Australia’s Victoria Launches Solar Waste Challenge

Victoria State Government Seeking Innovative Ways To Recycle Solar Panels With $10 Million Equity Investment

Australia’s Victoria Launches Solar Waste Challenge

By 2035, Victoria expects 187,000 tons solar waste entering its waste stream. To prevent that from happening, it has launched a call to support projects that can come up with innovative ways to reuse and recycle solar panels. (Illustrative Photo; Photo Credit: rangizzz/

  • Australia’s Victoria has launched a $10 million round to fund innovative ways for solar panel recycling
  • It is seeking new or improved projects that can recycle or reuse solar panels with an aim to support local talent to address emerging problems
  • Projects offered may include new separation and recycling technologies, collection and logistics developments and ways to maximize harvesting of materials to create new, high value products

The State Government of Victoria in Australia has opened a $10 million round to award innovative projects that can help develop new ways to recycle solar panels and reduce their waste, under Breakthrough Victoria’s Solar Waste Challenge.

The government anticipates more than 187,000 tons of solar panels to enter its waste stream by 2035 and sees current options for managing and recovering valuable materials from panels as limiting.

Through the challenge, it is seeking projects that can offer new or improved technology to recycle or reuse solar panels for which it is ready to shell out investment funding. It calls this as the 1st step in the development of a commercially viable solar panel recycling system in the state.

With Breakthrough Challenge, as an equity investor Victoria targets to support new innovations locally and attract global talent to address emerging problems, and solar recycling is its inaugural theme.

The state has so far installed 600,000 solar systems out of more than 3 million deployed across Australia. Victoria aims to 40% of its renewable energy to come from renewables by 2025 and household solar alone is expected to generate 12.5% of the same.

Considering the country already has the highest per capital uptake of rooftop solar in the world, Victoria wants to address the situation for end-of-life solar PV systems.

“Valuable components like silicon and silver could be retrieved at a high value from the panels-but commercial technology does not yet exist at scale,” explained the administration. “Innovations may include new separation and recycling technologies, collection and logistics developments and ways to maximize harvesting of materials to create new, high value products.”

Victoria’s Minister for Solar Homes Lily D’Ambrosio added, “We’ve helped 200,000 households and businesses to install solar – driving down power bills and emissions – and now we’re creating more jobs and new industries as we boost Victoria’s recycling to meet our clean energy transition.”

About The Author

Anu Bhambhani

SENIOR NEWS EDITOR Anu is our solar news whirlwind. At TaiyangNews, she covers everything that is of importance in the world of solar power. In the past 9 years that she has been associated with TaiyangNews, she has covered over thousands of stories, and analysis pieces on markets, technology, financials, and more on a daily basis. She also hosts TaiyangNews Conferences and Webinars. Prior to joining TaiyangNews, Anu reported on sustainability, management, and education for leading print dailies in India. [email protected]

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