical, and toxic materials. There is currently no standard for how to recycle the valuable ones and mitigate the toxic ones.

Numerous articles review individual options for PV recycling but, until now, no one has done a global assessment of all PV recycling efforts to identify the most promising approaches.

“PV is a major part of the energy transition,” said Garvin Heath, a senior scientist at NREL who specializes in sustainability science. “We must be good stewards of these materials and develop a circular economy for PV modules.”
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$10bn of precious metals dumped each year in electronic waste, says UN

A fast growing mountain of toxic e-waste is polluting the planet and damaging health, says new report

Ecotechprom electronic and electric equipment recycling plant in Moscow<br>MOSCOW, RUSSIA - FEBRUARY 21, 2020: An employee at the Ecotechprom electronic and electric equipment recycling plant of the Ecopolis Corporation, Russia’s leading enterprise investing in recycling and utilization of electronic and electric equipment; its recycling efficiency reaches 95% of the incoming volume. Sergei Karpukhin/TASS (Photo by Sergei Karpukhin\TASS via Getty Images)

A worker at an electronic and electric equipment recycling and reuse plant, belonging to Ecopolis Corporation, in Moscow. Photograph: Sergei Karpukhin/Tass

At least $10bn (£7.9bn) worth of gold, platinum and other precious metals are dumped every year in the growing mountain of electronic waste that is polluting the planet, according to a new UN report.

A record 54m tonnes of “e-waste” was generated worldwide in 2019, up 21% in five years, the UN’s Global E-waste Monitor report found. The 2019 figure is equivalent to 7.3kg for every man, woman and child on Earth, though use is concentrated in richer nations. The amount of e-waste is rising three times faster than the world’s population, and only 17% of it was recycled in 2019.

Electronic and electrical goods, from phones and computers to refrigerators and kettles, have become indispensable in modern societies and enhance lives. But they often contain toxic chemicals, and soaring production and waste damages human health and the environment, and fuels the climate crisis.

The report blames lack of regulation and the short lifespan of products that are hard or impossible to repair. Experts called the situation a “wholly preventable global scandal”.

People in northern Europe produced the most e-waste – 22.4kg per person in 2019. The amount was half as much in eastern Europe. Australians and New Zealanders disposed of 21.3kg per person, while in the US and Canada the figure was 20.9kg. Averages across Asia and Africa were much lower, at 5.6kg and 2.5kg per person respectively.E-waste contains materials including copper, iron, gold, silver and platinum, which the report gives a conservative value of $57bn. But most are dumped or burned rather than being collected for recycling. Precious metals in waste are estimated to be worth $14bn, but only $4bn-worth is recovered at the moment.
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Càng mua hàng online, càng làm hại môi trường?

BY TỊNH ANH  – 14.08.2019, 16:58
TTCT – Mua sắm qua mạng trước giờ vẫn được cho là giúp bảo vệ môi trường. Nhưng khi thương mại điện tử bùng nổ, những yếu tố từng là ưu điểm trong việc giảm ô nhiễm lại phản tác dụng.
Càng mua hàng online, càng làm hại môi trường?

Khi bàn đến tác động xấu của thương mại điện tử (TMĐT) tới môi trường, ta thường nghĩ ngay đến khâu giao hàng vì liên quan đến xe cộ chạy trên đường và khí thải. Tiếp tục đọc “Càng mua hàng online, càng làm hại môi trường?”

Vietnam’s biggest bookstore chain to eschew plastic bags

Fahasa will stop using single-use plastic bags, replacing them recycled paper bags and wrappings. Photo courtesy of the company.

VNE By Nguyen Quy July 23, 2019 | 04:00 pm GMT+7

Fahasa will stop using single-use plastic next month and shift to biodegradable bags and paper wrappings.

Starting August 1, Fahasa, Vietnam’s biggest bookstore chain, will use a paper band to wrap books purchased from their shops for customers who bring their own bag, the company has recently announced on its official Facebook page. Tiếp tục đọc “Vietnam’s biggest bookstore chain to eschew plastic bags”

How can development cooperation address ocean plastic pollution?

23 January 2018

In the first weeks of 2018 there were (for me) unexpected announcements from both the EU and the UK Government on the urgent global issue of ocean plastic pollution. The EU intends to make all plastic packaging on the European market recyclable by 2030 and in her speech announcing the UK’s 25 Year Environment Plan, Prime Minister Theresa May committed the UK to eliminating all “avoidable plastic waste” by 2042. The Prime Minister also said it would direct UK aid to help developing nations reduce plastic waste, which could indicate a new direction for the UK’s and other countries’ aid programmes.

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Beyond recycling: solving e-waste problems must include designers and consumers

theconversation_Agbogbloshie, an area in the city of Accra Ghana, is usually portrayed as an e-waste dump. A more accurate picture would include the repair and refurbishment economy. Agbogbloshie Makerspace Platform

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E-Waste in East and South-East Asia Jumps 63% in Five Years

  • 2017•01•15     BONN

    The volume of discarded electronics in East and South-East Asia jumped almost two-thirds between 2010 and 2015, and e-waste generation is growing fast in both total volume and per capita measures, new UNU research shows.

    Driven by rising incomes and high demand for new gadgets and appliances, the average increase in e-waste across all 12 countries and areas analysed — Cambodia, China, Hong Kong, Indonesia, Japan, Malaysia, the Philippines, Singapore, South Korea, Taiwan, Province of China, Thailand and Vietnam — was 63% in the five years ending in 2015 and totalled 12.3 million tonnes, a weight 2.4 times that of the Great Pyramid of Giza.

    China alone more than doubled its generation of e-waste between 2010 and 2015 to 6.7 million tonnes, up 107%. Tiếp tục đọc “E-Waste in East and South-East Asia Jumps 63% in Five Years”

HCM City vows to reduce waste landfill, replace with recycling

Last update 08:10 | 13/06/2017
VietNamNet Bridge – Sorting waste at the source and recycling are two of the solutions being implemented in HCMC to control issues posed by garbage dumping.

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A report shows that the city produces 7,500 tons of waste, while the figure is expected to increase to 10,000-12,000 tons by 2020.

Hazardous solid waste is around 150,000 tons per year, including 6,300 tons of hazardous healthcare waste per year.

Dumping waste remains the major solution to waste treatment. However, experts say the technology, which was considered suitable many years ago, is no longer reasonable. Tiếp tục đọc “HCM City vows to reduce waste landfill, replace with recycling”